SenseFly drones generate an detailed 3D model

SenseFly drones generate an detailed 3D model

SenseFly drones generate a detailed 3D model of the Matterhorn. Thanks to a Pix4D software, the pictures it took generated a 300-million-points georeferenced 3D model of the mountain.

EPFL spin-off SenseFly recently launched a small swarm of lightweight “eBee” drones around the Matterhorn, in the Swiss Alps.

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Giant Oarfish ‘Sea Serpent’ Found Off California VIDEO Snorkeller Finds Monster ‘Serpent’

Giant Oarfish ‘Sea Serpent’ Found Off California VIDEO Snorkeller Finds Monster ‘Serpent’

The 5.5m carcass – which needed 16 people to bring it ashore – will be buried in sand before it is reconstructed for display.

A marine biologist has made the discovery of a lifetime – the five-metre-long silvery carcass of the creature belived to be the origin of sea serpent legends.

Jasmine Santana of the Catalina Island Marine Institute (CIMI) was snorkelling with colleagues in Toyon Bay, southern California when she spotted something shimmering in the water.

She dragged the eel-like beast by the tail for more than 20m, others waded in to the sea and helped her bring it to shore.

After taking a closer look she discovered it was an oarfish, which can grow up to 15m.

“Jasmine Santana was shocked to see (a) half-dollar sized eye staring at her from the sandy bottom,” the institute said in a statement.

“Her first reaction was to approach with caution, until she realised that it was dead.”

Oarfish are deep-water pelagic fish and the longest bony fish in the world, according to CIMI.

Because oarfish dive more than 3,000 feet (914 metres) deep, sightings of the creatures are rare and they are largely unstudied.

“We’ve never seen a fish this big,” said Mark Waddington, senior captain of the Tole Mour, CIMI’s sail training ship.

“The last oarfish we saw was three feet long.”

Tissue samples and video footage were sent to be studied by biologists at the University of California in Santa Barbara.

It will be buried in the sand until it decomposes and then its skeleton will be reconstructed for display.

The fish apparently died of natural causes.

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Why Do Autumn Leaves Change Color?

Why Do Autumn Leaves Change Color?

Scientific American editor Mark Fischetti explains how the leaves of deciduous trees perform their annual chameleon act, changing from various shades of green to hues of bronze, orange and brilliant red.

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Top 10 Famous Animals in History

Top 10 Famous Animals in History

All right-minded individuals love their animals, but some animals have been so loved, or provided such a service to humans, that they’re remembered fondly years and years after they were alive.

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Here are 10 of the most famous animals in history.

10. Ham the Chimp

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Ham the chimp was the first hominid in space and, thankfully, his is a happier tale than that of the first dog, who’s mentioned further down this list. Named after the Holloman Aerospace Medical Centre, he was one of six monkeys trained to pull levers in response to flashing lights during a spaceship flight. Ham was the one who was chosen by NASA to be launched into space in a Mercury capsule. The journey he undertook on January 31, 1961 was short, but he still managed to travel 155 miles (250 km) in 16.5 minutes. The flight was abandoned because of a problem with the oxygen supply, and Ham was recovered some three hours after he landed, apparently none the worse for his trip; he even ate an apple and half an orange when he exited the rocket. Ham went on to live in the National Zoo in Washington DC for the next 17 years of life.

9. Elsa the Lioness

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Elsa the lioness first came to the world’s attention with the publication of the book “Born Free,” by naturalist Joy Adamson. The lion cub didn’t have a great start to life; her mother was killed by Joy’s game warden husband George, to stop an attack on him. The Adamsons thankfully took the cub and her siblings in, keeping Elsa and sending the others to a zoo. The young lioness lived the life of a domesticated pet, but Joy was determined to give her a life in the wild, gradually introducing her to the world of game reservations. Elsa had three cubs, who  probably became fully adjusted to their life in the wild, but Elsa unfortunately died at an early age, succumbing at the age of five to a tick-born disease called babesia. George Adamson and his scouts fired 20 volleys of shots over Elsa’s grave at her burial.

8. Jonathan the Tortoise

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Jonathan the tortoise is at least 179 years old, and the world’s oldest living animal. This is difficult to verify, though there is photographic evidence to help shore up the claim. The photograph was taken during the Boer War in 1900, on the island of St Helena which he still calls home. He was at least 50 years old at the time, and might well have been 70, so 179 is his minimum age. Jonathan enjoys life with five companion tortoises and, although sightless in one eye, age hasn’t worn him down too much. He loves attention, and is still feisty enough to be able to make amorous advances toward his younger female friends.

7. Mr. Magoo the Mongoose

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On November 15th, 1962, a tea-drinking, snake-killing mongoose called Mr. Magoo was taken from Duluth jail by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, and sentenced to death or deportation back to his country of birth, India. The story got out and caused a national uproar. He had been given to the zoo by a foreign sailor, and the powers-that-be decided he shouldn’t be allowed to remain in the country, because of the mongoose’s propensity to breed. Mr. Magoo didn’t have a mate however, and he was eventually given a reprieve. Thousands of people visited the unlucky carnivore in one weekend, and many more mailed the authorities to tell them to get rid of the beast (fear of his escape and the area being overrun by fearsome critters caused that reaction). In the end, Mr. Magoo was given a pardon, and lived out the rest of life eating eggs, drinking tea and having free rein of the zoo office. He died in 1968.

6. Punxsutawney Phil the Groundhog

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The most famous groundhog in the world, Punxsutawney Phil (also known by his full name, “Punxsutawney Phil, Seer of Seers, Sage of Sages, Prognosticator of Prognosticators and Weather Prophet Extraordinary”) has been predicting the weather in Gobbler’s Knob since February 2, 1886. Incredibly, some people believe that he’s still the same groundhog today. As these animals have an average lifespan of only ten years, he would have to live on regular doses of elixir along with the love of his good wife, Phyllis, to keep him going all this time. A mysterious group called the Inner Circle look after him, and wear top hats and tuxedos to the prediction ceremony. The prognosticating groundhog is thought to derive from a German tradition that if the sun comes out on candlemas and the hedgehog sees his shadow, six more weeks of winter will follow.

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A race for what’s left of the planet: The Arctic battleground

A race for what’s left of the planet: The Arctic battleground

For the past 800,000 years, there has always been ice in the Arctic Ocean. But now climate change is causing this ice to melt at an unprecedented rate, with some people predicting that the region’s waters could be completely ice-free as early as 2016. And as the ice melts, energy companies are moving in to try and drill for some of the world’s last untapped oil and gas reserves — the very fossil fuels that caused the ice to melt in the first place.

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25 Strangest Prehistoric Creatures To Roam The Earth

25 Strangest Prehistoric Creatures To Roam The Earth

The world is cluttered with so many different creatures — some cute, some scary and some just plainly bizarre. However, the animals of today have nothing on the creatures that lived on Earth during prehistoric times. From miniature bird looking rodents to the behemoths beneath the waves, these are the 25 strangest prehistoric creatures to roam the Earth.

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