Daily Archives: December 4, 2020

Letters to the Editor | Opinion | westvalleyview.com – westvalleyview.com

Posted: December 4, 2020 at 11:58 am

Divided we stand


Worried citizens are calling for national unity in the wake of the political debacle that was Election Day. A noble ideal. But, realistically, undoable. Ironically, warring leftists and patriots can unanimously agree on one thing: Blues and reds have irreconcilable differences.

Our cultural chasm is unbridgeable. A divorce is inevitable.

Now what? We could revive the old-school strategy of peaceful coexistence. It avoided an apocalyptic nuclear war back in the day. No winners or losers.

Sadly, we havent lived up to Americas unifying motto, E pluribus unum (out of many, one).

Divided we stand.

Ken Williams


Meet your



Everyone is invited to come join us on Saturday, Dec. 5, at Sangria & Shopping, a community event in Buckeye between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. It is held at the South Buckeye Equestrian Center, 10300 S. Miller Road. Take I-10 west toward LA and exit on Miller Road No. 114. Head south for about 7 miles, and if you sink into the river, you missed the big complex on your right.

Republican legislative districts LD4 and LD13 will have booths at the event for a Meet Your Legislators day, with all three LD13 legislators and our new local LD4 rep in attendance. Also attending will be local school board members, while others were invited and have yet to confirm.

This is your perfect opportunity to meet your local representatives and get answers to questions. Hope to see you there.

Richard Hopkins, Chairman

LD4 Republican Committee


A response


In response to David Wilsons Nov. 26 letter: David, you say that you are listening to science and health experts. Bolognayou are listening to the anti-Trump media and censored Facebook, who have a left agenda.

To say that Trump caused the COVID-19 to rise in that community is silly and unfounded. I attended the rally because the CDC facts are there are 2 deaths per 10,000 people in the USA, and we are closing this economy because of that. Now that is silly.

I believe the country didnt overwhelmingly reject President Trump, as we see more and more evidence of voter fraud (I do wish that Trump would have selected a more dynamic VP). The courts will determine this.

Bidens strong relationships with other career politicians is the exact reason for term limits, with 47 years for Biden and 20 years for Mitch McConnell.

Ronald Reagan said, Government is not the solution to our problems. ... Government is the problem. Oh, how true that is.

Are you joking that other nations of the world have lost respect for us? They now know that we will stand for what is right and not bow to their ways or money (Iran deal and Hunter Biden to name two).

I fully and finally want Congress to work together to solve our nations problems, but Ive not seen that with the impeachment and by tearing up the State of the Union speech. Republicans can do much better by working with Democrats also. I dont expect this much from either party.

My hope is that in the future your letters to the editor would be more fair and balanced as I hope mine has been.

Scott Stewart


Yogi Berra Dept.


As the noted philosopher Yogi Berra said, Its like dj vu all over again. The Nov. 18 West Valley View had three letters naming me with the usual sarcasm and name-calling but short on reality.

Lets review: In 2016, Trump said months before the election that if he lost it had to be rigged. He said he would accept the results of the voting only if he won. If he didnt win, the Second Amendment people might come to his aid. Well, he won the electoral vote by a landslide with 306 electors. On election night the major networks reported Trump had won, and he declared himself the winner that night. He lost the popular vote by 2.8 million but claimed he won that, too. When he was in office he formed a committee to investigate election fraud. After a year they found none and quietly disbanded.

In 2020, Trump again said for months that the election would be rigged and full of fraud. He still says he won despite all evidence that Biden won with 306 electors and by 5.5 million votes. Trump said the Proud Boys, a white supremacy group, should stand by. They were a notable presence at the Trump rally in Washington, D.C., recently. He and his followers say the TV networks do not decide who wins, which we all know. All federal, state and local election officials say the election was fair.

As of this writing (Nov. 19) the Trump people have filed about 20 lawsuits, none of which earned them a significant ruling. Rudy Giuliani? Please. Meanwhile, those efforts have created doubt on the legitimacy of our elections in many peoples minds. And a key factor in our democracy, a peaceful transition of power, is being threatened by this shameful charade.

One of the Nov. 18 letter writers said the Bidens were corrupt, even though a Republican Senate committee concluded there was no evidence of their corruption. He wondered how Trump could lose the vote when he had much bigger rallies during the pandemic. Really? He mocked my research citations (BBC, Politifact, the AP, FactCheck.org, etc.) without revealing his sources. He doesnt trust the top news agencies in the country, but I suspect he has great trust in far-right sources like AON and Fox and the always-credible internet for his information.

