Science, Space, Health & Robotics News - Page 331

All the latest Science, Space, Health & Robotics news with plenty of coverage on space launches, discoveries, rockets & plenty more - Page 331.

"The best meteor shower of the year" is this weekend--don't miss it!

Trace Hagan | Fri, Aug 10 2012 5:33 PM CDT

Continuing with a theme of science and space Friday, we would like to give you something to do over the weekend. It's time for the yearly Perseid meteor shower in the northern hemisphere and it promises to be a good one. NASA has called it the "best meteor shower of the year" so you really don't want to miss it.

The shower will run from August 11 to 13, with the night of August 12 expected to be the best. NASA is predicting that at its peak rate people could be making 100 wishes an hour. In other words, NASA expects it to peak at 100 shooting stars an hour. "We expect to see meteor rates as high as a hundred per hour," NASA's Bill Cooke says.

Heading to the countryside away from city lights is usually advisable. According to NASA, "a visit to the countryside will typically triple the number of meteors you see." The best viewing time will be in the early morning darkness just before dawn. The show should start sometime after 10PM. I'll be heading to a remote location in the Northern California Sierra Nevadas to escape the Sacramento city light pollution.

Continue reading: "The best meteor shower of the year" is this weekend--don't miss it! (full post)

Chinese researchers achieve quantum teleportation, send data across a lake

Anthony Garreffa | Fri, Aug 10 2012 1:21 AM CDT

Chinese researchers have achieved something quite grand, where they've overcome some challenges in regards to open-air quantum teleportation. The team developed a highly accurate laser pointing and tracking system, reports Ars Technica.

Chinese researchers achieve quantum teleportation, send data across a lake | TweakTown.com

The team of researchers teleported a qubit (which is a standard unit of data in quantum computing) 97 kilometers (!) across a lake, all using a small set of photons without fiberoptic cables, or other such technology. Juan Yin and his team developed the laser targeting device, and the team were necessary to counteract the minute seismic and atmosphere shifts that would usually break the link between the two locations.

Point-to-point accuracy problems are solved by fibreoptic cables, compared to open-air systems, where the cables are used to carry entangled photons, which carry the data required for quantum teleportation. But, this can cause what's referred to as "quantum decoherence", or the corruption of the proton's entanglement data. It's incredibly exciting, and while it's not teleporting people around yet, the aim of it is to transport data, which would require quantum repeater satellites to build the network required.

Continue reading: Chinese researchers achieve quantum teleportation, send data across a lake (full post)

China to land exploratory craft on the Moon in 2013

Anthony Garreffa | Tue, Jul 31 2012 5:27 AM CDT

China are set to settle for infinity now, and not beyond, with plans to land an exploratory craft on one and only naturally orbiting satellite, the Moon, for the first time. China's third lunar probe, Chang'e-3, is set for take off in the second half of next year, the state Xinhua news agency reported late yesterday. Chang'e-3 is named after the Chinese goddess of the Moon.

China to land exploratory craft on the Moon in 2013 | TweakTown.com

Other reports have stated that it would land, and transmit back a survey of the Moon's surface. If China are successful in landing the craft on the Moon, it will mark a very large milestone for its space development. Xinhua have said it is part of a project to orbit, land and return from the Moon. China have said on its last white paper on space that they are working toward landing a man on the Moon, but no time frame has been given.

Beijing sees its multi-billion-dollar space program as a symbol of its rising global importance, growing technical expertise, and the Communist Party's success in turning around the fortunes of the one poverty-stricken nation. If China are successful, it will be quite the media event for 2013.

The one downside to all of this? The United States used to be at the bleeding edge of this type of space exploration, considering all the technological advances we've seen in the past 50 years, it's quite sad to see that China are now looking to land on the Moon for a look around.

Continue reading: China to land exploratory craft on the Moon in 2013 (full post)

Man designs and builds trashcan which moves to catch flying trash

Trace Hagan | Mon, Jul 23 2012 12:32 PM CDT

A cool science project has brought something that every person on earth has been waiting for. Think back to all those Sci-Fi movies. What do they all have in common? If you said moving trashcans that adjust their position to catch the trash you have just thrown towards it, you'd be correct.

