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New instrument sifts through starlight to reveal new worlds

July 5, 2012 12:32 pm | by Eurekalert! | News | Comments

An advanced telescope imaging system that started taking data last month is the first of its kind capable of spotting planets orbiting suns outside of our solar system. The collaborative set of high-tech instrumentation and software, called Project 1640, is now operating on the Hale telescope at the Palomar Observatory in California after more than six years of development by researchers and engineers at the American Museum of Natural History, the California Institute of Technology, and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). The project's first images demonstrating a new technique that creates extremely precise "dark holes" around stars of interest were presented today at the International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE) Astronomical Telescopes and Instrumentation meeting in Amsterdam by Ben R. Oppenheimer, an associate curator in the Museum's Department of Astrophysics and principal investigator for Project 1640.

What is polonium-210 and how can it kill?

July 5, 2012 12:29 pm | by Jill Lawless, AP | News | Comments

Polonium first hit the headlines when it was used to kill KGB agent-turned-Kremlin critic Alexander Litvinenko in London in 2006. This week, Yasser Arafat's widow has called for the late Palestinian leader's body to be exhumed after scientists in Switzerland found elevated traces of radioactive polonium-210 on clothing he allegedly wore before his death in 2004.

In McNeil's Nebula, a young star flaunts its X-ray spots

July 5, 2012 8:48 am | by Eurekalert! | News | Comments

Using combined data from a trio of orbiting X-ray telescopes, including NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and the Japan-led Suzaku satellite, astronomers have obtained a rare glimpse of the powerful phenomena that accompany a still-forming star. A new study based on these observations indicates that intense magnetic fields drive torrents of gas into the stellar surface, where they heat large areas to millions of degrees. X-rays emitted by these hot spots betray the newborn star's rapid rotation.

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Poof! Dust disk that might have made planets disappears

July 5, 2012 8:45 am | by Deborah Zabarenko, Reuters | News | Comments

In a cosmic case of "now-you-see-it, now-you-don't," a brilliant disk of dust around a Sun-like star has suddenly vanished, and the scientists who observed the disappearance aren't sure about what happened.

This summer is 'what global warming looks like'

July 5, 2012 8:36 am | by SETH BORENSTEIN, AP | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Is it just freakish weather or something more? Climate scientists suggest that if you want a glimpse of some of the worst of global warming, take a look at U.S. weather in recent weeks.

A closer look at the Higgs boson

July 5, 2012 8:35 am | by Frank Jordans, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Scientists working at the world's biggest atom smasher near Geneva have announced the discovery of a new subatomic particle that looks remarkably like the long-sought Higgs boson. Sometimes called the "God particle" because its existence is fundamental to the creation of the universe, the hunt for the Higgs involved thousands of scientists from all over the world.

The first “Code of Conduct” for UAVs

July 3, 2012 11:50 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

A trade group has written the first "Code of Conduct" related to unmanned aerial vehicles. The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI), which boasts more than 7,000 members across 60 countries, released its treatise in response to growing privacy concerns toward domestic UAV usage.

Sounding rocket mission to observe magnetic fields on the sun

July 3, 2012 8:57 am | News | Comments

On July 5, NASA will launch a mission called the Solar Ultraviolet Magnetograph Investigation or SUMI, to study the intricate, constantly changing magnetic fields on the sun in a hard-to-observe area of the sun's low atmosphere called the chromosphere. Magnetic fields, and the intense magnetic energy they help marshal, lie at the heart of how the sun can create huge explosions of light such as solar flares and eruptions of particles such as coronal mass ejections (CMEs).

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Research paves the way for accurate manufacturing of complex parts for aerospace and car industries

July 2, 2012 2:16 pm | News | Comments

Producing strong, lightweight and complex parts for car manufacturing and the aerospace industry is set to become cheaper and more accurate thanks to a new technique developed by engineers from the University of Exeter. The research team has developed a new method for making three-dimensional aluminium composite parts by mixing a combination of relatively inexpensive powders.

Officials: Ala. Airbus plant will employ 1,000

July 2, 2012 10:24 am | by Phillip Rawls, Associated Press | News | Comments

Airbus's planned aircraft assembly plant in Alabama will cost $600 million to build and will employ 1,000 people when it reaches full production, officials said ahead of a formal announcement Monday.

Hi-C to investigate activity in solar atmosphere

July 2, 2012 10:09 am | News | Comments

NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. is leading an international effort to develop and launch the High Resolution Coronal Imager, or Hi-C, on a sounding rocket from the White Sands Missile Range at White Sands, N.M. Hi-C is a next-generation suborbital space telescope designed to capture the highest-resolution images ever taken of the million-degree solar corona.