An old adage for lawyers says to pound on the law if you dont have the facts or to pound on the facts if you dont have the law. If you dont have either, then pound on the table. This is what Trump and his minions are doing now. America and democracies around the world will survive despite their attacks.

John Flynn


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Grantees Awarded as Part of the Breast Cancer Research Project Between NCCN and Lilly Oncology – Newswise

Posted: at 11:58 am

PLYMOUTH MEETING, PA [December 3, 2020] The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) Oncology Research Program (ORP) today announced five projects selected to receive funding for clinical and preclinical evaluation of abemaciclib. Abemaciclib is a cyclin dependent kinase (CDK) 4 & 6 inhibitor used in the treatment of hormone receptor-positive (HR+), human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-negative (HER2-) breast cancer. The proposals were reviewed and awarded by a scientific steering committee made up of experts from NCCN Member Institutions, and the NCCN ORP is handling project oversight. Research funding is being provided by a grant from Eli Lilly and Company.

The selected projects are:

Congratulations to all of these accomplished grantees, said Wui-Jin Koh, MD, Chief Medical Officer, NCCN. We are eager to learn more about which patients develop resistance to CDK 4 & 6 inhibitors, the potential underlying mechanisms, and ways in which such resistance can be overcome, in order to improve the application of this potentially life-prolonging therapy. This research is one of the many ways we work to improve longevity and quality-of-life for people with metastatic breast cancer.

I have had a frontline view of how metastatic breast cancer can be unpredictable and complex, said Maura Dickler, MD, Vice President, Late Phase Development, Lilly Oncology. Every day the lives ofan estimated 115 women and menin the United States are lost as a result of this disease. Lilly is honored to support this research because it is critical in furthering our efforts to improve treatment options for people living with metastatic breast cancer.

The NCCN ORP fosters innovation and knowledge discovery that improves the lives of people with cancer and supports preclinical, translational, clinical research and quality improvement projects in oncology at NCCN Member Institutions. In an effort to improve collaboration in cancer research, the NCCN ORP also maintains a shared resources website and an informed consent database. For more information, visit NCCN.org/orp.

* The preclinical studies by Drs. Olmez and Zeng have already begun. The remainder are expected to commence in mid-2021.

# # #

About the National Comprehensive Cancer Network

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) is a not-for-profit alliance of leading cancer centers devoted to patient care, research, and education. NCCN is dedicated to improving and facilitating quality, effective, efficient, and accessible cancer care so patients can live better lives. The NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines) provide transparent, evidence-based, expert consensus recommendations for cancer treatment, prevention, and supportive services; they are the recognized standard for clinical direction and policy in cancer management and the most thorough and frequently-updated clinical practice guidelines available in any area of medicine. The NCCN Guidelines for Patients provide expert cancer treatment information to inform and empower patients and caregivers, through support from the NCCN Foundation. NCCN also advances continuing education, global initiatives, policy, and research collaboration and publication in oncology. Visit NCCN.org for more information and follow NCCN on Facebook @NCCNorg, Instagram @NCCNorg, and Twitter @NCCN.

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Online Chess and Working from Home – Chessbase News

Posted: at 11:57 am

12/4/2020 Can the performance of world class players at online tournaments be used as an indicator for the quality of work done from home? Three economists, among them German IM Dr. Christian Seel, do think so. A report by Stefan Lffler highlights their sobering conclusions. | Image: Christian Seel (private)

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When the pandemic struck in spring, Christian Seel began playing online more frequently. He soon got the impression that he was making more mistakes while playing on a screen than he did on a real board, and wondered whether other players felt the same. When the Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour began in April, Seel followed the games of the world's best players and knew he was onto something.

Among chess players Seel is best known from the Bundesliga, where he plays on board one for the SK Aachen. However, Seel is also a professor of microeconomics at Maastricht University. He is not the only chess enthusiast in his faculty. There is alsoemployment market researcher Stefan Knn, who just recently proved that a higher concentration of particulate matter in the air increases the probability of errors during games of chess.

In call centers or banks, it is expensive or even impossible to reliably assessthe quality of services. Chess games, on the other hand, can be analysed very efficiently with engines.

