Science, Space, Health & Robotics News - Page 386

All the latest Science, Space, Health & Robotics news with plenty of coverage on space launches, discoveries, rockets & plenty more - Page 386.

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NASA offers SpaceX $5 million to ensure employees don't smoke pot

Shannon Robb | Oct 16, 2019 2:20 PM CDT

Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX, caused quite the fervor among viewers as he smoked from a joint on an episode of Joe Rogan's popular podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience.

NASA offers SpaceX $5 million to ensure employees don't smoke pot

If you would like to see the full 2hr podcast video, it can be found here. It gives a very interesting look at Elon Musk, the man behind Tesla and SpaceX.

Now with that understanding of the events prior. NASA took this as a warning sign and wanted to step in since SpaceX is a contractor for NASA projects such as the construction of space capsules. While California is one of many states that have passed laws allowing for recreational use of marijuana, the drug is still a controlled substance and illegal on the federal level.

Continue reading: NASA offers SpaceX $5 million to ensure employees don't smoke pot (full post)

NASA reschedules first all-female spacewalk after battery failure

Jak Connor | Oct 16, 2019 2:03 AM CDT

NASA has debuted a new press release that details that some changes are coming to the spacewalk schedule that is going to happen aboard the International Space Station (ISS).

NASA reschedules first all-female spacewalk after battery failure

At 4:30pm today, NASA will be hosting a media conference that will be streamed on their website. Throughout this conference, Kenny Todd, manager of International Space Station Operations Integration, and Megan McArthur, deputy chief of NASA's Astronaut Office will be taking live questions about the recent changes that have been put in place regarding the spacewalk scheduling. For those out of the loop, NASA and the astronauts aboard the ISS are upgrading the space station's power system through replacing old batteries with new ones, more on that here.

The space station managers have decided to postpone three spacewalks that were previously planned to be executed this week and next week. Here's why, according to the press release "Space station managers have postponed three spacewalks previously scheduled for this and next week to install new batteries in order to first replace a faulty battery charge/discharge unit (BCDU)". The press release continues and says "The BCDU failed to activate following the Oct. 11 installation of new lithium-ion batteries on the space station's truss. The three spacewalks previously planned to continue the installation of additional lithium-ion batteries will be rescheduled."

Continue reading: NASA reschedules first all-female spacewalk after battery failure (full post)

Sex robots with 'consent modules' being made for ethical sex robots

Anthony Garreffa | Oct 15, 2019 8:00 PM CDT

The world of sex robots is an interesting one where I've previously reported that sex robots with "coding errors" could strangle, and kill you in the act -- but now let's move into the design of "ethical" sex robots.

Sex robots with 'consent modules' being made for ethical sex robots

These ethical sex robots will have to provide their partner with consent before they have sex, with university researchers from Australia and the Netherlands seeing a future where "consent modules" will be used in sex robots. These consent modules would require the sex robot to give consent before sex.

Anco Peeters of Australia's University of Wollongong and Pim Haselager, an associate professor at The Netherlands' Radboud University recently published an article that talked about a future where "ethical" sex robots were a thing. The research article explains: "We propose that virtue ethics can be used to address ethical issues central to discussions about sex robots. In particular, we argue virtue ethics is well equipped to focus on the implications of sex robots for human moral character. Our evaluation develops in four steps".

Continue reading: Sex robots with 'consent modules' being made for ethical sex robots (full post)

That reddish interstellar visitor isn't what we thought it would be

Jak Connor | Oct 15, 2019 3:07 AM CDT

Astronomers that have been observing the comet that arrived in our solar system from deep space, discovered that the comet is much more ordinary than first expected.

That reddish interstellar visitor isn't what we thought it would be

Sometimes space discoveries aren't all celebrations, as sometimes what was expected to be found is a bit more ordinary than originally thought. This is one of those times, as amateur astronomer, Gennady Borisov found back in late August a comet from deep space which was then named 2I/Borisov. This comet was the second interstellar object ever found to enter our solar system, and as astronomers studied its qualities it has been found to be quite the ordinary comet.

A team led by Piotr Guzik at Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland maned the telescopes at the Canary Islands and Hawaii to observe the visitor further. What they found is that the comet has a reddish color with a fuzzy tail extending from its 2-kilometre-wide nucleus. The team found that the comet is more normal than once thought, and is extremely similar to the comets that are currently floating around our sun. Astronomers will continue to study 21/Borisov as its trajectory is will closely approach the sun on the 8th of December. After that it will continue outwards to the edges of our solar system.

Continue reading: That reddish interstellar visitor isn't what we thought it would be (full post)

This 100,000 times thinner guitar string 'nano-string' plays by itself

Jak Connor | Oct 15, 2019 1:05 AM CDT

Scientists have managed to create a nano-electronic circuit that can vibrate and play guitar notes without any external force.

This 100,000 times thinner guitar string 'nano-string' plays by itself

The scientists from the Lancaster University and University of Oxford have used a tiny suspended wire that is positioned much like a guitar string to showcase their experiment that reveals how a simple nano-device can generate motion by itself. Researchers used a carbon nanotube, a wire with a diameter of about 3 nanometers or to put it into a musicians perspective - about 100,000 times thinner than a normal guitar string.

Researchers mounted the nanotube onto metal supports at each end and then cooled it down to 0.02 degrees. Researchers then passed an electric current through the wire and measured its change in electrical resistance. Much like a normal guitar string when its plucked, the nanotube wire vibrated when the electric current passed through it, what was the surprising part was when the researchers stopped forcing the voltage and the wire continued vibrate by itself.