Man designs and builds trashcan which moves to catch flying trash | TweakTown.com

And one would think with all of the technology we have some researcher would have been able to build this some time ago. Well, it turns out that people who are too lazy to get up and place trash in the can are too lazy to work on inventing a trashcan like this. However, an inventor by the name of FRP has managed to design and build one for himself.

FRP built everything from scratch from the wheeled base to the circuit boards and programming. He used a Kinect sensor that monitors the entire room and watches for trash to become airborne. It then tracks the trash and directs the trashcan to move to where it is likely to land. The video makes it look pretty darn accurate, but FRP admits the accuracy wouldn't win an MVP award quite yet.

If he manages to improve the accuracy, it's likely this invention will one day make him a very rich man.

Continue reading: Man designs and builds trashcan which moves to catch flying trash (full post)

Scientists at CERN discovers the "God particle", or Higgs boson

Anthony Garreffa | Wed, Jul 4 2012 11:00 PM CDT

The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) have done it, after more than 30 years of experimentation, and billions upon billions of dollars in research and the use and construction of the Large Hadron Collider, have found the Higgs boson, or "God particle".

Scientists at CERN discovers the God particle, or Higgs boson | TweakTown.com

Some might dismiss this as nothing, but this is considered an absolutely mind-blowing achievement for all scientists, researchers and everyone in between. The Higgs boson is a subatomic particle which is thought to give everything in our universe, mass. Mass is a physical property which gives matter its weight here on Earth, and other bodies which exert gravity.

But, you don't just stumble upon this, and when you do, you require some serious confirmation before you make these types of claims. Scientists are 99.99999999999-percent certain, and this is about as close as one can get. The scientists were able to calculate that the new particle is very near the "five-sigma" level of significance, meaning that there is less than a one in a million chance that their results are a statistical fluke.

Continue reading: Scientists at CERN discovers the "God particle", or Higgs boson (full post)

New reality show to be based on Mars, $6 billion cost to establish permanent colony by 2023, Snooki will be too old by then

Anthony Garreffa | Wed, Jun 27 2012 3:27 AM CDT

Ever wished there were a reality show that wasn't based on this planet? Well, just wait another decade and your wish might just come true. A Dutch company is determined to establish a permanent colony on Mars, and is looking to spend $6 billion doing so.

New reality show to be based on Mars, $6 billion cost to establish permanent colony by 2023, Snooki will be too old by then | TweakTown.com

The plans for a reality show is grandiose, with the project dubbed 'Mars One', and will drop four astronauts on Mars in April 2023, with none of them ever returning to Earth. In order to pony up $6 billion for this venture, the project is set to stage a media spectacle like the world has never, ever seen previously. An interplanetary reality show, along the lines of Big Brother.

Theoretical physicist and Nobel laureate Gerard 't Hooft, an ambassador for Mars One, has said in an introductory video posted on the company's website:

This project seems to be the only way to fulfill humanity's dream to explore outer space. It is going to be an exciting experiment. Let's get started.

Continue reading: New reality show to be based on Mars, $6 billion cost to establish permanent colony by 2023, Snooki will be too old by then (full post)

Japan, Russia looking to set up bases on the Moon

Anthony Garreffa | Tue, May 22 2012 10:39 PM CDT

If you've ever imagined being a fly on the wall in an important meeting between companies, or corporations, this might be it. The heads of the space agencies for Europe, Canada, and Russia as well as senior representatives from the space agencies of India and Japan, were all together in a hotel in Washington, DC, where they were talking about the benefits of international collaboration at the Global Space Exploration Conference.

Japan, Russia looking to set up bases on the Moon | TweakTown.com

The leader of the space agency who's HQ is just a few blocks away, was not on the stage. NASA administrator, Charles Bolden, was in Florida where he was watching the attempt by SpaceX to launch a capsule to the International Space Station. But, it's not strange for NASA to not be involved with these talks, as the agency has had a hard time working with others in joint ventures, and Europe in particular has had to turn elsewhere for partners.

