General Category => Ostalo => Topic started by: Lidija on June 28, 2016, 09:27:32 AM

Title: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on June 28, 2016, 09:27:32 AM

Ancient Mars Was Even More Earth-Like Than We Imagined (

New findings from NASA’s Curiosity Rover provide evidence that significant amounts of oxygen once permeated the atmosphere of ancient Mars. The Red Planet, it would seem, was more Earth-like than we thought.

Using the ChemCam instrument atop Curiosity, scientists at the Los Alamos National Laboratory have discovered high levels of manganese oxides in Martian rocks. The rover made the discovery in mineral-filled cracks in sandstones in the Kimberley region of Gale crater. The presence of this chemical element suggests that high levels of free-floating oxygen once existed on Mars, and that in addition to having a warmer climate and lakes of liquid water, this planet was once quite Earth-like in terms of its chemical composition.

“The only ways on Earth that we know how to make these manganese materials involve atmospheric oxygen or microbes,” noted study lead author Nina Lanza in a statement. “Now we’re seeing manganese-oxides on Mars and wondering how the heck these could have formed.”

It’s highly unlikely that microbes produced Mars’ manganese, but the suggestion that they were produced by free-floating oxygen is wholly reasonable. The researchers say that high-manganese materials like the ones discovered on Mars aren’t capable of forming without copious amounts of liquid water and oxygen.

But where did all this oxygen come from, and where did it all go? Lanza’s team hypothesizes that oxygen seeped out of the planet’s water and into the Martian atmosphere as Mars’ magnetic field collapsed. Without a magnetic field to protect the surface from ionizing radiation, the molecules within the water split into hydrogen and oxygen. Due to the relatively low gravity on Mars, the planet couldn’t hold on to the lighter hydrogen atoms, but the heavier oxygen atoms stayed put.

Over time, this oxygen bled into the rocks, creating the rusty red dust that now covers its surface. Tellingly, it doesn’t take much oxygen to create the red iron oxides—but it does take a lot of oxygen to form manganese oxides. This means that Mars, for a time, was quite oxygen-rich.

And that’s an exciting result. Mars may have been habitable a billion years ago or so, so it may have spawned basic microbial life (we have yet to find any proof of this, but we’re still looking). Oxygen, which is necessary to sustain most terrestrial life, is used in cellular respiration and other biological processes. Many important classes of organic molecules in living organisms contain oxygen, including proteins, nucleic acids, carbohydrates, and fats. It’s possible that exotic alien life might emerge without the benefit of oxygen, but here on Earth it’s been critical.

Revealingly, Curiosity is not the only probe to have found manganese on Mars. The Opportunity rover recently discovered high-manganese deposits at a site thousands of miles away from Curiosity, so this latest discovery is not specific to Gale Crater. Moving forward, the researchers would like to compare manganese produced by microbes to see how it differs from those produced by oxygen. Until more is known, nothing can be ruled out.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on June 28, 2016, 09:48:05 AM

This Picture Shows Something Strange Happening in Jupiter's Atmosphere (

Next week, Juno—the solar-powered spacecraft that’s been closing in on Jupiter since 2011—will arrive to orbit the planet and send us back photos and data. But already, researchers have taken an infrared view of the planet that reveals an incredibly active atmosphere.

Because Juno will (among its other jobs) monitor changes in Jupiter’s atmosphere, researchers wanted to get a baseline look at the movement of the planet’s atmosphere. Once Juno arrives, they intend to use these pictures, along with the new data sent back from the spacecraft, to create a 3-D map of the planet’s atmosphere.

To get the infrared image, researchers from the European Southern Observatory (ESO) combined newer digital tech with an analog technique called “lucky imaging.” In this method, researchers take photographs in a series of bursts to create thousands of short exposure images from the same angle.

Most of the photographs taken from Earth-bound telescopes do not show a clear image. But within every thousand or so of the unusable frames, there are a few “lucky” frames that come out clear. Once researchers have enough of those clear images, they are able to stitch them together to get a complete picture of the planet’s atmosphere.

Researchers at ESO used that technique to get this infrared shot, which shows cool gas clouds moving rapidly upwards through Jupiter’s atmosphere. Although researchers were able to identify the source of the turbulence they were seeing in the atmosphere, they still have questions about how the movement happens and what it means for the planet itself. When they combine these images with Juno’s data to create a 3-D atmospheric map, researchers hope to get answers.

“These maps will help set the scene for what Juno will witness in the coming months,” Leigh Fletcher of the UK’s University of Leicester and lead researcher on the project, explained in a statement. “Observations at different wavelengths across the infrared spectrum allow us to piece together a three-dimensional picture of how energy and material are transported upwards through the atmosphere.”

With Juno’s arrival next week—and its much better vantage point—we’ll be able to get a more complete picture of exactly what is happening around the mysterious planet.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Ygg on July 05, 2016, 09:20:10 PM
With Juno’s arrival next week—and its much better vantage point—we’ll be able to get a more complete picture of exactly what is happening around the mysterious planet.

Juno je uspješno ušao u orbitu Jupitera!
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 06, 2016, 08:30:12 AM
Ehhh, predivnog li i prekrasnog vidika, kolega Ygg, zar ne?  juče mi svisnule sve mobilne naprave jer ne mogu pogleda da odvojim… a nisam jedina, svi zure bez daha...  :)


Aurora spotted on Jupiter as Juno probe nears (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: dejan on July 06, 2016, 01:11:18 PM
znam da je uobičajeno da se na ovakvom topiku postavljaju priče, vesti i informacije koje najčešće imaju veze sa prirodnim naukama, no ja ću nastaviti sa povremenom i ničim izazvanom agresijom na temu raznim društvenim događajima...recimo, koliko TTP u stvari utiče na stvaranje sveta, onakvog kakvog je gibson (a onda i sledstvenici) opisao još u središnjim osamdesetim ( (iako, ako ćemo relano, sve je počelo još početkom prošlog veka, a ovaj sistem je svoj prvi veliki uspon, do sumorne današnjice, doživeo kroz posledice 'velike depresije')
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Miodrag Milovanovic on July 06, 2016, 01:21:53 PM
Samo napred. Društvene nauke su jednako dobrodošle. Evo i ja da doprinesem:

Dijagram koji možda najbolje opisuje gde leže problemi današnjice:

 [ You are not allowed to view attachments ]

U suštini, kada su države početkom sedamdesetih izgubile kontrolu nad privatnim kapitalom, odnosno, kada se privatnom kapitalu učinilo da se ravnoteža uspostavljena posle ratova može narušiti, svet je polako počeo da klizi u propas'...

Rešenje je očigledno, ali mi se uopšte ne sviđa...
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Ygg on July 06, 2016, 09:43:54 PM
Možda ne bi bilo loše da na ovom topiku budu vijesti vezane za astronomska dešavanja, a da se za druge vrste vijesti otvore novi topici. Čisto zbog preglednosti. Mada, meni ne smeta i da bude sve đuture na jednom mjestu.

Elem, noćas oko pola 4 (ako sam dobro preračunao vrijeme) polijeće sa Bajkonura raketa ka Međunarodnoj svemirskoj stranici sa tri nova člana. Među njima je i ova zgodna cura ispod,


Ta cura je Kate Rubins, mikrobiolog, a Wired je s njom napravio kratak intervju ( u kojem ona između ostalog kaže:

OK, last, totally unrelated question. I was looking at your Twitter account and I saw a couple of Battlestar Galactica references. Are you a fan?

I’m a huge fan! I’m not sure I’m allowed to say that. I kind of watch anything on the Syfy channel. I think it’s reasonable, you can own your nerd credibility when you’re an astronaut. I gotta say Starbuck is my favorite character.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 07, 2016, 09:23:57 AM
...recimo, koliko TTP u stvari utiče na stvaranje sveta, onakvog kakvog je gibson (a onda i sledstvenici) opisao još u središnjim osamdesetim[/url] (iako, ako ćemo relano, sve je počelo još početkom prošlog veka, a ovaj sistem je svoj prvi veliki uspon, do sumorne današnjice, doživeo kroz posledice 'velike depresije')

Free flow kapitalizam je opak fenomen, nema tu zbora… ali, u svetlu ovog Mićinog dijagrama, ne ispada li da bi (nas) alternativa preskupo koštala?
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 07, 2016, 09:25:25 AM
A šta sve očekujemo tokom ovog meseca:
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: dejan on July 07, 2016, 09:48:14 AM
...recimo, koliko TTP u stvari utiče na stvaranje sveta, onakvog kakvog je gibson (a onda i sledstvenici) opisao još u središnjim osamdesetim[/url] (iako, ako ćemo relano, sve je počelo još početkom prošlog veka, a ovaj sistem je svoj prvi veliki uspon, do sumorne današnjice, doživeo kroz posledice 'velike depresije')

Free flow kapitalizam je opak fenomen, nema tu zbora… ali, u svetlu ovog Mićinog dijagrama, ne ispada li da bi (nas) alternativa preskupo koštala?
zavisi od toga ko je koliko spreman da plati...oni koji imaju sve manje (sredstava, prava, vlasništva) uskoro će biti spremni da plate krajnju cenu za mogućnost da je njihova deca ne plaćaju...
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 07, 2016, 09:58:42 AM

Da, to je lako moguće. Ali ako do toga i dođe, teško mi je da poverujem da bi se time išta u amanet ostavilo osim radijacije… doba velikih ideologija je odavno prošlo, a sa tim prolaskom kao da je nestao i onaj format ljudi koji su bili spremni da ginu za ideale bolje sutrašnjice.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Miodrag Milovanovic on July 07, 2016, 10:45:37 AM
U suštini, svet (dobro, zapadni svet) je bio najbolje mesto za život u šezdesetim godinama prošlog veka. Hladni rat je znatno bolji od stvarnog rata, a dovoljno efikasno zadržava kapital od divljanja...
Jačanje BRIKS-a je jedna od nada za svet, ali samo ako se mnogoljudne zemlje Azije budu mogle držati pod kontrolom...
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 07, 2016, 11:03:21 AM
Heh, držati Kinu pod kontrolom… ali da, to jeste jedna od boljih nada.  I uopšte, Afrika bi mogla biti dobra kontrateža, kad bi joj se samo malo danas pomoglo.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 08, 2016, 02:51:23 PM
Mission Status Report

The engineers and scientists working on NASA’s Juno mission have been busying themselves, getting their newly arrived Jupiter orbiter ready for operations around the largest planetary inhabitant in the solar system. Juno successfully entered Jupiter's orbit during a 35-minute engine burn on Monday, July 4. Confirmation that the burn had completed was received on Earth at 8:53 pm. PDT (11:53 p.m. EDT) that evening.

As planned, the spacecraft returned to high-rate communications on July 5 and powered up five of its science instruments on July 6. Per the mission plan, the remaining science instruments will be powered up before the end of the month. Juno’s science instruments had been turned off in the days leading up to Jupiter orbit insertion.

The Juno team has scheduled a short trajectory correction maneuver on July 13 to refine the orbit around Jupiter.

"Prior to launch five years ago we planned a date and time for the Jupiter orbit insertion burn and the team nailed it,” said Rick Nybakken, project manager for Juno from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. "We are in our planned 53.4 day orbit. Now we are focusing on preparing for our fourth and final main engine burn, which will put us in our 14-day science orbit on October 19.”

The next time Juno’s orbit carries it close by the planet will be on Aug. 27. The flyby is expected to provide some preliminary science data.

“We had to turn all our beautiful instruments off to help ensure a successful Jupiter orbit insertion on July 4,” said Scott Bolton, Juno principal investigator from the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio. “But next time around we will have our eyes and ears open. You can expect us to release some information about our findings around September 1.”

The Juno spacecraft launched on Aug. 5, 2011, from Cape Canaveral, Florida.

JPL manages the Juno mission for the principal investigator, Scott Bolton, of Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio. Juno is part of NASA's New Frontiers Program, which is managed at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, for NASA's Science Mission Directorate. Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver, built the spacecraft. Caltech in Pasadena manages JPL for NASA.

More information on the Juno mission is available at:
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 12, 2016, 08:49:23 AM

This Tiny Robot Lets You Play God With Huge AI (


Tappeiner and his cohorts at Anki built an incredibly entertaining little robot that reads your facial expressions, has enviable spatial awareness, and can experience its own series of emotions thanks to an intricately programmed AI featuring over one million lines of code. The software development kit that will launch with Cozmo gives you access to all that code in a language (Python) that’s a breeze for programmers, and only mildly terrifying for the rest of us.

Tappeiner’s wife, a programmer with no background in robotics, had access to the SDK for an hour and immediately linked it up the her Hue lights. As soon as Cozmo saw more than two people sit down on the couch it dimmed the lights for prime movie watching.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 12, 2016, 09:06:52 AM
Say hello to 2015 RR245, a 440-mile-wide dwarf planet located approximately 7.5 billion miles from the sun. It takes 700 years to make a complete orbit, making it one of the most remote known objects in the entire solar system of significant size.

The newly discovered dwarf planet was discovered by an international team of astronomers using the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope on Maunakea, Hawaii, as part of the ongoing Outer Solar System Origins Survey (OSSOS). Astronomer J.J. Kavelaars from Canada’s National Research Council was the first to spot the minor planet in February 2016 while pouring through OSSOS images taken back in September 2015.


There's a New Dwarf Planet Far Beyond Pluto's Orbit (

Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 12, 2016, 09:09:10 AM
Using pneumatic pistons and servos to power robots makes them fast and strong, but also bulky and extremely heavy. No one is going to mistake ATLAS for a real human being. To eventually create humanoid-looking robots like the Terminator we need to mechanically replicate every part of the human anatomy—starting with the muscles.


The Freaky Artificial Muscles on this Human Skeleton Are the Future of Robotics (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 13, 2016, 08:49:02 AM

It Looks Like Pluto Has a Liquid Water Ocean

Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 13, 2016, 08:49:54 AM
Rosetta describes the exciting discoveries she made during her second year at Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, after the comet made its closest approach to the Sun along its orbit. She also tells us about her efforts to contact Philae, and starts counting down to her own mission finale.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 18, 2016, 12:06:23 PM

MeerKAT joins the ranks of the world's great scientific instruments through its First Light image (


The MeerKAT First Light image of the sky, released today by Minister of Science and Technology, Naledi Pandor, shows unambiguously that MeerKAT is already the best radio telescope of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. Array Release 1 (AR1) being celebrated today provides 16 of an eventual 64 dishes integrated into a working telescope array. It is the first significant scientific milestone achieved by MeerKAT, the radio telescope under construction in the Karoo that will eventually be integrated into the Square Kilometre Array (SKA).
In a small patch of sky covering less than 0.01 percent of the entire celestial sphere, the MeerKAT First Light image shows more than 1300 galaxies in the distant Universe, compared to 70 known in this location prior to MeerKAT. "Based on the results being shown today, we are confident that after all 64 dishes are in place, MeerKAT will be the world's leading telescope of its kind until the advent of SKA," according to Professor Justin Jonas, SKA South Africa Chief Technologist.

MeerKAT will consist of 64 receptors, each comprising a 13.5-metre diametre dish antenna, cryogenic coolers, receivers, digitiser, and other electronics. The commissioning of MeerKAT is done in phases to allow for verification of the system, early resolution of any technical issues, and initial science exploitation. Early science can be done with parts of the array as they are commissioned, even as construction continues. AR1 consists of 16 receptors, AR2 of 32 and AR3 of 64, expected to be in place by late 2017.

Dr Rob Adam, Project Director of SKA South Africa, says: "The launch of MeerKAT AR1 and its first results is a significant milestone for South Africa. Through MeerKAT, South Africa is playing a key role in the design and development of technology for the SKA. The South African team of more than 200 young scientists, engineers and technicians, in collaboration with industry, local and foreign universities and institutions, has developed the technologies and systems for MeerKAT. These include cutting edge telescope antennas and receivers, signal processing, timing, telescope management, computing and data storage systems, and algorithms for data processing."

In May 2016, more than 150 researchers and students, two-thirds from South Africa, met in Stellenbosch to discuss and update the MeerKAT science programme. This will consist of already approved "large survey projects", plus "open time" available for new projects. An engineering test image, produced with only 4 dishes, was made available just before that meeting.

"The scientists gathered at the May meeting were impressed to see what 4 MeerKAT dishes could do," says Dr Fernando Camilo, SKA South Africa Chief Scientist. "They will be astonished at today's exceptionally beautiful images, which demonstrate that MeerKAT has joined the big leagues of world radio astronomy".

Pandor today released the MeerKAT First Light image from the telescope site in the Northern Cape. She was accompanied by Ministers and Deputy Ministers from the Presidential Infrastructure Coordination Committee (PICC), as well as other senior officials.

Minister Pandor says: "South Africa has already demonstrated its excellent science and engineering skills by designing and building MeerKAT. This telescope, which is predominantly a locally designed and built instrument, shows the world that South Africa can compete in international research, engineering, technology and science. Government is proud of our scientists and engineers for pioneering a radio telescope that will lead to groundbreaking research."
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: lilit on July 21, 2016, 01:20:01 PM (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 22, 2016, 07:31:12 AM
Ojha! Evo ga Trisolaris sistem iz The Three-Body Problem (Cixin Liu), samo što su u Trisolarisu putanje malko eratičnije, pa se sa sirotom planetom igra kosmički ping-pong…

(S druge strane, sad strepim da će ovo biti još jedan prilog u korist nečije teze kako je SF mrtav…  :'( )
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on August 16, 2016, 08:58:45 AM

In the 1970s, Stephen Hawking made an audacious prediction that black holes aren’t totally black; they evaporate over time, emitting tiny amounts of radiation in the process. Now Israeli physicists have reported the strongest evidence to date that Hawking was right in a new paper in Nature Physics.

Black holes got their name because their gravitational force is so strong, not even light can escape once it passes beyond the event horizon—a theoretical point of no return. But then Hawking discovered that it’s theoretically possible for black holes to evaporate over time via a quantum mechanical process known as “Hawking radiation.”

According to quantum mechanics, even the vacuum of space isn’t truly empty. So-called “virtual particles” can pop in and out of existence over such short time frames that they don’t violate established laws of physics. But if a virtual particle pair appears at the event horizon of a black hole, and one of the pair falls in, the black hole would appear to be emitting photons (particles of light), losing a bit of its mass in the process. The bigger the black hole, the longer it takes to evaporate. So-called “mini-black holes, which physicists hope to create at the Large Hadron Collider, would wink out of existence within fractions of a second.

Hawing’s idea has enormous implications for theoretical physics, most notably for the black hole information paradox. But how do you test such an audacious hypothesis? In 1981, Bill Unruh , a physicist at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, proposed a thought experiment involving a sonic analogue of a black hole he nicknamed a “dumb hole”—except in this case it is sound, not light, that becomes trapped in a kind of event horizon.

Unruh drew an analogy with a waterfall where the water flows faster and faster as it falls over the edge. Eventually the water will be flowing faster than sound can travel through water, so any phonons (particles of sound) trying to escape will just get sucked back in. Dumb holes don’t actually exist in nature, although Unruh loves to tell people that we create rotating black hole analogues every time we take a bath. Surface waves form in the tub as water swirls down the drain, and when it’s shallow enough, the water flowing down the drain moves faster than those surface waves.

But physicists thought it should be possible to create analogue black holes in the lab, not out of sound, but with Bose-Einstein condensates—exotic forms of ultra-cold quantum states matter where a bunch of atoms behave like a single atom. In 2009, Jeff Steinhauer’s lab at the Israel Institute of Technology (Technion) did just that: they briefly produced a supersonic flow for about eight milliseconds in a soup of 100,000 chilled rubidium atoms.

This was exciting stuff, because it offered the potential to test Hawking’s prediction. Black hole analogues should emit the equivalent of Hawking radiation, complete with entangled phonons. In 2014, Steinhauer reported the first hints of the phenomenon in one of his acoustic black hole experiments, after figuring out how to create the sonic equivalent of a laser’s beam-generating cavity to boost the signal.

It wasn’t a slam dunk, however. There was still the possibility that the signal was really just noise in the system, since the observed radiation had to be triggered. But now Steinhauer says his lab has improved its experimental setup sufficiently that it’s observed entangled phonons being emitted by an acoustic black hole. And that radiation arises from the Bose-Einstein Condensate itself, with no need for a trigger.

If the result holds up, this would be a very big deal for theoretical physics, since it’s a key factor in resolving the black hole information paradox, and one day devising a unified theory that merges quantum mechanics with general relativity. It could also snag Hawking a coveted Nobel Prize, some 40 years after he made that first prediction.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on August 22, 2016, 08:18:36 AM

​It's 2.4 Miles Across, 8,650 Years Old, and It Lives in Oregon (


No, it's not hipster Cthulhu. Known as "honey fungus," this huge underground organism is the world's biggest living thing. And its life cycle is incredible.

Photo of honey fungus by Stu's Images

The fungus lives largely underground, but it grows fruiting bodies above the soil that look like creamy yellow mushrooms. If you were picking one to sautée with your favorite pasta dish, you'd never guess that they were attached to a huge, ancient life form that occasionally preys on the Blue Mountain forest where it has lived for millennia.

Over at the BBC, Nic Fleming tells the story of how the world's biggest honey fungus was first discovered in Oregon:

In 1998 a team from the US Forest Service set out to investigate the cause of large tree die-offs in the Malheur National Forest in east Oregon.

They identified affected areas in aerial photographs and collected root samples from 112 dead and dying trees, mostly firs. Tests showed all but four of the trees had been infected with the honey fungus Armillaria solidipes (previously known as Armillaria ostoyae).

When mycelia from genetically identical A. solidipes meet, they can fuse to form one individual. The researchers harnessed this ability, growing fungi samples in pairs in petri dishes. By observing which ones fused and which ones rejected each other, they found that 61 of the trees had been struck down by the same clonal colony – individuals with identical genetic make-up that all originated from one organism.

The most widely-spaced were 2.4 miles (3.8 km) apart. The team calculated that the A. solidipes covered an area of 3.7 sq miles (9.6 sq km), and was somewhere between 1,900 and 8,650 years old.

The web-like network lives below ground, occasionally sprouting the fruiting bodies that look like mushrooms. What's so extraordinary about the honey fungus is that when two identical funguses meet, they can fuse to form a bigger organism.

