2017 has ended. Being termed as the most significant year in terms of scientific developments, this year brought to us many revelations and discoveries that have completely revolutionized previous perceptions. Here we bring you 13 of the most important scientific discoveries (of course in our own humble opinion) made in 2017 that are worth a read.
New Function of Lungs
Scientists discovered that the lungs play a far more complex role in mammalian bodies than we thought, with new evidence revealing that they don’t just facilitate respiration – they also play a key role in blood production.
Gravitation waves and their speed
The speed of gravity is pretty much identical to the speed of light! 2017 was an incredible year with respects to breakthroughs. Scientists, for the first time were able to photograph a collision between two neutron stars. By conducting simultaneous optical and gravitational wave observations, they were able to accurately measure the speed of gravity for the first time.
Your body now has an extra organ
Researchers have classified a brand-new organ inside our bodies, one that’s been hiding in plain sight in our digestive system this whole time. Although we now know about the structure of this new organ, its function is still poorly understood, and studying it could be the key to better understanding and treatment of abdominal and digestive diseases. Everyone, meet your mesentery.
Time – Space Paradigm
It is mathematically possible to build an actual time machine. Physicists have come up with what they claim is a mathematical model of a theoretical “time machine” – a box that can move backwards and forwards through time and space. What’s holding us back is finding materials that can physically bend the fabric of space-time.
A Blob Underneath Vermont
A mysterious blob of hot rock is building up under America’s northeast. Scientists used a network of thousands of seismic measurement devices in the largest geological study of its kind, detecting the enormous blob upwelling underneath Vermont and extending into other subterranean regions below New England.
Sleep Deprivation Hazards
The brain literally starts eating itself when it doesn’t get enough sleep. The reason we sleep goes far beyond simply replenishing our energy levels every 12 hours – our brains actually change states when we sleep to clear away the toxic byproducts of neural activity left behind during the day. But when we’re sleep deprived this process goes into overdrive, causing the brain to clear away significant amount of neurons and synaptic connections.
Vantablack – the blackest material known to science – now comes in a handy ‘spray-on’ form and it’s the weirdest thing we’ve seen so far this year.
Ancient Forest Exposed
Siberia has a colossal crater called the ‘doorway to the underworld’, and its permafrost is melting so fast, ancient forests are being exposed for the first time in 200,000 years.
Utility of Appendix
Your appendix might not be the useless evolutionary byproduct after all. Unlike your wisdom teeth, your appendix might actually be serving an important biological function – and one that our species isn’t ready to give up just yet.
Dinosaurs and Their Family Hierarchy
After 130 years, we might have to completely redraw the dinosaur family tree, thanks to a previously unimportant cat-sized fossil from Scotland.
A New Continent of the World
Earth appears to have a whole new continent called Zealandia, which would wreak havoc on all those textbooks and atlases we’ve got lying around.
Narwhals and Their Unicorns
Turns out, narwhals – the precious unicorns of the sea – use their horns for hunting.
Human activity has literally changed the space surrounding our planet – decades of Very Low Frequency (VLF) radio communications have accidentally formed a protective, human-made bubble around Earth.