Ghost Army, da Vinci’s Heart and more Unearthed Secrets for September

A roundup of Secrets in the News for September 2020.


‘Ghost Army’ in WWII used inflatable tanks to fool the Nazis and win the war

Live Science: Today (Sept. 2) marks the 75th anniversary of World War II’s end. During this historic global conflict, hundreds of bloody skirmishes were waged on land, sea and air. But one top-secret U.S. Army battalion fought not with bullets but with stagecraft, using inflatable life-size tanks, phony insignias, soundscapes and fake radio transmissions to deceive German soldiers on the battlefield…[read more]

 

500 Years Later, Scientists Solve Leonardo da Vinci’s Human Heart Mystery

Popular Mechanics: After 500 years, researchers finally understand the anatomical function of a heart feature first described by Leonardo da Vinci. To find the answer, scientists used fractal theory, MRIs, and a lot of computational elbow grease to shed light on structures called trabeculae. They found this branching, snowflaky muscle layer plays a part in the risk of heart disease…[read more]

 

Crypt reopens, honors 2 figures key to Notre Dame Cathedral 

Associated Press: PARIS (AP) — The crypt under the plaza in front of Notre Dame Cathedral, spared during the 2019 fire that devastated the medieval edifice, reopened to the public Wednesday after a painstaking cleaning to remove traces of lead dust that spewed from the nearby blaze. The Archeological Crypt of Notre Dame features an exhibition on two figures central to the cathedral, writer Victor Hugo, who brought the character of the hunchback, the bell ringer, to the world in 1831, and architect Eugene Viollet-Le_Duc, who designed the soaring spire felled in last year’s fire…[read more]

 

Viking Sword Found In Grave In Central Norway

Archeology News Network: During the Viking Age—probably sometime in the 800s-900s—a man died in the village we call Vinjeøra today, south of Trøndelag county. He was buried with a full set of weapons: axe, spear, shield and sword. Some 1,100 years later, archaeologist Astrid Kviseth bends over his grave and painstakingly cleans his sword. Soon she will pick it up from the ground and become the first person to hold it in her hands since Viking times…[read more]

 

400-Year-Old Frozen Goat Offers Insight on Ice Mummies

Science Times: The goat-antelope discovered in the Alps is similar to other “ice mummies,” or preserved remains of dead creatures preserved by the cold and often at high altitudes. A famous case was the Iceman Ötzi, a 5,300-year-old mummified man who was believed to have lived between 3,400 to 3,100 BCE. Ötzi got his name from the Ötztal Alps, where he was discovered by hikers in September 1991…[read more]