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Physical sciences/Earth sciences/Geology/Physical geology/Geomorphology/Topography

The 2015 Golden Goose Awards celebrated federally funded basic research with widespread impacts, leading Congressional supporters to call for increased research funding.


An artist’s depiction of the twin spacecraft Ebb and Flow that comprise NASA’s GRAIL mission.
[Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MIT]

On a quest to locate water and other volatile minerals in the Moon’s soil, the LCROSS experiment—Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite—hurtled a spent Centaur rocket into a dark crater at the lunar South Pole last year. The crater, known as Cabeus, is one of the permanently shadowed regions of the Moon, and researchers believe it is also one of the coldest.

On the 162nd anniversary of the founding of AAAS, radio icon Garrison Keillor paid tribute to the organization’s roots on his popular radio program, “The Writer’s Almanac.”

“It was on this day in 1848 that the American Association for the Advancement of Science was formed in Philadelphia, at the Academy of Natural Sciences,” Keillor reported 20 September. “Its stated purpose was to ‘procure for the labors of scientific men, increased facilities and a wider usefulness.’”