Science, Space, Health & Robotics News - Page 264
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has fired off a shot at Blue Origin CEO Jeff Bezos after Amazon sent a letter to the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
Amazon sent a letter to the FCC asking the regulatory agency not to allow SpaceX to launch a new set of its Starlink satellites, and in response to the letter SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has taken to his Twitter account to poke some fun at former Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. Musk said that it "Turns out Besos retired in order to pursue a full-time job filing lawsuits against SpaceX ..."
This isn't the first time a company run by Bezos has pushed for regulation of SpaceXs' plans as Blue Origin earlier this month has moved to sue NASA over its decision to award SpaceX a $2.9 billion contract to construct the next lunar lander. The decision to sue NASA and the previous arguments put forward by Blue Origin has resulted in numerous delays with the construction of the new lunar lander, which has now raised concern about the likelihood of NASA being able to put humans back on the moon in 2024.
NASA is sending launching another resupply trip to the International Space Station with SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft.
The Dragon spacecraft launched aboard the Falcon 9 rocket from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida with more than 4,800 pounds of cutting-edge science for researchers aboard the laboratory to enjoy. The cargo delivery is scheduled to arrive on Monday. It includes ants, avocados, a human-sized robotic arm, and numerous testing equipment designed to monitor astronaut health progression.
Other items aboard the cargo shipment are fresh foods such as lemons, ice cream for the floating laboratories, seven astronauts, shrimp, plant test subjects, seeds, weeds, concrete samples, solar cells, and more. All of the items aboard the cargo ship will be exposed to weightlessness and studied by the astronaut researchers in their respective fields. Assisting the astronauts in their study will be Gitai Inc.'s robotic arm that is designed to take on mundane tasks from astronauts, freeing up their time to accomplish something more of value.
The International Space Station (ISS) will soon be getting a bunch of new cutting-edge science toys to play around with in microgravity.
SpaceX will be transporting the cargo aboard the company's Dragon resupply spacecraft that launched at 3:14 a.m. EDT Sunday on a Falcon 9 rocket from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The cargo's weight comes in at a total of 4,800 pounds and includes new experiments, supplies for the astronauts aboard the floating laboratory, and hardware.
The Dragon spacecraft will automatically dock with the ISS on Monday, August 30 and will stay at the ISS for around a month while astronauts aboard the lab remove the cargo and prepare for Dragon's separation. Below is what science is included in the cargo.
During an expedition in July, researchers came across what is now believed to be the "northernmost" landmass in the world.
Currently, the official northernmost landmass is Oodaaq, which is a bank of gravel and silt northeast of Greenland. However, Morten Rasch from Copenhagen University's department of geosciences and natural resource management, and head on the expedition, "We were informed that there had been an error on my GPS which had led us to believe that we were standing on Oodaaq Island. In reality, we had discovered a new island further north, a discovery that just slightly expands the kingdom."
For context of where this "new" island is, Oodaaq is around 700 miles south from the North Pole, and this recently discovered island is about 2,000 feet north of Oodaaq. While Greenland is undoubtedly pleased to discover more of its kingdom, researchers are concerned that the ocean could swallow the recently discovered landmass as it only resides 96 to 196 feet above sea level. Rasch added, "No one knows how long it will remain. In principle, it could disappear as soon as a powerful new storm hits."
A new study published in the journal Geology has detailed the discovery of a fossilized brain that dates back 310 million years.
According to the study, researchers uncovered what is being described as a "one in a million" fossilized brain of a horseshoe crab, specifically from the crab species called Euproops danae. The researchers found the crab brain in Mazon Creek, Illinois, where conditions consist of iron carbonate minerals named siderite, which the corpse of the crab was wrapped in - fossilizing it for all of that time.
Russell Bicknell, the led author on the study, and paleontologist at the University of New England in Maine, spoke to Live Science and said, "This is the first and only evidence of a brain in a fossilized horseshoe crab." Bicknell clarified that over the millions of years, the brain tissue of the crab decomposed, but due to the fossilization, the mineral kaolinite created a perfect mold of the brain. "We have a mold of the brain, not the brain itself. If we start looking, we may be lucky enough to find more brain fossils", said Bicknell.