Dainis Zegners of the Rotterdam School of Management, a colleague and fellow chess enthusiast of Seel and Knn, wasinvolved in their research. At the time, Zegners was working on a different study, which also used chess data. Said study relates to the notion that work is becoming increasingly more challenging from a cognitive standpoint. How does our cognitive performance develop over the course of our lives, and how do different generations compare in this regard? Error quotas in chess games are easy to evaluate, which is why Zegner used them to answer this question.

The three researchers did the same for the games played at the Magnus Carlsen Invitational. As a benchmark, they used games played by the same players at the Rapid World Championships 2015 and 2019, as all these tournaments were played with the same time limit: 15 minutes for the whole and with an additional 10 seconds for each move.

Another important factor from an economic point of view were the incentives offered to the players in the form of prize money, which were at least on a comparable level. This meant that there were a grand total of 27,000 moves to be analysed. This was done with Stockfish, at a search depth of 25 plies.

Seel's personal observation was confirmed. Online, the top players blundered more often than in live games. This held true for every single player for whom data had been available:Magnus Carlsen, Ding Liren, Anish Giri, Alireza Firouzja, Hikaru Nakamura, Ian Nepomniachtchi andMaxime Vachier-Lagrave.

At least Carlsenseems to be sharingthis sentiment. Although he has won amost every single online tournament up to this point, he has also repeatedly criticisedthe quality of his own performance. For one particular tournament, his second Peter Heine Nielsen even rented a holiday lodge to get Carlsen out of "home office mode" and into "tournament-mode".

According to Seel, it is of course plausible to assume that players first need to get used to the new situation. The three authors are considering a follow-up study onwhether performance is going to improve over time, and if so, to what extent. However, Knn, Seel and Zegners first wrote a paper on cognitive performance during work from home. Considering the increased popularity of this approach during the pandemic, their work understandably managed to strike a chord. Their findings were picked up numerous times by the Dutch press.

By the way: Next Sunday, December 6, Christian Seel and Dainis Zegners will be discussing their chess research at the online conference ChessTech 2020. Their session will be preceded by a joint introductory lecture by Fernand Gobet and Andrea Brancaccio, titled "Using chess databases to answer psychological questions: Asurvey".

Translation from German: Hugo B. Janz

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Astronauts harvest radishes grown aboard the International Space Station – CNN

Posted: at 11:57 am

On Monday, NASA flight engineer Kate Rubins pulled out 20 radish plants grown in the space station's Advanced Plant Habitat, wrapping them in foil for cold storage until they can make the voyage back to Earth next year.

"I've worked on APH since the beginning, and each new crop that we're able to grow brings me great joy because what we learn from them will help NASA send astronauts to Mars and bring them back safely," said Nicole Dufour, the Advanced Plant Habitat program manager at NASA's Kennedy Space Center, in a news release.

Back on the ground, scientists at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida are growing radishes in a control group set for harvest on December 15. The researchers will compare the space-grown radishes to the veggies grown on Earth, checking on how space produce measures up on providing the minerals and nutrients astronauts need as they prepare for longer trips.

Meanwhile, astronauts will repeat the radish experiment in the heavens, planting and harvesting another round of radish crop to give scientists more data to draw from.

With their short cultivation time, radishes present potential advantages as a food source for future astronauts embarking on deep space missions in years to come. The radishes grow quickly, and they can reach full maturity in 27 days.

The root vegetables also don't require much maintenance from the crew as they grow.

"Radishes provide great research possibilities by virtue of their sensitive bulb formation," said Karl Hasenstein, a professor of biology at the University of Louisiana and the principal investigator on the project, in a news release.

Researchers will analyze the effects of carbon dioxide on the radishes as well as how the vegetables acquire and distribute minerals, according to Hasenstein, who has run plant experiments with NASA since 1995.

Astronauts have grown 15 different types of plants on the station, including eight different types of leafy greens. And NASA has already tested more than 100 crops on Earth, identifying which candidates to try out next in space.

"Growing a range of crops helps us determine which plants thrive in microgravity and offer the best variety and nutritional balance for astronauts on long-duration missions," Dufour said.

Years of research with space crops

Researchers at NASA began experiments using its Vegetable Production Systems growth chambers back in 2014 shortly after they were delivered to the space station.

