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Jan 15, 2016

‘Space Warps’ and other citizen science projects reap major dividends for astrophysics

Posted by in categories: physics, science, space

The astrophysics project Space Warps offers a compelling example of why citizen science has become such a popular tool and how valuable it can be. In a roundtable discussion with the Kavli Foundation, citizen science leaders and astrophysicists Chris Lintott, Anupreeta More and Aprajita Verma discuss the tremendous impact these enthusiastic volunteers are having.

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Jan 15, 2016

New theory of secondary inflation expands options for avoiding an excess of dark matter

Posted by in categories: cosmology, physics

A new theory from physicists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and Stony Brook University, which will publish online on January 18 in Physical Review Letters, suggests a shorter secondary inflationary period that could account for the amount of dark matter estimated to exist throughout the cosmos.

“In general, a fundamental theory of nature can explain certain phenomena, but it may not always end up giving you the right amount of dark matter,” said Hooman Davoudiasl, group leader in the High-Energy Theory Group at Brookhaven National Laboratory and an author on the paper. “If you come up with too little dark matter, you can suggest another source, but having too much is a problem.”

Measuring the amount of dark matter in the universe is no easy task. It is dark after all, so it doesn’t interact in any significant way with ordinary matter. Nonetheless, gravitational effects of dark matter give scientists a good idea of how much of it is out there. The best estimates indicate that it makes up about a quarter of the mass-energy budget of the universe, while ordinary matter — which makes up the stars, our planet, and us — comprises just 5 percent. Dark matter is the dominant form of substance in the universe, which leads physicists to devise theories and experiments to explore its properties and understand how it originated.

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Jan 15, 2016

Comets can’t explain weird ‘alien megastructure’ star after all

Posted by in category: space

Well well well……

It looks like we just might have some neighbors after all!

Hopefully their idea of a good housewarming present DOESN’T include planetary extermination! wink

Continue reading “Comets can’t explain weird ‘alien megastructure’ star after all” »

Jan 15, 2016

Microbots individually controlled using magnetic fields

Posted by in category: engineering

This image shows how two microbots can be independently controlled when operating within a group. (Purdue University image/David Cappelleri)

Purdue University researchers have developed a method to use magnetic fields to independently control individual microrobots operating within groups.

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Jan 15, 2016

Frozen Tardigrade Brought Back to Life After 30 Years

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, space

Tardigrades, or “water bears,” are renowned for their remarkable survival skills. But these microscopic creatures are far more indestructible than we thought. In a recent experiment, scientists in Japan successfully revived a tardigrade that had been frozen for more than three decades.

That’s a new record.

Tardigrades are tiny water-dwelling extremophiles that are capable of withstanding some of the most severe environmental conditions, including freezing, total dehydration, radiation, and even the vacuum of space. Much of this has to do with their extraordinary genome, of which nearly 18% is comprised of DNA from other organisms, including plants, fungi, bacteria, and viruses.

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Jan 15, 2016

Space Mining Could Set Off a Star War — By Clive Thompson | Wired

Posted by in categories: business, space


“Space is lousy with profits. Consider the asteroid Ryugu: It’s made of so many tons of nickel, iron, cobalt, and water, it’s worth an estimated $95 billion.”

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Jan 15, 2016

The future is coming! (h/t Watercar

Posted by in category: futurism

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Jan 15, 2016

‘Spermbots’ are a bionic suit for your sperm

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, transhumanism

One of the main causes of infertility in men is low sperm motility. That is to say, the sperm are present and alive, but they have the swimming prowess of a toddler that’s afraid to lose its water wings.

In short, they just aren’t fast enough to reach the egg.

It’s hard to fault them, I can’t get to the front door fast enough for the FedEx guy not to leave my package in the bushes these days.

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Jan 15, 2016

Y-3 and Virgin Galactic — Shaping the future of space access

Posted by in categories: futurism, space

Y-3 in space! We officially announce our partnership with Virgin Galactic to create their future pilot flight-suits.

A pioneering spirit and dedication to pushing the boundaries of possibility- Y-3 announce a space-apparel partnership with Virgin Galactic.We have been developing the intersection of fashion and space, underpinned by a shared approach to design and innovation, as they create apparel system for the world’s first commercial spaceline.

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Jan 14, 2016

Space Oddity (David Bowie + Kristen Wiig) — The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

Posted by in category: space

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