Month: August 2019

  • British team plans to reestablish contact with 1970s era satellite

    first_img Citation: British team plans to reestablish contact with 1970’s era satellite (2011, September 6) retrieved 18 August 2019 from More information: via BBC Britain considers manned space missions Explore further Photo of a model of the Prospero X-3 satellite in London’s Science Museum. Image: GFDL CC-BY-SA The satellite, called Prospero X3 (from Prospero in Shakespeare’s The Tempest, who was made to relinquish his powers, an obvious dig at the government’s decision to end the program) was and is the only satellite ever launched aboard an all British rocket (the Black Arrow). It was sent up shortly after the British rocketry program was ended October 28, 1971, with the purpose of learning more about the space environment.The first challenge was finding the original codes used to communicate with Prospero, difficult because the agency that had sent up the satellite had been broken apart and been superseded by other agencies. They eventually found them in the National Archives in London.Next, the team will need to build a system to actually communicate with the satellite since the equipment originally used is long gone. But before they can do that they’ll have to obtain permission to use the necessary radio frequency from Ofcom (the British agency that regulates electronic communications) as it’s been usurped by other satellites.The first step, once given the go-ahead, would be of course to determine if Prospero is still active, which seems unlikely given the length of time it’s been orbiting. If the satellite is still alive though and the team manages to communicate with it, they plan an as yet undetermined public demonstration, on or around October 28.The United Kingdom is in the middle of a bit of a space exploration resurgence after abandoning most efforts to launch rockets (other than for military purposes) after the cancellation of its program in the early 1970’s and vowing to avoid manned flights into space altogether. Since that time it has relied on other programs to send it’s satellites aloft, though it has been a part of the other projects such as the doomed Beagle 2 sent to Mars last year. Also, in a move designed to remove barriers to government investment in private projects, the British Government established the UK Space Agency, (replacing the British National Space Centre) and this year enacted legislation to reduce the liabilities that can be incurred in space operations to help boost competitiveness. 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. © 2011 ( — A group of academic space scientists has decided to try to open a channel with a British satellite launched in 1971, but not heard from since 1996. The team, headed by Roger Duthie, a PhD student in London, hopes to overcome many obstacles in reestablishing contact with the satellite to celebrate the 40th anniversary of its launch.last_img read more

