This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. (PhysOrg.com) — The race to offer commercial passengers an experience of a lifetime just got more affordable. RocketShip Tours owned by Jules Klar, a veteran in the travel business will arrange a sub-orbital trip aboard XCOR Aerospace’s third generation rocket powered vehicle for less than 50-percent of its rival Virgin Galactic. The Lynx is XCOR´s first sub-orbital rocket powered vehicle designed to take commercial passengers 37.87 miles straight up to catch a glimpse of Outer Space, Earth, enjoy weightless and then gently glide back and land at an Arizona air strip. Space tourism projects at a glance Explore further Lynx Flight Pattern – Via XCOR Aerospace Lynx is a two-passenger rocket powered aircraft that has the ability to operate as an airplane. It operates on kerosene and liquid oxygen. The pilot for the adventure of a lifetime is former NASA astronaut Colonel Rick Searfoss. Col. Searfoss was the Commander on the Space Shuttle Columbia, pilot, Space Shuttle Atlantis and chalked up a total of 50 rocket powered missions. Per Wimmer, a Danish investment banker holds the first reservation for the Lynx sub-orbital flight expected to launch sometime in 2011. Mr. Wimmer hedged his bet by plunking down the necessary reservation fee to Richard Branson´s Virgin Galactic and another rival for commercial space travel, Space Adventure. According to Wimmer, “It will be a real race to see which one goes up first”. The main difference between the XCOR Lynx is its ability to launch on any 10,000 foot runway with clear air space. Within a minute of engine light the Lynx goes super sonic. The Lynx takes to the skies and achieves Mach 2 speed with a 2.5 g-force. The guest traveler travels in the co-pilot seat and is equipped with a pressure suit. Somewhere in the range of 100,000 feet the sky darkens and within a few minutes turns to inky black. A period of weightlessness occurs after the rocket engines are shut down and the tour peaks at 200,000 feet with a vista of the Earth´s surface enhanced by the pilot´s ability to maneuver Lynx upside down and side-wise before gliding for home. In contrast the Virgin Galactic voyage is a craft that must be towed by a mother-craft some 50,000 feet above the Earth before breaking free and starting the rocket boosters. The Virgin Galactic is a six-passenger transport vehicle which may allow passengers to float around in the cabin during weightless periods. The Virgin Galactic is expected to reach 62-miles above the earth´s surface. The RocketShip adventure includes a five day stay at a luxury resort, medical evaluation, flight preparedness and training, a flight cancellation insurance policy and the 30-minute or so flight aboard the Lynx. A $20,000 dollar deposit starts the process to ensure the guest participant is medically fit for the adventure and provides some initial training. The total cost of the RocketShip Tour is $95,000 and compared to the $200,000 ticket price for the Virgin Galactic flight is a discount sub-orbital flight. On the Net: www.rocketshiptours.com© 2008 PhysOrg.com Citation: RocketShip Tours Teams Up With XCOR Aerospace To Offer A $95,000 Right Stuff Experience (2008, December 4) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2008-12-rocketship-teams-xcor-aerospace.html
(A) Using three of the new highly flexible supercapacitors arranged in series, the researchers demonstrated lighting a red LED. (B) An illustration of the flexible, all-solid-state paper-like polymer supercapacitors. Image credit: Chuizhou Meng, et al. © 2010 American Chemical Society. Copyright 2010 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Paper-thin supercapacitor has higher capacitance when twisted than any non-twisted supercapacitor (2010, September 21) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-09-paper-thin-supercapacitor-higher-capacitance-non-twisted.html Paper supercapacitor could power future paper electronics More information: Chuizhou Meng, et al. “Highly Flexible and All-Solid-State Paperlike Polymer Supercapacitors.” Nano Lett. ASAP. DOI:10.1021/nl1019672 The researchers, Chuizhou Meng, et al., from the Tsinghua-Foxconn Nanotechnology Research Center at Tsinghua University in Beijing have published their results in a recent issue of Nano Letters.As the researchers explain, portable electronic devices are becoming increasingly small and flexible. However, the energy management components – e.g. batteries and supercapacitors – tend to lag behind the other components when it comes to small size and flexibility. Specifically, supercapacitors are limited by their conventional configuration, which is a separator sandwiched between two electrodes sealed in liquid electrolyte. The two major drawbacks with this configuration are that the liquid electrolyte requires safety encapsulation materials to prevent leakage, and the multiple parts of the system that move relative to each other decrease the performance and cycle life of the device. In an attempt to design an energy-storage device that is smaller and more flexible than previous devices, the researchers turned to carbon-based materials. By using two slightly separated electrodes made of polyaniline (a conductive polymer) and carbon nanotubes, and solidifying them in a gel polymer solid-state electrolyte (acting simultaneously as a separator), the researchers could fabricate a highly flexible supercapacitor that was as thin as a standard piece of paper. The novel materials and no moving parts enabled the researchers to overcome the problems with the conventional configuration, and further decrease the size and increase the flexibility of the device.