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Posts Tagged ‘Uk Technology News’

CERN’s Loose Cable To Blame For Proving Einstein Wrong

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 26, 2012

Note to Einstein naysayers – check your equipment before trying to prove the chief geek wrong.

A loose wire may be to blame for CERN’s claim late last year that Einstein’s theory of special relativity, proposed in 1905, was actually incorrect.

The theory states that nothing in the universe can travel faster than the speed of light in a vacuum.

It took just 2.3 milliseconds for light to travel between the Geneva and Gran Sasso laboratories.

CERN showed that the accepted speed of light could be broken by 60 nanoseconds, or more precisely that neutrinos arrived 60 nanoseconds too early than if they were travelling at the speed of light, breaking the speed of light itself by 0.00248%. Two experiments reached the same conclusion.

The Telegraph reports that a loose wire at CERN might mean Einstein is not wrong. Read the rest of this entry »

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FBI plans social network map alert mash-up application

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on January 27, 2012

FBI Develops Facebook Spy Tool

The FBI is seeking to develop an early-warning system based on material “scraped” from social networks.

It says the application should provideinformation about possible domestic and global threats superimposed onto maps “using mash-up technology”.

The bureau has asked contractors to suggest possible solutions including the estimated cost.

Privacy campaigners say they are concerned that the move could have implications for free speech.

The FBI’s Strategic Information and Operations Center (SOIC) posted its “Social Media Application” market research request onto the web on 19 January, and it was subsequently flagged up by New Scientist magazine.

The document says: “Social media has become a primary source of intelligence because it has become the premier first response to key events and the primal alert to possible developing situations.”

It says the application should collect “open source” information and have the ability to:

  • Provide an automated search and scrape capability of social networks including Facebook and Twitter.
  • Allow users to create new keyword searches.
  • Display different levels of threats as alerts on maps, possibly using colour coding to distinguish priority. Google Maps 3D and Yahoo Maps are listed among the “preferred” mapping options.
  • Plot a wide range of domestic and global terror data.
  • Immediately translate foreign language tweets into English. Read the rest of this entry »

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US And EU Develop Code Of Conduct For Outer Space

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on January 19, 2012

The United States and the European Union have joined other nations in committing to an International Code of Conduct for Outer Space Activities.

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said in a statement on January 17: “A Code of Conduct will help maintain the long-term sustainability, safety, stability, and security of space by establishing guidelines for the responsible use of space,”

“The long-term sustainability of our space environment is at serious risk from space debris and irresponsible actors. Unless the international community addresses these challenges, the environment around our planet will become increasingly hazardous to human spaceflight and satellite systems, which would create damaging consequences for all of us.”

In the statement, Clinton said that the US would not enter into a code of conduct that constrains its national security-related activities in space or its ability to protect the United States and its allies. Read the rest of this entry »

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Vampire Star SS Leporis Spotted By Powerful Telescope

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on December 7, 2011

Imagine having your life force slowly sucked out of you by a close lingering companion who just won’t leave you alone.

A “vampire” star has been doing just that to its companion in the small constellation of Lepus.

The strange star system in The Hare constellation contains two stars, once of which – a red giant – is losing its matter to its hotter companion.

“We knew that this double star was unusual, and that material was flowing from one star to the other,” says Henri Boffin from ESO, co-author of the findings.

“What we found, however, is that the way in which the mass transfer most likely took place is completely different from previous models of the process. The ‘bite’ of the vampire star is very gentle but highly effective.”

The stars are separated by a distance equivalent to that between the Sun and the Earth. Because of the closeness, the hot companion has already cannibalised about half of the mass of the larger star, possibly by a stellar wind.

The video below shows the vampire in action, beginning with a broad view of the Milky Way, then zooming in on the small constellation of Lepus next to the more familiar Orion.

The images were created using the VLT Interferometer at ESO’s Paranal Observatory, which produces photos fifty times sharper than those from Hubble Space Telescope.

Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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VFTS 102: The Fastest Rotating Star Discovered

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on December 7, 2011

Astronomers have found the fastest rotating star ever spotted.

Young and very bright, VFTS 102 is rotating at more than two million kilometres per hour – more than three hundred times faster than the Sun.

