The visiting US foreign minister, John Kerry, told Swedish press on Tuesday that his government valued Sweden’s participation in the US-led Nato mission in Afghanistan. …
Building with moon dust 18/04/2013 16:55 CET
NASA unveils plan to catch asteroid as step to Mars… 11/04/2013 08:43 CET
Historic dig on Mars 10/02/2013 08:35 CET
Interplanetary pop from Mars to Earth 29/08/2012 17:03 CET
Next NASA mission: discover what’s inside Mars 21/08/2012 15:37 CET
Just two weeks after applications opened, tens of thousands of people have declared themselves ready to be astronauts, in a rather ambitious project to establish a human colony on planet Mars.
The mission is a private venture by the Dutch non-profit organization Mars One. The aim of the mission is to send a crew to Mars in 2022.
Probably the most important thing about the mission is the fact that there will be no coming back from the Red Planet.
If you think that this would discourage people, you should think again. So far, over 78,000 people have applied to become Mars’ first immigrants.
Mars One officials say they are expecting more than 500,000 applications by August 31, the deadline for anyone interested in spending the rest of their life on Mars.
Watch the video
Russian civil activists and scientists talk about necessity of colonization of Mars
Such an ambitious mission will not be easy. Mars One stated that the daily routine on the Red Planet will involve work on the colony, maintenance of the settlement’s systems and research into Mars’ climate and geological history.
All this work has to be done whilst living in an inhospitable environment with unbreathable air, the average temperature is around -50 degrees Celcius.
The organisation says that it is not looking for applicants with specific skills. On the other hand, they are looking for people who “have a deep sense of purpose, willingness to build and maintain healthy relationships, the capacity for self-reflection and ability to trust.”
Volunteers must be “resilient, adaptable, curious, creative and resourceful.”
Watch the video
Bas Lansdorp, founder of Mars One presenting the plan for Mars’ colonization
Candidates will receive a minimum of eight years training before leaving Earth, according to the Dutch company.
More information on Mars One, the official website of the mission to the Red Planet.
Copyright © 2013 euronews
Europe’s deep-space Herschel telescope has given up the ghost — running out of coolant after a successful mission to observe the birth of stars and galaxies, the European Space Agency said Monday. “Herschel has made over 35,000 scientific observations, amassing more than 25,000…
Even lasers that act like “Star Trek” tractor beams are among the suggestions put forth by scientists to protect some $100 billion worth of satellites from man-made cosmic trash.Ion-firing satellites are also being considered as a solution to the space junk problem, according to astronomer Thomas Schildknect. The satellites would shoot ions at the target, potentially slowing down orbiting space debris and dragging it back to Earth.Ground based lasers could be used in the same way, although only for very small objects, Schildknect told AP.Meanwhile, British engineers at the satellite company Astrium have developed a harpoon that could be launched from a chase satellite to catch junk. It would then reel it in and hurl it through the atmosphere where it would safely burn up.The harpoon’s inventor, Dr. Jaime Reed, said the company could begin space trials in just four years.”There’s a lot of stuff up there already that can – and will – come back to Earth,” he told Sky News. “New satellites pose a threat to future satellites, so it’s something we need to look at and address.”Extra-large space junk could be combated with a dedicated robot, which would be sent on a suicide mission to bring the debris down safely. But the complex mission comes at a cost. In fact, such a quest would cost up to $200 million.However, the hefty price tag hasn’t stopped Schildknect from expecting such attempts to take place very soon.”I’m confident that we will see demonstration missions in the near future,” he said.And it seems the sooner, the better. The European Space Agency (ESA) says testing of new technologies for cleaning up space needs to happen rapidly, because the amount of junk spinning uncontrollably through orbit is growing.Experts estimate that around 27,000 objects measuring ten centimeters or more are flying through orbit at 80 times the speed of a passenger jet, said Heiner Klinkrad, a space debris expert at ESA. And each one could destroy a satellite.Even a piece of debris measuring just 1 millimeter – of which there are around 160 million – can destroy sensitive space instruments. Scientists say that smaller debris may pose the biggest danger because it is harder to track.“Whatever we do is going to be an expensive solution. But one has to compare the costs of what we are investing to solve the problem as compared to losing the infrastructure that we have in orbit,” Klinkrad said.He said that five to ten large objects need to be collected each year to prevent what is known as Kessler Syndrome – when a few major collisions trigger a cascade effect in which each crash increases the amount of dangerous debris in orbit.Although such major collisions are rare, they do happen. In 2009, a private communications satellite called Iridium 33 smashed into the Russian military satellite Kosmos-2251, destroying both in the process.Scientists say it’s only a matter of time before the next major space collision occurs. …
