Geoff Brumfiel

European authorities are providing new details about a cloud of mysterious radioactive material that appeared over the continent last month.

Monitors in Italy were among first to detect the radioactive isotope ruthenium-106 on Oct. 3, according to a fresh report by France's Radioprotection and Nuclear Safety Institute, known as IRSN. In total, 28 European countries saw the radioactive cloud, the report says.

The speed and ferocity of the wildfires raging through Northern California's wine country have caught many residents off guard and left state officials scrambling to contain the flames.

But for fire researchers, these devastating blazes are part of a much larger pattern unfolding across the Western United States. So far this year, fires in the U.S. have consumed more than 8.5 million acres — an area bigger than the state of Maryland.

A final report on Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 says the fate of the vanished aircraft may never be known, despite years of searching and more than $150 million in costs.

The report, which includes hundreds of pages of technical appendices, contains new details about the search. Perhaps most significantly, it provided more detail about a crew member's flight simulator that contained a route similar to the one investigators think the missing plane took.

The blast was picked up by seismic stations all over the world, and it was big.

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