Soyuz spacecraft lands safely in Kazakhstan

July 2, 2012 9:54 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

A Soyuz space capsule carrying a three-man multinational crew touched down safely Sunday on the southern steppes of Kazakhstan, bringing an end to their 193-day mission to the International Space Station.

Soyuz spacecraft ends mission with smooth landing

July 2, 2012 9:02 am | by Reuters | News | Comments

A Russian Soyuz capsule landed on the Kazakh steppes on Sunday, safely delivering a trio of astronauts who helped to dock the first privately owned spacecraft during a six-month stint on the International Space Station.

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Noise filter removes incoming disturbances

June 29, 2012 10:31 am | Product Releases | Comments

WAGO Corporation’s DIN-rail mount 288 Series Signal Noise Filter removes disturbances from incoming power for industrial control panels. The 288-2003 pairs a 10A/120VAC Receptacle, common mode choke and WAGO 740 Series PCB Terminal Blocks on a 1.75’’ wide open assembly. Initially developed as a custom product by WAGO’s Engineering Services division for aquatic show control systems (dancing water fountains), 288 Series is now a standard product.

GPGPU embedded DSP module is AFT-cooled

June 29, 2012 10:19 am | Product Releases | Comments

Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions (CWCDS) announced what is said to be the industry’s first rugged Air Flow Through (AFT) cooled GPGPU embedded DSP module. The announcement of the AFT version of CWCDS’ VPX6-490 GPU Application Accelerator, a dual NVIDIA GPU-based 6U VPX module

Enjoy the long weekend, if only for a second

June 29, 2012 9:11 am | by Chris Wickham, Reuters | News | Comments

The world is about to get a well-earned long weekend but don't make big plans because it will only last an extra second.

Scientists develop spray-on battery

June 28, 2012 2:12 pm | by Chris Wickham, Reuters | News | Comments

Scientists in the United States have developed a paint that can store and deliver electrical power just like a battery.

Milky Way struck 100 million years ago, still rings like a bell

June 28, 2012 1:40 pm | News | Comments

An international team of astronomers have discovered evidence that our Milky Way had an encounter with a small galaxy or massive dark matter structure perhaps as recently as 100 million years ago, and as a result of that encounter it is still ringing like a bell. The discovery is based on observations of 300,000 nearby Milky Way stars by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS).

New government system will send severe weather warnings straight to Americans' smartphones

June 28, 2012 8:57 am | by Steve Karnowski, AP | News | Comments

Millions of smartphone users will soon begin receiving text messages about severe weather from a sophisticated government system that can send a blanket warning to mobile devices in the path of a dangerous storm.

Seal rotary switch resistant to corrosion, rough weather

June 27, 2012 9:54 am | Product Releases | Comments

Cole Hersee, the Commercial Vehicle Products division of Littelfuse, Inc., announced that it is introducing the latest product in the 95060 series of sealed rotary switches. This new, weather-sealed reversing switch, constructed with engineering thermoplastic, stands up to corrosion much better than older, metal models with similar functionality.

Microwave coaxial cables feature solid core or monofilament dielectric for desirable signal speed and improved electrical performance

June 26, 2012 3:18 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Temp-Flex LLC, a subsidiary of Molex Incorporated, announced the availability of microwave coaxial cables designed for high-bandwidth applications using proprietary processes.

Synchronizer accommodates up to 8 PCIe boards for multichannel applications

June 26, 2012 2:56 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Pentek, Inc. introduced a system synchronization and distribution amplifier, the Model 7893 PCIe board.

High-frequency RF and microwave MLCCs tout high Q factor

June 25, 2012 12:22 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Vishay Intertechnology, Inc. introduced a series of surface-mount multilayer ceramic chip capacitors (MLCCs) offering high self-resonance, a high Q factor of ≥2000, and a low dissipation factor of ≤0.05  percent for operation in high-frequency commercial applications. With their low

China manned docking a key step for space station

June 25, 2012 9:15 am | by Gabriel Wildau and Samuel Shen, Reuters | News | Comments

China re-affirmed its goal of building a full-fledged space station by 2020 on Sunday, following a successful manual docking between a manned spacecraft and an experimental orbiting lab module.

Manufacturers: Defense cuts would cost more than 1 million jobs

June 22, 2012 3:47 pm | News | Comments

The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) today released a new report, Defense Spending Cuts: The Impact on Economic Growth and Jobs, that highlights the potential impact defense spending cuts under the Budget Control Act (BCA) of 2011 will have on U.S. jobs and economic growth.

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