Daniel Athens

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The Week In Drones: Flying Into A Volcano, Delivering Drugs, And More

Keeping up with the droneses<p>Here's a roundup of the week's top drone news, designed to capture the military, commercial, non-profit, and recreational applications of unmanned aircraft.<p><b>Into a Vanuatu Volcano</b><p>Drone pilot Shaun O'Callaghan flew his DJI Phantom quadcopter over a volcano in Vanuatu, an …

APOD: Apollo 17 VIP Site Anaglyph (2014 Mar 15) Image Credit: Gene Cernan, Apollo 17, NASA; Anaglyph by Erik van Meijgaarden http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap140315.html Explanation: Get out your red/blue glasses and check out this stereo scene from Taurus-Littrow valley on the Moon! The color anaglyph features a detailed 3D view of Apollo 17's Lunar Rover in the foreground -- behind it lies the Lunar Module and distant lunar hills. Because the world was going to be able to watch the Lunar Module's ascent stage liftoff via the rover's TV camera, this parking place was also known as the VIP Site. In December of 1972, Apollo 17 astronauts Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt spent about 75 hours on the Moon, while colleague Ronald Evans orbited overhead. The crew returned with 110 kilograms of rock and soil samples, more than from any of the other lunar landing sites. Cernan and Schmitt are still the last to walk (or drive) on the Moon. http://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/cernan-ea.html http://www-pao.ksc.nasa.gov/history/apollo/apollo-17/apollo-17.htm http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/pao/History/alsj/ErikvanM.html Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=140315 #APOD

New Pygmy Tyrannosaur Found, Roamed the Arctic

At 20 feet long, Nanuqsaurus hoglundi measured about half the size of T. rex.<p>A great discovery came in a small package for paleontologists who've unearthed a new species of tiny tyrannosaur in northern Alaska.<p>Dubbed <i>Nanuqsaurus hoglundi</i>, the polar pygmy measured about 20 feet (6 meters) long, about …

Robotic Fish and Inflatable Tentacles: How MIT is Solving Hard Problems with Soft Robots

In the interest of not burying the lead: MIT is developing inflatable robotic tentacles, motor-free limbs that are able to flex and grip in response to targeted bursts of air. But the inspiration for those undulating components is a fish. And that’s the more appropriate bot to start with.<p>As robots …

This Pacemaker Membrane Can Keep A Heart Beating Perfectly

The pacemaker of the future looks crazy<p>You're looking at what might be the pacemaker of a decade from now: a custom-made membrane, developed by researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Washington University in St. Louis, that slides over a heart and keeps it regulated by a …

Scientists: Global Warming Likely to Surpass 2°C Target

They argue for new “narrative” so world can better prepare for dangerous climate change impacts.<p>It took a long time for nations to set a speed limit on the road to a warming world.<p><b>But for the past four years, even though negotiators have never arrived at a plan for avoiding dangerous climate</b> …

10 Mind-Bending Implications of the Many Worlds Theory

In quantum physics—the scientific study of the nature of physical reality—there is plenty of room for interpretation within the realm of what is …