“We innovatively designed the microstructure and optimized the configuration of our supercapacitors so as to effectively make full use of each necessary component,” coauthor Changhong Liu told PhysOrg.com. “We omitted the heavy metal current collectors and bulky encapsulation of conventional supercapacitors. Here, carbon nanotubes formed a good electric conducting network, polyaniline provided extremely large pseudocapacitance, and the ultra-thin middle gel polymer electrolyte layer acted simultaneously as a separator. Overall, the devices are very flexible and paper-like.” In tests, the researchers demonstrated that the new supercapacitor has a capacitance of 31.4 F/g when twisted, compared to 5.2 F/g for current commercial supercapacitors. The new supercapacitor also showed superior characteristics in other areas, such as a high power density, low leakage current, and long cycle life. The researchers predict that these properties could be further improved by optimizing the device’s materials and structure, such as by shortening the distance between electrodes. “To the best of our knowledge, this flexible paper-like supercapacitor has much higher specific capacitance than current high-level conventional commercial ones,” Liu said, adding that the researchers could not guarantee that they were aware of every commercial device.The researchers also showed how three twisted supercapacitors connected in series could be used to light a red LED. After 15 minutes of charging at 2.5 V, the rolled-up supercapacitors lit the LED for almost 30 minutes. Given its high capacitance and flexibility that surpass current commercial supercapacitors, the new supercapacitor should be attractive for use in wearable electronics, an area which is still only beginning to be explored.“We think that this lightweight and flexible energy storage device will have great application potential in future wearable electronics,” Liu said. “For example, incorporated with flexible display technology, it will make a flexible electronic book truly paper-like, by saving much weight and space. And in the future, when flexible large-scale integrated circuits come true, a lightweight and flexible notebook computer is much expected.” (PhysOrg.com) — In an effort to develop wearable electronics, researchers have designed a new ultra-thin supercapacitor that has a capacitance that is six times higher than that of any current commercial supercapacitor. What’s more, the new supercapacitor was tested in a twisted state to demonstrate its good electrochemical properties with high flexibility. Explore further
Little known privately held Pixel Qi (pronounced as Pixel Chi) is based in San Bruno California, and makes Liquid Crystal Displays (LCDs) for laptops, tablets and other devices that have the unique ability to use direct sunlight to help brighten the screen when used outdoors. Called transflective, such devices actually use less power outdoors, compared to iPads, which use more.Jepson says the motivation for creating a device equal in quality to the iPad but much less power hungry came from reports that the new iPad overheats as it draws up to eight watts of power at peak consumption, a figure that she says “shocked” her.Thus far in its short history, Pixel Qi hasn’t made much of a dent in the consumer market; its screens appear in only about a dozen little known products, such as the ARM based Adam tablet. This new development is likely to change that, if the claims made by Jepson turn out to be true, of course.Jepson includes a chart on the blog post, showing power consumption of tablets with Pixel Qi screens compared to both the old and new iPad. And of course, the Pixel Qi screens beat the iPad by a very wide margin. Unfortunately, most of the chart is based on estimates, and thus far, no one, including Jepson, has offered any proof of the claims made.Jepson says the Pixel Qi screen also has a power save mode that is a 100x reduction in power from peak power on the iPad. She adds that she’s not trying to knock Apple or its popular tablet, but would like the world to know that there is a better option available.Also missing from the blog post is pricing for the new screen, though Jepson says the company is currently in negations with prospective partners that will apparently use the new screen in their device. If that turns out to be true, then it shouldn’t be long before everyone else will be able to verify what Jepson is claiming, and if that happens, perhaps then even Apple will come knocking. Explore further © 2012 Phys.Org Pixel Qi creates a solar powered tablet pc (Phys.org) — In a post on the company blog, Mary Lou Jepsen, founder and head of Pixel Qi, boasts that her company has developed a tablet screen with a resolution that is equal to the Retina display on the new iPad but achieves it using far less battery power. She claims that the screen also has more color saturation, better viewing angles and better contrast. More information: Company’s blog Citation: Pixel Qi says it has a tablet screen as good as iPad’ Retina but uses far less power (2012, April 24) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-04-pixel-qi-tablet-screen-good.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
