Jun 22, 2016
This week the people of the United Kingdom will be making an enormously important choice. The result of the "Brexit" vote will profoundly affect the lives of Britons for decades.
To leave or not to leave?
That is the question.
Last week in the closing I mentioned that “science is a team sport”. Some of the most valuable and productive collaborations are the ones that cross borders. The UK now produce 62% of its scientific output as international collaborations, and that proportion is growing rapidly. The EU has facilitated those collaborations for decades making the European Union the science powerhouse of the world.
No, it’s not the United States.
The EU has 34% more scientific output than the United States, and they’re increasing that lead year after year.
So let’s be clear, if the UK vote to leave there will be consequences. The UK will lose its currently prominent, even dominant role on forming science policy in the EU.
Scientific discovery drives industry and health care. If the UK leaves then they’ll not only lose their influence in shaping European Union science, but both academia and industry will be big losers.
The vast majority of scientists in the United Kingdom are dead-set against leaving the European Union.
So when you go to the polls this week, think about that.
And by all means, go to the polls this week.
Kevin O'Sullivan, a listener from Ithaca, New York, was the first to answer correctly last week's mystery sound. Congratulations. You have earned the undying admiration of the Blue Streak Science team.
Also, congratulations to host Ivy Shih for also getting the correct answer! Another stab in the dark finds its mark! And that answer is...what? You think I'm going to tell you here? Stop it. You're killin' me! No way! You have to listen to the podcast for that!
Well done, everyone!
A Second Gravitational Wave Signal Detected
For the second time, scientists have directly detected the elusive ripples that vibrate the fabric of spacetime. A new observation of gravitational waves in the distant universe, announced by scientists with the Advanced Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO), follows their first detection, reported earlier this year. The incredibly faint ripple that eventually reached Earth was produced by two black holes colliding at half the speed of light, 1.4 billion light years away.
Mystery meteorite found fossilised in quarry
A mysterious meteorite was found in Swedish quarry; a unique fossilized find from the early universe that lay hidden for 470 million years. The discovery is thought to be the remains of an asteroid in pulverized in an ancient collision.
This episode of Blue Streak Science Podcast comes to you from Santa Rosa, California; and Sydney, Australia.