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Feb 29, 2024

Fire-resistant sodium battery balances safety, cost and performance

Posted by in categories: innovation, materials

A sodium battery developed by researchers at The University of Texas at Austin significantly reduces fire risks from the technology, while also relying on inexpensive, abundant materials to serve as its building blocks.

Though battery fires are rare, increased battery usage means these incidents are on the rise.

Continue reading “Fire-resistant sodium battery balances safety, cost and performance” »

Feb 29, 2024

Meet the SpaceX Crew-8 astronauts launching to the ISS on March 2

Posted by in category: space travel

Four new astronauts are scheduled to launch to the International Space Station on Saturday (March 2) as part of NASA’s SpaceX Crew-8 mission.

Crew-8, the eighth operational commercial crew mission for NASA, will lift off Saturday at 11:16 p.m. EST (0416 GMT on March 3) from Kennedy Space Center in Florida using the SpaceX Crew Dragon Endeavour spacecraft, situated atop a Falcon 9 rocket. The Crew Dragon spacecraft will then dock with the orbiting lab the following day around 2:10 p.m. EST (1910 GMT).

Feb 29, 2024

‘Air-breathing’ propulsion tech could unlock unlimited propellant for satellites

Posted by in category: satellites

Earth’s orbit is so populated that the space industry is now developing technologies to remove space debris caused by satellites from an over-crowded low Earth orbit (LEO).

One untapped orbit above Earth does exist, though. The so-called very low Earth orbit (VLEO) would allow satellites to fly in a less crowded space closer to home and take more detailed pictures of our planet.

Feb 29, 2024

East Valley’s $25M International Dark Sky Discovery Center will feature observatory, planetarium

Posted by in category: futurism

The nonprofit group behind the East Valley project has been raising millions of dollars behind the scenes for several years.

Feb 29, 2024

Scientists reveal how first cells could have formed on Earth

Posted by in categories: chemistry, evolution

Roughly 4 billion years ago, Earth was developing conditions suitable for life. Origin-of-life scientists often wonder if the type of chemistry found on the early Earth was similar to what life requires today. They know that spherical collections of fats, called protocells, were the precursor to cells during this emergence of life. But how did simple protocells first arise and diversify to eventually lead to life on Earth?

Now, Scripps Research scientists have discovered one plausible pathway for how protocells may have first formed and chemically progressed to allow for a diversity of functions.

The findings, published online on February 29, 2024, in the journal Chem, suggest that a chemical process called phosphorylation (where are added to the molecule) may have occurred earlier than previously expected. This would lead to more structurally complex, double chained protocells capable of harboring chemical reactions and dividing with a diverse range of functionalities. By revealing how protocells formed, scientists can better understand how could have taken place.

Feb 29, 2024

ResLoRA: Identity Residual Mapping in Low-Rank Adaption

Posted by in category: mapping

Microsoft presents ResLoRA

Identity residual mapping in low-rank adaption.


Join the discussion on this paper page.

Feb 29, 2024

Humanoid robot-maker Figure partners with OpenAI and gets backing from Jeff Bezos

Posted by in categories: finance, habitats, robotics/AI

Why do I find this so alarming?


ChatGPT-maker OpenAI is looking to fuse its artificial intelligence systems into the bodies of humanoid robots as part of a new deal with robotics startup Figure.

Sunnyvale, California-based Figure announced the partnership Thursday along with $675 million in venture capital funding from a group that includes Amazon founder Jeff Bezos as well as Microsoft, chipmaker Nvidia and the startup-funding divisions of Intel and OpenAI.

Continue reading “Humanoid robot-maker Figure partners with OpenAI and gets backing from Jeff Bezos” »

Feb 29, 2024

Astronomers reveal a new link between water and planet formation

Posted by in category: space

Researchers have found water vapor in the disk around a young star exactly where planets may be forming. Water is a key ingredient for life on Earth and is also thought to play a significant role in planet formation, yet until now, astronomers have never been able to map how water is distributed in a stable, cool disk—the type of disk that offers the most favorable conditions for planets to form around stars.

For the first time, astronomers have weighed the amount of water vapor around a typical planet-forming star.

The new findings were made possible thanks to the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA)—a collection of telescopes in the Chilean Atacama Desert. The University of Manchester’s Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics hosts the UK ALMA Regional Centre Node (UK ARC).

Feb 29, 2024

Hackers find missing people for fun

Posted by in category: computing

At any given time, there are roughly 100,000 missing people in the U.S. These hackers are using their skills in computer forensics to follow digital footprints.

Feb 29, 2024

Grey Swans on the Horizon; AI, Cyber, Pandemics, and ET Scenarios

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, economics, robotics/AI

Back in 2007, statistician Nassim Nicholas Taleb described a “Black Swan” as an occurrence that “is an outlier,” meaning it deviates from accepted wisdom. Accordingly, black swans are unanticipated, and uncommon, and can result from geopolitical, economic, or other unanticipated occurrences.

Because of major advances in computing, we can now anticipate, and, with applied risk management, help contain what was described as Black Swan events. So, in effect, with predictive analytical capabilities enabled by artificial intelligence, most Black Swans have now morphed into what is now termed Grey Swan events.

An industry leader in the insurance sector, Aon, defines Black Swan events as unexpected, unanticipated shocks. They depict unexpected but predicted surprises that are known as “Grey Swan events.” Similar to Black Swans, they can have a profound effect.

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