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About Wonderpedia

Wonderpedia magazine opens up a world of wonder for everybody, delivering the latest developments in science, history, nature, world events, technology and the human mind and body.

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Science

Could Ebola become airborne?

Viruses exist to replicate themselves; it’s their raison d’etre. But with replication comes mutation: improper copies occur and new variants of the virus arise. Ebola is an RNA virus, which means every time it replicates itself, one or two mutations occur.

Technology

How quickly does a fighter jet decelerate when landing?

Landing on an aircraft carrier requires pilots to be extremely precise. They fly in at 150mph to the rear of the vessel, catching at a perfect angle one of four high-tensile steel ‘arresting wires’ on the deck with their small tailhook.

Nature

How dangerous can a tree be?

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the world’s most dangerous tree is the Manchineel tree, found throughout the Florida Everglades, Central America and the Caribbean. Its sap is so potent that just standing underneath it in a storm will leave you covered in blisters.

World Events

What happened to Nasa's moon trees?

The 1971 Apollo 14 mission saw the deployment of astronaut and former forest firefighter, Stuart Roosa, to the moon’s orbit, along with a collection of 500 different tree seeds. The US Forestry Service gifted the seeds to Roosa as a nod to his earlier career.

Nature

Do snakes get vertigo?

When snakes wriggle along branches, they might appear pretty relaxed. But appearances can be deceiving: the snake is clinging onto the branch with all its might. That’s because, depending on the snake’s size and weight and the texture of the ground, a fall could prove fatal.

World Events

How did Earth get its name?

Earth is the only planet in our solar system not to be named after a Greek or Roman deity. Originally, humans had no idea that they lived on a planet that was mostly water.

Technology

Which aircraft is the fastest?

It might look futuristic, but the Lockheed SR-71A Blackbird actually took off for the first time way back in 1964. In 1976 the stealth aircraft thundered over Beale Air Force Base in California at an unrivalled 2193.2mph.

Nature

How long can a tree live for?

Surviving the last Ice Age, the world’s oldest known living tree is a five-metre spruce in Sweden known as ‘Old Tjikko’ (right), at an impressive 9,550 years old.

Science

How quickly can a person fall?

A skydiver falls from a height of 4,000 metres, accelerating by 20mph every second. After three seconds, they are falling at a speed of over 62mph. The reason? Gravity. This force accelerates a body in freefall by 9.81 metres per second every second.

Nature

5 Facts About Clouds

1. In the summer months, clouds sometimes glow a range of different colours: on occasion a pale yellow, at other times a pearlescent silver. Ice crystals are responsible for these glowing clouds (known as notilucent clouds) as they reflect the light of the setting sun.

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