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Flights are being disrupted due to eruptions of volcanic ash, but this time it is a range of volcanoes in Chile, that are causing the problems. Thousands of people have been forced to leave their homes as a blanket of grey ash settles over the ground and buildings, looking like snow or sand. To find out more we contacted Professor David Pyle from the University of Oxford in the UK, an expert on the area.
Thirty years ago this week the first patient was identified with a condition that was to become known as Aids. The original report, for the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, detailed five young gay men, in Los Angeles, California, with some strange symptoms. In the three decades that have followed, HIV/Aids is estimated to have killed 30 million people worldwide. Global research efforts continue, and have led to some amazing advanced in medical science. Professor Jerome Zack from the University of California, Los Angeles, Aids Institute tells us more.
Predicting cholera outbreaks
Researchers at the International Vaccine Institute in Seoul, Korea have found a link between increases in temperature and rainfall, and a rise in cholera cases. Cholera is an infection that leads to severe diarrhea and vomiting and affects 3.5 million people worldwide. It causes more than 100,000 deaths every year. Just a one degree Celsius increase in the average monthly minimum temperature doubled cholera cases within four months. It is now hoped that this new information could be used to predict cholera outbreaks and allow for vaccination campaigns to be carried out, protecting the population.
Antimatter a reality?
Scientists have managed to trap antimatter, and hold it, for more that 15 minutes. It is a huge advance on previous efforts, which managed only a few fractions of a second. Researchers at CERN created anti-hydrogen. Antimatter is the mirror image of ordinary matter and was used in the science fiction world of Star Trek to power star ships, although this would probably be a very inefficient way of propelling one!
Out of this World
A new exhibition at the British Library in London is exploring and celebrating how sci-fi progressed from niche, to global. It plots the progress of science fiction, and claims to be able to change visitors' perceptions of the genre. It includes the first ever piece of science fiction literature that dates back 1,900 years. The BBC's Chris Valance went to check it out for us.
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