  • Security experts sound medical device malware alarm

    first_img Citation: Security experts sound medical device malware alarm (2012, October 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from After insulin pump hacking, lawmakers seek review They run without updates and present easy targets for malware. Considering the range of today’s computerized medical devices that are put to use in hospitals, including fetal monitors for at risk pregnant women to other types of monitors in intensive-care wards, the implications are serious.Kevin Fu, a computer scientist at the University of Michigan and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, whose research is focused on medical devices and computer system security, was one of the panel participants. He is sounding an alarm about devices in hospitals where thousands of network-connected devices used for patient care are vulnerable to infection. In September, the Government Accountability Office put out a warning that computerized medical devices could be vulnerable to hacking and asked the FDA to address the issue. The GAO report focused mostly on wireless devices, namely implanted defibrillators and insulin pumps. Fu said those were only two of many devices vulnerable to infection. A Boston hospital’s chief information security officer confirmed Fu’s reason for alarm, identifying a wide variety of devices that pose malware risks, ranging from drug compounders to high-end magnetic resonance imaging devices to blood gas analyzers to nuclear-medical delivery systems. In looking for remedies, hospitals find no easy answers. Many pieces of equipment are hooked up to Windows systems, but the reason goes beyond Windows per se. They run on old versions of Windows that go without updates and patches. Medical devices connected to internal networks connected to the Internet are open for malware; laptops, tablets, or smartphones brought into the hospital can be sources. Often the malware is associated with botnets, said the security officer. Another problem identified was manufacturers that do not allow their equipment to undergo OS updates or security patches. In one example cited, a medical center had 664 pieces of medical equipment running on older Windows operating systems that manufacturers did not allow to be modified, even for antivirus software. Reasons involved questions and concerns over whether modifications would require regulatory review. An FDA deputy director at the conference said, however, that FDA is reviewing its regulatory stance on software.Meanwhile, a security gathering in Australia this week generated wide publicity when Barnaby Jack, Director of Security Research for IOActive, showed how pacemakers can be a vehicle for murdering an individual or large numbers of people, if a hacker were to upload malicious software to a central server that would spread lethal shocks to everybody using a company’s pacemakers.Speaking at the BreakPoint security conference in Melbourne, he said today’s pacemakers have evolved to a wireless control mechanism that can be activated from a distance. Jack demonstrated how he could force the pacemaker to deliver an 830-volt shock directly to a person’s heart, by using a laptop. Several different vendors’ pacemakers are vulnerable; he was able to use a laptop to access every wireless pacemaker and implantable cardioverter-defibrillators within a 30-foot radius. The exploit weakness has to do with the programming of the wireless transmitters used for delivering instructions to the devices. Jack staged the demo not only to raise awareness that such attacks were possible but to encourage manufacturers to review the security of their code rather than just focusing on safety mechanisms. 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 © 2012 (—Speakers at a government gathering revealed more reasons for nervous patients to get out their worry beads over future hospital stays. Besides staph infections, wrong-side surgeries and inaccurate dosages, there is a serious problem with medical devices and malware that can harm their performance. Malware, too, can be turned into life or death enablers inside U.S. hospitals nationwide. According to health and security experts at a government panel in Washington, at the National Institute of Standards and Technology Information Security and Privacy Advisory Board, there is a lot of medical equipment running old operating systems.last_img read more

  • Researchers seeking to redefine difference between solids and liquids

    first_img More information: Research paper PDF: Simons Foundation Explore further Journal information: Notices of the American Mathematical Society For most people, the difference between a solid and liquid is easy to discern—liquids move, they flow, they take the shape of whatever they are put in. Solids on the other hand, are rigid and don’t slosh around. For physicists however, things are not quite so simple, especially since 1984 when Dan Shechtman discovered what are now known as quasicrystals (for which he won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2011)—materials that appear rigid but upon closer inspection reveal a non-repeating pattern in the arrangement of their atoms. Thus, they’re neither liquid nor solid according to the traditional definition (solids are supposed to be arranged in a crystal lattice), which muddles the very definition of the state of matter. Because of that, physicists and mathematicians have been looking for a new way to clearly differentiate between a solid and a liquid.Radin and Aristoff suggest that measuring shear in a material is the way to go. In physics, shear is witnessed as a body part being deformed and can be expressed mathematically as the sidewise displacement between two points in parallel planes divided by the distance between those planes. In building their model, they found that at low densities, materials show no response to shear, but as the atoms move closer to one another and eventually become densely packed together, they do show shear, and also tend to result in expansion of the material. It’s where it crosses over, the two say, that the definition of solid versus liquid resides. Another team, this one in France, has another idea—they say matter can be defined as solid or liquid by measuring its viscosity, or ability to flow. They note that glass actually flows, very slowly of course, and so does diamond, though they note researchers would have to measure it over the course of the age of universe to see it flow due to Earth’s gravity.In either case, redefining what constitutes the different states of matter is important because without clear terminology, material descriptions can lose their meaning. Unlocking jams in fluid materials: A theoretical model to understand how to best avoid jamming of soft matter © 2013 Phys.orgcenter_img ( —Charles Radin a mathematical physicist with the University of Texas and one of his former student’s David Aristoff, have built a 2D model material made of disks to represent atoms. In their article published in Notices of the American Mathematical Society, they suggest that their model shows that defining the difference between a solid and a liquid should be more a matter of measuring the way a material responds to shear, than looking at the way its atoms are arranged. Citation: Researchers seeking to redefine difference between solids and liquids (2013, April 8) retrieved 18 August 2019 from A schematic experimental parameter space. Credit: Charles Radin, Notices of the American Mathematical Society. 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.last_img read more

  • Researchers find a way to stabilize the magnetic moment of a single

    first_img © 2013 More information: Stabilizing the magnetic moment of single holmium atoms by symmetry, Nature 503, 242–246 (14 November 2013) DOI: 10.1038/nature12759AbstractSingle magnetic atoms, and assemblies of such atoms, on non-magnetic surfaces have recently attracted attention owing to their potential use in high-density magnetic data storage and as a platform for quantum computing. A fundamental problem resulting from their quantum mechanical nature is that the localized magnetic moments of these atoms are easily destabilized by interactions with electrons, nuclear spins and lattice vibrations of the substrate. Even when large magnetic fields are applied to stabilize the magnetic moment, the observed lifetimes remain rather short (less than a microsecond). Several routes for stabilizing the magnetic moment against fluctuations have been suggested, such as using thin insulating layers between the magnetic atom and the substrate to suppress the interactions with the substrate’s conduction electrons, or coupling several magnetic moments together to reduce their quantum mechanical fluctuations7, 8. Here we show that the magnetic moments of single holmium atoms on a highly conductive metallic substrate can reach lifetimes of the order of minutes. The necessary decoupling from the thermal bath of electrons, nuclear spins and lattice vibrations is achieved by a remarkable combination of several symmetries intrinsic to the system: time reversal symmetry, the internal symmetries of the total angular momentum and the point symmetry of the local environment of the magnetic atom. Two teams use cold atoms and lasers to create a system that should exhibit Hofstadter’s butterfly Explore further 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. ( —A team of physicists working at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany, has developed a way to cause the magnetic moments of individual holmium atoms placed on a conductive metallic base to survive for several minutes. The team describes their procedure in their paper published in the journal Nature.last_img read more

  • A hydrogel that can stop bleeding from an artery

    first_img Citation: A hydrogel that can stop bleeding from an artery (2019, May 15) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Credit: CC0 Public Domain 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 hydrogel is shown to be capable of immediately arresting puncture lesion bleeding following fixation by UV irradiation. Credit: Hong et al. The researchers also report that they tested their hydrogel by piercing the carotid artery of a test pig and then used their gel to close the wound. They report that not only did the hydrogel close the wound (and save the pig’s life) it also allowed the wound to heal—testing two weeks later showed little to no necrosis or inflammation. Also, the hydrogel had begun to decompose harmlessly into the body. The team also tried their hydrogel on a rabbit by cutting and repairing its femoral artery. They also poked a hole in its liver and used the gel to stop the bleeding. More work will need to be done to further test the safety of the gel before it can be tried in human patients. © 2019 Science X Network Journal information: Nature Communications A team of researchers affiliated with several institutions in China has developed a hydrogel that can stop bleeding from a punctured artery. In their paper published in the journal Nature Communications, the group describes how the hydrogel was made and how well it worked on test animals. Researchers create a more effective hydrogel for healing wounds More information: Yi Hong et al. A strongly adhesive hemostatic hydrogel for the repair of arterial and heart bleeds, Nature Communications (2019). DOI: 10.1038/s41467-019-10004-7 Explore further Uncontrolled bleeding is a very serious situation, both during surgical procedures and as a result of trauma. In most cases, it is the result of damage to a major artery or an organ like the liver. In all cases, immediate action must be taken or the victim will die. Currently, treatment for such wounds involves clamping the artery and then using sutures to close the wound. In the past, researchers have attempted to create a type of glue to stem such wounds, but thus far, none of them has worked as hoped—they were either made of toxic materials or were not strong enough to stand up to the high liquid pressure in the bloodstream. In this new effort, the researchers have developed a new type of hydrogel that solves both problems.The researchers report that the hydrogel is made of water, gelatin and a mix of proteins and other chemicals. It was designed to be as close as possible in structure to human connective tissues. When UV light shines on the gel, it thickens and solidifies, adhering to the wound, preventing blood from flowing out. And it does so in just 20 to 30 seconds. The researchers note that it could also stand up to 290-mmHg blood pressure—much higher than normal.last_img read more