In August 2015, NASA shared a video that features American astronauts Dr. Kjell Lindgren and Scott Kelly floating aboard the station, saying "Cheers" and eating the space-grown treat.

"Tastes good," Kelly said.

Getting space agriculture right matters because the nutrients in the prepackaged food that astronauts currently eat in space degrade over a period of time, NASA said.

Getting humans to Mars and back safely over a two- or three-year mission requires growing food along the way. That not only gives astronauts more of a vibrant supply of fresh nutrients on the voyage; it also serves an emotional need as they tend to crops that are both a figurative and literal taste of home, according to the agency.

The NASA Artemis program aims to land the first woman and next man on the moon in 2024, and to establish a sustained presence on the moon by 2028. From there, the agency will be poised to begin staging its next big leap, to Mars.

But before we make it to the red planet, we've first got to make a tasty green space salad.

CNN's Ashley Strickland contributed to this story.

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Art projects from 2 students head to the International Space Station – KCTV Kansas City

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Art projects from 2 students head to the International Space Station - KCTV Kansas City

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Celebrating 20 years of space station research, discovery | Technology Today – Theredstonerocket

Posted: at 11:57 am

The past 20 years aboard the International Space Station have yielded scientific and technological advancements in the only laboratory available for long-duration microgravity research. These include fundamental disease research, the discovery of steadily burning cool flames, new water purification systems, and drug development using protein crystals.

Fundamental disease research: Those impacted by Alzheimers disease, Parkinsons disease, cancer, asthma or heart disease have been personally touched by space station research. Microgravity research has provided new insights to scientists studying these diseases. Studying cells, organoids, and protein clusters without the influence of gravity or even the forces of container walls can help researchers get a clearer understanding of their properties, behaviors and responses to treatments.

Without the interference of Earths gravity, Alzheimers researchers on the space station have studied protein clusters that can cause neurodegenerative diseases. Cancer researchers studied the growth of endothelial cells on the space station.

Discovery of steadily burning cool flames: Fire typically conjures thoughts of heat, but special flames created aboard the space station keep things a bit cooler. When scientists burned fuel droplets in the Flame Extinguishing Experiment study, something unexpected occurred. A fuel droplet appeared to extinguish but actually continued to burn without a visible flame. The fire went out twice once with and once without a visible flame. This is the first time scientists observed large droplets of heptane fuel that had dual modes of combustion and extinction. The second stage was sustained by what is known as cool flame chemical heat release.

Removing gravity from studies of combustion allows for exploration of the basic principles of flames. Cool flames have been produced on Earth, but they quickly flicker out.

New water purification systems: The space stations life support system was developed to provide the crew with clean air and water. The Water Recovery System purifies and filters the stations water, recovering and recycling 93% of the water astronauts use in space. This technology is licensed for adaption into an Earth-based water treatment system, with the first ground-based water filtration systems using NASA technology installed in Iraq in 2006 Marshall engineers helped install and test the system in the northern village of Kendala, after the pump for the villages deep-water well failed. Station research studies likeAquaMembranehave also tested out other innovative water systems.

Efficiently recycling wastewater aboard the space station reduces the need to provide water through resupply missions. As humans travel deeper into space, resupply will be unachievable, making these systems a necessity. The restrictions imposed by the requirements of space prompted innovation that was applied to Earth.

Water is vital for human survival. Unfortunately, many people around the world lack access to clean water. At-risk areas can gain access to advanced filtration and purification systems through technology developed for the space station, making a lifesaving difference in these communities.

Drug development using protein crystals: Humans are composed of more than 100,000 types of proteins. Each protein provides information related to health. Studying these proteins by crystallizing them helps scientists learn more about the body and potential disease treatments.

Protein crystals grown on Earth are affected by gravity, which may alter the way the molecules align on the crystal. Researchers have discovered that growing crystals aboard the space station allows for slower growth and higher quality crystals. This high-quality crystallization allows scientists to identify the structures of disease-causing proteins to develop a new medications and effective treatments. Protein crystal growth experiments conducted aboard the space station have provided insights into numerous diseases, from cancer to gum disease.

One of the most promising results of these station experiments has come from thestudyof a protein associated with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, an incurable genetic disorder that affects 1 in 3,600 young boys. A treatment based on this research is in clinical trials.

Another investigation, PCG-5, sought to grow the therapeutic antibody Keytruda in a more uniform crystalline form. The goal was toimprovethe drug so it can be delivered by injection rather than an IV treatment.