Scientists have known for many years that some of the meteorites that strike the Earth came from Mars. Such rocks are ejected from the surface of Mars when struck by meteorites themselves. Mars rocks have been classified into three main categories depending on their chemical makeup: chassignites, nakhlites and shergottites. The latter make up roughly three quarters of all such rocks found and have been studied extensively over the years. In this new effort, the researchers contend that all shergottites come from a single source on Mars: Mojave Crater.To establish Mojave Crater as the source, the researchers combined several types of data, each of which suggest the crater as a likely suspect, though there is one, the estimated age of the rocks, that is not quite as clear-cut as the others. THEMIS daytime image mosaic overlain by MOLA color-coded topography. Craters were counted for the plateau units (brown), channel units (blue-grey), and the continuous ejecta unit of Mojave crater (red line). Credit: Science/AAAS Explore further (Phys.org) —A trio of researchers, two from France and one from Norway, has published a paper in the journal Science where they claim to have found sufficient evidence to identify a specific crater on Mars as the origin of Mars rocks found on the Earth’s surface. In their paper Stephanie Werner, Anouck Ody and François Poulet describe their extensive research and how they came to their conclusions. The researchers began by analyzing imagery of Mars surface taken by various spacecraft over the years—they were looking for reasonably recent formation, a large size and rays leading away from the crater indicating a blast capable of sending rocky debris into space. Mojave Crater stood out as one of the best candidates for further study. The team next examined data gathered by spacecraft that have orbited the Red Planet over the years, specifically those that had taken mineral scans (measures of wavelengths of light bounced back off of them) of the Mojave Crater and the area around it. Analysis showed that the mineral composition of rocky material on the lip of the crater matched closely with the Mars rocks found on Earth. The team also sought to determine the age of the crater by studying the surface area around it—the number of craters around it and their size allows for a model to be made based on techniques developed with the Apollo moon project. Their study showed that the crater was likely formed approximately three million years ago. Finally, prior research has shown that the Martian rocks likely were in transit on average less than five million years, based on cosmic ray exposure. More information: The Source Crater of Martian Shergottite Meteorites, Science DOI: 10.1126/science.1247282ABSTRACTAbsolute ages for planetary surfaces are often inferred by crater densities and only indirectly constrained by the ages of meteorites. We show that the <5 million-year-old and 55-km-wide Mojave Crater is the ejection source for the meteorites classified as shergottites. Shergottites and this crater are linked by their coinciding meteorite ejection ages and the crater formation age, and mineralogical constraints. Because Mojave formed on 4.3 billion year old terrain, the original crystallization ages of shergottites are old, as inferred by Pb-Pb isotope ratios, and the much-quoted <600 million years shergottite ages are due to resetting. Thus, the cratering-based age determination method for Mars is now calibrated in situ, and shifts the absolute age of the oldest terrains of Mars backward by 200 million years. Mojave crater showing its well-preserved morphology and ray pattern. The direction of the red arrow indicates distant examples of secondary crater clusters shown in Figure 1B in the manuscript. Credit: Science/AAAS Citation: Researchers claim Mojave Crater on Mars is source of Mars rocks found on Earth (2014, March 7) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-03-mojave-crater-mars-source-earth.html Research says Mars had oxygen-rich atmosphere 4000 million years ago Prior research has shown that the plateau in which Mojave Crater exists is approximately 4.3 billion years, which suggests that rocks blasted from its surface should be near the same age. Unfortunately, that’s where things don’t match as well. Most studies of Mars rocks have found them to be only 150 to 600 million years old. The researchers suggest this anomaly can be explained by events (shock waves, etc.) that transpired on Mars that set their age clock back. Journal information: Science © 2014 Phys.org MRO-CTX image mosaic of Mojave’s crater interior. Credit: Science/AAAS This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
