Top 10 Discoveries Of 2012

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  • Lolong has hit the big time at 20.24 feet (6.17 meters) long, the saltwater crocodile is officially the largest in captivity, the Guinness World Records announced in July.

  • In July, two separate teams working at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) reported they were more than 99 percent certain they've discovered the Higgs boson, aka the God particle or at the least a brand-new particle exactly where they expected the Higgs to be.

  • They aren't worms or even snakes. They're soil-burrowing, limbless amphibians, and they're completely new to science, a February study suggested.

  • An unnamed new species of Yeti crab swarms near hot, mineral-rich hydrothermal vents in the oceans off Antarctica a newfound "lost world" of strange deep-sea species, scientists say.

  • In the last known largely unexcavated Maya megacity, archaeologists have uncovered the only known mural adorning an ancient Maya house and it's not just any mural, scientists said in May.

  • Some 1,600 years ago, the Temple of the Night Sun was a blood-red beacon visible for miles and adorned with giant masks of the Maya sun god as a shark, blood drinker, and jaguar. Long since lost to the Guatemalan jungle, the temple our most popular discovery of 2012 is finally showing its faces to archaeologists, and revealing new clues about the rivalrous kingdoms of the Maya, scientists said in May.

  • An as yet undiscovered planet might be orbiting at the dark fringes of the solar system, according to a study published in May.

  • A new species of night monkey (pictured) is one of eight new mammals found during an expedition to northern Peru's Tabaconas Namballe National Sanctuary (map), scientists announced in September.

  • A star about 127 light-years from Earth may have even more planets than the sun, which would make the planetary system the most populated yet found.

  • Astronomers have made a sweet discovery: simple sugar molecules floating in the gas around a star some 400 light-years away, suggesting the possibility of life on other planets.

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Top 10 Discoveries Of 2012

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