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These real beetles wear mini backpacks that can detect humans trapped under the rubble during an earthquake

THE world’s smallest disaster squad has been created in the form of backpack-wearing beetles. Remote controlled insects are fitted with tiny packs which can detect carbon dioxide within collapsed buildings. Scientists hope they could be sent in to areas after earthquakes or other disasters. The detectors would be able to alert those controlling the beetles […]

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THE world’s smallest disaster squad has been created in the form of backpack-wearing beetles.

Remote controlled insects are fitted with tiny packs which can detect carbon dioxide within collapsed buildings.

AsiaWire
The beetles are fitted with tiny computer backpacks which can tell scientists if they are near carbon dioxide[/caption]

Scientists hope they could be sent in to areas after earthquakes or other disasters.

The detectors would be able to alert those controlling the beetles to life amongst the rubble.

They would theoretically lead them to whoever is generating the carbon dioxide and find victims.

It is thought this would save time digging in areas where no one has been left alive, and allow rescuers to concentrate their efforts on survivors.

AsiaWire
It is hoped the beetles could lead rescuers to people trapped in rubble after earthquakes[/caption]

AsiaWire
The beetles are steered by scientists using their antennae[/caption]

The cyborg beetles were developed by scientists from Nanyang Technological University (NTU).

Assistant Professor Hirotaka Sato, from NTU’s School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, said: “In the aftermath of a disaster, many survivors remain buried and the rescue teams are often not clear which sites they should comb.

“We need tools that can get through small spaces to help them find missing people.”

They have used darkling beetles and attached a tiny computer to their backs using beeswax.

This computer sends electrical pulses to the insect’s antennae which steers them.

As well as carbon dioxide, the team hope that the sensors will also be able to detect temperature and the vibration from heartbeats.

But there have been critics as some people say it is animal torture – they believe only mechanical robots should be used.

The scientists say they are well cared for, and when not being controlled can live normal lives.


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Science

Doctors diagnose man with cancer… 2000 YEARS after he died

Doctors doing tests on a mummified body found in an Egyptian tomb have found the man was suffering from cancer when he died. The discovery was made when the team performed a full CT scan on the body, in an attempt to find out what he died from. While doctors can’t be sure the cancer […]

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Doctors doing tests on a mummified body found in an Egyptian tomb have found the man was suffering from cancer when he died.

The discovery was made when the team performed a full CT scan on the body, in an attempt to find out what he died from.

Syracuse.com
The cancer was discovered after doctors performed a CT scan on the mummified man[/caption]

While doctors can’t be sure the cancer alone caused his death, it gives a fascinating insight into an illness that still affects us today.

“He had a tumor on his fibula which is one of the two bones of the lower leg,” explains Dr. Mark Levinsohn of Crouse Hospital in Syracuse, New York.

“Looking at it, it had all the characteristics of a malignant tumor and one that’s somewhat rare. So, here we have a rare circumstance and a rare tumor and that evoked our interest a lot.”

This is not the first time the man, who has been nicknamed ‘Hen’, has been examined by physicians. His body was last looked at over a decade ago, but equipment has improved significantly since then.

Doctors found the tumour in the man’s fibula
Syracuse.com

Dr Levinsohn adds: “What, at that time, was a 16-detector scanner is now a 320-detector [scanner] and all that additional information is now derived when we scan the body.”

The team will continue carrying on tests on the body for another two or three months to see what else can be discovered.

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Aliens and UFOs

Former MoD UFO investigator reveals battle plan for if Earth was INVADED by aliens … and it’s terrifying

THE chances of anything coming from Mars may be a million to one… but is it worth taking the risk? Nick Pope, who used to run the Ministry of Defence’s UFO project, believes the threat of an alien invasion is serious enough that we should be preparing for the worst. Drawing from his experiences at […]

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THE chances of anything coming from Mars may be a million to one… but is it worth taking the risk?

Nick Pope, who used to run the Ministry of Defence’s UFO project, believes the threat of an alien invasion is serious enough that we should be preparing for the worst.

We’ve mocked-up this war plan based on what Nick predicts our response to an invasion would be

Drawing from his experiences at the MoD, he has even created a war plan which reflects how the British government would likely respond to an extraterrestrial attack.

Although this has been mocked up by the Sun Online and isn’t a real government document, Nick thinks it’s what we’d have to do in the unlikely event of an alien invasion.

The UFO investigator told the Sun Online: “I based the document as much on declassified plans for the Iraq War as on my knowledge of UFOs and extraterrestrial life.

“This is exactly the sort of top-level strategic document that politicians and senior officials need in order to take the very rapid and important decisions.”

Nick Pope, the government’s former UFO investigator, has predicted what an alien invasion battle plan would look like
Toby Canham

His prediction would see the UK ally itself with NATO and the United Nations, and use our Air Force and Navy to hammer aliens with missiles.

Nick argues that we’d have to rely on our nuclear defences as a last resort, but even then we’d almost certainly be out-gunned by our interplanetary conquerors.

The war plan also advises that we should also develop a biological weapon to deal with living invaders, or use powerful energy pulses to disable invading machines.

Either way, our prospects are bleak.

The possibility of an alien attack is very slim, but some believers think we should prepare for it anyway
Getty - Contributor

Alien invasions have been done to death in sci-fi, with The War of the Worlds, Independence Day and District 9 among the classic films depicting aliens arriving on Earth.