Explore further In the current study, the researchers not only observed the missing boundary but also can explain why it has been so elusive and what causes the boundary to occur in the first place. They explain that the region containing lead is composed of two types of structures. In one structure, the lead atoms have a lot of space to move around, allowing them more room to be affected by an external mechanical stress. In the other structure, the lead atoms do not have nearly as much space to move. This finding indicates that the first type of structure is strongly preferable for maximizing the piezoelectric response in PZT material, helping explain why the piezoelectric response increases near this boundary. This is the first time that the important difference between these two types of structures has been understood.The small-scale findings could have large implications for the field of piezoelectrics, which have applications including motors, sensors, and actuators. One important area of research involves trying to find new piezoelectric materials that do not contain lead, a toxic element. Currently, some lead-free piezoelectric materials can perform as well as or even better than lead-based piezoelectrics, but only in specialized applications and limited scope. Understanding the origins of piezoelectricity is an important step toward broadening the applications of lead-free piezoelectrics.”We shall be continuing to carry out neutron and also X-ray work on PZT,” Glazer said. “In particular, we are looking at single crystals of PZT grown in Vancouver with respect to the presence of what is called diffuse diffraction effects. This is important in examining the disorder (or better, the short-range order) present in PZT. I myself retired four years ago, but I continue to work on research. I do this mainly through collaboration with fellow scientists elsewhere, as I no longer have my own research group.” Citation: Study reveals missing boundary in PZT phase diagram (2014, November 3) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-11-reveals-boundary-pzt-phase-diagram.html Animation showing that lead atoms can rotate their displacement direction within the PZT crystal structure. The more room an atom has to move, the more it is affected by an external mechanical stress, giving rise to piezoelectricity. Credit: N. Zhang, et al. ©2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited Over the past 60 years, research on the PZT structure has revealed a high degree of structural complexity. In particular, studies have revealed the existence of a phase boundary in PZT that separates the titanium-rich region from the zirconium-rich region. A second phase boundary has been theoretically predicted to exist, since calculations have shown that the piezoelectric effect of PZT increases towards such a boundary. However, this boundary, which was predicted to lie between the zirconium-rich region and a region containing lead atoms, had not been experimentally observed until now. Journal information: Nature Communications More information: N. Zhang, et al. “The missing boundary in the phase diagram of PbZr1-xTixO3.” Nature Communications. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms6231 © 2014 Phys.org (Phys.org) —Piezoelectric materials, which produce electricity in response to mechanical stress, account for a $12 billion global industry that is projected to grow at a rate of 13.2% per year, according to a recent report by Innovative Research and Products. And yet the origins of the widely applicable piezoelectric properties of one of the most common piezoelectric materials are not fully understood. This lack of understanding is due to the complex nature of the material’s underlying crystal structure, which is responsible for its physical properties. Nearly everyone uses piezoelectrics: Be nice to know how they work A stereographic projection of a PZT crystal structure showing the displacement of certain ions. The results of the new study show how the crystal’s complex structure influences the material’s piezoelectric properties. Credit: N. Zhang, et al. ©2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited In a new study published in Nature Communications, a team of researchers, N. Zhang, et al., has investigated the nature of the crystal structure of lead zirconium titanate, more commonly known as PZT. Among their findings is the discovery of a boundary between two different regions of the crystal material, which has previously been predicted to exist but has not been observed until now. Understanding the nature of this “missing boundary” sheds light on what exactly makes PZT such a good piezoelectric material, and also provides insight into how to optimize its piezoelectric response.”Because PZT is the most widely used ceramic piezoelectric, and because there are attempts to find new piezoelectrics without lead, it is important to understand why PZT works as it does and then with such information to apply this information elsewhere,” coauthor Mike Glazer, Emeritus Professor at the University of Oxford, told Phys.org. “So, we have showed a mechanism that seems to highlight an important ingredient in this understanding. This work also points out that a material like this with its long and short-range order components is much more complex structurally than people originally thought.”In order to understand the significance of the boundary, the researchers explain some background on PZT. PZT is a solid solution made of lead zirconate (PbZrO3) and lead titanate (PbTiO3). It has a perovskite crystal structure (ABX3, where A is lead, B is zirconium or titanium, and X is oxygen) and occurs in an octahedral formation. One important characteristic of PZT is that the A and B ions can be slightly displaced from their primary locations in the molecular structure. If they are all displaced in the same general direction, the crystal may show polar properties, including piezoelectricity. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
