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Apr 11, 2019

Strange anti-ageing effect of space travel discovered in NASA’s Twin Study

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, life extension, space

When NASA set out to study identical twin astronauts, leaving one on Earth and sending the other to the International Space Station (ISS) for a year, they expected that the rigours of microgravity would have largely negative impacts.

But on board the ISS, Scott Kelly, 51, underwent a very strange transformation which has left scientists scratching their heads.

The telomeres in his white blood cells got longer. Telomeres are the protective caps which sit at the end of chromosomes, protecting the DNA inside, like the plastic aglets on the end of shoelaces.

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Apr 11, 2019

Israel’s attempted Moon landing fails moments before touchdown

Posted by in category: space

It probably slammed into the lunar surface.

Beresheet probably slammed into the lunar surface.

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Apr 11, 2019

Landmark NASA Twins Study Reveals Space Travel’s Effects on the Human Body

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, space travel

End analysis: No long term or irreversible damage due to long term space exposure.

Here’s what happens on long-duration space missions.

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Apr 11, 2019

Objective reality may not exist, European researchers say

Posted by in category: futurism

A new experiment shows that two observers can experience divergent realities (if they go subatomic).

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Apr 11, 2019

The Army Wants AI to Read Soldiers’ Minds

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, transportation

A new study from the Army Research Lab may help AI-infused weapons and tools better understand their human operators.

In World War II, the Allies had a big problem. Germany’s new bombers moved too quickly for the anti-aircraft methods of the previous war, in which soldiers used range tables and hand calculations to line up their guns. Mathematician Norbert Wiener had a theory: the only way to defeat the German aircraft was to merge the gun and its human operators — not physically but perceptually, through instruments. As Weiner explained in the video below, that meant “either a human interpretation of the machine, or a machine interpretation of the operator, or both.” This was the only way to get the gun to fire a round on target — not where the plane was but where it was going to be. This theoretical merger of human and machine gave rise to the field of cybernetics, derived from the Greek term cyber, to steer, and the English term net, for network.

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Apr 11, 2019

Team makes artificial atoms that work at room temp

Posted by in categories: computing, particle physics, quantum physics

Ultra-secure online communications, completely indecipherable if intercepted, is one step closer with the help of a recently published discovery by University of Oregon physicist Ben Alemán.

Alemán, a member of the UO’s Center for Optical, Molecular, and Quantum Science, has made artificial atoms that work in ambient conditions. The research, published in the journal Nano Letters, could be a big step in efforts to develop secure communication networks and all-optical quantum computing.

“The big breakthrough is that we’ve discovered a simple, scalable way to nanofabricate artificial atoms onto a microchip, and that the artificial atoms work in air and at ,” said Alemán, also a member of the UO’s Materials Science Institute.

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Apr 11, 2019

Infinite number of quantum particles gives clues to big-picture behavior at large scale

Posted by in categories: particle physics, quantum physics

In quantum mechanics, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle prevents an external observer from measuring both the position and speed (referred to as momentum) of a particle at the same time. They can only know with a high degree of certainty either one or the other—unlike what happens at large scales where both are known. To identify a given particle’s characteristics, physicists introduced the notion of quasi-distribution of position and momentum. This approach was an attempt to reconcile quantum-scale interpretation of what is happening in particles with the standard approach used to understand motion at normal scale, a field dubbed classical mechanics.

In a new study published in EPJ ST, Dr. J.S. Ben-Benjamin and colleagues from Texas A&M University, USA, reverse this approach; starting with quantum mechanical rules, they explore how to derive an infinite number of quasi-distributions, to emulate the approach. This approach is also applicable to a number of other variables found in quantum-scale particles, including particle spin.

For example, such quasi-distributions of position and momentum can be used to calculate the quantum version of the characteristics of a gas, referred to as the second virial coefficient, and extend it to derive an infinite number of these quasi-distributions, so as to check whether it matches the traditional expression of this physical entity as a joint distribution of position and momentum in classical mechanics.

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Apr 11, 2019

Marrying two types of solar cells draws more power from the sun

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

This is one of the most exciting results I’ve seen in a long time.

Simple tandem design uses perovskite layer to feed photons to silicon cell.

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Apr 11, 2019

Could BATS hold the key to ‘eternal life’?

Posted by in category: life extension

Scientists from the University of Maryland have identified four species that have ‘extreme longevity’ and say their adaptations could let humans live up to 240 years old.

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Apr 11, 2019

Engineers tap DNA to create ‘lifelike’ machines

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics

As a genetic material, DNA is responsible for all known life. But DNA is also a polymer. Tapping into the unique nature of the molecule, Cornell engineers have created simple machines constructed of biomaterials with properties of living things.

Using what they call DASH (DNA-based Assembly and Synthesis of Hierarchical) , Cornell engineers constructed a DNA material with capabilities of , in addition to and organization – three key traits of life.

“We are introducing a brand-new, lifelike material concept powered by its very own artificial metabolism. We are not making something that’s alive, but we are creating materials that are much more lifelike than have ever been seen before,” said Dan Luo, professor of biological and environmental engineering in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

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