This Week in Science: Gross Memories, New Stars, and Super-Diamonds

It’s time for “Nerd News,” covering the most important news for your brain.

Here’s a quick rundown of this week in science . . .

1.  A study found it’s theoretically possible to create an even harder material than diamonds . . . which they’re calling “super-diamonds“.  (Your wife wants one.)

2.  The night sky could gain a “new” star in the next few months, but it’s not coming out of nowhere.  It’s actually two stars that orbit each other, and they’re usually too dim to see.  Every 79 years or so, there’s a “nova outburst” that makes them brighter than the North Star.  It could happen between now and September.

3.  In other space news:  Mysterious dark matter may not exist at all . . . humans might only survive four years on Marsbecause of all the radiation . . . and SpaceX tested a new emergency slide for astronauts.  It’s like the ones on airplanes, but much longer.  It’s for the launchpad . . . not the Space Station.  (Here’s a video.)

4.  In  health news:  The bacteria that causes plaque on your teeth might be linked to colon cancer . . . a study found smoking may lead to more belly fat . . . and doctors in Boston performed the first transplant of a genetically modified pig kidney.  The 62-year-old patient is doing well and should go home soon.

5.  In climate news:  We know temperatures are rising, but the “heat index” might be rising even faster.  That’s how hot it feels with humidity.  A study found the heat index in Texas has been increasing three times faster than the temp itself.

6.  And in “eww, that’s gross” news:  A study found a lot of our most vivid memories of disgusting moments involve smells, tastes, and things we touched.  Disgusting sights and sounds are less memorable.  They think it’s an evolutionary thing, since things that smell or taste bad could be hazardous to our health.