Continue reading: This 100,000 times thinner guitar string 'nano-string' plays by itself (full post)

Astronomers officially find second Earth in habitable Goldilocks zone

Jak Connor | Oct 14, 2019 8:44 AM CDT

Its now official, astronomers have managed to locate another Earth-like planet, the news has recently come out of NASA's Kepler Space Telescope.

Astronomers officially find second Earth in habitable Goldilocks zone

According to PhysicsAstronomy, astronomers using NASA's Kepler Space Telescope managed to discover another Earth located in the Goldilocks zone of our galaxy. The planet is titled Kepler-186f. Its about 500 light-years away from Earth in Cygnus constellation which is a known habitable zone due to its position next to a star and atmospheric pressure that can sustain liquid water on surfaces.

Scientists have recognized that there at least 40 billion Earth-sized planets currently floating around in our Milky Way galaxy. But this is the first time one of these planets has been discovered in the habitable zone of another star. Elisa Quintana, research scientist at the SETI Institute at NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., and lead author of the paper published in the journal Science said "We know of only one planet where life survives - Earth. When we hunt for life outside our solar system, we emphasis on discovering planets with features that mimic that of Earth. Discovering a habitable zone planet similar to Earth in size is a major breakthrough."

Continue reading: Astronomers officially find second Earth in habitable Goldilocks zone (full post)

What happens when a city is Nuked? Just every natural disaster at once

Jak Connor | Oct 14, 2019 1:10 AM CDT

Humans have undoubtedly created some quite questionable weapons in our time, and nuclear weapons are definitely within the top five of that category. So what exactly happens if one was to be launched at any city on the planet?

What happens when a city is Nuked? Just every natural disaster at once

Above we have a new video from Kurzgesagt - In a Nutshell, they explore the affects of a Nuke hitting a downtown city, and how the events of that explosion would roll out on the residents. Firstly, one millisecond after the detonation a 2km wide ball of plasma hotter than the sun erupts from the center of the blast zone, evaporating everything within its radius.

The light that's emitted from the blast is so hot it produces a thermal pulse which burns anything that is able to burn within 500 squared km, or a 13km radius. As the explosion progresses, a bubble of super heated and super compressed air begins to rapidly expand faster than the speed of sound, decimating most already burning buildings, people and anything else in its way. Then a mushroom cloud made from rubble, fire, dust and ash erupts from the center and rises kilometers into the sky, drawing in an abundance of oxygen fueling the already burning fires.

Continue reading: What happens when a city is Nuked? Just every natural disaster at once (full post)

The world's largest Ouija board is as big as a brontosaurus

Anthony Garreffa | Oct 14, 2019 12:50 AM CDT

Just in time for Halloween... the world's largest Ouija board has arrived in Salem. Ouijazilla was created by New Jersey-based tattoo artist Rick Schreck, who is also the vice president of the Talking Board Historical Society, of which I did not know existed until just now.

The world's largest Ouija board is as big as a brontosaurus

Ouijazilla weighs a hefty 9000 pounds, and so long that the world's largest Ouija board could have five 18-wheel trucks park on top of it. For those unfamiliar with a Ouija board, the "planchet" is the part of the board that you put your hands-on and it moves around -- with the planchet on Ouijazilla a massive 15.5-feet in length and weighs a huge 400 pounds on its own.

In an interview between Schreck and Talking Board Historical Society's director Karen Dahlman, he explained: "The board that I used, actually, to replicate is the 1998 (board) for Hasboro. The glow-in-the-dark board. That's my favorite. ...Ouijazilla is big enough to put, I think, 2,300 of those boards on top of it".

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Paralyzed man walks again using brain-controlled exoskeleton

Anthony Garreffa | Oct 11, 2019 7:38 PM CDT

The use of exoskeletons can and will be vast as the technology matures and time passes, with researchers over at the University of Grenoble releasing their results of a trial using a 4-limb robotic system that helps patients with tetraplegia, which is the loss of control of all four limbs.

Paralyzed man walks again using brain-controlled exoskeleton

The most tricky way of using the system is finding a patient with tetraplegia and getting them hooked into the system, with 28-year-old French man 'Thibault' using the suit. It's not a fully-baked and ready-to-use suit just yet, but in its current trial status the researchers along with the patients can train an algorithm that interprets brain signals which then converts them into physical movement.

Professor Alim-Louis Benabid, president of the Clinatec Executive Board, a CEA laboratory, and Professor Emeritus from the University of Grenoble, France, said in a press release: "Ours' is the first semi-invasive wireless brain-computer system designed for long term use to activate all four limbs".

Continue reading: Paralyzed man walks again using brain-controlled exoskeleton (full post)

SpaceX's Crew Dragon could transport astronauts to ISS in Q1 of 2020

Jak Connor | Oct 11, 2019 4:06 AM CDT

NASA Administrator, Jim Bridenstine and SpaceX founder Elon Musk have addressed the public in a recently concluded Q&A session at SpaceX's HQ.

SpaceX's Crew Dragon could transport astronauts to ISS in Q1 of 2020

The Q&A was held at the SpaceX HQ in California where NASA Administrator, Jim Bridenstine and SpaceX founder Elon Musk stood next two two astronauts and answered some questions regarding their upcoming mission plans. While the talk was quite lengthy, Musk and Bridenstine were asked about the upcoming Crew Dragon project, and according to the administrator after some more testing the first crewed "Demo-2" test flight could launch as early as Q1 of 2020.

Musk also touched on the subject and said that drop tests are about to commence and SpaceX's team will be evaluating its "Mark 3" parachute design. The "Mark 3" design has replaced what was once nylon cords with much stronger "xylon" material.

Continue reading: SpaceX's Crew Dragon could transport astronauts to ISS in Q1 of 2020 (full post)