It is around 25 times the mass of the Sun and about one hundred thousand times brighter.

The super star lies in the Large Magellanic Cloud, about 160 000 light-years from Earth.

VFTS 102 is spinning so fast that it has almost reached the point where it could be pulled apart by centrifugal forces.

European Southern Observatory astronomers think that it may have had an unusual and violent past, which saw it ejected from a double star system as its companion star exploded.

“The remarkable rotation speed and the unusual motion compared to the surrounding stars led us to wonder if this star had had an unusual early life. We were suspicious.” explains Philip Dufton of Queen’s University Belfast, Northern Ireland, UK.

Dufton and his team suggest that the if the two stars were close, gas from the companion star could have streamed over VFTS 102, making it spin extraordinarily fast.

After ten million years, the companion could have exploded as a supernova. The clue to that is a supernova remnant found nearby.

The explosion and collapse of the companion star could also have caused this star to turn into the pulsar spotted by ESO.

Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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(PHOTOS) Mars Mission Cosmonauts Speak After 18 Months In Shed

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 9, 2011

Russia’s “astronauts” are back from their mission, not to Mars, but to a shed, in a carpark. The men who spent 18 months together simulating the long-distance trip to Mars, are still friends and returned with their sense of humour intact.

Wang Yue, one of the astronauts, told “We are very good friends, even family members now.”

He told their website that he kept busy by practicing Chinese calligraphy, learning to play guitar and reading books.

Sukhrov Kamolov, one of the Russian astronauts, told the Guardian.”There were no conflicts,”

“If people are together for a long time, this can happen, but we understood in space it can become serious.”

“We had a sign up that said: ‘a fly can grow into an elephant'” – a Russian saying akin to “don’t make a mountain out of a molehill”.

Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Asteroid Watch: You Can Track Asteroid Passing Earth

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 7, 2011

Asteroid 2005 YU55 is the not-so catchy name of the rock that will hurtle past Earth on November 8. If you’re into space, then pay attention, because you can see it with your at-home telescope and there won’t be anything similar coming this way until 2028.

The 400 meter-wide rock will cruise 324,600 kilometres from earth, between us and the moon. That’s the closest it has travelled to the earth in 200 years.

Asteroid 2005 YU55 is a frequent visitor to our galactic neighbourhood. Its orbit brings it into the vicinity of Earth, Venus and Mars regularly, though this year’s encounter with Earth is the closest this space rock has come since 1811.

Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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(WATCH) Nasa Finds Youngest, Brightest Millisecond Pulsar

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 4, 2011

Wondered where you’d left that millisecond pulsar of yours? Don’t fret, Nasa’s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope has found it and nine other equally impressive pulsars.

The “surprisingly powerful” NGC6624 millisecond pulsar has put scientists into a spin, as it challenges existing theories about how these objects form. Nine new gamma-ray pulsars were found by another team looking at the Fermi data.

Scientists are excited about it because this one appears to have been born only millions of years ago, while similar pulsars are usually a billion years or more old.

Paulo Freire, the study’s lead author at the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, said: “It’s amazing that all of the gamma rays we see from this cluster are coming from a single object. It must have formed recently based on how rapidly it’s emitting energy. It’s a bit like finding a screaming baby in a quiet retirement home.”

Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Satellite Crashes In South-East Asia

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on October 24, 2011

NASA has confirmed the Roentgen Satellite (ROSAT) has fallen back to earth over South East Asia.

Up to 30 fragments weighing a total of 1.87 tons (1.7 metric tons) could have crashed at 280 mph (450 kph), the German Aerospace Center said.

The Telegraph reports that the satellite fell to earth either east of Sri Lanka in the Indian Ocean, in the Andaman Sea off the coast of Burma, in inland Burma or inland China.

No reports of a fiery inferno or debris have been received, hinting that the satellite must have fallen in the sea, or into a remote unpopulated area.

Discovery news reports that the odds of ROSAT hitting someone were much higher than that of theNASA Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) which fell to earth last month. The high temperature mirror, 81 cm wide and weighing 400 kg, was expected to survive re-entry, whereas UARS broke apart on re-entry.

Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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