  • New evidence suggests Scottish crannogs thousands of years older than thought

    first_imgCredit: Antiquity (2019). DOI: 10.15184/aqy.2019.41 A pair of archaeologists, one with the University of Reading, the other the University of Southampton, has found evidence that suggests some crannogs in Scotland were built during the Neolithic period, several thousand years ago. The researchers, Duncan Garrow and Fraser Sturt, have written a paper about their findings published in Antiquity. © 2019 Science X Network Citation: New evidence suggests Scottish crannogs thousands of years older than thought (2019, June 13) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Explore further Crannogs are very small artificial islands built in rivers, lakes and streams in Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Most are no bigger than 10 to 30 meters in diameter. Researchers believe they were used as dwellings of some sort, likely accessible by footbridges. No one knows their purpose, though theories abound. Some of the crannogs have even been restored to what is believed to be their original architecture, with thatched roof coverings. Until recently, researchers believed that most, if not all of the Scottish crannogs were built during the Iron Age, though there had been little study of their origin. In this new effort, the researchers report finding evidence that suggests that at least some of the crannogs in Scotland are much older than has been thought—thousands of years older.Garrow and Sturt report that back in 2011, Chris Murray, a former Royal Navy diver, was exploring the water around a crannog on Scotland’s Outer Hebrides. He came across some ceramic on the water bed that appeared interesting. He brought samples to the local conservation officer at a nearby museum. Together, the two of them explored underwater areas near several other local crannogs and found more of the ceramic pieces. Eventually, the findings by the two amateur sleuths made their way to Garrow and Sturt, who undertook a formal study of both the crannogs and the ceramic pieces that the divers had found. They carried out radiocarbon dating on material found on the ceramic pieces and on wood pieces that were assumed to have been used on the crannog near them. They report that dating showed the crannogs to have been in use from 3640 to 3360 BC, placing their construction in the Neolithic period. More information: Duncan Garrow et al. Neolithic crannogs: rethinking settlement, monumentality and deposition in the Outer Hebrides and beyond, Antiquity (2019). DOI: 10.15184/aqy.2019.41 Journal information: Antiquity 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. New study of Avebury monument suggests it started out as a single-family home Aerial photographic comparison of the six islet sites known to have produced Neolithic material (all shown at the same scale): 1) Arnish; 2) Bhorgastail; 3) Eilean Domhnuill; 4) Lochan Duna (Ranish); 5) Loch an Dunain (Carloway); 6) Langabhat (images © of Getmapping PLC). Credit: Antiquity (2019). DOI: 10.15184/aqy.2019.41last_img read more

  • What women want

    first_imgBased on the works of Dario Fo and Franca Rame, Orgasm – A Tiny Little Death is a play that brings forth monologues straight from the mind to the proscenium. Presented by Saanjha Sapnaa, Orgasm is a series of four monologues dealing with female oppression. In turns comic and deeply moving, this play is Dario Fo and Franca Rame’s theatrical brilliance collaborated to present a popular approach to feminism, an engaging blend of mime, story-telling, burlesque and stand-up comedy. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The team behind the presentation warns well in advance that the play contains explicit references to adult situations and contain language and imagery that may cause offence – so viewer discretion is seriously advised. Saanjha Sapnaa is a group of art enthusiasts committed to channelize social, cultural and educational change. As a nonprofit organization their motto is to embark new horizon in the fields of performing and visual arts. We are dedicated to mobilise resources to empower audience through enriching theatrical experiences. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixTheir previous productions include The Shadows Within, Somewhere Between the Sky and The Sea (both won at the Short and Sweet Theatre Festival in two consecutive years of 2010 and 2011), The Sum of Your Experiences was nominated at the same festival in almost all categories and won the best actor award. These guys have also performed their renditions of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Seagull (Anton Chekov), Happy Ending (Bertolt Brecht), Jhootan (Om Prakash Valmiki), The Odd Couple (Neil Simon), Medea (Euripides) and more. Orgasm promises to be quite a treat, in all sense of it. Don’t miss it!last_img read more

