Science, Space, Health & Robotics News - Page 259
The Soyuz 61 crew recently took off from Earths surface yesterday, and upon arrival at the International Space Station (ISS) a crew member of the ISS snapped this awesome picture.
NASA astronaut Jessica Meir, Russian cosmonaut Oleg Skripochka and United Arab Emirates spaceflight participant Hazza AlMansoori launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on September 25th. It wasn't long before they were to join the ISS crew of six that has been living and conducting experiments aboard the flying lab/observatory. Jessica Meir was on route to join her best-friend and classmate Christina Koch and upon Meirs arrival Koch snapped this incredible picture.
"What it looks like from @Space_Station when your best friend achieves her lifelong dream to go to space". She continued and explained what the image is of "Caught the second stage in progress! We can't wait to welcome you onboard, crew of Soyuz 61!" Meir and Skripochka will stay on board the ISS until February next year, while AlMansoori will return back to Earth in just week since he is just a spaceflight participant.
Boston Dynamics have finished up some designs of their robot dog 'Spot' and have decided to put him to work. Companies can now join their leasing program to acquire their very own Spot robot.
You have perhaps seen Boston Dynamics' robot dog before, and since its original reveal calibrations have been made that allow for Spot to avoid obstacles much better and keep balance under not-so-good circumstances. Why would companies want their very own Spot? Spot can carry up to four hardware modules on his back, which gives companies room to equip Spot with whatever it needs to complete its task. An example of a task is Spot being trained to check gas leaks with a methane detector.
Other use cases could be a company wanting to track connectivity over a long distance, Spot can be equipped with a radio transmitter and set on a specific course. Spot is also capable of also working in the rain. There are many different use cases for Spot, but one of them is something that Michael Perry, VP of business development at Boston Dynamics doesn't want to see, and thats Spot being converted into some sort of weapon. Here is what he had say, "Fundamentally, we don't want to see Spot doing anything that harms people, even in a simulated way".
A super-small and easily-fixed hole was discovered on the International Space Station in August 2018 by flight controllers, and now someone finally knows why.
Russia knows and it won't say what it was, with Russian space agency boss Dmitry Rogozin saying they know what it was but will not share the information with the US or NASA. Rogozin told attendees at a youth science conference: "We know exactly what happened, but we won't tell you anything".
It wasn't just the youth at the science fair that the Russian space agency boss was cold to, but also NASA -- in whom it is in direct partnership with along with the United States when it comes to the International Space Station. NASA boss Jim Bridenstine told the Houston Chronicle: "They have not told me anything. I don't want to let one item set (the relationship) back, but it is clearly not acceptable that there are holes in the International Space Station".
A new mineral has been found inside of a diamond at a volcanic site in South Africa, with Ph.D. student Nicole Meyer and a team of researchers from the University of Alberta making the discovery.
The new material is known as Goldschmidtite after the legendary geochemist Victor Moritz Goldschmidt, and was found atop the Koffiefontein mine in a volcanic dig site, inside of a diamond. Goldschmidtite is an interesting new mineral, and finding it must've felt like ten Christmas mornings at once for the team.
Meyer explained: "Goldschmidtite has high concentrations of niobium, potassium, and the rare earth elements lanthanum and cerium, whereas the rest of the mantle is dominated by other elements, such as magnesium and iron".
NASA has announced that they want to build a brand new space telescope to become the observer of the planet, this telescope would serve as a planetary defense instrument.
NASA has said that they have put away $150 million dollars of their budget to build this new telescope, and that if they did proceed to develop it that it would be able to track asteroids in Earths immediate neighborhood. Associate Administrator for the Science Mission Directorate, Thomas Zurbuchen said during the Planetary Science Advisory Committee meeting today that "The goal is not to do everything for eternity. The goal is to do the right things as they pop up."
For the space telescope to be a ultility to the planet, it would need to be able to track the positioning of a multitude of different asteroids as well as take into account their size and projected routes. This new proposed NASA telescope would be able to do this and it could reach the skies as early as 2025. If the telescope does get approved and is launched, its believed that it would be able to find 65% of the undiscovered space objects currently floating around out in the ether.
I didn't think I'd be typing this today but here it goes -- a female walrus has attacked, and successfully sunk a Russian Navy rescue boat by a female walrus. The walrus was most likely protecting its young, explains the RGO.
The Altai was sent out by the Russian navy's North Fleet, which was sailing away towards Franz Josef Land archipelago in the Arctic with researchers from the Russian Geographical Society on-board. In order to get to the Altai shore the crew had to get off the larger vessel and onto a smaller landing craft, which is when things got serious.
A female walrus appeared and attacked one of the expedition boats, sinking it. The research group explained: "Walruses attacked the participating boat. The boat sank, but the tragedy was avoided thanks to the clear actions of the squad leader. All the landing participants safely reached the shore".
U.S President, Donald Trump recently had a meeting with the Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morison and discussed the future of space exploration.
During that meeting, Trump spoke openly about each of the countries roles that they will be playing when it comes to space exploration via the Moon and eventually Mars. He said that "We're stopping at the moon. The moon is actually a launching pad, That's why we're stopping at the moon. I said, 'Hey, we've done the moon. That's not so exciting.' So we'll be doing the moon. But we'll really be doing Mars."
Trump also reinstated that "We're going to Mars" and that U.S space program will eventually take them there, its just a matter of securing the Moon first. For those that didn't know, NASA plan on leaving Earth by 2024 as apart of their Artemis lunar mission, more on that here. Additionally, NASA will be working with other space exploration companies such as Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin and Elon Musk's SpaceX.
Here is what Trump had to say about that, "In addition, rich people like to send up rocket ships. So between Bezos and Elon Musk and others, we're leasing them our launch facilities, which you can't get. And they've actually done very well. They've said they've had great success."
According to NASA, their Pioneer Venus mission reached Venus back in 1978 and the craft discovered that Venus showed signs of past oceans on its surface.
Since that mission, NASA has discovered many more things about Venus' surface which gave them more data to be able to understand how the planet went from being "Earth-like" to what it is now. The data indicates that around 700 million years ago Venus experienced a Greenhouse Effect event that caused the now hot place it is. Which means that 2 to 3 billion years Venus could of had a habitable environment fit for life.
After the forming of Venus its development process was extremely similar to that of Earths, which means that the planets atmosphere at one stage consisted of a lot of carbon dioxide. Venus then went onto experience a massive outgassing event which is yet to be discovered by scientists. It is believed that this event was geological and was so massive that it caused 80% of the planet to resurface.
Australia has formed and alliance with the US in NASA's upcoming space missions aimed towards re-landing on the Moon and eventually Mars.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison recently announced that Australia will be become involved with the United States' Artemis lunar program that targets a Moon landing by 2024. The announcement came out of the NASA Headquarters at a ceremony that was held in Washington. NASA Deputy Administrator, Jim Morhard, and Head of the Australian Space Agency, Megan Clark sat down and signed the new agreement (image above).
The agreement states that Australia will contribute to aspects of the lunar mission that they have a mutual interest in, such as "robotics, automation, and remote asset management". Morrison also stated that he will attempt to triple the Australian Space Agency budget to support the Artemis mission as well as the Moon to Mars mission that is planned for the future. Jim Morhard said "We are honored by today's statement and the commitment of our friends from Australia to support us in our mission to return to the Moon by 2024 with the Artemis program".
Space agency across the world have decided its time that humans go back to Moon, not only are NASA planning lunar missions but so are Russia and China.
For those that didn't know, Russia was the first country to achieve a successful soft landing onto the Moon's surface, that was back in 1966. China within the last decade also managed to achieve a soft landing and now both Russia and China have agreed to work together for future lunar missions.
China's Chang'e 5 will be launching next year and it is designed to be China's first sample-return mission. After Chang'e 5, Chang'e 6 will fetch a sample from the lunar south pole in 2023, Chang'e 7 will do a more in-depth exploration in that area. Russia on the other hand is on a different schedule, according to Dmitry Rogozin, the head of Roscosmos Space Agency, Russia plans involve a 2024 orbiter, a 2028 sample-return mission and human flights sometime in 2029 - 2030.