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BBC News - Science/Nature - UK Edition 

Virgin spacecraft crash kills pilot

A pilot is killed and another is injured as Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo space tourism craft crashes in California.

Rockets 'destroy chemical weapons'

A team has developed micro-sized rockets, powered by seawater, that can neutralise chemical and biological weapons.

Wannabe is 'catchiest hit single'

Results from a citizen science online experiment suggests that the Spice Girls' Wannabe is the UK's catchiest hit single.

WW2 technology 'Plan B' for GPS

Technology developed during World War Two is to be used as a back-up for GPS in ports across England and Scotland.

Newt flesh fungus 'brought by pets'

A skin-eating fungus threatens salamanders and newts across Europe, and probably arrived on pet amphibians imported from Asia.

IPCC debates 'most important' report

Scientists and government officials are meeting in Copenhagen to edit a report on the causes, impact and solutions to global warming.

Low oxygen 'delayed life on Earth'

Animals took so long to evolve and thrive on Earth because of incredibly low levels of oxygen during a period more than a billion years ago, scientists say.

Rocket makers probe US explosion

The builders of an unmanned supply rocket which exploded on the way to the International Space Station have vowed to find the cause of the failure.

New species of frog in urban jungle

Scientists confirm that a frog found living in New York City wetlands is a new species.

Koala chlamydia vaccine raises hope

Australian scientists say they have successfully tested a vaccine aimed at protecting wild koalas from chlamydia.

Salt destroying fertile land - UN

About 2,000 hectares of fertile land are lost each day due to damage caused by salt, according to a UN analysis.

Giant tortoise 'miraculous' recovery

A new study confirms that giant tortoise numbers on one of the Galapagos Islands have bounced back thanks to captive breeding.

Met Office supercomputer confirmed

Plans are unveiled for a £97m supercomputer which will boost the Met Office's computing capacity by 13 times, improving weather forecasting and climate modelling.

Google developing a cancer detector

Google is attempting to diagnose cancers, heart attack risks and other ailments with a system that combines nanoparticles and a wrist-worn sensor.

Two genes linked with violent crime

Two genes are associated with repeat violent offenders, according to a genetic analysis of almost 900 criminals in Finland.

Protection plan 'will not save reef'

Australia's Academy of Science says a government draft plan to protect the Great Barrier Reef will not prevent its decline.

Key to sounding charismatic revealed

An innate ability some people have to manipulate their vocal frequency could be the key to sounding charismatic, according to new research.

Why scratching 'intensifies itching'

Scratching an itch releases serotonin, which paradoxically makes you more itchy, research suggests.

Piece of Australia found in Vanuatu

A fragment of ancient Australia is found under Vanuatu in the South Pacific, raising new questions about how continents are formed.

Legal fight begins to save beavers

Campaigners start legal action to prevent the government from capturing a family of wild beavers.

Monster shark 'kept whales in check'

The extinction of the biggest shark known to science may have triggered whales to grow to their current hefty sizes, a study suggests.

Farmland birds show rapid decline

Farmland birds are at their lowest levels since records began, according to government figures.

DNA yields secrets of human pioneer

DNA analysis of a 45,000-year-old human has helped scientists pinpoint when our ancestors interbred with Neanderthals.

Mystery of giant arm dinosaur solved

Two dinosaur skeletons have been unearthed in Mongolia, solving a mystery that has baffled palaeontologists for 50 years.

Population controls 'not effective'

Attempts to restrict population growth will not solve global sustainability issues in the short term, new research says.

EU leaders agree CO2 emissions cut

The EU agrees what it calls "the world's most ambitious" deal to cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40% by 2030, overcoming deep divisions.

'Tree of the Year' shortlist issued

The 10 trees to make the final of England's "Tree of the Year" competition are announced.

Turtles tracked on swimming frenzy

Small tags stuck to the undersides of baby loggerhead turtles are used to follow the animals' frenetic first hours.

Wind farms outstrip nuclear power

The UK's wind farms generated more power than its nuclear power stations on Tuesday, the National Grid says.

Pesticide bans 'could hit UK crops'

The EU's decision to ban the use of some pesticides could threaten UK crops, increase food prices and hit farmers' profits, a report claims.


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