But how likely is it that we’ll ever see a real alien invasion?

While it’s true that Nasa recognises the likelihood that we’ll find alien life relatively soon, the chances of an invasion are widely believed to be very slim.

Even so, Nick believes that the impacts of an attack would be so catastrophic that it’s worth preparing for the worst anyway.

Classic sci-fi like War of the Worlds imagine what would happen if aliens came to conquer Earth
Alamy

He said: “There’s no government plan for an alien invasion, or for other scenarios where we find extraterrestrial life.

“Aliens capable of getting to Earth would clearly have technology way ahead of ours, so getting into any kind of war should be the last resort.

“We can only guess at what technology they may have, and what weaponry they might possess.

“I hope that if aliens arrive on Earth they’ll come as explorers or scientists – but that’s wishful thinking.”

We’d have to fight against aliens and their UFOs using Typhoon fighter jets, Navy missiles and nukes
Getty - Contributor

The reality is that super-advanced aliens would probably arrive as slavers, zoo keepers or pest controllers, Nick predicts.

He added: “The biggest single thing we can do to protect ourselves is to acknowledge that there’s an issue here.

“With Nasa and others now openly talking about the possibilities of alien life, we can no longer dismiss this as sci-fi.

“Is it that hard to believe that we might not be alone, and there might be civilizations out there much older than ours, and thus more advanced?”

Nick's alien invasion plan

First warning of an alien invasion is likely to come from the Hubble Space Telescope, the Deep Space Network, or a radio telescope, e.g. Jodrell Bank. The Ballistic Missile Early Warning System at RAF Fylingdales may also play a role in detection.

UK Threat Level will immediately be raised to CRITICAL.

The PM will form a War Cabinet, with membership to include the Home Secretary, the Secretary of State for Defence, the Foreign Secretary, the Chief of the Defence Staff and the Government Chief Scientific Adviser.

Any UK military response will probably form part of an international coalition, possibly US-led, and involving NATO.

Legal authority for military action would come from the United Nations and the international community to resist an attack on soverign nations.

All forces with air-to-air and ground-to-air capability may be deployed. The bulk of the UK effort will comprise Eurofighter Typoon aircraft armed with Meteor missiles, and Type 45 destroyers armed with Sea Viper missiles. The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory at Porton Down will be asked to develop a biological weapon, though if we are facing a machine intelligence, directed energy weapons and EMP weapons may be more effective. The UK’s strategic nuclear deterrant may be used as a weapon of last resort.

Extraterrestrial invaders will almost certainly possess weapons of mass destruction, and technologies significantly in advance of our own. Key priorities must be to gather intelligence on alien technology, and to reverse-engineer it.

We’ve been bringing you all the extraterrestrial news you’d need to brush up on our potential conquerors.

Previously, we revealed that a top scientist claimed the human race may have originally come from Mars.

We also revealed what aliens may really look like, based on how evolution has played out on Earth.

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Science

Scientists discover bizarre worm-like creature with helmet and spikes that roamed earth 518 million years ago

A BIZARRE worm-like creature which had a helmet and spikes along its body roamed the earth 518 million years ago. Archaeologists have found fossils of a sea creature they described as “strange beyond measure”. The astonishing find was made in southern China’s Yunnan Province – which is full of fossils. Two specimens have been found […]

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A BIZARRE worm-like creature which had a helmet and spikes along its body roamed the earth 518 million years ago.

Archaeologists have found fossils of a sea creature they described as “strange beyond measure”.

NanjingInstituteOfGeologyAndPalaeontology
Zhao Fanchen with one of the fossils found in China of a spiny worm-like creature which lived in the sea[/caption]

The astonishing find was made in southern China’s Yunnan Province – which is full of fossils.

Two specimens have been found so far, with the first being pulled from the earth in 2015.

The first was discovered at Chengjiang fossil site by researchers from the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaentology, and the second was found nearby in 2016 and given to researcher Zhao Fanchen.

Eventually it was realised the two fossils were of the same creature, with one curled up and the other extended, but with the same spikes and helmet visible.

NanjingInstituteOfGeologyAndPalaeontology
An impression of what the creatures might have looked like while roaming the seabed[/caption]

Getty Images - Getty
The fossils came from a part of China known for being full of ancient clues to the past – here children investigate some findings[/caption]

Mr Zhao told the MailOnline: “The creature was about 1.5cm long and 3mm wide, but its spikes were about 6mm long. It just looked so different.”

He added these spikes made it unlike any other sea creature and therefore hard to categorise.

Martin Smith, assistant professor at the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Durham said: “The creature is like a mythical beast.

“We don’t know much about the animal underneath these mineralied plates – whether it had legs or a slug-like foot, [and] whether it had teeth or tentacles.”

Mr Zhao thinks the creature evolved out of a need to protect itself, and believes it may have lived in shallow waters less than 100 metres deep.

He also said both fossils give proof to the Cambrian Explosion, a theory which claims an abundance of animals emerged 541 million years ago.

Earlier this month we reported on a real life sea monster “from the age of the dinosaurs” which caused waves in the scientific world after being caught off the Algarve coast.

The ultra-rare frilled shark – which has a body like a snake but the jaws of a terrifying sea predator – was hauled out of the water by EU fish stock researchers.


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