Investigative reporter Linda Moulton Howe discussed the discovery of an ancient forest preserved by sand, mysterious radio bursts detected from beyond our galaxy, Comet ISON's close approach, and a new crop formation near Avebury.
One year after Hurricane Katrina hit, an Alabama dive shop owner discovered an underwater treasure 60 feet down that might be unique in ancient sites known to this modern world. It was a half-mile long forest of cypress that had been preserved by sand for more than 50,000 years, according to university radiocarbon dating. The cypress is so fresh that when cut, it gives off the aroma of freshly sawed wood. The dive shop owner kept it a secret until a year ago when he contacted a reporter who alerted scientists about the unprecedented find. Linda interviewed Ben Raines who worked with university students to study the underwater forest. Raines, who works with the Weeks Bay Foundation to protect coastal resources, said efforts are underway to safeguard the forest, and get it declared as a marine sanctuary. More here.
Mysterious strong radio bursts from far beyond the Milky Way Galaxy have been detected that might go back in the universe's life between 5 to 11 billion light-years ago. Scientists are puzzled as to what causes these strong radio bursts, which occur approximately every one second in Earth time. She spoke with astronomy professor Jim Cordes who speculated that an evaporating black hole (as proposed by Stephen Hawking) could be behind the pulses. It's also possible the cause is some type of cataclysmic collision. "If I had to bet money, I would bet on something like a compact object - perhaps interacting with another object that might be a supermassive black hole in the center of a galaxy. It might be their magnetic fields that are interacting because when you get that kind of interaction, you have a lot of power to draw on," Cordes remarked. Further info.
In her third report, Linda detailed how Comet ISON is headed for close approach to our sun in November. This primordial ball of ice could reach the brightness of the full moon. Scientists are meeting on August 1st at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore to plan how to monitor this comet that's never been through our solar system before. A telescope and infrared equipment will be launched in a huge helium balloon that will rise to almost 23 miles in the upper atmosphere in order to study ISON. Research scientist Karl Hibbitts told Linda that one of their goals in studying ISON is to measure the ratio of carbon dioxide to water, which gives insight into the formation characteristics of our solar system, and the Oort Cloud where the comet arose. More.
On July 6, 2013, 9 refined rings were discovered in a wheat field on The Ridgeway near the ancient stone circles of Avebury in Wiltshire County. Crop formation photographer, researcher and author Lucy Pringle was able to get the farmer's permission to investigate on the ground and was impressed. Then from aerial images, a retired aerospace engineer in England and a retired scientist in Australia concluded the pattern is a cross-section of what mathematically is known as a Schwarzschild Radius. This relates to toroidal energy systems inside 3-dimensional spheres, including black holes. The UK engineer, James W. Lyons, noted that the pattern formed a curious geometrical series, which reflects the diatonic musical scale-- the white notes on the piano. Further details.
Credit Card Hacking
First hour guest, computer security expert Kevin Mitnick reported on a massive credit card hacking scheme in which five foreign nationals were charged. It's the largest ever such scheme prosecuted by the U.S., involving the stealing of info from more than 160 million credit and debit cards over a seven year period. These particular hackers were really sophisticated in exploiting a vulnerability in databases, he said. Beyond the failure of businesses to protect their credit information, "the National Security Agency can't protect their systems from employees stealing top secret information...that to me is even more egregious," he said in reference to the Snowden case.