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Category Archives: Transhuman News

NASA sees space station cross the solar eclipse – CNET

Posted: August 25, 2017 at 3:44 am

The International Space Station transits the sun during the solar eclipse.

Look closely at this photo of the great North American solar eclipse. You’ll notice the sun and the moon’s rounded bite taken out of the side. Most of the dark specks are sunspots. But there’s something else notable. A larger speck near the curve of the moon’s shadow is the International Space Station.

The International Space Station Twitter account shared the photo on Monday with the message “It’s the moon, sunspots AND the station in front of the sun. @NASA photographer captures station transiting sun during #Eclipse2017.”

The ISS looks different from the sunspots. You can even make out the station’s distinctive solar arrays.

The incredible photo took a combination of skill and luck to achieve. It stands with some of the great ISS transit photos of the past, including one from 2015 showing the station’s path across the sun. This latest one is all the more spectacular with the backdrop of the eclipse.

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Solar eclipse 2017: Here’s what people saw

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International Space Station Astronauts to See Solar Eclipse …

Posted: at 3:44 am

Updated: Aug 21, 2017 11:24 AM ET

As millions of Americans look up to the sky to catch the total solar eclipse on Monday, or watch TIME’s live broadcast , astronauts on the International Space Station are gearing up for multiple views of the phenomenon.

The crew on the Expedition 52 will not be in the eclipse’s path of totality, but will see a partial view of the solar eclipse three times as they orbit the Earth from the station. The International Space Station will pass through moon’s penumbra shadow, giving the crew a partial view each time. Since the station won’t pass through the moon’s umbra, the astronauts will not see the total eclipse, according to NASA . Each astronaut will have their cameras outfitted with special filters so they can photograph the solar eclipse aboard the station.

“We get three different looks at the eclipse,” astronaut Randy Bresnik said during a NASA Facebook session on Friday. “Because we are going around the Earth every 90 minutes and about the time it takes the sun to cross the U.S., we’ll get to see it three times.”

NEXT: Watch the Whole Total Solar Eclipse in 4 Minutes

The International Space Station will first see the eclipse just before it begins in the U.S. The total solar eclipse is set to start in Lincoln Beach, Ore. around 9:05 a.m. PST. The crew should see a partial eclipse with about 38% of the sun obscured by the moon.

The second time, the International Space Station will see about 43.9% of the sun covered by the moon. Astronauts will also see the moon’s shadow as it passes over parts of Illinois and Kentucky.

“As we come around the Earth again, this time on the second pass, we will actually cross over,” Bresnik said. “We will be north of Lake Huron in Canada when we will be able to see the umbra, or the shadow of the moon, of the eclipse on the Earth. [Mission Control is] telling us around Tennessee-Kentucky, the western side of those states, that area, that we will be able to see it close to the horizon.”

On its third orbit, the crew will see the eclipse as it passes over the East Coast. In the partial eclipse, 84% of the sun will be covered by the moon at its maximum point. The moon’s shadow will not be visible.

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Space station transits sun during eclipse – EarthSky

Posted: at 3:44 am

During the August 21, 2017 solar eclipse, the International Space Station (ISS) passed three times through the penumbral shadow of the moon on Earth. Astronauts aboard ISS captured images of the moons shadow on Earth, as did other earthly spacecraft. During the eclipse, people using the right equipment and located in the right place could catch the fleeting pass of ISS across the suns face. That pass was seen from a very thin ground track from California through Canada. Meanwhile, there was only one place where you could witness both a transit of the ISS across the partially eclipsed sun and the total solar eclipse later in the morning; it was at the intersection of this transit path with the moons shadow path in Wyoming. The video above from Destin Sandlin at the educational video series Smarter Every Day, and from professional photographer Trevor Mahmann, who earns his living in part via his Patreon page shows that ISS transit.

Its an amazing video and a tribute to our modern information world. Its only now through information sharing and combined knowledge that such things as videos of ISS transits across the suns face during eclipses have become possible!

Great job, guys, and awesome video!

Transit of the International Space Station across the partial eclipsed sun, August 21, 2017. Image via Trevor Mahmann. Find him on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

Bottom line: Video showing a transit of the International Space Station across the face of the sun during the August 21, 2017 solar eclipse.

Visit the educational video series Smarter Every Day

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International Space Station Only Visible in Wyoming During Eclipse – Kgab

Posted: at 3:43 am

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During the first phase of the eclipse, a visible object crossed in front of the Sun, it was not the moon, it was the International Space Station. It was uniquely visible from the state of Wyoming, according to Smarter Every Day.

Destin Sandlin, the host of the You Tube channel, Smarter Every Day, traveled all the way to Wyoming to see the eclipsebecause he and a buddy figured out that from there they could see something that could not be seen in any other state.

The entire eclipse was a three-hour event. The moment of totality only lasts 2.5 minutes. While totality is an amazing event, there is a lot to see during that long transit time.

Call it a Three Clips because you can see three objects at once. As the Moon crossed in front of the Sun, so did the International Space Station.

Amerter Every Day chose to set up in Crowheart, Wyoming as the best point to see the transit of the space station. They were gained special permission to view the event from aranch in the middle of an Indian reservation where not many people are allowed to visit.

Folks in Glendowere also able to see the transit of that space station as well, but Crowheart was considered the best place to witness the crossing, according to the math.

Anyone outside of Wyoming would not be able to see the station transit during the eclipse because of the time and angle of the eclipse in their corresponding area.

So chalk one up for our state, we had something extra to our eclipse that no one else got to see.

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Space Station astronauts catch sight of monster storm Hurricane Harvey – Mashable

Posted: at 3:43 am

Hurricane Harvey, which is forecast to become the strongest such storm to hit the U.S. in over a decade, is a gnarly sight from above.

Astronauts aboard the International Space Station captured the eye of Hurricane Harvey over Texas, where it’s expected to make landfall Friday night or Saturday morning as a Category 3 or 4 storm.

Harvey is then forecast to stall out for days, dumping 2 to 3 FEET of rain along the Texas and Louisiana coastlines.

NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik posted two photos of the storm from space.

With the storm forecast to reach maximum sustained wind speeds of 125 mph, retired Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, who flew aboard the ISS, tweeted about seeing the massive storm brewing over “your family.”

The NASA corps of astronauts are based in Houston, Texas, which is home to the Johnson Space Center.

These are powerful photos, but not as powerful as the Category 3 winds and rains forecast to come down fast on the Gulf Coast for many days in a row.

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Carbondale-made bags to be used for research aboard International Space Station – The Southern

Posted: at 3:43 am

CARBONDALE Products manufactured in Carbondale arrived at the International Space Station last week.

Com-Pac International, Inc., which manufactures flexible packaging products for the medical and laboratory specimen-handling industries, was notified by NASA earlier this month that scientists will be using the companys BITRAN leak-proof specimen bags for a research project aboard the ISS.

The products were included on SpaceXs 12th cargo resupply mission, which launched Aug. 14 from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The cargo ship docked at the ISS on Aug. 16.

Its a very exciting thing that something as local as our small town of Carbondale is going to be on the Space Station, said Com-Pac Business Development Manager Diana Isaacs.

The research project involves the study of a protein linked to Parkinsons disease. On Earth, gravity keeps the protein, known as LRRK2, too small for effective study. Using automated biotechnology devices, scientists will grow larger versions of the protein in the micro-gravity environment of space, according to an overview of the project on NASAs website.

The proteins will be returned to Earth for analysis to aid in the development of therapies to combat Parkinsons disease.

We are certainly very pleased that NASA has chosen to utilize our products aboard the ISS, but are additionally pleased that the products we make right here in Carbondale could contribute to finding a cure for Parkinsons disease, said Com-Pac President Greg Sprehe in a news release.

According to the release, Com-Pacs bags were chosen because they can remain leak-proof even after multiple openings and closings during freezing and thawing cycles.

This bag is made out of a special resin, plastic, its called EVOH, and it has a very low oxygen transmission rate, which is the rate oxygen can transfer through the plastic itself, Isaacs said.

Com-Pac, located in Carbondales industrial park, has worked with NASA for several years; the agency has utilized several of the companys specimen-style bags in the past, Isaacs said.

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Elon Musk reveals first official photo of SpaceX space suit – The Verge – The Verge

Posted: at 3:43 am

Elon Musk has posted the official first photo of his SpaceX space suit on Instagram, teasing that more details will come in a few days. Musk says the suit actually works, and was tested to double vacuum pressure. The suit itself is very white and very spacey, and Musk acknowledges that it was incredibly hard to balance the suits look and its function.

Musk didnt specify, but the SpaceX suits are meant to be worn by astronauts when riding inside the companys Dragon Capsule. Theyre pressure suits, so theyre not meant for spacewalks, but are worn by astronauts during transport in case the capsule depressurizes. The suits will be worn by NASA astronauts for the commercial crew program when SpaceX starts launching people to and from the International Space Station. In January, Boeing revealed its own spacesuit design that astronauts will wear on route to the ISS.

The reveal today is similar to photos of a SpaceX suit that surfaced years ago on reddit. The design is very elegant and feels right at home in a sci-fi flick, while simultaneously paying homage to the old school suits NASA astronauts wore to the Moon. We compiled a list of science fiction spacesuits from worst to best, though in my opinion, this real SpaceX suit tops the list of best.

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Watch the space station cross the sun during the eclipse – fox2now.com

Posted: at 3:43 am

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Along with the moon and some sunspots, the International Space Station made a cameo in front of the sun. If you look very closely, you can see it.

This composite image, made from seven frames, shows the International Space Station, with a crew of six onboard, as it transits the Sun at roughly five miles per second during a partial solar eclipse, Monday, Aug. 21, 2017 near Banner, Wyoming.

If you weren’t able to see one of the most anticipated and unifying events this country has witnessed in nearly a hundred years, don’t worry. You won’t have to wait an entire century until the next one — just seven years. Another total solar eclipse will be visible in the United States onApril 8, 2024.

Traveling a different path from the 2017 eclipse, the total eclipse will be visible in Mexico, the central US and east Canada, with a partial eclipse visible across North and Central America.

Although Monday’s eclipse was peaking over two minutes in the path of totality, the 2024 eclipse will have peaks of 4 minutes. In the United States, it will be visible in a diagonal path crossing from Texas to Maine, according to NASA.

Cities like Austin, Texas; Dallas; Little Rock, Arkansas; Indianapolis; Toledo, Cleveland and Akron, Ohio; Buffalo and Rochester, New York; Montpelier, Vermont; and Montreal will be directly in the path of totality.

Given the planning by many in preparation for the 2017 eclipse, you might want to start making your hotel and travel arrangements now. And stock up on eclipse glasses once they become widely available again.

If you’re eclipse chaser who doesn’t mind globetrotting, you can also catch these total solar eclipses around the world in the coming years:

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Could Astronauts Harvest Nutrients From Their Waste? – Smithsonian

Posted: at 3:42 am

Astronauts traveling to Mars may be able to pack a little lighter with microbes that could make nutrients and the building blocks of plastic.

smithsonian.com August 24, 2017 12:53PM

There’s no doubt that the journey to Mars will be a feat of both engineering and logistics. But a few basic human waste products could actually help in the venture, providingnot onlyvital nutrients, but also materials that could be used to make tools.

In a presentationgiven this week at the American Chemical Society’s National Meeting and Exposition, a scientist from Clemson University explained how genetically engineered yeast could feed on the astronaut’s urine and carbon dioxide to produce valuable byproducts like omega-3 fatty acids and compounds commonly found in plastics, reports Andrew deGrandpre for the Washington Post.