(Phys.org)—A team of researchers with Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School and the Broad Institute has developed a procedure to decode histone modifications that point out gene regulation. In their paper published in the journal Science, the team describes the approach they developed to map combinations of modifications made to individual nucleosomes. Altered primary chromatin structures and their implications in cancer development Determining whether a gene should be active or not has been linked to covalent modification of histone proteins that form the framework upon which DNA strands are wound. Scientists would like to better understand how the coding works but have not been able to find a way to uncover the combinations at play, or to quantify or map them. In this new effort, the researchers report that they have developed a technique that allows for doing just that. Their strategy involved starting with pluripotent stem cells as well as lineage-committed cells, singling out nucleosomes (the packages that contain histone proteins and DNA strands) and dabbing the ends of DNA strands with fluorescent material, meanwhile the DNA was incubated with histones that had been flagged with fluorescent antibodies. Next to pinpoint individual nucleosomes, the team used internal reflection microscopy which allowed for creating millions of images which set the stage for decoding modification states. In so doing, the team was able to actually quantify different changes on single nucleosomes, which led to demonstrating that genetic and chemical changes preferentially impacted nucleosomes with certain modification states. The last step involved applying the same approach to single-molecule DNA sequencing to figure out the exact location of the modified nucleosomes in a given genome.In using their technique, the team reports that they found evidence that suggested that cells that had been differentiated showed different patterns of “bivalent” markings than did embryonic cells. They suggest that the technique holds promise of assisting in answering some of the fundamental questions in both chromatin biology and epigenetic regulation by providing new insights into genetic processes. They also note that their results represent early results in their efforts to better understand histone signaling regulation and expect that eventually they will have a more complete understanding of the rules that underlie the fate of cells in general. Explore further © 2016 Phys.org More information: E. Shema et al. Single-molecule decoding of combinatorially modified nucleosomes, Science (2016). DOI: 10.1126/science.aad7701AbstractDifferent combinations of histone modifications have been proposed to signal distinct gene regulatory functions, but this area is poorly addressed by existing technologies. We applied high-throughput single-molecule imaging to decode combinatorial modifications on millions of individual nucleosomes from pluripotent stem cells and lineage-committed cells. We identified definitively bivalent nucleosomes with concomitant repressive and activating marks, as well as other combinatorial modification states whose prevalence varies with developmental potency. We showed that genetic and chemical perturbations of chromatin enzymes preferentially affect nucleosomes harboring specific modification states. Last, we combined this proteomic platform with single-molecule DNA sequencing technology to simultaneously determine the modification states and genomic positions of individual nucleosomes. This single-molecule technology has the potential to address fundamental questions in chromatin biology and epigenetic regulation. Journal information: Science Citation: Procedure developed to decode histone changes that point out gene regulation (2016, May 10) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-05-procedure-decode-histone-gene.html Nucleosome core particle, crystal structure (PDB ID: 1EQZ). Credit: Darekk2, Protein Data Bank (PDB), via Wikipedia This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
