Science, Space, Health & Robotics News - Page 1
Engineers from West Virginia University are working on robots tasked with improving on-the-job safety for retail workers. Researchers want to test the robot in actual grocery stores after the locations are closed, providing a more accurate testbed environment.
As part of $367,000 in funding from the National Science Foundation, WVU researchers want to analyze workplace dangers - and find ways to reduce falling risks in retail stores. The robots can provide situational awareness, monitor risks and offer walkability maps, and should be able to help reduce the number of occupational injuries related to slips and falls.
Instead of trying to rely on a security camera to identify and detect workplace hazards, the robot equipped with a camera can move closely to the spill area - and is able to identify how slippery it is.
Artificial intelligence company Nala Robotics has introduced The Wingman, a self-cleaning autonomous robot that can be used in fast food restaurants.
The Wingman can pick up and load frying baskets with French fries, chicken wings and other types of frozen food, dip the basket in oil, and shake off any excess oil once finished. Once collected, the foods can be dispensed to individual seasoning bins so spices and sauces and can be added in the appropriate proportions.
Nala Robotics uses artificial intelligence paired with a high-performance camera and vision systems to support a built-in clean in place functionality - and ensure all foods are made to desired high quality.
The Baltic Sea is receiving an extremely large dosage of methane gas following multiple leaks being identified in Russia's gas pipelines Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2.
Researchers are rushing to attempt to measure the effects of the pipeline leak, but estimations are difficult to conclude as the situation is ongoing. What is known is that four major leaks have been identified so far and that European leaders have accused Russia of sabotaging Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 as a way to attack the West over its condemnation of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
Experts are now sounding the alarm on the environmental impact of high amounts of methane gas leaking into the Baltic Sea. Bloomberg reports that a circle with a diameter of approximately 3,200 feet and growing has been spotted bubbling with natural gas pouring up from the below pipeline. Satellites have already been used to get a birds-eye view of the impacted area. According to Russia, the European leaders are "stupid" to suggest that the nation would destroy its own pipelines.
Archaeologists in Prague are rejoicing at the discovery of a monumental building that is estimated to have been built 7,000 years ago.
Experts discovered the large building more accurately described as a roundel in Prague's district of Vinor, and according to researchers working at the dig, the relic of a past time is in extremely good condition. A roundel is a large circular structure from the Neolithic period between 4600 and 4900 BC. These structures are much older than the Great Pyramids of Giza or Stonehenge, which are estimated to have been constructed from 2550 to 2490 B.C and 2,500 BC, respectively.
Miroslav Kraus, who is in charge of the research, explains that despite the extreme significance of such a structure being discovered, researchers are yet to identify what roundels were actually used for. Kraus gave one theory to reporters, which suggests that these large structures could have been a focal point for trade, much like a market, or religious cults used them to perform rites of passage.
A study on climate change and trees titled "The effect of carbon fertilization on naturally regenerated and planted US forests" has been published in the journal Nature Communications.
Researchers from the Ohio State University have now determined how much climate change, specifically excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, has contributed to the growth of different species of trees. Trees help buffer the effects of climate change on the planet by sequestering carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which has increased wood volume, or biomass, in a process known as carbon fertilization.
The phenomenon refers to the influx of carbon dioxide into a plant, increasing the rate at which it can photosynthesize to fuel growth, using the sun's energy, water, and other nutrients. Though higher carbon dioxide levels can be detrimental to natural systems and infrastructure worldwide, trees have used this increased availability to grow 20 to 30 percent larger than trees only three decades ago.
NASA deputy administrator Pam Melroy spoke during a presentation at the International Astronautical Congress 2022 in Paris, France on September 20th, detailing NASA's plans for its Moon to Mars exploration program.
Melroy stated that NASA's overarching goal is for the agency "to create a blueprint for sustained human presence and exploration throughout the solar system," and that to do this, NASA will need to identify specific objectives it wants to achieve. She noted that in the past, NASA has created capabilities and gone on to do what those capabilities allow them to achieve, but to "truly be aspirational and strategic," the agency has to "know what the goal is, even if we know we're not fully ready to do everything yet."