During NASA's Mars helicopter 12th and most recent flight, the small scout named Ingenuity snapped its most valuable images.
The area is dubbed South Seitah, and during Ingenuity's flight that occurred on August 16, the helicopter scoped out the area by taking some incredible pictures of landscapes. According to Ken Farley, the project scientist for NASA's Perseverance rover, Ingenuity's recent images are the most valuable images the helicopter has ever taken because they are giving project planners essential data that impacts the route of the Perseverance rover.
NASA's goal is to find prime locations that Perseverance can traverse and inspect. Through the rover's inspection, NASA hopes to gain a deeper understanding of possible ancient microbial life and also the history of Mars' geology. There are certain locations where this data is best extrapolated from the planet and these locations where there are sedimentary rock - rock that shows erosion, weathering, dissolution, precipitation, and lithification.
Space telescopes receiving light that was from billions of years ago is quite literally allowing researchers to peer back in time.
NASA's Kepler Space Telescope is one of the space agency's telescopes that do such a thing, and according to the led author of the study, Patrick Armstrong, a Ph.D. student at the Australian National University, "The light we were seeing had actually left that star a billion years ago".
Armstrong added that it was lucky that the space telescope was observing the area of space where the explosion occurred as a star, while it can live for billions of years, it explodes in just a matter of weeks, leaving a relatively small window of opportunity for observations to be made of a supernova. Kepler is providing researchers with an abundance of data to go over, which means that discoveries from observations made by Kepler usually happen years after the images were taken.
One way researchers discover "new" craters on Mars is to analyze images taken from NASA satellites that are pointed at the surface of the Red Planet.
Researchers will look at a collection of images spanning over various time frames, then compare images of the surface to each other. If a new crater appears between an image taken on A date and an image taken B date, then researchers can estimate that an impact must have occurred sometime between the dates of the images taken. To analyze one image, a researcher will spend about 40 minutes.
As humans tend to do, we have offloaded the process to technology that can complete the task much more efficiently, freeing up time for researchers to work on other tasks. Researchers have now used a supercomputer at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) to train an artificial intelligence with around 7,000 images, reducing the time it takes to analyze a single image to just 5 seconds and causing the discovery of new craters.
As humans continue to expand our understanding of what technology is capable of, we also expand our understanding of the world we live in.
The evolution of human knowledge through the advancement of the technologies we create comes in various forms, and one of those forms is radar technology. In 2013 it was discovered that beneath the Greenland ice sheet, there is the world's longest canyon that is 460 miles in length, putting it above China's 308-mile-long (496 km) Yarlung Tsangpo Grand Canyon, which is renowned as the world's longest visible canyon.
Not only has the world's longest canyon been discovered through the use of emerging new technologies, but so have vast mountain ranges beneath the 2 mile-thick ice sheet. The data recovered by these technologies revealed a topographic map of the world beneath the glaciers, making researchers interesting in certain aspects of the glaciers; water beneath the surface containing clues about past events, meteor impacts, lakes of various sizes, and perfectly preserved fossil plants.
If you haven't heard about the Carrington event then I suggest you read up on it, but back in 1859 there was a gigantic solar flare that -- if it happened now -- would knock us back into the Stone Age.
But in a new study, Sangeetha Abdu Jyothi of the University of California, Irvine warned that a solar storm could knock the internet down for weeks if not more. In the presentation titled "Solar Superstorms: Planning for an Internet Apocalypse" found that local and regional Internet infrastructure could be hit but they would be fine -- the long undersea cables on the other hand, are at risk.
Why? The local and regional internet infrastructure isn't at a high risk because the optical fiber isn't affected by geomagnetically induced currents -- meanwhile, short cable spans are grounded regularly. But, undersea cables on the other hand... would be knocked out of operation. The reason is that there are repeaters under the sea that connect the internet cables, at around 50-150km apart.