Why Roman structures like the Pantheon are still standing

Why Roman structures like the Pantheon are still standing

Why Roman structures like the Pantheon are still standing

A version of this story appeared in CNN’s science bulletin Wonder Theory. To receive it in your inbox, Register for free here.



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Welcome to a new year, where new wonders are already waiting for you.

Rome has often been called the Eternal City. The ancient Romans were proud of their metropolis and saw it as an unshakable pinnacle, and poets such as Virgil and Ovid made similar references in their works to perpetuate this idea.

The revolutionary buildings of the Imperial Capital have served multiple purposes, and even those that have faded over time are enjoying new life, thanks to curators and archaeologists – and our enduring fascination.

The Pantheon is still one of Rome’s most enduring wonders. Its oculus opens up to the sky like the eye that gave it its name, letting in both sunlight and driving rain. Standing beneath the wonder, you can almost feel the world spinning.

The ancient building still holds many secrets, but researchers may have just uncovered one of them.

The Pantheon is in the center of Rome.

Sporting the largest unreinforced concrete dome in the world, the Pantheon was one of the architectural feats of the ancient world, and its prestige remains to this day.

More than 2,000 years after the temple was built, the majestic building and other concrete Roman structures like the Colosseum and aqueducts still stand.

In contrast, modern concrete can crumble in just a few decades. So how did the ancient Romans do it?

New research suggests that their innovative concrete mix – a Roman invention – included a mysterious ingredient. Reviving the use of the unassuming white lumps in concrete could make today’s cement more durable.

If you’re making healthy resolutions this year, don’t forget to include your pet as well. Cats and dogs need exercise just like people.

The dogs benefit from two daily walks, allowing you to enjoy the fresh air with them. Cats can get their zooms while playing with interactive toys.

Mental exercise is also great for cats and dogs. Try making an easy and cheap food puzzle to keep your pet’s brain occupied.

The JUICE mission will explore Jupiter and some of its moons, as shown in this illustration.

Get ready for a year filled with exciting space missions and exploration like never before.

The four-person crew for the Artemis II mission, which aims to circle the moon in 2024, is expected to be announced in the coming months.

The European Space Agency plans to launch the Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer mission in April. The goal is to determine if Jupiter’s oceans and three of its icy moons could support life.

The highly anticipated samples collected in 2020 from the asteroid Bennu by the OSIRIS-REx mission are expected to arrive on Earth in September. And the launch window for the Psyche mission opens in October to send a spacecraft to visit its namesake asteroid – a completely unexplored pure metal world.

Our Stone Age ancestors probably donned cave bear fur 300,000 years ago.

It’s hard to find direct evidence of prehistoric clothing, but archaeologists in Germany have discovered cut marks on a cave bear paw that suggest the animals were skinned for their fur.

A cave bear was about the size of a modern polar bear, and the species became extinct around 25,000 years ago. The heavy animal’s thick fur would have provided early humans with the right amount of insulation against the elements.

The Schöningen site, where the leg was found, is also where some of the oldest known wooden weapons have been discovered.

A snowy owl has been spotted in Cypress, California.

Hedwig, is that you?

A rare snowy owl has taken up residence among the palm trees of Southern California. The striking raptor, native to the arctic tundra, was first spotted in Cypress, California in mid-December – and birdwatchers flocked to see it, sometimes traveling hundreds of miles to catch a glimpse of the sight” surprising”. .

Snowy owls can be found in northern Canada, but generally the southern limit of their winter migration is the northern United States.

Experts don’t know why or how the captivating bird appeared in sunny SoCal, but they have a few theories about how the owl’s migration got derailed. So far, all signs point to the bird being healthy and eating well during its visit to the West Coast.

Here are some other stories that caught our attention:

— Astronomers have shared a sparkling new image of the tail of the constellation Serpens, where stars are born.

– A wildlife rehabilitator treated more than 1,600 frozen bats in her attic after many fell from their roosts under Houston bridges during December’s Arctic blast.

– Ice Age hunter-gatherers may have used lines, dots and other symbols on cave walls to communicate with each other in a form of early writing – and it could have been similar to the how we use emojis.

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