Viewing everything posted on December 4, 2012

US denies Iranian drone capture report

NBC News, Reuters: The U.S. Navy says it had not lost any drones over the Persian Gulf recently after Iran claimed to have captured one in its airspace.

The semi-official Fars and the state-run IRNA news agencies reported that a U.S. ScanEagle drone was gathering information over Gulf waters and had entered Iranian airspace.

Photo: Insitu’s ScanEagle (Jim Watson / AFP - Getty Images, file)

African lion populations plummet as humans encroach habitats

AP: Lions that roam Africa’s savannahs have lost as much as 75% of their habitat in the last 50 years, a study released Tuesday says.

Researchers at Duke University warn that the number of lions have dropped to as few as 32,000. Populations in West Africa are under incredible pressure.

Fifty years ago, nearly 100,000 lions roamed across Africa. However, a growing human population has come into savannah lands to settle and develop.

Photo via Thinkstock

Netflix gets exclusive Disney streaming rights 


Netflix shares jumped Tuesday with word that the online service struck an exclusive deal to stream live-action animated feature films from The Walt Disney Studios.

Beginning in 2016, theatrically released films from Disney and subsidiaries including Pixar Animation Studios will be instantly available for viewing on-demand for a price at Netflix, according to the companies.

Photo via

NASA plans to send new rover to Mars in 2020

NBC News: NASA announced it plans to build another Mars rover based on the design of its current Curiosity rover, with the intention of sending it to the Red Planet in 2020 and perhaps storing up samples for later return to Earth.

The move comes less than a year after the space agency said it couldn’t afford to contribute $1.4 billion to the European-led Exomars missions, and it seems likely to stir new debate within the planetary science community. Hoped-for missions to other interplanetary destinations, such as the Jovian moon Europa, could conceivably be impacted further by the revised plans for Mars exploration.

Photo: NASA’s Curiosity rover undergoes testing at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in 2011. (NASA / JPL-Caltech file)

At least 81 dead in the Philippines from Typhoon Bopha

NBC News: At least 81 people died in the southern Philippines island of Mindanao after Typhoon Bopha made landfall Tuesday morning.

The typhoon is said to be the strongest storm to hit the Philippines this year. The Weather Channel said it was the equivalent of a category five hurricane. More than 155,000 people were evacuated to shelters.

Update, 9:45 p.m. ET

Officials now say the death toll has risen to more than 100 people, according to the Associated Press.

Photo: Residents brave heavy wind and rains during Typhoon Bopha on the southern island of Mindanao on Tuesday. (AFP - Getty Images)