Editors note: This is the first in a five-part series highlighting scientific and technological breakthroughs that have been achieved over the past two decades as a result of International Space Station science. This research helps humanity explore farther into space while also benefiting life on Earth. The Payload Operations Integration Center at Marshall Space Flight Center schedules, assists with, and coordinates all experiments on the stations U.S. Orbital Segment.

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HemoCue Lab-Accuracy: Soon Counting White Blood Cells in Outer Space. Innovative Technology Onboard SpaceX Falcon 9 Mission CRS-21 – Bound for…

Posted: at 11:57 am

STOCKHOLM, Dec. 2, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- On December 5, 2020 at 11:37 AM ET, new critical research projects fly on the 21st SpaceX Cargo Mission heading for the International Space Station (ISS). HemoCue is proud to announce its participation in this adventure and for being selected in the critical research and technology demonstration run by NASA Human Research Program. A small drop of blood can be an ocean of knowledge - perhaps even in outer space.

With close to 40 years of experience providing quality and trusted technology to customers worldwide, HemoCue is proud to support the NASA Human Research project and provide the crew members on board the International Space Station with this unique benefit of running a total white blood cell (WBC) count including a 5-part differential within minutes*. Verification of an autonomous capability for blood analysis on the space station is an important step toward meeting the health care needs of crew members on future explorative missions, including projects like e.g. NASA's Artemis program to the Moon.

The research project will test the ability of the HemoCue device to provide quick and accurate counts of total and differentiated white blood cells in microgravity. A successful demonstration means that the device could be considered for use on future exploration missions to indicate the presence of certain medical conditions, diagnose illnesses, monitor conditions such as bacterial/viral infections or radiation exposure, track the response to treatment, and assess the severity of an illness during interplanetary spaceflight.

"HemoCue has been at the forefront of point-of-care testing technology for close to 40 years and we intend to continue to innovate and advance the healthcare industry long into the future. I am excited to see how our dedication and innovation can touch people's lives in the years to come - and now soon also being used by astronauts on board the ISS. We are eager to see how the ease of use, lab-accuracy and well-known HemoCue quality will provide the astronauts on board the ISS with assistance in diagnosing and treating medical conditions even in this demanding environment", says Christophe Duret, CEO at HemoCue.

"HemoCue products have been tested in evaluation projects in demanding environments over the years. From 0 gravity tests preparing for space flights, extreme conditions in Antarctica, tough expeditions in Himalaya and travelling with drones in Malawi - our products and technologies have been exposed to the most challenging situations in the past and have now also shown that the ease of use and robustness makes them qualified even for space research missions", Christophe Duret concludes.

December 2, 2020Christophe Duret, CEOHemoCue AB

*HemoCue WBC DIFF System is not available in the US.

For additional information about HemoCue AB and our products and services, visit http://www.hemocue.com.

HemoCue Corporate Head OfficeHemoCue AB | Kuvettgatan 1 | SE-262 71 ngelholm, Sweden.Email: [emailprotected]| Phone: +46 77570 02 10 | Fax: +46431 48 12 25 | Web: http://www.hemocue.com

About HemoCue

HemoCue is a global leader in a field of diagnostics known as near-patient, or point-of-care, testing. In 1982, HemoCue AB, based in ngelholm, Sweden, introduced the first system making accurate hemoglobin testing possible in near-patient settings. Since then, more than 400,000 HemoCue systems have been sold worldwide. The company offers point-of-care tests for hemoglobin, glucose, urine albumin, HbA1c, total and differential white blood cell count. HemoCue subsidiaries, franchises, and third-party distributors supply HemoCue products in more than 130 countries worldwide. HemoCue has been part of the Danaher Corporation's diagnostic platform since April 2013. Additional company information is available at http://www.hemocue.com

This information was brought to you by Cision http://news.cision.com


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HemoCue Lab-Accuracy: Soon Counting White Blood Cells in Outer Space. Innovative Technology Onboard SpaceX Falcon 9 Mission CRS-21 - Bound for...

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Proposed New Russian Space Station Will Be Able to Monitor the Entire World – Space Daily

Posted: at 11:57 am

On Thursday, Russia's Energia Corporation, tasked with managing Russian modules aboard the International Space Station, proposed the creation of a new, national orbital space station, to be deployed sometime after the year 2024.

