Tag: new (page 63 of 174)

Study Shows Dogs Can Process Human Speech

Excerpt from techtimes.com When you talk to your dog, he or she is listening to what you say in a surprisingly sophisticated and even human-like manner, a new study in Britain suggests.While past studies have provided strong evidence that dogs ...

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Massive Light Show Over Russian Urals Stuns Locals, Scientists


An extraordinary bright orange flash has lit up the sky in Russia’s Sverdlovsk region in the Urals. While locals captured the massive ‘blast’ on numerous cameras, both scientists and emergency services still struggle to explain the unusual event.

Dark evening skies in the town of Rezh in Sverdlovsk region near Russia's Ekaterinburg turned bright orange for some ten seconds on November 14, with the event being caught on several cameras by the locals.

A driver filmed the massive flash with his dashcam, later posting the video on YouTube, with more people commenting they’ve seen it too. Teenagers in the town of Rezh also filmed the phenomenon with a mobile phone.

Theories of what might have caused the “blast” appeared both on social and traditional media, with a new meteorite or military exercise in the region being among the top guesses. Regional emergency services said no accidents in connection with the event had been recorded. No sound of explosion has been reported either.

According to E1.ru, the emergency officials suggested the military were behind the flash, as they might have had a scheduled explosive ordnance disposal procedure. The city administration has also said such ammunition disposal might have taken place, while the military themselves denied they were behind the mystery. 

A fireball caused by an asteroid’s collision with the Earth's atmosphere is among other presumed reasons for the burning sky.

Another astronoma, Vadim Krushinsky, doubted his colleague's theory, saying the color of the flash does not support the asteroid speculation. The shade of light depends on the body’s temperature, and flashes caused by bolides are usually whiter, he explained to Ekburg.tv. The observatory engineer suggested his own theory, saying a space rocket launch might have been the cause.

Click to zoom

A path of launches from the Plesetsk cosmodrome lies above the area, Krushinsky said. But, according to Russian Federal Space Agency's website, the latest launch from the Plesetsk cosmodrome happened on October 29, with the next one planned for November 24.

People in the Urals witnessed a space ‘invasion’ event a year and a half ago, when the famous Chelyabinsk meteorite hit the region. A massive fireball explosion in February 2013 injured over a thousand people with shattered glass mostly, and damaged many residential and industrial buildings.

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Future Tech Watch ~ High-tech mirrors to beam heat from buildings into space ~ May replace air conditioning

illustration of reflective panel on building


By Chris Cesare

A new ultrathin multilayered material can cool buildings without air conditioning by radiating warmth from inside the buildings into space while also reflecting sunlight to reduce incoming heat.

Stanford engineers have invented a material designed to help cool buildings. The material reflects incoming sunlight, and it sends heat from inside the structure directly into space as infrared radiation (represented by reddish rays).

Stanford engineers have invented a revolutionary coating material that can help cool buildings, even on sunny days, by radiating heat away from the buildings and sending it directly into space.

A team led by electrical engineering Professor Shanhui Fan and research associate Aaswath Raman reported this energy-saving breakthrough in the journal Nature.

The heart of the invention is an ultrathin, multilayered material that deals with light, both invisible and visible, in a new way.

Invisible light in the form of infrared radiation is one of the ways that all objects and living things throw off heat. When we stand in front of a closed oven without touching it, the heat we feel is infrared light. This invisible, heat-bearing light is what the Stanford invention shunts away from buildings and sends into space.

Of course, sunshine also warms buildings. The new material, in addition dealing with infrared light, is also a stunningly efficient mirror that reflects virtually all of the incoming sunlight that strikes it.

The result is what the Stanford team calls photonic radiative cooling – a one-two punch that offloads infrared heat from within a building while also reflecting the sunlight that would otherwise warm it up. The result is cooler buildings that require less air conditioning.

"This is very novel and an extraordinarily simple idea," said Eli Yablonovitch, a professor of engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, and a pioneer of photonics who directs the Center for Energy Efficient Electronics Science. "As a result of professor Fan's work, we can now [use radiative cooling], not only at night but counter-intuitively in the daytime as well."

The researchers say they designed the material to be cost-effective for large-scale deployment on building rooftops. Though still a young technology, they believe it could one day reduce demand for electricity. As much as 15 percent of the energy used in buildings in the United States is spent powering air conditioning systems.

In practice the researchers think the coating might be sprayed on a more solid material to make it suitable for withstanding the elements.

"This team has shown how to passively cool structures by simply radiating heat into the cold darkness of space," said Nobel Prize-winning physicist Burton Richter, professor emeritus at Stanford and former director of the research facility now called the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory.

A warming world needs cooling technologies that don't require power, according to Raman, lead author of the Nature paper. 

"Across the developing world, photonic radiative cooling makes off-grid cooling a possibility in rural regions, in addition to meeting skyrocketing demand for air conditioning in urban areas," he said.