  • Kolkata Police uses legendary scene from Saptapadi to create awareness on safe

    first_imgKolkata: The scene featuring the immortal romantic pair of Bengali Cinema Uttam Kumar and Suchitra Sen, riding on a motorcycle and singing ei path jodi na sesh hoy in the film Saptapadi, is still as popular as it was five decades ago.The Kolkata Police didn’t make any delay in making use of the evergreen scene, in which Uttam Kumar is riding a motorcycle with Suchitra Sen as pillion rider, to reach people of all ages with the message of “Safe Drive Save Life”. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe Kolkata Police has tweeted a still photograph of a particular moment from the scene, in which both the matinee idols are singing the song while riding the motorcycle and a parody of the song has been incorporated to create awareness on the importance of using helmets while riding a motorcycle, even as a pillion.In this particular scene of the Bengali romantic drama that was released in 1961, Uttam Kumar and Suchitra Sen were featured singing a duet. The song was sung by Hemanta Mukhopadhyay and Sandhya Mukherjee. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedNow, in a bid to encourage people to use helmet, it has been shown in the photograph that Uttam Kumar is saying ei path jodi na sesh hoy (if the road doesn’t end), in reply to which Suchitra Sen is seen saying duto helmet holey besh hoy (it would be good if there are two helmets).Before playing the role of a motorcycle rider in the film, Uttam Kumar had taken lessons in motorcycle riding from a famous motorcycle collector in South Kolkata. However, on the day when the scene was shot, the director decided that he would act with Suchitra Sen on a fixed motorcycle. He had learnt the art of motorcycle riding so perfectly, that the viewers had got the feeling that the two-wheeler was moving, even though the scene was shot on a fixed motorcycle. The motorcycle that Uttam Kumar was seen riding in the film was a BSA Golden Flash. Today too, many high-end bikes are often found plying on city roads. So, the police have taken up the idea of creating awareness using the photograph of the matinee idols.The tweet has been liked by many and the same has been retweeted by 78 users of the social networking site.last_img read more

  • NRC debacle TMC to hold meets across state today

    first_imgKolkata: Trinamool Congress will organise meetings all over the state on Saturday except Kolkata, to protest against the omission of 40 lakh people from the National Register of Citizens (NRC) by the Centre, party’s secretary general Partha Chatterjee said on Friday.The protest meetings will be held on the day when BJP national president Amit Shah will address a rally in Kolkata. Asked why no meeting inKolkata will be held, Chatterjee cited political courtesy as the reason. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeChatterjee said common people will also attend the meetings along with party leaders. Party workers will wear black badges. It may be mentioned that Trinamool had observed ‘black day’ on August 4 and 5, after the party’s MPs and MLAs were not allowed to meet the helpless people in Assam. The eight member delegation was stopped at the Silchar Airport after prohibitory order under section 144 CrPC was promulgated.Chatterjee said on August 12, a meeting will be held in the city in which the party’s MPs, MLAs and councillors will take part. The venue of the meeting is yet to be decided. There may be two meetings instead of one, he maintained. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedTrinamool Congress has protested against the publication of a list omitting the names of genuine citizens on the floor of the Parliament and state Assembly. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, during her recent trip to Delhi, had met the Union Home minister Rajnath Singh and discussed the issue.Meanwhile, BJP has protested against the putting up of posters and flags by Trinamool Congress around the venue where the meeting will be held on Saturday.last_img read more