Russia's next orbital space station may be deployed at an orbit that will allow it to keep an eye on the entire surface of the Earth, and the Arctic region in particular. That's according to an Energia Rocket and Space Corporation document submitted to the Russian Academy of Sciences' Space Council seen by Sputnik.

According to the company, two orbital inclinations - 72 and 98 degrees, have been proposed for the new station, with the latter suggested for the first time ever.

A 72 degree inclination would allow the station to observe the Earth's surface at latitudes up to 80 degrees, giving a clear view of most of the planet's surface, including the outer ring of the Arctic Circle and the prospective Northern Sea Route transport artery. An orbital inclination of 98 degrees would enable for the entirety of the Earth to be monitored by the station.

Dr. Andrei Ionin, a member of the Tsiolkovsky Russian Academy of Cosmonautics, and senior expert on Russia's GPS equivalent, GLONASS, says an inclination of 98 degrees could assist in the monitoring of northern territories, although less expensive Russian satellites weighing 15 kg apiece are also capable of doing the same job.

"No one has ever set up space stations at such inclinations. Such orbits are necessary for observing the Earth. They are convenient because the Sun is consistently situated at a certain angle, this is called the sun-synchronous orbit, and the equipment for filming needs to be calibrated only once," Ionin explained.

Russia has contributed vast economic and military resources in recent years to shoring up its presence in the Arctic in an effort to turn its northern territories into a major driver for economic growth, both through the exploration of the region's vast untapped natural resources, and the creation of a new major transport route to ease trade between Europe and Asia.

New Russian Space StationEnergia Corporation has been lobbying for the creation of a new, autonomous Russian space station for years. On Thursday, at a meeting chaired by Russian Academy of Sciences President Alexander Sergeev, Vladimir Soloviev, Energia's deputy director-general, indicated that Russia needs to consider creating a new national space station because the International Space Station's systems are beginning to show their age. Soloviev later also clarified that Russia has no plans to give up on the ISS or end its existing partnerships with other space-faring nations.

The new proposed Russian space station is expected to have between three and seven modules, and to host crews of between two to four people. It is expected to be deployed at some point after 2024, although no exact time frames have been set thus far.

In October, Soloviev indicated that the new Russian station would be similar in design to the Mir, a Soviet space station design which operated between 1986 and 2001, and which in many ways served as a precursor to the ISS.

According to the senior Russian space industry official, the station could include a commercial module for accommodating four space tourists, with the module including two large portholes and Wi-Fi access. Additionally, engineers plan to make it possible to regularly dock the station to a free-flying lab module.

At present, it's planned to launch the station's modules using the new Angara-A5 heavy lift launch vehicle, which is capable of launching at least 24.5 tonnes of useful cargo into orbit. Earlier this year, Energia proposed using the Angara-A5 as an inexpensive means to send Russian cosmonauts to the Moon and back without the need to develop a new super-heavy lift rocket.

Source: RIA Novosti

Related LinksEnergia CorporationSpace Tourism, Space Transport and Space Exploration News

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ISS astronauts celebrated Thanksgiving aboard the space station – SlashGear

Posted: at 11:57 am

Thanksgiving 2020 was as much of a mess for most people as the majority of the year has been. Many were unable to visit family due to social distancing. Astronauts aboard the ISS were about as socially distanced from their families as you can get, but they still celebrated Thanksgiving. NASA astronaut Kate Rubins talked about what the astronauts did aboard the ISS as it orbited the Earth at 17,500 miles an hour.

She noted that her and the three other NASA astronauts were excited to celebrate the holiday in space with their international crewmembers. To the astronauts aboard the station are from Russia, and another is from Japan. American astronauts currently aboard the station include Rubins, Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, and Shannon Walker. Rubins noted they would enjoy each others company and that the astronauts would speak to family members on the phone.

Glover noted that the astronauts plan to have cornbread dressing, with the caveat that their stuffing came and paste form. The astronauts also got to have turkey and other traditional Thanksgiving dishes. Walker was most excited about the astronauts getting to stream a football game aboard the ISS.

The astronauts from other countries where Thanksgiving isnt typically celebrated also shared some special foods. Japanese astronaut Noguchi intended to share curry rice, red beans and rice, and seafood prepared by high school students from Japan. Theres no word if the Russian astronauts added anything to the Thanksgiving celebration.