Following Melroy's presentation, NASA has released a revised version of its Moon to Mars objectives that will help direct investments into technologies to achieve them. The agency began with 50 draft objectives, and after opening up the discussion to international partners, the wider industry, and the public, have ended up with 63 final goals.
The official landfall confirmation comes from the National Hurricane Center Twitter account that posted at 3:05 pm EDT that Hurricane Ian has made landfall in Florida.
Shortly after the announcement from the National Hurricane Center, which stated that the "extremely dangerous" Category 4 hurricane had made landfall near Cayo Costa, Florida, NASA switched on its live stream to showcase the event from space. Officials reported Hurricane Ian brought wind speeds of 150 mph to the area it made landfall and that over the coming days, it's expected to move over central Florida, with forecasts estimating it will emerge over the western Atlantic by late Thursday.
NASA's video stream showcased just how large-scale a major storm can be, with the incredible views being captured by the cameras and astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS). In the days leading up to Hurricane Ian making landfall, astronauts aboard the ISS snapped photos of the major storm rolling into the region as it was gaining strength just south of Cuba. Officials warned Florida residents in the days before landfall was made to evacuate as Ian will cause rain, flooding, and destruction.
Reports surfaced on September 27 that a key gas pipeline between Russia and Germany had sprung a leak resulting in methane gas spilling into the Baltic Sea.
The two pipelines in question are called Nord Stream 1, and Nord Stream 2, and both run underwater in the Baltic Sea, providing gas to Germany from Russia. Sweden and Denmark have reported that a new major leak has been found, bringing the total number of identified leaks to four as of September 29. European leaders have accused Russia of sabotaging its own gas pipeline in an attempt to use gas resources as a weapon against the West.
BBC reports that European leaders have come together to agree that if any deliberate attack was discovered on either of the gas pipelines, it would be met with the "strongest possible response". San Francisco company Planet operates approximately two-hundred Dove satellites, which are small shoebox-sized Earth-facing satellites used to capture images of the Earth's surface. One of the Dove satellites captured the above image showcasing methane gas spilling into the Baltic Sea from the breached pipelines.
NASA has pulled off a world's first by successfully colliding a man-made spacecraft into a distant asteroid with the goal of altering its orbit.
NASA's Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) recently struck the binary asteroid system Didymos-Dimorphos, located approximately seven million miles from Earth. The DART spacecraft impacted the smaller of the two asteroids, Dimorphos, which orbits its larger companion asteroid, Didymos. NASA's goal was to prove that a spacecraft approximately the size of a vending machine, when traveling at extremely high speeds, is capable of changing the orbit of an asteroid - the world's first planetary defense demonstration.
Astronomers on Earth gazed up at the asteroid system on the day of the impact, looking for any changes in the asteroid. Italian astronomer Gianluca Masi live-streamed his observations via the Virtual Telescope project, which showcased Dimorphos gaining in brightness following the impact of the DART spacecraft. The above GIF showcases the increasing brightness, which, according to Masi, completely exceeded his expectations for the event.
Researchers from Oregon State University want to find out if robots can improve the mental and physical wellbeing of veterans. The university is working with the Edward C. Allworth Veterans' Home in Oregon on a project with federal funding from the National Science Foundation's National Robotics Initiative.
During the initial phase of research, OSU engineers want to analyze physical therapy programs and cognitive exercise for veterans, which can be led by robots. Assuming the robot is streamlined and easy to operate, they tend to be extremely more immersive than something on a laptop, tablet, or a virtual reality system.
Robots have a certain appeal both in the home and in a veterans' home, where it can be used in group sessions - and alleviate nurse and worker burnout. The staff and residents of the veterans' home will be interviewed to figure out what specific needs they have which can be assisted by OSU researchers and their robotic research.