“About seven well-armed men in government uniform entered the court today as soon as a car bomb exploded at the gate. We thought they were government soldiers,” said Aden Sabdow, who works in the neighboring mayor’s office.The blast of the car bomb was followed by gunfire, court worker Hussein Ali said.Special forces arrived and besieged the building as a second blast struck. The ensuing gun battle continued for more than two hours.“I never expected to make it out alive today,” said Halima Geddi, a visitor of the court who took cover behind an outer wall. “There is no peace. No one protects us.”Sixteen people were killed in the attacks, but the identities of the victims are unclear, Reuters reported.Hours later, another car bomb exploded at a building along the road to the Mogadishu airport as Turkish and African Union (AU) vehicles were passing, according to police and witnesses. Security forces rushed to the scene and surrounded the area.”The car bomb exploded near the gate of a building housing the Somali security. AU and Turkish cars were also passing there. We are still investigating the target and casualties,” police official Qadar Ali said.Three people were killed in the attacks, witnesses reported.Al-Shabaab has claimed responsibility for the attacks:”We carried out a superb intense mission in Mogadishu today. We killed 26 people including soldiers and court staff,” spokesperson Sheikh Ali Mohamud Rage said, inflating the number of deaths. “We assigned five special mujahideen for the court – four of them entered and killed the people inside. The other mujahid with his car bomb exploded when government soldiers gathered at the gate.”Britain issued a warning on April 5 that it believed “terrorists are in the final stages of planning attacks in Mogadishu.”Most militant attacks in the Somali capital are blamed on fighters from Al-Qaeda-linked Islamic extremist rebel group Al-Shabab, which governed Mogadishu from 2006 until August 2011, when AU and Somali forces pushed them out of the city. Al-Shabab extremists have launched regular attacks on the capital city since 2011. …
Speaking at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles the 71-year-old scientist called for further exploration of space to guarantee the future of mankind, the Belfast Telegraph reports.”We must continue to go into space for humanity. If you understand how the universe operates, you control it in a way,” Professor Hawking said, adding that “we won’t survive another 1,000 years without escaping our fragile planet.”Space exploration has however been struggling with the global financial crisis and has too proven subject to spending cuts. In particular NASA’s planetary science budget, which is seen as crucial to finding habitable planets, was slashed by $300 million this year.At the same time, the Mars race has not been abandoned.On Monday NASA concluded from Curiosity Rover’s findings that the red planet is gradually turning cold after losing a large part of its original atmosphere.Russia, in its turn, has signed a deal with the European Space Agency to become a full-fledged partner in the ExoMars project, a new attempt to discover if there is life on Mars and eventually send a manned mission there. In 2010 and 2011, the Mars-500 experiment was carried out in Moscow: a group of six volunteers were locked inside a simulated spacecraft for 520 days – the time it would take to make a round trip to the planet.Back at the LA Medical Center, Hawking was touring a stem cell lab, which is focused on trying to slow the progression of Lou Gehrig’s disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. He’s been suffering the incurable ailment, which attacks nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord that control the muscles, for 50 years.Director of Cedars-Sinai’s ALS program, Dr. Robert Baloh, has admitted that he is unable to explain Hawking’s longevity, because people rarely live more than a dozen years with this diagnosis.“But 50 years is unusual, to say the least,” Baloh said.Hawking was diagnosed with the neurological disorder while a student at Cambridge University at the age of 21. He is confined to a wheelchair and needs permanent assistance. The only movement he is able to do on his own is to twitch the cheek. He communicates with the rest of the world by means of the built-in wheelchair computer, which conveys the owner’s thoughts by a monotonous robot’s voice.”However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at,” Hawking added speaking of dealing with his health condition.Despite his grave diagnosis, Professor Hawking has remained active. In 2007, he floated like an astronaut on an aircraft that creates zero-gravity by making parabolic dives.Hawking spent his career on decoding the Universe, working on black holes and the origin of matter. The Professor brought his esoteric physics concepts to the masses through his books, including “A Brief History of Time” published in 1988, which was sold 10 million copies worldwide. …