Yes, it's just as amazing and terrifying as it sounds.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Ygg on August 22, 2016, 07:00:43 PM

​It's 2.4 Miles Across, 8,650 Years Old, and It Lives in Oregon (

Ovo me asociralo na jednu odličnu The X Files epizodu:
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on September 14, 2016, 08:31:23 AM

The Amazing Place the Rosetta Spacecraft Is Going To Die (


In two weeks, the European Space Agency will crash-land its prized Rosetta spacecraft, marking a dramatic end to the whirlwind two-year science mission that saw humanity’s first-ever comet landing. It’ll be 48 action-packed hours as Rosetta descends to its ultimate resting place on Comet 67P—and to get you properly excited for that event, we wanted to share the fascinating reason this site was chosen.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on September 14, 2016, 08:51:49 AM
At the heart of the Stingray Nebula some 2,700 light years from Earth lies a small, aging star known as SAO 244567. Astronomers have been observing it on and off for decades, and they can now confirm they’ve witnessed something amazing: a never-before-seen stellar rebirth.

From 1971 to 2002, the surface temperature of SAO 244567 skyrocketed, from 20,000 to nearly 60,000 degrees Celsius. At the same time, the star contracted, shrinking from about four times the size of our Sun to just a third of its diameter. Now, observations made with the Hubble Space Telescope reveal that the star has begun to cool off and expand again, its surface temperature waning to a tepid 50,000 degrees Celsius in recent years.


Astronomers Just Witnessed a Rare Stellar Rebirth For the First Time (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on September 14, 2016, 08:54:14 AM
For the first time ever, scientists have produced live mice without a fertilized egg cell. The potentially revolutionary technique could one day allow gay men to produce biological offspring, or—even more radically—allow both men and women to self-fertilize.

Researchers from the University of Bath injected sperm directly into a modified, inactive mouse embryo. The resulting mice appeared to be normal, and were even able to reproduce. The new study, published in Nature Communications, challenges nearly two centuries of conventional wisdom, showing that it’s possible to produce healthy mammalian offspring without first having to fertilize an egg.

Scientists Have Bred Live Mice with No Need for Fertilized Eggs
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on September 19, 2016, 10:38:11 AM

Deep-sea volcano a hotspot for mysterious life (http://=

he three-man submarine went down, down, down into the abyss and drew within sight of something no human had ever laid eyes on: Cook seamount, a 13,000-foot extinct volcano at the bottom of the sea.

Scientists aboard the vessel Pisces V visited the volcano earlier this month to examine its geological features and its rich variety of marine life, and an Associated Press reporter was given exclusive access to the dive. It was the first-ever expedition to the Cook seamount by a manned submersible.

Among other things, the researchers from the University of Hawaii and the nonprofit group Conservation International spotted such wonders as a rare type of octopus with big fins that look like Dumbo's ears, and a potentially new species of violet-hued coral they dubbed Purple Haze.

Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on September 27, 2016, 08:00:19 AM

Hubble Directly Images Possible Plumes on Europa (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on October 03, 2016, 08:25:57 AM

8 Alien Landscapes Where You Can Visit Mars on Earth (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on October 31, 2016, 09:06:10 AM

Could an astronaut’s corpse bring new life to another world? (

A poor soul adrift in the void could bring the genesis on a place like Mars


“If the question is, 'Are there a set of possible circumstances by which a corpse could deliver microbes to a planet that could survive the space environment?' well, then I would say the answer is yes,” says Gary King, a microbial biologist at Louisiana State University who studies microbes that survive in extreme environments.

King argues that our bodies are riddled with microbes we already know can survive vast periods of time in stasis; even in cold, dry environments similar to space.

“We've pulled microbes out of permafrost, and there we're talking about organisms surviving around one million years in suspended animation. Especially if the trip is somewhere close, like to Mars, bacterial spores in the human body will survive for sure,” says King. “It's also possible that other, non-sporing bacteria could survive as well. I'm thinking about microbes like Deinococcus radiodurans, which we know can survive low levels of water and high amounts of ionizing radiation.”
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on November 13, 2016, 07:21:28 AM
Rama i 2312 revizited!  ;)

Where does Jeff Bezos foresee putting space colonists? Inside O’Neill cylinders (

Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on December 01, 2016, 07:20:07 AM

Let's Colonize Titan (

Saturn's largest moon might be the only place beyond Earth where humans could live

The idea of a human colony on Titan, a moon of Saturn, might sound crazy. Its temperature hovers at nearly 300° below zero Fahrenheit, and its skies rain methane and ethane that flow into hydrocarbon seas. Nevertheless, Titan could be the only place in the solar system where it makes sense to build a permanent, self-sufficient human settlement.

We reached this conclusion after looking at the planets in a new way: ecologically. We considered the habitat that human beings need and searched for those conditions in our celestial neighborhood.

Our colonization scenario, based on science, technology, politics and culture, presents a thought experiment for anyone who wants to think about the species’ distant future.

We expect human nature to stay the same. Human beings of the future will have the same drives and needs we have now. Practically speaking, their home must have abundant energy, livable temperatures and protection from the rigors of space, including cosmic radiation, which new research suggests is unavoidably dangerous for biological beings like us.

Up to now, most researchers have looked at the Moon or Mars as the next step for human habitation. These destinations have the dual advantages of proximity and of not being clearly unrealistic as choices for where we should go. That second characteristic is lacking at the other bodies near us in the inner solar system, Mercury and Venus.

Mercury is too close to the sun, with temperature extremes and other physical conditions that seem hardly survivable. Venus’s atmosphere is poisonous, crushingly heavy and furnace-hot, due to a run-away greenhouse effect. It might be possible to live suspended by balloons high in Venus’s atmosphere, but we can’t see how such a habitation would ever be self-sustaining.

But although the Moon and Mars look like comparatively reasonable destinations, they also have a deal-breaking problem. Neither is protected by a magnetosphere or atmosphere. Galactic Cosmic Rays, the energetic particles from distant supernovae, bombard the surfaces of the Moon and Mars, and people can’t live long-term under the assault of GCRs.

The cancer-causing potential of this powerful radiation has long been known, although it remains poorly quantified. But research in the last two years has added a potentially more serious hazard: brain damage. GCRs include particles such as iron nuclei traveling at close to the speed of light that destroy brain tissue.

Exposing mice to this radiation at levels similar to those found in space caused brain damage and loss of cognitive abilities, according to a study published last year by Vipan K. Parihar and colleagues in Science Advances. That research suggests we aren’t ready to send astronauts to Mars for a visit, much less to live there.

On Earth, we are shielded from GCRs by water in the atmosphere. But it takes two meters of water to block half of the GCRs present in unprotected space. Practically, a Moon or Mars settlement would have to be built underground to be safe from this radiation.

Underground shelter is hard to build and not flexible or easy to expand. Settlers would need enormous excavations for room to supply all their needs for food, manufacturing and daily life. We ask why they would go to that trouble. We can live underground on Earth. What’s the advantage to doing so on Mars?

Beyond Mars, the next potential home is among the moons of Jupiter and Saturn. There are dozens of choices among them, but the winner is obvious. Titan is the most Earthlike body other than our original home.

Titan is the only other body in the solar system with liquid on the surface, with its lakes of methane and ethane that look startlingly like water bodies on Earth. It rains methane on Titan, occasionally filling swamps. Dunes of solid hydrocarbons look remarkably like Earth’s sand dunes.

For protection from radiation, Titan has a nitrogen atmosphere 50 percent thicker than Earth’s. Saturn’s magnetosphere also provides shelter. On the surface, vast quantities of hydrocarbons in solid and liquid form lie ready to be used for energy. Although the atmosphere lacks oxygen, water ice just below the surface could be used to provide oxygen for breathing and to combust hydrocarbons as fuel.

It’s cold on Titan, at -180°C (-291°F), but thanks to its thick atmosphere, residents wouldn’t need pressure suits—just warm clothing and respirators. Housing could be made of plastic produced from the unlimited resources harvested on the surface, and could consist of domes inflated by warm oxygen and nitrogen. The ease of construction would allow huge indoor spaces.

