Dragonfly Mission to Titan

NASA has announced a plan to explore the surface of Saturn’s largest moon, Titan.

The space agency made the announcement in a media teleconference Thursday afternoon, detailing its vision of a robotic rotorcraft dubbed Dragonfly that will collect samples and measure soil composition in search for signs of habitability.

The enormous, icy moon is said to be the most Earth-like world in the solar system, and previous findings by the Cassini mission suggest it holds some of the ingredients necessary for the emergence of life.

Dragonfly will launch in 2026 as part of NASA’s New Frontiers program, and is expected to arrive at Titan in 2034. read more

$50 Million Will Get You 30 Days Aboard The International Space Station

NASA has announced a plan to allow tourists to fly on the International Space Station starting next year.

Up to two private astronaut missions will be allowed per year, each lasting 30 days at most.

But, a trip to space won’t come cheap – with life support systems and all necessary supplies considered, it will cost an eye-watering $35,000 per night at minimum.

The announcement came as NASA unveiled its new business model on Friday, revealing a plan to incorporate more commercial and marketing opportunities ‘both in low-Earth orbit and around the moon.’

NASA has announced a plan to allow tourists to fly on the International Space Station for the first time starting next year. File photo

‘Today is a very remarkable day,’ NASA’s Chief Financial Officer Jeff DeWitt said in a press conference Friday morning.

‘NASA is opening the International Space Station to commercial opportunities and marketing these opportunities as we’ve never done before.’

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Toxic Jellyfish Lurk in Waters off Jersey Shore

Scientists are warning visitors to the Jersey Shore this Memorial Day weekend to watch out for toxic jellyfish said to be invading the waters.

A bloom of roughly 200 to 300 clinging jellyfish have been found in the New Jersey waters, according to Professor Paul Bologna of Montclair State and a group of his students.

‘We’ve just pulled algae and what we’re trying to look for is something called clinging jellyfish,’ Elias Chalet, a biology major at the school, explained to CBS New York. ‘The reason we’re trying to look for it is because they have a very lethal toxin.’

GM E.Coli May Help Liver and Bowel Disease

Genetically modified bacteria could be used to treat liver and bowel diseases by mopping up toxins inside the gut.

Researchers tested the groundbreaking technique by creating a common strain of bacteria mop up excess ammonia in the body.

High levels of the chemical can be fatal for people with liver damage and rare genetic disorders.

The genetically modified bacteria created by Synlogic, a firm co-founded by MIT, could be used to treat liver and bowel diseases by mopping up toxins inside the gut. Researchers tested the groundbreaking technique by creating a a common strain of e.coli bacteria mop up excess ammonia in the body. Stock image shown.

New Segway Delivery Robot

Segway is branching out from its eponymous ‘personal transporters’ with a lineup of delivery robots.

Ninebot, the parent of Segway, is debuting its first-ever autonomous delivery robot, called Loomo Delivery, alongside a new scooter.

Loomo is designed to make deliveries in buildings and malls, using artificial intelligence to make sure they’re dropped off at the right location.

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Chinese Rover Lands on the Moon

from the Daily Mail:

A Chinese rover is making its tracks on the soft surface of the ‘dark’ side of the moon after touching down on our nearest celestial neighbour.Image result for chinese rover

The Yutu-2 – or Jade Rabbit 2 – rover drove off its lander’s ramp and onto the exterior of the moon’s far side at 10:22pm Beijing time (2:22 pm GMT) on Thursday, about 12 hours after the Chinese spacecraft carrying it came to rest.

China’s space agency later posted a photos online, revealing lunar rover several yards away from the spacecraft.

The tracks it makes on the surface of the moon will be forever immortalised and will never be lost as there is no wind on the moon due to its lack of an atmosphere. read more

Irish Dirt Kills New Superbugs

Soil found in rural Northern Ireland could hold the key to fighting antibiotic resistance, researchers believe.

Doctors and scientists are desperately searching for new ways to kill superbugs – and the new finding could pave the way.

A study found dirt from County Fermanagh can stop the growth of drug-resistant bacteria, such as the hospital superbug MRSA.

The discovery has been hailed as an ‘important step forward’ in the progress against antibiotic resistance, considered one of the biggest threats to humanity.

The new bacteria discovered in the soil from County Fermanagh, streptomyces sp. myrophorea (pictured under a microscope) can halt the spread of superbugs including MRSA

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Fully Harnessed Horse Found at Pompeii

Remains of a horse that was killed while wearing its harness during the 79 AD eruption of Mount Vesuvius have been discovered by archaeologists.

The majestic animal was tall, well-groomed and had a saddle fitted with richly decorated bronze trimmings, experts have revealed.

The catastrophic eruption produced hundreds of tonnes of lava and toxic gas which killed and petrified the animal, as well as the other horses in the stable.

It was found in the grounds of a large villa in a Pompeii suburb which scientists say may have belonged to a high-ranking military official. read more

Acupuncture Needles Found in Patient After 30 Years

Incredible X-rays show acupuncture needles buried along the spine of a 94-year-old woman.

The unnamed woman, who had recently been diagnosed with dementia, went to the division of general internal medicine at the University of Toronto after a painful fall.

Doctors took scans of her back and hips to rule out any fractures, only to discover what looked like tiny flecks along her spine and at the top of her legs.

The medics were told by the woman’s carers she had visited a traditional Korean Hari acupuncture clinic just once 30 years before. Hari involves leaving needles permanently under the skin in the belief they relieve pain.

VW’s New Electric Dune Buggy

Volkswagen is resurrecting the classic dune buggy as a modern electric car, according to an anonymous source inside the automaker.

The new car is ‘under active consideration’ as a possible addition to the firm’s upcoming range of zero-emission ‘ID’ vehicles, it’s claimed.

It will be inspired by the classic 1960s Meyers Manx dune buggy, which itself was built on an original VW Beetle chassis.

Like the 60’s version, the modern two-seater open-top buggy will feature a freestanding windshield, oversized tires and a roll bar, according to the source.

It comes after news emerged in September that the revitalized Beetle was itself to be axed 80 years after it was first introduced.

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