Charon, taken by New Horizons late on 13 July 2015. Credit: NASA (Phys.org)—A combined team of researchers from several institutions in Japan has found evidence that suggests Pluto’s distinctive red spot may have developed after a massive collision with a comet or other object. In their paper published in the journal Nature Astronomy, the researchers detail experiments they conducted that showed that the red spot on Pluto may have come about due to pools that developed on the dwarf planet’s surface after a collision. © 2017 Phys.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. The researchers then used conclusions from their experiments to create computer simulations. They found that such a collision appeared possible, and that if it were large enough to create the amount of material found on Pluto’s surface, it would have been big enough to give Pluto its current tilt; it might also have spawned Pluto’s moon Charon. They also suggest similar collisions occurring throughout the solar system could explain the wide color variation seen on large bodies in the Kuiper belt. Ever since the New Horizons probe passed by Pluto back in the summer of 2015, space scientists have been curious about the nature of a very dark reddish patch (subsequently nicknamed Cthulhu Regio) that could be seen on its surface in the new images. Some suggested it was likely due to an impact and the red material was the remains of the other object. But subsequent study has revealed flaws with that theory. In this new effort, the researchers started with the assumption that if an object such as a comet struck Pluto, it likely had some organic compounds in its makeup—as did Pluto itself. In such a collision, they reasoned, the huge amount of heat generated would have resulted in pools of liquid forming on the surface. As time passed the liquid would have cooled into rock—dark red rock due to the organic compounds in it.To test their theory, the researchers conducted experiments in which they heated different “soups” they made with various organic materials for several hours and then let them cool to see if they might resemble the material seen on Pluto. The team reports that several of their soups did cool to resemble the images of the red spot on Pluto—soups that had been heated for over 1,000 hours and to temperatures of 122F° or higher. Video: A colorful ‘landing’ on Pluto Map of Cthulhu Regio, Pluto. Credit: NASA Journal information: Nature Astronomy More information: Yasuhito Sekine et al. The Charon-forming giant impact as a source of Pluto’s dark equatorial regions, Nature Astronomy (2017). DOI: 10.1038/s41550-016-0031AbstractPluto exhibits complex regional diversity in its surface materials. One of the most striking features is the dark reddish material, possibly organic matter, along Pluto’s equator coexisting with the H2O-rich crust. Little is known, however, about the surface process responsible for the dark equatorial regions. Here, we propose that Pluto’s dark regions were formed through reactions in elongated pools of liquid water near the equator, generated by the giant impact that formed Charon. Our laboratory experiments show that dark reddish organic matter, comparable to Pluto’s dark materials, is produced through polymerization of simple organic compounds that would have been present in proto-Pluto (for example, formaldehyde) by prolonged heating at temperatures ≥50 °C. Through hydrodynamic impact simulations, we demonstrate that an impactor, one-third the mass of Pluto, colliding with proto-Pluto—with an interior potential temperature of 150–200 K—could have generated both a Charon-sized satellite and high-temperature regions around Pluto’s equator. We also propose that high-velocity giant impacts result in global or hemispherical darkening and reddening, suggesting that the colour variety of large Kuiper belt objects could have been caused by frequent, stochastic giant impacts in a massive outer protoplanetary disk in the early Solar System. Explore further Citation: Experiments suggest red spot on Pluto may have come about from impact that formed Charon (2017, February 2) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-02-red-pluto-impact-charon.html
© 2019 Science X Network A team of researchers with Mortality Research & Consulting, Federal State Budgetary Scientific Institution Izmerov Research Institute of Occupational Health and the Russian State Research Center has found that thus far, astronauts and cosmonauts are not at increased risk of dying from cancer or cardiovascular disease (CVD) due to radiation exposure during their space adventures. Throughout the history of space flight, scientists and astronauts have known that space travel entails an increased risk of cancer or CVD—with less protection from the sun’s radiation, exposure levels rise. Space engineers in the U.S. and Russia have added as much protection as possible to spacecraft and spacesuits, but have assumed that those going into space face increased health risks. In this new effort, the researchers sought to test that assumption—more specifically, to find out if space travel has resulted in early deaths.To learn more about the impact of space travel for cosmonauts and astronauts, the researchers reviewed the medical histories of all astronauts and cosmonauts that conducted space missions over the years 1959 to 2018, which covered almost all of the history of human space flight. In all, that included 117 cosmonauts and 301 astronauts. In so doing, they found that 89 have died. They also found that 75 percent of the deaths of the cosmonauts were due to cancer or heart disease. For astronauts, the number was 50 percent. More specifically, they found that 30 percent of the astronauts died from cancer, and under 15 percent from CVD. For the cosmonauts, the numbers were 28 and 50 percent. The researchers report that none of these statistics stand out, but more importantly, they were not able to find any linkages between flying in space and incurring the expected increased