Titanians (as we call them) wouldn’t have to spend all their time inside. The recreational opportunities on Titan are unique. For example, you could fly. The weak gravity—similar to the Moon’s—combined with the thick atmosphere would allow individuals to aviate with wings on their backs. If the wings fall off, no worry, landing will be easy. Terminal velocity on Titan is a tenth that found on the Earth.

How will we get there? Currently, we can’t. Unfortunately, we probably can’t get to Mars safely, either, without faster propulsion to limit the time in space and associated GCR dosage before astronauts are unduly harmed. We will need faster propulsion to Mars or Titan. For Titan, much faster, as the trip currently takes seven years.

There is no quick way to move off the Earth. We will have to solve our problems here. But if our species continues to invest in the pure science of space exploration and the stretch technology needed to preserve human health in space, people will eventually live on Titan.

(Charles Wohlforth and Amanda Hendrix are the authors of Beyond Earth: Our Path to a New Home in the Planets)
Title: dobro je da su se setili da treba u tunelima
Post by: Aleksandar_B_Nedeljkovic on December 01, 2016, 04:04:11 PM
Не, на Титану не треба имати насеобине, никако; то је врло лоша идеја;

али, добро је што око половине чланка признају да на Месецу и на Марсу треба становати у подземним тунелима. Никако не на површини.

Добро је што се полако појављује свест о тој истини.

Макар веома споро, али ипак, извирује понеки мали зрак свести о томе.

Наравно да би добро било да те тунеле ископају, и наставе да копају још хиљадама година, роботи. И наравно да је за почетак пожељно искористити неку природну пећину, можда “цев лаве” (lava tube) и слично.

Нико не треба да станује у лименом киоску у каменом беспућу, у бескрају вакуума, на удару радијације, микрометеорита, драстичних температурних промена (на површини Месеца), без вишеструко обезбеђених извора ваздуха, воде, хране, енергије, и свега осталог…

Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on December 02, 2016, 06:59:02 PM
Znate, jedan od ključnih aspekata posthumanističke revalorizacije je diktiran spoznajom da smo uslovljeni na život jedino na ovoj planeti, nigde drugde. A čak i na njoj mi opstajemo samo u njenim klimatski umerenim delovima, tako da novi milenijum glatko ignoriše utopijska zavaravanja u tom smislu: gde god da odemo, sledi nam riskantno življenje u strogo kontrolisanim habitatima.

Ali s druge strane, to nam sleduje i ovde na Zemlji, jer ako su makar i najumerenije prognoze tačne, slede nam ekstremni klimatski uslovi, koje će se moći lagodno podneti jedino u habitatima. Što dalje znači da je potreba za tehnološkim napretkom na tom polju neminovna, kud god da se okrenemo.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on December 05, 2016, 08:12:59 AM

Alien life could thrive in the clouds of failed stars (

There’s an abundant new swath of cosmic real estate that life could call home—and the views would be spectacular. Floating out by themselves in the Milky Way galaxy are perhaps a billion cold brown dwarfs, objects many times as massive as Jupiter but not big enough to ignite as a star. According to a new study, layers of their upper atmospheres sit at temperatures and pressures resembling those on Earth, and could host microbes that surf on thermal updrafts.

The idea expands the concept of a habitable zone to include a vast population of worlds that had previously gone unconsidered. “You don’t necessarily need to have a terrestrial planet with a surface,” says Jack Yates, a planetary scientist at the University of Edinburgh in the United Kingdom, who led the study.

Atmospheric life isn’t just for the birds. For decades, biologists have known about microbes that drift in the winds high above Earth’s surface. And in 1976, Carl Sagan envisioned the kind of ecosystem that could evolve in the upper layers of Jupiter, fueled by sunlight. You could have sky plankton: small organisms he called “sinkers.” Other organisms could be balloonlike “floaters,” which would rise and fall in the atmosphere by manipulating their body pressure. In the years since, astronomers have also considered the prospects of microbes in the carbon dioxide atmosphere above Venus’s inhospitable surface.

Yates and his colleagues applied the same thinking to a kind of world Sagan didn’t know about. Discovered in 2011, some cold brown dwarfs have surfaces roughly at room temperature or below; lower layers would be downright comfortable. In March 2013, astronomers discovered WISE 0855-0714, a brown dwarf only 7 light-years away that seems to have water clouds in its atmosphere. Yates and his colleagues set out to update Sagan’s calculations and to identify the sizes, densities, and life strategies of microbes that could manage to stay aloft in the habitable region of an enormous atmosphere of predominantly hydrogen gas. Sink too low and you are cooked or crushed. Rise too high and you might freeze.

On such a world, small sinkers like the microbes in Earth’s atmosphere or even smaller would have a better chance than Sagan’s floaters, the researchers will report in an upcoming issue of The Astrophysical Journal. But a lot depends on the weather: If upwelling winds are powerful on free-floating brown dwarfs, as seems to be true in the bands of gas giants like Jupiter and Saturn, heavier creatures can carve out a niche. In the absence of sunlight, they could feed on chemical nutrients. Observations of cold brown dwarf atmospheres reveal most of the ingredients Earth life depends on: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, and oxygen, though perhaps not phosphorous.

The idea is speculative but worth considering, says Duncan Forgan, an astrobiologist at the University of St. Andrews in the United Kingdom, who did not participate in the study but says he is close to the team. “It really opens up the field in terms of the number of objects that we might then think, well, these are habitable regions.”

So far, only a few dozen cold brown dwarfs have been discovered, though statistics suggest there should be about 10 within 30 light-years of Earth. These should be ripe targets for the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), which is sensitive in the infrared where brown dwarfs shine brightest. After it launches in 2018, the JWST should reveal the weather and the composition of their atmospheres, says Jackie Faherty, an astronomer at the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington, D.C. “We’re going to start getting gorgeous spectra of these objects,” she says. “This is making me think about it.”

Testing for life would require anticipating a strong spectral signature of microbe byproducts like methane or oxygen, and then differentiating it from other processes, Faherty says. Another issue would be explaining how life could arise in an environment that lacks the water-rock interfaces, like hydrothermal vents, where life is thought to have begun on Earth. Perhaps life could develop through chemical reactions on the surfaces of dust grains in the brown dwarf’s atmosphere, or perhaps it gained a foothold after arriving as a hitchhiker on an asteroid. “Having little microbes that float in and out of a brown dwarf atmosphere is great,” Forgan says. “But you’ve got to get them there first.”
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on January 31, 2017, 07:54:13 AM

Watch planets orbit a star 129 light-years away (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on February 16, 2017, 07:56:04 AM

We finally have a computer that can survive the surface of Venus (

Sulphuric rain? Easy. Not burning up at 500°C or crushed by 90 atmospheres? Hard.

Venus is one of the most inhospitable places in the solar system. Descending through the clouds of boiling sulphuric rain is actually the easy bit—the hard bit is not being cremated by the surface temperature of 470°C (878°F) or crushed by the atmospheric pressure, which is about 90 times that of Earth, the same as swimming 900 metres under water.

The longest survival time for a human-made object on Venus was 127 minutes, back in 1981 when the Soviet spacecraft Venera 13 landed there. Not dying for two hours, and netting our first ever colour photos of the planet's surface, was considered a huge success; the probe had only been designed to live for 32 minutes before it was cooked, crushed, and dissolved by its environs. Three more spacecraft followed, all Soviet—Venera 14, Vega 1, Vega 2—but we haven't tried to land anything on Venus since 1985.

