If asking and investigating “why” is good enough for Nancy Drew, or the Scooby-Doo gang trawling for the truth in the Mystery Machine, that’s the only motivation we need.
From the time we’re little, we’re encouraged to be curious and seek answers to life’s puzzles. It’s the joy of discovery — and ultimately how we understand the world around us.
Pick up your magnifying glass, and explore some of the solved mysteries and fascinating finds that delighted CNN’s space and science team this week.
A long time ago
The imprints of the once vast ancient Roman Empire have made their presence known in discoveries this week across Europe.
For years, scientists puzzled over Mesopotamian art showing majestic horse-like animals 4,500 years ago — mainly because domesticated horses didn’t reach the region until 4,000 years ago.
The mystery of this creature’s identity has finally been solved after DNA was collected from skeletons of the animals, which were buried alongside their elite owners in northern Syria.
Beneath the ice-covered Weddell Sea in Antarctica, scientists have found a breeding colony of 60 million fish.
The ecosystem covers an area the size of Malta, or 93 square miles (241 square kilometers) and contains perfectly spaced nests.
In order to survive in such a frigid place, the fish have made some extreme adaptations — including an antifreeze protein to prevent ice crystals from growing in their blood.
Things are heating up, and not in a good way, due to the warming created by fossil fuel emissions.
A similar scenario is playing out in the world’s oceans with a long-term upward trend in water temperature. This temperature increase can supercharge weather patterns to create more powerful storms, hurricanes and intense rainfall, which can all lead to deadly flooding.
Our galaxy is full of wonderfully weird planets, but if those worlds have any moons around them, they’ve remained well hidden — until now.
Astronomers have detected what they believe to be only the second candidate for an “exomoon,” or a moon outside of our solar system.
These are worth a double take: