Science Art: Hybrid Wing Body, NASA, 2013

scientific illustration of a blended wing aircraft, or hybrid wing body, a jet concept tested by NASAClick to embiggen

NASA, for a while, was looking at different ways an aircraft’s body could be used to generate lift, rather than having wings sort of stuck on the fuselage after the fact. These “blended wing aircraft” or “hybrid wing body” planes should be more efficient and quieter.

From NASA’s page on this image:

This NASA concept, called the “N3-X,” uses a number of superconducting electric motors to drive the distributed fans to lower the fuel burn, emissions, and noise. The po…

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Science Art: Pl. 119 Cittura cyanotis, from A monograph of the Alcedinidae : or, family of kingfishers by Richard Bowdler Sharpe.

Scientific illustration of a lilac kingfisher, an Indonesian bird, from the Biodiversity Heritage Library.Click to embiggen slightly

A lilac kingfisher, as pictured in the 1800s in A Monograph of the Alcedinidae, found in the Biodiversity Heritage Library.

It’s a bird from Sulawesi, an Indonesian bird, the only member of its genus. So it’s a bit of an odd bird, I suppose. Though there are two sub-species, so maybe it’s getting odder. Its call: “Very rapid “ku-ku-ku-ku”, repeated every few minutes; 3–4 descending.”

Got a bit of a look, doesn’t it? Knows something.

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Science Art: Neurons from rat brain tissue stained green with antibody to ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase L1 (UCH-L1)... by Gerry Shaw, 2005

Scientific illustration of rat neurons stained with antibodies in green, red and blue. Click to embiggen

Glia are the cells around neurons that manufacture myelin (the insulation around nerve cells), help repair cell damage and, apparently, have something to do with creating long-term memories.

This photo shows a few kinds of nerve cells. (It really looks like an early Pink Floyd light show in there!) Though glia aren’t mentioned by name, the image is in Wikimedia Commons’ “Glia” category. The description is:

Neurons from rat brain tissue stained green with antibody to ub…

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Science Art: Genesee County Hogs of the "Swill-Pail Breed," from Moore's Rural New-Yorker, March 22, 1862

Scientific illustration of Genesee County "swill-pail" hogs, from Moore's Rural New-Yorker, 1862.Click to embiggen

Swill-pail hogs from upstate New York, as featured on the front page of Moore’s Rural New-Yorker, a delightful paper that promised “Agriculture, Horticulture, Rural Life, Literature, Science, Art, News.” If you’ve got a few minutes, I recommend flipping through the collection at the Biodiversity Heritage Library. But at the very least, check out the masthead here:
Moore's Rural New Yorker masthead. Is it a scientific illustration? Click to embiggen

That’s some American art, there. This is a publication that knows how to get your hogs he…

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Science Art: Neuron Matrix, by Nicolas P. Rougier

Scientific illustration of a neuron, a brain cell, being electrifying. By Nicolas P. RougierClick to embiggen slightly

A nerve, an electric cell, a node in a network.

A place and size where electricity meets chemistry inside our bodies. This appears to be an illustration of synapses communicating (sending out chemicals/electrical signals) drawn over a scanning-electron microscope image. Can’t say for sure – there’s no info on Wikimedia Commons other than the name and the author.

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Science Art: UCF Space Game football uniform, 2019

Scientific illustration as football uniform: the UCF Space Game 2019 uniformClick to embiggen vastly

UCF, the University of Central Florida, is the university closest to the Kennedy Space Center, and has a rivalry with the *other* space-launch city, Houston, that’s played out annually in the “Space Game.”

For this year, the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission that put the first human being on the moon, the Knights unveiled a new “Space Game” uniform with a heck of a lot of symbolism. I first saw the uniform when someone in my Twitter feed liked the way the…

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A 1,300-year-old rook?

28 November 2019 grant 0

Science News picks up a really old game with a shaped stone from the desert of Jordan that might well have been the oldest chess […]