Using a window into space

The real breakthrough is how the Stanford material radiates heat away from buildings.

researchers Linxiao Zhu, Shanhui Fan, Aaswath Raman
Doctoral candidate Linxiao Zhu, Professor Shanhui Fan and research associate 
Aaswath Raman are members of the team that invented the breakthrough energy-saving material.
As science students know, heat can be transferred in three ways: conduction, convection and radiation. Conduction transfers heat by touch. That's why you don't touch an oven pan without wearing a mitt. Convection transfers heat by movement of fluids or air. It's the warm rush of air when the oven is opened. Radiation transfers heat in the form of infrared light that emanates outward from objects, sight unseen.
The first part of the coating's one-two punch radiates heat-bearing infrared light directly into space. The ultrathin coating was carefully constructed to send this infrared light away from buildings at the precise frequency that allows it to pass through the atmosphere without warming the air, a key feature given the dangers of global warming.

"Think about it like having a window into space," said Fan.

Aiming the mirror

But transmitting heat into space is not enough on its own.
This multilayered coating also acts as a highly efficient mirror, preventing 97 percent of sunlight from striking the building and heating it up.

"We've created something that's a radiator that also happens to be an excellent mirror," said Raman.

Together, the radiation and reflection make the photonic radiative cooler nearly 9 degrees Fahrenheit cooler than the surrounding air during the day.

From prototype to building panel

Making photonic radiative cooling practical requires solving at least two technical problems.

The first is how to conduct the heat inside the building to this exterior coating. Once it gets there, the coating can direct the heat into space, but engineers must first figure out how to efficiently deliver the building heat to the coating.

The second problem is production. Right now the Stanford team's prototype is the size of a personal pizza. Cooling buildings will require large panels. The researchers say there exist large-area fabrication facilities that can make their panels at the scales needed.

The cosmic fridge

More broadly, the team sees this project as a first step toward using the cold of space as a resource. In the same way that sunlight provides a renewable source of solar energy, the cold universe supplies a nearly unlimited expanse to dump heat.

"Every object that produces heat has to dump that heat into a heat sink," Fan said. "What we've done is to create a way that should allow us to use the coldness of the universe as a heat sink during the day."

In addition to Fan, Raman and Zhu, this paper has two additional co-authors: Marc Abou Anoma, a master's student in mechanical engineering who has graduated; and Eden Rephaeli, a doctoral student in applied physics who has graduated.

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MIT Scientists Found an Invisible Force Field Protecting Earth

Excerpt from

The invisible force field seems to be taken from a Star-Trek movie script – it’s invisible, it’s steady, and it doesn’t allow harmful cosmic radiation penetrating into our planet’s atmosphere. Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers say it was first noticed by two NASA spacecrafts orbiting the Van Allen radiation belt on a 7,200 miles (11,000 km) altitude.

This new invisible force field protecting Earth does a very good job at blocking highly radioactive electrons populating Earth’s upper atmospheric region. NASA said these “ultrarelativistic” electrons were extremely aggressive and they easily circulate in space at speeds very close to the speed of light. They also fry everything on their way from spacecrafts to communication satellites. NASA launched two probe crafts, the Van Allen probes, for the sole purpose of studying these electrons and improving the safety level of their spacecrafts and crew.

NASA says although these electrons are attracted towards Earth by its magnetic field, they cannot get closer than 7,200 miles to it due an invisible shield-like barrier, never detected before. This barrier protects Earth from harmful cosmic radiation and has already done a good job in the past by deflecting several solar blows directed towards Earth. It seems that this mysterious force field operates on low frequency electromagnetism, but its source is still uncertain.

In the end, researchers found out that the barrier was probably generated by the plasmaspheric hiss, a phenomenon occurring in the upper parts of the atmosphere. This plasmaspheric hiss deviates from orbit the fast-moving dangerous particles, and sets them on a parallel plan to one of the Earth’s magnetic field lines, forcing them to fall into the atmosphere, collide with neutrally charged particles, and disappear.

Mary Hudson, professor of physics, said the new NASA observations made over more than two years through its Van Allen probes confirmed the inner barrier’s existence, and brought invaluable new information to the particle acceleration theory.

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NASA Is Building a Sustainable ‘Highway’ for Unprecedented Deep Space Exploration

Excerpt from huffingtonpost.comIn early December, NASA will take an important step into the future with the first flight test of the Orion spacecraft -- the first vehicle in history capable of taking humans to multiple destinations in deep space. An...

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You’re flying with NASA and you don’t even know it

Excerpt from cnn.comBy Thom Patterson You know those little "winglets" that point up from the tips of airliner wings? Those were developed by NASA. And, you know those little grooves in runways that channel away standing water?NASA again.America's spac...

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Could ‘Interstellar’ Wormhole Travel Actually Happen?

Excerpt from  techtimes.com Interstellar may be attracting viewers to the movies at warp speed, but wormholes like the one featured in the new film are likely a reality, deep in space.The movie Interstellar follows a group of astronauts who...

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