Tuesday's science stories

Miriam Kramer, author of Space
Apr 6, 2021 - Science

NASA's InSight lander feels Mars quake beneath it

InSight on Mars. Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA's InSight lander on Mars felt two relatively large quakes shake the Red Planet last month.

Why it matters: InSight uses these shakes on Mars — caused by volcanic activity — to learn more about the interior of the planet.

Miriam Kramer, author of Space
Apr 6, 2021 - Science

"Space Hero" wants to take us all to orbit

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

The developers of the reality TV show "Space Hero" want to make space cool.

Why it matters: As spaceflight opportunities open up to more people who aren't professional astronauts, the space industry — which is largely insular and elite — will need to find ways to make space travel appealing to the public.

Miriam Kramer, author of Space
Apr 6, 2021 - Science

Russia is dialing up its military space ambitions

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Russia is staging shows of military might in orbit as its civil and commercial space sector loses its longstanding edge.

Why it matters: These demonstrations threaten to undermine responsible behavior in space, and could put U.S. military — and possibly commercial — assets in orbit at risk.

Updated Apr 6, 2021 - World

New Zealand to open quarantine-free "travel bubble" with Australia

Australian Prime Minster Scott Morrison and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern in Sydney, Australia, in February last year. Photo: James D. Morgan/Getty Images

New Zealand will open a quarantine-free "travel bubble" with Australia from 11:59pm on April 18, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced Tuesday.

Why it matters: New Zealand tourism industry official Chris Roberts and Michael Barnett, an NZ Chamber of Commerce director, told Axios the plan could serve as a model for other countries.

Apr 6, 2021 - Health

New Utah law requires fathers to pay half of pregnancy costs

Gov. Spencer Cox at Southern Utah University in March. Photo: Utah governor's office/Facebook

A new Utah law requires biological fathers to pay half of women's pregnancy expenses.

Why it matters: While states like New York and Wisconsin have similar financial provisions for pregnancies, "Utah appears to be the first state to mandate prenatal child support," AP notes.

Updated Apr 6, 2021 - Health

Montana governor tests positive for COVID

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte in Livingston in 2018. Photo: William Campbell-Corbis via Getty Images)

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte (R) on Monday tested positive for COVID-19 after experiencing mild symptoms a day earlier, his office said in a statement.

The big picture: Gianforte will be isolating for 10 days as a precaution, his office added. He received his first dose of the Pfizer vaccine last Thursday.

Updated Apr 5, 2021 - World

Indonesia landslides and flash floods kill more than 70 people

An elderly villager and her grandson stand in floodwaters in front of their damaged home in the village of Haitimuk in East Flores, Indonesia, on Sunday. Photo: Joy Christian/AFP via Getty Images

At least 76 people have been killed and thousands displaced after flash flooding and landslides struck Indonesia and the tiny nation of Timor-Leste Sunday following heavy rains overnight, per Reuters.

The big picture: Dams overflowed, inundating thousands of homes from Indonesia's Flores Island to Timor-Leste, AFP notes. Officials said Monday the disaster killed 55 people in Indonesia's East Nusa Tenggara province and 21 in Timor-Leste. Dozens were missing.

Editor's note: This article has been updated to reflect the death toll increase.

Updated Apr 5, 2021 - World

India surpasses 100,000 new COVID cases in 1 day for first time

A health worker collecting a swab sample in New Delhi, India, on Sunday. Photo: Amal KS/Hindustan Times via Getty Images

India's Ministry of Health confirmed 103,558 new COVID-19 infections on Monday.

Why it matters: It's the first time the country has reported over 100,000 new coronavirus cases in one day. India is the second country after the U.S. to reach that milestone.