National News

Have Spare Time? Try To Discover A Planet

Astronomers are offering the general public a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity: the chance to discover a new planet in our solar system.

Many astronomers now think there may be a massive, undiscovered planet lurking in the far reaches of our solar system. Right now, however, the existence of this planet is theoretical. So the hunt is on to actually capture an image of it.

Workers load coal onto rail cars during snowfall at a railway station in Jiujiang, China, last year.

China Suspends Coal Imports From North Korea, Dealing A Blow To Pyongyang

In a surprising move, China's commerce ministry has announced that the country would be suspending its coal imports from North Korea. China released a statement Saturday saying that the freeze in imports will begin Sunday and will be in place through the end of the year.

Tom Willey has farmed for decades in California's Central Valley. His farm, T&D Willey Farms, is in the process of being taken over by Food Commons Fresno. Willey plans to still help, advise and mentor.

As California's Organic Farming Pioneers Age, A Younger Generation Steps In

The generation that pioneered organic farming is beginning to retire. These farmers want what they've built to last. Some growers are passing on their farms to their kids. But not all of them have a second generation who wants to take over the family farm.

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket is prepared Friday for a launch at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Launch Pad 39A, one of the renovated space shuttle launch pads that SpaceX leases from NASA, has been the site of many of NASA's most famous liftoffs.

A Liftoff Deferred: SpaceX Mission From NASA's Historic Launch Pad Delayed

Updated at 10:25 a.m. ET

Poised on the brink of ushering in a new era, NASA's historic launch pad in Florida will need to wait another day for its milestone. At the last minute, the private space company SpaceX scrubbed its Saturday launch, which would have marked the first time the Kennedy Space Center's Launch Complex 39A was used in over half a decade.

People shop after returning to their homes in east Mosul in January.

Life Inches Back To Normal In East Mosul, But Worries Remain

There are a lot of children playing outside in eastern Mosul. They run around the front yards of their houses, chasing each other through the alleyways, as their parents sit on plastic chairs keeping — at most — half an eye on them.

At the al-Kufa boys' school, Mustafa Salem, 13, says this freedom is new. During the 2 1/2 years that ISIS controlled his neighborhood, he was rarely allowed to leave the house.

"It wasn't good, there was no school, nothing," he said.

On one Alaskan island, reindeer have eaten the lichen faster than it could regrow. They're now digging up roots and grazing on grass.

When Their Food Ran Out, These Reindeer Kept Digging

Polar bears aren't the only beloved Arctic animal threatened by climate change. Scientists believe reindeer are at risk as a warming world makes their main winter food source disappear.

But reindeer on one Alaskan island are surprising researchers.

And that surprise doesn't just come from the fact that the reindeer are hard to spot.

On St. Paul Island, Lauren Divine of the EcoSystem Conservation Office was not having luck seeing a herd of 400 reindeer, even on this treeless island with tundra as far as the eye can see.

Spring Lake Park High School junior Kia Muleta has been playing the clarinet since fifth grade. Kia wants more diversity in her band music. She is often the only black student in band, where most of the music was composed by white men.

Why This High School Band Is Only Buying Music From Composers Of Color

There's a bulletin board at the front of the band room at Spring Lake Park High covered in portraits of the composers who wrote this year's music selection.

The bulletin board isn't new, it's there every year. What's new are the faces: Instead of primarily white men, there are faces of women and composers of color.

This is intentional. The band directors at Spring Lake, outside of St. Paul, Minnesota, have pledged to include at least one piece by a female composer and one by a composer of color in each concert, for each of the school's bands.

President Trump steps off Air Force One as he arrives in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Friday. The president is holding a rally in the state on Saturday.

Trump To Step Back Into Familiar Territory With Rally In Florida

President Trump is returning to the campaign trail Saturday night. Yes, it's less than a month into his presidency. But Trump's campaign, which never shut down after he won the election, is organizing the rally in Melbourne, Fla.

It's been a tumultuous start for Trump — from alternative facts about the size of his inauguration crowd, to courts halting his travel ban executive order and this week having to ask his national security adviser to resign. But now Trump is returning to the comfortable embrace of a campaign rally.

This image made by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope shows part of a group of five galaxies known as Stephan's Quintet.

'Are We Alone?' Churchill Concludes It's Likely Life Circles Other Suns

We keep on learning from great lives.

On Oct. 16, 1939, just weeks after Germany invaded Poland and Britain was at war, Winston Churchill, who had warned of Germany's wicked and avaricious ambitions, was called out of political isolation to become First Lord of the Admiralty and drafted an essay in which he asked, perhaps himself as much as anyone who would read it, "Are We Alone in the Universe?"

In New Zealand, sheep outnumber people 6 to 1.

NPR News Nuggets: Sheep Shearing, Snuggies & Fried Chicken

Here's a quick roundup of some of the mini-moments you may have missed on this week's Morning Edition.

Bah, Bah, Bye.