“If astronauts are going to make journeys that span several years, well need to find a way to reuse and recycle everything they bring with them, biomolecular engineer Mark Blenner saidin a statement before his presentation. Atom economy will become really important.

This is an urgent problem. NASA is hoping to start human settlementson Mars in the next 20 years, and private space companies are pushing for even fastercolonization. But this will be no easy feat. Mars is just over 30 million miles from Earth, and the people that eventually make the tripmust be protected and nourishedthroughout the journey.

Every supply brought on board adds to the total mass of the craft flung into space. Not to mention each extra tool takes up space in what will likely already be a cramped environment. But without adequate provisions and tools, astronauts on boardthe Mars-bound craft would be doomed before they even left Earth.

To help get around this problem, NASA has been funding Blenner since 2015 to scrutinize a strain of yeast called Yarrowia lipolytica, reports Catherine Caruso for STAT. Blenner has used the yeast strain, a close relative of baker’s yeast available in grocery stores, as a template that he then modifieswith genes from algae and phytoplankton. These alterations allow the microbes to produce the omega-3 fatty acids necessary for healthy metabolism in humans.

This yeast can also be genetically engineered to produce monomers, the basic building blocks of polymers that could be used by 3D printers to create new tools on the spacecraft or on Mars, reports Becky Ferreira of Motherboard.

But the yeast still need fuel to produce these products. That’s where the astronauts, and their waste, comein. The microbes can use thenitrogen in humanurine andcarbon dioxide from their breath to create useful compounds.

This work is still in its very early stages, notes Nicola Davis of the Guardian.Blenner still needsto tweak the yeast so that it produces useful quantities of the nutrients and monomers. There’s also the question of whether the microbes could survive in the low-gravity, high-radiation conditions of a trip to Mars.

If it all works out, however, future settlers on the Red Planet might not have to live solely off potatoes.

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Elon Musk shares first photo of SpaceX’s sleek new spacesuit – Florida Today

Posted: at 3:41 am

SpaceX’s highly anticipated foray into spacesuits that will be worn by astronauts en route to the International Space Station has finally arrived. Wochit

The first image of SpaceX’s new spacesuit, released by CEO Elon Musk on Wednesday, shows the company’s foray into the hardware, which will be worn by astronauts traveling to the International Space Station.(Photo: Elon Musk / SpaceX via Instagram)

SpaceX’s highly anticipated foray into spacesuits that will be worn by astronauts en route to the International Space Station and possibly beyond has finally arrived.

CEO Elon Musk took to Instagram early Wednesday morning to release the first teaser image of the company’s futuristicspacesuits, which appear tofeature a mostly white palette that sharply contrasts with gray segments and accents.

Musk said it was “incredibly hard”to balance function and aesthetics for the hardwarethat will fulfill one of SpaceX’s core obligations to NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.

“Worth noting that this actually works (not a mockup),” Musk, also CEO of energy company Tesla, said.”Already tested to double vacuum pressure.”

[NOAA satellite launched from Space Coast captures incredible eclipse video]

[Reminder: NASA sonic boom testing begins near Kennedy Space Center]

More photos and detailsare expected over the next few days.

If timelines hold, SpaceX could launch astronauts on a Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral as soon as 2018, marking the first time humans have launched from U.S. soil since the final flight of space shuttle Atlantis in July 2011.

SpaceX could also use the spacesuits or at least portions of them for trips around the moon and, eventually, the company’s ultimate goal of Mars colonization.

SpaceX was selected by NASA as a commercial crew partner under a $2.6 billion contract and has successfully delivered supplies and science experiments to the station under the separate Commercial Resupply Services program 11 times.

Aerospace giant Boeing, also contracted for the Commercial Crew Program at $4.2 billion, announced its version of a spacesuit earlier this year. Named Starliner, the modern suits feature plenty of blue, sneaker-like boots and Velcro.

Boeing could also launch astronauts to the ISS on an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral as soon as 2018.

Contact Emre Kelly at aekelly@floridatoday.com or 321-242-3715. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook at @EmreKelly.

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