The crew aboard the ISS currently numbers seven, and most will be on the space station for six months as the crew works on maintenance and research. Six months seems like a long time to eat most of your food as a paste. We cant help but wonder how good turkey paste would taste.

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ISS astronauts celebrated Thanksgiving aboard the space station - SlashGear

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Op-ed | China, the moon, Mars, and beyond an opportunity for human cooperation – SpaceNews

Posted: at 11:57 am

SpaceNews photo illustration

China this week is conducting a robotic lunar sample return mission, something the United States has never done.

The grab-and-go sample return is proceeding while a Chinese lunar rover is wrapping up its second year of service on the moon on its far side,something also never done by the United States.

Another Chinese rover mission, Tianwen-1, is on its way to Mars and scheduled to land there in February around the same time NASAs Mars 2020 rover and the United Arab Emirates Hope orbiter are due to reach the red planet.

And China is scheduled to launch the first element of its space station early next year as well.

Beyond? They have described a mission to be launched in 2024 to reach 100 astronomical units (roughly 100 times the distance between the Earth and the sun) in 2049 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of founding of the Peoples Republic of China.

It is not a space race; they havent challenged the U.S. and we are largely ignoring these developments. They may have a human landing goal, but not until the 2030s. They are proceeding methodically with human spaceflight, focusing on a space station not on the critical path to the moon.

In the meantime, they are also undertaking robotic solar system goals. Why? Surely not for any militaristic or economic goals. It is equally doubtful that understanding lunar and Martian geology or the physics of the interstellar medium is a high strategic priority.

And, as we already know, there is no national security advantage to human spaceflight in Earth orbit, so their space station is not for that. National security comes from automated spacecraft with communications, remote sensing and other robotic capabilities. It seems to me that China is heading to the moon, Mars and beyond because they want to be a great country leading the world not just in one or two areas but in all areas of science and technology part of their long-term effort for economic growth.

The change of U.S. presidential administrations in January, U.S. and Chinese robotic Mars landings in February, and the dawning recognition that the U.S. Artemis lunar landing goal is unrealistic creates an opportunity for rethinking Americas human space goals perhaps redirecting them to serve American national goals instead of merely those of the space industry.

We have only done that twice in all of the space age once with Apollo to demonstrate American Cold War technological superiority, and then with bringing the Russians into the International Space Station to forestall them selling post-Soviet arms to rogue states. With the incoming administration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden wanting to bring American foreign policy back from isolation and confrontation, the space program could play a role by engaging China on the creation of an international lunar station, boosting our space program and giving us a benign foreign policy initiative.

Engage China!? That is totally anathema to current American policy and broader attitudes. Probably the only thing the Biden and Trump administrations agree on is being tough on China. And the space community would rather have another space race for its own advantage.

But another space race is not likely, not with all the other competing domestic priorities and it would serve no U.S. strategic goal. The growing Chinese economy is seen as a threat, not as an opportunity. But so far, the U.S. reaction has been defensiveness to weakly hide behind walls and other barriers, and a lot of hand-wringing. If we want to act strong (but not dangerously), we might try co-option through cooperation. Invite them to play on our field of 350 million people, instead of allowing ourselves to play on their field of 1.4 billion.

Engaging China, given the current policy climate, would be difficult. It would involve dealing with hawks and hard-liners amid a backdrop of contentious issues: notably trade, security and human rights.

The best bet would be to start with something symbolic, as the U.S. and Russia did with the Apollo-Soyuz mission in 1975 and the Shuttle-Mir program in the mid-1990s.

Inviting a taikonaut to the International Space Station would be a harmless gesture that would raise public interest in the ISS. China also might value gaining some ISS experience prior to operating its own space station.

Each nations current lunar and Mars programs would continue on their current course, but could be gradually enhanced with international cooperation while serving the bigger context of human activity on the moon and Mars.

Those expecting commercial development and other private ventures on the moon will find Earths nearest neighbor large enough to accommodate lots of interests. Chinas presence is not uncertain they are doing that anyway. The scale and the reality of lunar development can only be enhanced by coordination and cooperation.

The political risks of lunar engagement are small but the potential payoff is large: cooperation on a great venture off this world, increasing mutual understanding on it.

Louis Friedman is the co-founder and executive director emeritus of The Planetary Society.

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Op-ed | China, the moon, Mars, and beyond an opportunity for human cooperation - SpaceNews

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