Continue reading: Japan, Russia looking to set up bases on the Moon (full post)

Chinese researchers teleport photons over 60 miles

Anthony Garreffa | Sun, May 13 2012 10:33 PM CDT

The Chinese have beamed up Scotty. Starting in 1997, researchers have been able to quantum teleport photons, where a record was set by researchers at the University of Science and Technology of China in Shanghai.

Two years ago, this team successfully transported a photon over 16km. This same team has just released some new findings, where they've claimed to have teleported photons nearly 100km, or over 60 miles. Incredible!

Chinese researchers teleport photons over 60 miles | TweakTown.com

How the process works is when a photon is teleported, they aren't physically transporting the proton, but instead the information that is contained in it through quantum entanglement. The second photon at the end of the teleport then becomes the first one, or the identical qubit of information. This means that information is exchanged, all without any physical movement.

This would be perfect for information, instead of it travelling through cables or satellites, information would stay in a single place, shoot across the other side of the planet (or solar system?) and recreate itself in its intended position. This is because quantum teleportation has to be done in free space. Fiberoptics just don't work because once you go over a distance of around 1km, the fiber absorbs so much light that the information is lost.

Continue reading: Chinese researchers teleport photons over 60 miles (full post)

Any Futurama fans? High speed tube transport concept similar to the show could go NY to Hollywood in 45 minutes

Trace Hagan | Mon, Apr 23 2012 11:33 AM CDT

The future has once again been predicted by a TV show. A new concept vehicle that is strikingly similar to that in the TV cartoon Futurama could make trips around the world in only 6 hours. New York to Hollywood could be completed in a mere 45 minutes. All of this is thanks to magnetic levitation.

Any Futurama fans? High speed tube transport concept similar to the show could go NY to Hollywood in 45 minutes | TweakTown.com

This new concept is called Evacuated Tube Transport (ETT) and works by moving at incredibly high speeds. Each tube vehicle car thing (honestly, I'm not sure what to call them!) seats 6 people and has a baggage compartment. The passenger capsule is then put into a vacuum tube where it is levitated leaving it frictionless and air drag free.

Without friction or drag, the system is efficient and can attain a top speed of approximately 4,000 miles per hour. No typo there, folks. This speed allows it to do the incredible feats described above. Even with that speed, passengers would experience no more G-force than a typical car ride down the freeway.

Better yet, the people behind the technology say that it could be available in the next 10 years. "Just like trains, initial ETT use will be for cargo, and along high use routes of travel," ET3 says in a statement on its official site. "Since the system is efficient in energy and materials used, high-speed travel will be low-cost, and sustainable. Eventually, everyone in the world may use the system."

Continue reading: Any Futurama fans? High speed tube transport concept similar to the show could go NY to Hollywood in 45 minutes (full post)

Scientists make breakthrough that could double human lifespan

Trace Hagan | Wed, Apr 18 2012 3:33 PM CDT

Scientists have discovered a molecule that could very well double the lifespan of humans if the rat trials are anything to go on. Obviously there is a lot more research to be done before this can even be considered for human trials, but the early results are definitely positive. Imagine living to 150, 200 years old!

Scientists make breakthrough that could double human lifespan | TweakTown.com

Researchers at the Universite Paris Sud in France began experimenting with a special carbon molecule called Buckministerfullerene or, more commonly, "Buckyballs." These molecules are composed of 60 carbon atoms arranged in the shape of a sphere. The researchers then fed the molecule along with olive oil to several groups of rats.

One group of rats was the control group and was fed just a normal diet. A second group was fed the normal diet and olive oil. The third group was fed the normal diet along with olive oil and a 0.8mg/ml concentration of Buckminsterfullerene. The control group lived for an average of 22 months, the oil-fed group lasted an average of 26 months, and the final group, the ones fed the Buckminsterfullerene, lived for an unbelievable 42 months.

The group fed the Buckminsterfullerene survived for almost double that of the control group and still significantly better than the oil-fed group. Scientists had previously hypothesized the benefits of the molecule, but this is the first time their life-extending properties had been tested. Just imagine if these results transfer to humans. Hello, overpopulation!

Continue reading: Scientists make breakthrough that could double human lifespan (full post)

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