Scientists Create Metallic Hydrogen, a Possible Superconductor, Ending Quest

Scientists Create Metallic Hydrogen, a Possible Superconductor, Ending Quest

US scientists have succeeded in squeezing hydrogen so intensely that it has turned into a metal, creating an entirely new material that might be used as a highly efficient electricity conductor at room temperatures. The discovery, published in the journal Science on Thursday, provides the first confirmation of a theory proposed in 1935 by physicists Hillard Bell Huntington and Eugene Wigner that hydrogen, normally a gas, could occur in a metallic state if exposed to extreme pressure. Several teams have been racing to develop metallic hydrogen, which is highly prized…

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SpaceX CEO Elon Musk Says First Mars Explorers Must Be ‘Prepared to Die’

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk Says First Mars Explorers Must Be ‘Prepared to Die’

SpaceX is developing a massive rocket and capsule to transport large numbers of people and cargo to Mars with the ultimate goal of colonizing the planet, company chief and tech billionaire Elon Musk said on Tuesday. Musk outlined his plans for the Mars rocket, capable of carrying 100 passengers plus cargo per voyage, even as SpaceX is still investigating why a different rocket carrying a $200 million Israeli satellite blew up on a launch pad in Florida earlier this month. SpaceX intends to fly to Mars about every 26 months…

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Astronomers Spot Giant Planet That Experiences Triple Sunrises and Sunsets

Astronomers Spot Giant Planet That Experiences Triple Sunrises and Sunsets

Astronomers have discovered a planet unlike any other ever found, one that loops widely around one star that is locked in a gravitational embrace with two others in a triple-star system, creating a curious celestial ballet. The findings, published on Thursday in the journal Science, challenge current notions about what makes a planetary system viable. With three stars in the system, the massive planet would experience triple sunrises and triple sunsets during one season and all daylight in another. Since the planet’s orbit is very long, each season lasts for…

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World’s Fastest Supercomputer Is Made Entirely in China: Survey

World’s Fastest Supercomputer Is Made Entirely in China: Survey

A Chinese supercomputer has topped a list of the world’s fastest computers for the seventh straight year – and for the first time the winner uses only Chinese-designed processors instead of US technology. The announcement Monday is a new milestone for Chinesesupercomputer development and a further erosion of past US dominance of the field. Last year’s Chinese winner in the TOP500 ranking maintained by researchers in the United States and Germany slipped to No. 2, followed by a computer at the US government’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. Also…

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Why Solar-Powered Planes Are Still a Long Way From Carrying Passengers

Why Solar-Powered Planes Are Still a Long Way From Carrying Passengers

Swiss pilot Bertrand Piccard made headlines on Saturday when he glided a solar-powered plane onto Moffett Airfield in California after a three-day journey across the Pacific Ocean. It’s the most recent stop in an around-the-world trip that began in Abu Dhabi last spring and is intended to raise awareness about the importance of reducing carbon emissions through the use of clean energy. The plane itself, “Solar Impulse 2,” is a true zero-fuel aircraft, powered by more than 17,000 solar cells. It’s designed to carry just one pilot – Piccard and…

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Japan Abandons Costly X-Ray Satellite Lost in Space

Japan Abandons Costly X-Ray Satellite Lost in Space

Japan’s space agency has abandoned its efforts to restore the operations of a multimillion-dollar satellite that was to probe the mysteries of black holes using X-ray telescopes. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency announced Thursday that it would stop trying to fix the satellite after determining that it was “highly likely” that its two solar arrays had broken off at their bases. Contact was lost with the satellite on March 26, more than a month after its launch from southern Japan on February 17. The satellite, named Hitomi, was much larger…

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SpaceX Targets 2018 for First Mars Mission

SpaceX Targets 2018 for First Mars Mission

SpaceX plans to send an unmanned Dragon spacecraft to Mars as early as 2018, the company said on Wednesday, a first step in achieving founder Elon Musk’s goal to fly people to another planet. US space agency Nasa, which is aiming for a human mission to Mars in the 2030s, said it will provide technical support for SpaceX’s first foray, known as Red Dragon. SpaceX “could provide valuable entry, descent and landing data to Nasa for our journey to Mars, while providing support to American industry,” Nasa said in a…

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British Astronaut Tim Peake to Control Rover on Earth From ISS

British Astronaut Tim Peake to Control Rover on Earth From ISS

British astronaut Tim Peake, currently on the International Space Station, will command a robot to roll around a giant sandpit in Stevenage town that simulates the surface of Mars. The programme is part of a European Space Agency project that aims to learn how astronauts can control remote systems on other worlds, BBC reported on Friday. Known as Meteron (Multi-Purpose End-To-End Robotic Operation Network), the programme has already seen Danish ISS crewman Andreas Mogensen get a robot on Earth to put pegs in a series of holes. Peake will drive…

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Nasa’s Spitzer Telescope Spots Active Star Formation in The Spider Nebula

Nasa’s Spitzer Telescope Spots Active Star Formation in The Spider Nebula

Nasa’s Spitzer Space Telescope has spotted a nebula known as “The Spider” – located some 10,000 light-years from Earth in the constellation Auriga – which is clearly a site of active star formation. The Spider, officially named IC 417, lies near a much smaller object called NGC 1931. Together, the two are called “The Spider and the Fly” nebulae. Nebulae are clouds of interstellar gas and dust where stars can form. The Spider resides in the outer part of the Milky Way, almost exactly in the opposite direction from the…

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Iron From Supernova Found on Earth’s Moon

Iron From Supernova Found on Earth’s Moon

Confirming a supernova explosion in the neighbourhood of our solar system, physicists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) in Germany and colleagues have found supernova iron found on the moon’s surface. They succeeded in demonstrating an unusually high concentration of radioactive 60Fe isotope – created almost exclusively in supernova explosions – in lunar ground samples. The samples were gathered between 1969 and 1972 during Apollo lunar missions 12, 15 and 16 which brought the lunar material back to earth. Since the moon generally provides a better cosmic record than…

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