One of the core problems of exploring Venus is that normal digital computers don't really work there. Standard silicon chips can hang in to around 250°C, but eventually there's just so much energy in the system that the silicon stops being a semiconductor—electrons can freely jump the bandgap—and everything stops working. The Venera landers kept their electronics cool with cumbersome hermetically sealed chambers, and sometimes the innards were also pre-cooled to around -10°C before being dropped into the atmosphere by the parent orbiter.

Over the last few years electronics based on the semiconductor silicon carbide (SiC) have started to mature. SiC has drawn a lot of interest from the military and heavy industries because it can support very high voltages and temperatures—and those properties make it a very suitable candidate for computing on Venus, too.

Now, researchers out of NASA's Glenn Research Centre appear to have cracked the other big problem with high-temperature integrated circuits: they've crafted interconnects—the tiny wires that connect transistors and other integrated components together—that can also survive the extreme conditions on Venus.

The NASA Glenn researchers combined the new interconnects with some SiC transistors to create a ceramic-packaged chip. The chip was then placed into the GEER—the Glenn Extreme Environments Rig, a machine that can maintain Venus-like temperature and pressure for hundreds of hours at a time. The chip, a simple 3-stage oscillator, kept functioning at a steady 1.26MHz for 521 hours (21.7) days before the GEER had to be shut down.

NASA Glenn says this is the first reported demonstration of a computer chip operating in Venus-like conditions for multiple days/weeks without the aid of a pressure vessel, cooling system, or other means of protection. "With further technology maturation, such SiC IC electronics could drastically improve Venus lander designs and mission concepts, fundamentally enabling long-duration enhanced missions to the surface of Venus," the researchers conclude.

Sending a lander to Venus requires more than just high-temperature electronics, though. While researching this story I stumbled across a fascinating website that dives into the Soviet exploration of Venus from 1961 to 1985. It turns out that creating tools that continue to work at 470°C and 9MPa is rather difficult. Check out this description of the drilling apparatus on the Venera 13 and 14 landers:

Capable of drilling 3 cm into solid igneous rock, if needs be, the drill required the invention of new alloys and an electric motor. Machine parts were designed to fit and function properly only after thermal expansion to 500°C. The telescoping drill head lowers to the surface and bores for two minutes. Pyrotechnic charges break a series of seals that allow the high pressure atmosphere of Venus to rush into an assembly of tubes. Soil is carried in stages, into a soil transfer tube and onto a sample container. The sample container is driven through an airlock by pyrotechnic charges and into the x-ray fluorescence chamber. A large vacuum reservoir then lowers the chamber pressure to about 0.06 atmospheres.

The mechanical side of engineering a Venus lander would still be difficult today, but thanks to advances in materials science, oil drilling, and other high-temperature industrial pursuits, it should be within our capabilities. A rover, with more moving parts, would be a lot harder—though apparently NASA Glenn is working on a land-sailing rover that could be ready for 2023.

Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on February 20, 2017, 08:06:48 AM

Welcome to New Dubai: Will the UAE be the first to set up a CITY on Mars? Stunning images reveal plans for a colony on the red planet by 2117 (

Having scaled the heights of Earth with the world's tallest building, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has now announced its plans to set up Mars' first mini city.

The UAE said it will build the city by 2117, as part of its 100-year national programme to better understand the red planet. 
The announcement was made at the World Government Summit in the presence of representatives of 138 governments. 

The energy-rich country on the eastern tip of the Arabian Peninsula announced plans to help get people to the red planet over the few next decades.

The Mars 2117 Project was announced by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum who is the Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai and His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

The project will explore how people can get to Mars and how to create food and energy on the red planet, according to Gulf News.

A virtual presentation was made at the same time as the announcement.

'The landing of people on other planets has been a longtime dream for humans.

'Our aim is that the UAE will spearhead international efforts to make this dream a reality,' said Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid.
He said the UAE is ranked among the most important nine countries in the world that invest in space science.

'The UAE has become part of dynamic human scientific efforts to explore space and making scientific contributions to human knowledge,' Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed said.

'With the launch of this project, we begin a new journey that will last for decades to come, and it will speed up human endeavours to explore other planets,' he added.

Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on February 23, 2017, 07:44:00 AM

Ancient microbes found trapped in crystals in Mexican cave system (

The extraordinary micro-organisms were found trapped in crystal in a volcanically heated Mexican cave system where temperatures reach 60C (140F).

Some of them are believed to have been there for 60,000 years and were shut off from light or oxygen and obtained energy from minerals.

Scientists have been unable to classify 90% of the bugs, which could not be matched with any other micro-organisms catalogued in available databases.

The microbes are highly diverse and include around 100 different strains made up of both bacteria and other microbes known as archaea.

Five chambers were explored, which ranged in size from an average room to a cathedral-like cavern, at the Naica mine in Chihuahua.

The microbes were contained in small water-filled pockets within the sparkling white crystals, some of which were five metres long and a metre wide.

Dr Penelope Boston, director of NASA's Astrobiology Institute, who led the first expedition in 2008, said: "The deepest part we accessed was a place called Hell, very evocatively. That chamber is at the 800 metre level.

Experiments to see if the weird bugs could be cultured were partly successful.

"Much to my surprise we got the things to grow," said Dr Boston, who was speaking at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) annual meeting in Boston, Massachusetts.

"It was laborious. We lost some of them - that's just the game. They've got needs we can't fulfil. That part of it was really like zoo keeping."
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on February 23, 2017, 08:05:39 AM

NASA probe finds life's building blocks on dwarf planet Ceres (

Scientists searching for evidence of life beyond Earth have discovered organic material on Ceres, the dwarf planet located between Mars and Jupiter.

The carbon-based materials, similar to what may have been the building blocks for life on Earth, were discovered by NASA's Dawn space probe.

The exact molecular compounds in the organics cannot be identified, but they match tar-like minerals such as kerite or asphaltite.

"The discovery indicates that the starting material in the solar system contained the essential elements, or the building blocks, for life," said Dawn's lead scientist, Christopher Russell.

"Ceres may have been able to take this process only so far. Perhaps to move further along the path took a larger body with more complex structure and dynamics (like Earth)."

Ceres, a Texas-sized rock-and-ice world about 590 miles (950 km) in diameter, is the largest object in the asteroid belt and is located about three times farther from the sun than Earth.

Its composition is thought to reflect the material present in parts of the solar system when it was forming some 4.5 billion years ago.

The organic material was found near a 31-mile-wide (50km) crater in Ceres' northern hemisphere and experts say the location and type of organics mean they cannot have been deposited by a crashing asteroid or comet.

The dwarf planet now joins Mars and several ocean-bearing moons of Jupiter and Saturn, among others, as places of interest to scientists looking for life beyond Earth.

"This opens the possibility that primitive life could have developed on Ceres itself," said planetary scientist Michael Kuppers of the European Space Astronomy Centre.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on March 13, 2017, 08:18:04 AM
Trka se ubrzava :)


China developing manned space mission to the moon: State media (

China is building a manned spacecraft capable of sending astronauts to the moon as well as near-Earth orbit flight, according to Chinese state media.

The official newspaper of the Ministry of Science and Technology of China cited system chief architect Zhang Bainan who claimed the craft is being designed to carry as many as six astronauts.

The newspaper, Science and Technology Daily, quoted Zhang Bainan Tuesday as saying China wished to catch up with international standards of space exploration.

The fresh announcement follows a separate Chinese ambition to bring back samples from the moon before the end of this year.

The unmanned Chang'e-5 lunar probe is undergoing a final round of tests and is expected to be on standby for launch from August, according to the official People's Daily.