risk of cancer or CVD. They acknowledge that their findings have little bearing on future missions to Mars, because all but 24 of the space travelers in their study never left the safety of the Earth’s magnetic field. And the 24 astronauts who did—those who traveled to the moon and back—are too small a cohort to provide meaningful statistics. Apollo astronauts experiencing higher rates of cardiovascular-related deaths Citation: Study suggests space travelers are not yet at greater risk of dying from cancer or cardiovascular disease (2019, July 8) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-07-space-greater-dying-cancer-cardiovascular.html More information: Robert J. Reynolds et al. Contrapositive logic suggests space radiation not having a strong impact on mortality of US astronauts and Soviet and Russian cosmonauts, Scientific Reports (2019). DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-44858-0 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Journal information: Scientific Reports Explore further Credit: CC0 Public Domain
Drew Angerer Several Big Drug Companies Considering Massive Settlements… by NPR News Brian Mann, Colin Dwyer, Nick Castele 8.28.19 2:03pm Confronted with a torrent of lawsuits across the U.S., several major drug companies are in discussions with authorities to resolve thousands of opioid-related suits filed against them. A government source close to the negotiations tells NPR that Purdue Pharma, Johnson & Johnson, Endo International and Allergan are looking to cut deals.The health care giants are currently holding talks with attorneys general, attorneys representing local governments and Judge Dan Polster, who is overseeing the federal trial in Ohio, according to the source. Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost’s office confirmed only that he was in talks with Purdue, telling NPR that “Yost is at the table and actively engaged in discussions” with the OxyContin manufacturer.Johnson & Johnson wouldn’t confirm specifics of the Ohio talks, but the company sent NPR a statement saying that it “remains open to viable options to resolve these cases, including settlement.”Endo and Allergan have reached tentative settlement deals, the government source says.There are roughly 2,000 cases in the consolidated lawsuit, called the National Prescription Opiate Litigation, that is pending before a federal judge in Ohio. The sprawling Ohio case against 22 opioid manufacturers and distributors is expected to begin in October if the parties do not reach a settlement.Purdue Pharma has confirmed to NPR that global settlement talks are underway that would resolve all claims against the company. Published reports suggest the deal could involve payments of up to $12 billion and a bankruptcy process that would force the Sackler family to give up ownership of the company.News of the broader settlement negotiations comes two days after Johnson & Johnson lost a state opioid case in Oklahoma. The judge in that case awarded the state roughly $572 million to help it “abate the opioid crisis,” though Oklahoma had asked for much more — $17 billion — to fund a 30-year plan to combat opioid addiction.Judge Thad Balkman felt the state failed to offer “sufficient evidence of the amount of time and costs necessary [to the plan], beyond year one.”Still, in his ruling, Balkman asserted that by deceptively marketing its painkillers, the health care giant “caused an opioid crisis that is evidenced by increased rates of addiction, overdose deaths and neonatal abstinence syndrome in Oklahoma.”Johnson & Johnson has announced that it plans to appeal that judgment.Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit NPR.
Kolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has clearly stated to BJP leader Subramanian Swamy that her government is not interfering in any religious activities of Tarakeswar Temple and only carrying out beautification of the nearby area. Swamy visited Banerjee in this connection at Nabanna where he held discussion with her. After the meeting, Swamy said: “I am very satisfied with what was discussed and she was very clear and forthright. She said very clearly that as far as Tarakeswar Temple is concerned, the religious activities will be entirely looked after by the trustees but beautification of the nearby areas will be carried out by the state Urban Development and Municipal Affairs department.” He further said: “Derek O’Brien is a very good friend. He has been very helpful in solving a problem. There was urban development scope in Tarakeswar Temple. Mamataji has now said very clearly that as per the administration of the temple is concerned it will be by the trustees. She said her administration is secular and will not interfere in religious activity.” Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsWhen asked if there was any political discussion, he said: “That always happens but there is nothing to report. Trinamool Congress MPs are regularly in touch with me when Parliament is in session. I am trying to find common grounds where we can take a united stand. For instance, now the Narendra Modi government has accepted my point of view and converted the private limited company of GSTN into a government-owned firm, one which I wanted from the very beginning.”