China first landed an unmanned craft on the moon in December 2013. It marked the first spacecraft to land on the moon since the Soviet Union's Luna 24 in 1976.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on March 13, 2017, 08:19:58 AM
... i to na svim poljima...  8)

AI Scientists Gather to Plot Doomsday Scenarios (and Solutions) (

Artificial intelligence boosters predict a brave new world of flying cars and cancer cures. Detractors worry about a future where humans are enslaved to an evil race of robot overlords. Veteran AI scientist Eric Horvitz and Doomsday Clock guru Lawrence Krauss, seeking a middle ground, gathered a group of experts in the Arizona desert to discuss the worst that could possibly happen -- and how to stop it.

Their workshop took place last weekend at Arizona State University with funding from Tesla Inc. co-founder Elon Musk and Skype co-founder Jaan Tallinn. Officially dubbed "Envisioning and Addressing Adverse AI Outcomes," it was a kind of AI doomsday games that organized some 40 scientists, cyber-security experts and policy wonks into groups of attackers -- the red team -- and defenders -- blue team -- playing out AI-gone-very-wrong scenarios, ranging from stock-market manipulation to global warfare.

Horvitz is optimistic -- a good thing because machine intelligence is his life's work -- but some other, more dystopian-minded backers of the project seemed to find his outlook too positive when plans for this event started about two years ago, said Krauss, a theoretical physicist who directs ASU's Origins Project, the program running the workshop. Yet Horvitz said that for these technologies to move forward successfully and to earn broad public confidence, all concerns must be fully aired and addressed.

"There is huge potential for AI to transform so many aspects of our society in so many ways. At the same time, there are rough edges and potential downsides, like any technology," said Horvitz, managing director of Microsoft's Research Lab in Redmond, Washington. ``To maximally gain from the upside we also have to think through possible outcomes in more detail than we have before and think about how we’d deal with them."

Participants were given "homework" to submit entries for worst-case scenarios. They had to be realistic -- based on current technologies or those that appear possible -- and five to 25 years in the future. The entrants with the "winning" nightmares were chosen to lead the panels, which featured about four experts on each of the two teams to discuss the attack and how to prevent it.

Turns out many of these researchers can match science-fiction writers Arthur C. Clarke and Philip K. Dick for dystopian visions. In many cases, little imagination was required -- scenarios like technology being used to sway elections or new cyber attacks using AI are being seen in the real world, or are at least technically possible. Horvitz cited research that shows how to alter the way a self-driving car sees traffic signs so that the vehicle misreads a "stop" sign as "yield.''

The possibility of intelligent, automated cyber attacks is the one that most worries John Launchbury, who directs one of the offices at the U.S.'s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, and Kathleen Fisher, chairwoman of the computer science department at Tufts University, who led that session. What happens if someone constructs a cyber weapon designed to hide itself and evade all attempts to dismantle it? Now imagine it spreads beyond its intended target to the broader internet. Think Stuxnet, the computer virus created to attack the Iranian nuclear program that got out in the wild, but stealthier and more autonomous.

"We're talking about malware on steroids that is AI-enabled," said Fisher, who is an expert in programming languages. Fisher presented her scenario under a slide bearing the words "What could possibly go wrong?" which could have also served as a tagline for the whole event.

How did the defending blue team fare on that one? Not well, said Launchbury. They argued that advanced AI needed for an attack would require a lot of computing power and communication, so it would be easier to detect. But the red team felt that it would be easy to hide behind innocuous activities, Fisher said. For example, attackers could get innocent users to play an addictive video game to cover up their work.

To prevent a stock-market manipulation scenario dreamed up by University of Michigan computer science professor Michael Wellman, blue team members suggested treating attackers like malware by trying to recognize them via a database on known types of hacks. Wellman, who has been in AI for more than 30 years and calls himself an old-timer on the subject, said that approach could be useful in finance.

Beyond actual solutions, organizers hope the doomsday workshop started conversations on what needs to happen, raised awareness and combined ideas from different disciplines. The Origins Project plans to make public materials from the closed-door sessions and may design further workshops around a specific scenario or two, Krauss said.

DARPA's Launchbury hopes the presence of policy figures among the participants will foster concrete steps, like agreements on rules of engagement for cyber war, automated weapons and robot troops.

Krauss, chairman of the board of sponsors of the group behind the Doomsday Clock, a symbolic measure of how close we are to global catastrophe, said some of what he saw at the workshop "informed" his thinking on whether the clock ought to shift even closer to midnight. But don't go stocking up on canned food and moving into a bunker in the wilderness just yet.

"Some things we think of as cataclysmic may turn out to be just fine," he said.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on March 15, 2017, 06:21:12 AM

Indicators show potatoes can grow on Mars (

The International Potato Center (CIP) launched a series of experiments to discover if potatoes can grow under Mars atmospheric conditions and thereby prove they are also able to grow in extreme climates on Earth. This Phase Two effort of CIP's proof of concept experiment to grow potatoes in simulated Martian conditions began on February 14, 2016 when a tuber was planted in a specially constructed CubeSat contained environment built by engineers from University of Engineering and Technology (UTEC) in Lima based upon designs and advice provided by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration in Ames Research Center (NASA ARC), California. Preliminary results are positive.

The Potatoes on Mars project was conceived by CIP to both understand how potatoes might grow in Mars conditions and also see how they survive in the extreme conditions similar to what parts of the world already suffering from climate change and weather shocks are already experiencing.
"Growing crops under Mars-like conditions is an important phase of this experiment," says Julio Valdivia-Silva, a research associate with the SETI Institute who has worked at NASA's Ames Research Center (NASA ARC) and now works at UTEC in Lima. "If the crops can tolerate the extreme conditions that we are exposing them to in our CubeSat, they have a good chance to grow on Mars. We will do several rounds of experiments to find out which potato varieties do best. "We want to know what the minimum conditions are that a potato needs to survive," he said.

The CubeSat houses a container holding soil and the tuber. Inside this hermetically sealed environment the CubeSat delivers nutrient rich water, controls the temperature for Mars day and night conditions and mimics Mars air pressure, oxygen and carbon dioxide levels. Sensors constantly monitor these conditions and live streaming cameras record the soil in anticipation of the potato sprouting.

According to CIP potato breeder Walter Amoros, one advantage potato great genetic capacity for adaptation to extreme environments. CIP has tapped into that capacity by breeding potato clones that tolerate conditions such as soil salinity and drought, in order to help smallholder farmers grow food in marginal areas that could grow harsher under climate change.

In 2016, CIP brought Mars analog soil from the Pampas de La Joya desert in Southern Peru to its experimental station in La Molina, Lima. There CIP was able to show proof that potatoes could grow in this dry, salty soil with some help from fertilized Earth soil for both nutrition and structure.

"We have been looking at the very dry soils found in the southern Peruvian desert. These are the most Mars-like soils found on Earth." Chris McKay of NASA ARC. "This [research] could have a direct technological benefit on Earth and a direct biological benefit on Earth," says Chris McKay of NASA ARC.

Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on March 28, 2017, 08:14:01 AM
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on May 02, 2017, 08:46:31 AM
Our galaxy is positively stuffed with alien worlds.

That exoplanets swarm the Milky Way, and that a good fraction of them are small, rocky, and temperate like the planet we live on, means the search for life beyond Earth is moving past the question of whether these worlds are common and on to the more profound question of whether those faraway worlds also host life.

“We’re no longer wondering if rocky planets are in the habitable zones of stars,” the University of Arizona’s Olivier Guyon said during last week’s Breakthrough Discuss conference, hosted by the Breakthrough Initiatives. “As far as we can tell, they’re everywhere. We’re transitioning into life-finding. We have a lot of work ahead of us.”
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on June 02, 2017, 08:38:09 AM

Astronomers scramble to probe 'alien megastructure' star  (

KIC 8462852, also known as Tabby's Star, has been monitored for several years after it was noticed that its brightness changed significantly and at irregular intervals.

A range of theories have been put forward for this strange behaviour, including one hypothesis which suggests an alien megastructure may have been built around the star to harvest its energy.

Although the star was first discovered in the 1890s, it was not until observations between 2009 and 2013 when scientists first noticed something particularly odd about it.

It was subsequently named after Louisiana-based astronomer Tabetha Boyajian, who wrote a paper about its strange behaviour.

Professor Boyajian noticed that at one point Tabby's Star's brightness had dropped by 22%, which can not be explained by any properly understood phenomenon.

Last month scientists noticed what appeared to be another slight dimming of the star - but that accelerated significantly on Friday, causing a scramble for additional observations.

Jason Wright, associate professor of astronomy and astrophysics at Penn State University, told a web chat: "One of the difficulties here is that most telescopes are scheduled weeks, months in advance.

"We can't just jump on a telescope and take a spectrum typically. So we need to have a network of people around the world."

Tabby's Star is in the constellation Cygnus and is approximately 1,275 light years from Earth.

Scientists hope they might be able to work out what is causing the star to dim by analysing its full spectrum of light. But to do this, they need to know when that dimming is going to occur.

Astronomers do not believe it is being caused by a planet passing in front the star as this would not cause such a significant change in brightness, and it would be more predictable.

A number of other theories have been put forward. One suggests there may be a large cloud of dust and debris around the star.

Another suggestion is that it is recovering having been hit by a planet and a third theory suggests a swarm of comets may be responsible.

The most unusual suggestion - but one which scientists can not yet dismiss - is that an alien megastructure has been built around the star to harvest its energy.

The concept, which sounds like it comes straight out of science fiction, is actually referred to as as Dyson Sphere.

It is named after British-born scientist Freeman Dyson who, in the 1960s, hypothesised that advance civilisations would seek to power their worlds in this way.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on June 06, 2017, 09:00:54 AM
Jupiter: Juno Perijove 06
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 07, 2017, 11:22:34 AM
NASA's Juno Spacecraft to Fly Over Jupiter's Great Red Spot July 10 (

Just days after celebrating its first anniversary in Jupiter orbit, NASA's Juno spacecraft will on July 10 fly directly over Jupiter's Great Red Spot, the gas giant's iconic, 10,000-mile-wide (16,000-kilometer-wide) storm. This will be humanity's first up-close and personal view of the gigantic feature -- a storm monitored since 1830 and possibly existing for more than 350 years.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 13, 2017, 09:37:24 AM

The great red spot of Jupiter as never seen before – in pictures (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 27, 2017, 10:49:10 AM

Future astronauts could be drinking Moon water (

The Moon's surprisingly extensive sub-surface water reserves could potentially be extracted and used "for future exploration".
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on October 02, 2017, 11:45:01 AM

Saturn probe's fiery demise animated by scientists (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on November 09, 2017, 08:53:38 AM

'Zombie' star won't die, even after exploding (

It's the star that won't die, even though it has exploded and appeared to go down in a blaze of glory multiple times. This superlong supernova may be the first of its kind.

When they first observed supernova iPTF14hls in September 2014, astronomers at Las Cumbres Observatory in California thought it was perfectly normal. They analyzed the light of the explosion to study the material ejected and its speed.

But Zheng Chuen Wong, an intern at the observatory from the University of California, Santa Barbara, noticed something strange about the supernova and showed it to Iair Arcavi, a NASA Einstein postdoctoral fellow at the university.

A supernova, the massive explosion of a star, usually signals the end. Typically, a supernova remains bright for 100 days before fading. But this one fluctuated by brightening and dimming over the course of 600 days, according to a study released in the journal Nature on Wednesday.

The brightness of a supernova provides a luminosity equaling that of about 100 million suns.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on November 28, 2017, 10:23:41 AM

Oumuamua: Lost interstellar asteroid enters solar system (

The dark red rock, named Oumuamua, is the first space rock from outside the solar system ever observed by astronomers.

A lost interstellar asteroid has entered the solar system after wandering between the stars for hundreds of millions of years, scientists believe.

The dark red object named Oumuamua, is about 400 metres (1,312 ft) long, scientists reported in the journal Nature.

It is the first space rock from outside the solar system ever observed by astronomers.

A telescope in Hawaii designed to spot Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) spotted the asteroid on 19 October as a faint point of light moving in the sky.

After further observations and orbital calculations, there was no doubt the object originated from outside the solar system.

Moving at 95,000 kilometres per hour (59,030 mph), Oumuamua was at first thought to have travelled from the bright star Vega, 25 light years away in the northern constellation of Lyra.

But Vega was nowhere near its current position 300,000 years ago, when its journey would have started.

That has led scientists to speculate that the asteroid is an interstellar wanderer that happens to have stumbled across our solar system.

"Oumuamua may well have been wandering through the Milky Way, unattached to any star system, for hundreds of millions of years before its chance encounter with the solar system," Dr Karen Meech, from the Institute for Astronomy in Hawaii, said.

"This unusually large variation in brightness means that the object is highly elongated," she added.

"We also found that it has a dark red colour, similar to objects in the outer solar system, and confirmed that it is completely inert, without the faintest hint of dust around it."

The rock's properties suggest it could have a high metal content and lacks significant amounts of water or ice, and its surface has become dark and red by the impact of cosmic rays over millions of years.

Astronomers estimate that interstellar asteroids pass through the inner solar system about once a year, but they are difficult to see because they are so faint.

Oumuamua was discovered by the 1.8 metre Pan-STARR telescope in Hawaii, which is part of a system set up to track potentially threatening NEOs.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on May 18, 2018, 12:13:58 PM

Scientists accidentally engineer plastic-eating enzyme (

British scientists have engineered an enzyme which can digest polyethylene terephthalate (PET), the plastic used in single-use plastic bottles and other common packaging.

Tests showed that the lab-made mutant enzyme had a supercharged ability to break down PET, one of the most popular forms of plastic used by the food and drinks industry.

Bottles made from PET are used to package 70% of soft drinks, fruit juices and mineral waters, according to the British Plastics Federation.

PET persists for hundreds of years in the environment before it degrades and the discovery may mean that significantly more plastic waste could be recycled.
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 03, 2018, 10:49:22 AM

Japanese spacecraft reaches diamond-shaped asteroid after 3-year journey (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 03, 2018, 10:50:18 AM

Best evidence yet for alien life on Saturn's moon found by scientists

Enceladus is only body besides Earth known to 'simultaneously satisfy all of the basic requirements for life as we know it', say scientists (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on July 03, 2018, 10:51:14 AM

First confirmed image of the birth of a planet (
Title: Re: Gde bi sve trebalo lansirati SF ekspedicije...
Post by: Lidija on September 17, 2018, 03:08:32 PM

Ghost particle sent from deep in space could change our understanding of the universe (

A single strange particle from deep space may shed light on some of the mysteries of the universe.

The tiny, ghost like subatomic particle was ejected from an incredibly energetic galaxy four billion light years away and could solve the century old mystery of where cosmic rays come from, as well as providing an entirely new way of looking at the cosmos.

The mysterious particle made its way to scientists from the most extreme environments in the universe, and will give them an unparalleled look at those intriguing regions.

The neutrino is the first of its kind detected and its likely origin was traced to a “blazar” four billion light years away. There, it was thrown out by a galaxy with a vast black hole at its centre, flung across the universe as the cosmic consumes matter.

Neutrinos could be doubly helpful because they have no mass and travel in an almost entirely straight line through the universe – which makes them very difficult to detect but very easy to track, as they travel billions of light years.