вторник, 24 сентября 2019 г.

Light the Fuse Modern microscopy has made huge steps in…

Light the Fuse

Modern microscopy has made huge steps in picturing small things. But some of life’s structures are sometimes too fragile, or erratic, or simply just too tiny to follow under a microscope. Mitochondria – the mini factories that provide our cells with energy and heat – have thin ‘ultrastructures’ missed by many microscopes. Here the fragile architecture is highlighted by a new fluorescent sensor – stable enough to withstand the high-powered laser pulses used in stimulated emission depletion (STED) microscopy so they can be watched over time. Later in the video, concertina-like folds in the inner membranes of mitochondria, known as cristae, fuse together before they self-destruct. Being able to watch these important organelles – rather than taking static pictures – may allow scientists to test drugs towards mitochondrial disease, all while discovering more about how our biological power stations work.

Written by John Ankers

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Millennium-old royal tomb found in north China

Chinese archaeologists have uncovered a royal tomb dating back around 1,000 years in north China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, according to the regional institute of cultural relics and archaeology.

Millennium-old royal tomb found in north China
Figure shows the crane pattern mural at the top of the main burial chamber
[Credit: China News Services]

Found in Kailu County in eastern Inner Mongolia, the ceiling of the single-chamber tomb is decorated with crane-patterned murals. Archaeologists also unearthed valuable burial objects such as glass and gold wares, as well as a coping stone made of two huge pieces of granite, which was likely sourced from outside the area, archaeologists said.

Millennium-old royal tomb found in north China
Glassware unearthed from the tomb in Kailu county, North China’s Inner Mongolia autonomous region
[Credit: China News Services]

Based on its structure and design, the tomb was probably built in the early Liao Dynasty (916-1125) and belonged to the royal family, said Lian Jilin, a researcher at the institute, noting that the occupant has yet to be identified.

Millennium-old royal tomb found in north China
Gold pin unearthed from the tomb in Kailu county, North China’s Inner Mongolia autonomous region
[Credit: China News Services]

A royal tomb cluster was discovered 1 km away three years ago, which provided important materials for further research on the specific position of Longhua State, an ancient city built in 902 by Yelu Abaoji (Emperor Taizu of Liao), khagan of the nomadic Khitans who once ruled the northern part of China.

Excavation and further research are underway.

Source: ECNS [September 16, 2019]



HiPOD 23 September 2019: Landforms in Tempe Terra   The…

HiPOD 23 September 2019: Landforms in Tempe Terra

   The objective of this observation is to examine what looks like an old glacier coming out of the valley along a mesa. There also seem to be large lateral moraines, along with what looks like a ring-mold crater.

ID: ESP_055098_2265
date: 28 April 2018
altitude: 298 km

NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

2019 September 24 Sand Dunes Thawing on Mars Image Credit…

2019 September 24

Sand Dunes Thawing on Mars
Image Credit & License: ESA, Roscosmos, CaSSIS

Explanation: What are these strange shapes on Mars? Defrosting sand dunes. As spring dawned on the Northern Hemisphere of Mars, dunes of sand near the pole, as pictured here in late May by ESA’s ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter, began to thaw. The carbon dioxide and water ice actually sublime in the thin atmosphere directly to gas. Thinner regions of ice typically defrost first revealing sand whose darkness soaks in sunlight and accelerates the thaw. The process might even involve sandy jets exploding through the thinning ice. By summer, spots will expand to encompass the entire dunes. The Martian North Pole is ringed by many similar fields of barchan sand dunes, whose strange, smooth arcs are shaped by persistent Martian winds.

∞ Source: apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap190924.html

ESA mourns passing of first German cosmonaut

ESA — European Space Agency patch.

23 September 2019

We are sad to learn of the passing German cosmonaut Sigmund Jähn on 21 September in Strausberg, Germany, at the age of 82.

As a former GDR citizen, Sigmund trained as a cosmonaut in the Soviet Union from 1976 to 1978. On 26 August 1978, he flew on Soyuz 31 to the Russian Salyut 6 space station, before returning to Earth on 3 September 1978. Throughout the years he was a role model for adults as well as children and young people.

Sigmund worked as a freelance consultant for the German Aerospace Center (DLR), and later for ESA, where he supervised European astronauts at ‘Star City’, the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center, near Moscow, from 1990 to 2002.

ESA astronaut Thomas Reiter was among those astronauts and reflected on the time they spent together. «I remember the walks Sigmund and I took together in Star City. I will always keep his friendship and his enthusiasm for our common cause, space travel, in good memory. All the best up there, dear Sigmund,” said Thomas.

Sigmund Jähn. Image Credit: DLR

Sigmund was a founding member of the Association of Space Explorers (ASE) in 1985. Every year, astronauts and cosmonauts met in different parts of the world to share their experiences. For many astronauts, Sigmund was a role model, especially for ESA astronauts.

Frank De Winne, Head of the European Astronaut Centre in Cologne, Germany, said, “I personally had the pleasure to have the great support of Sigmund in Star City for my first mission. I will always remember him as a great, humble, warm person. The astronaut community has lost a great friend.”

ESA Director General Jan Wörner paid a special tribute, saying, “The news of Sigmund Jähn’s passing has touched me deeply. Whenever we met, it was very personal and we formed a friendship that extended beyond space travel and his unwavering support of European astronauts. I am deeply grateful to have met him and I will not forget him. Thank you, Sigmund.”

Sigmund Jähn — Wkipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sigmund_Jähn

Image (mentioned), Text, Credit:  European Space Agency (ESA).

R.I.P.; Orbiter.chArchive link

Japanese, Russian Rockets Prepare to Launch Cargo and Crew This Week

ISS — Expedition 60 Mission patch.

September 23, 2019

Japan is getting ready to launch its H-II Transport Vehicle-8 (HTV-8) cargo craft on Tuesday at 12:05 p.m. EDT to replenish the International Space Station crew. Russia has already rolled out its Soyuz MS-15 crew ship to its launch pad for a liftoff on Wednesday at 9:57 a.m. with three new crewmates. NASA TV will broadcast all mission activities live.

The HTV-8 space freighter from JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) is packed with over four tons of crew supplies, station hardware and new science experiments. The spacecraft, named Kounotori, will blast off on Tuesday from the Tanegashima Space Center in Japan and arrive at the station Saturday. NASA astronauts Christina Koch and Andrew Morgan will capture Kounotori with the Canadarm2 robotic arm around 7:15 a.m. Ground controllers will then take over and remotely install the Japanese resupply ship to the Harmony module about three hours later.

Image above: The gantry arms close around the Soyuz MS-15 rocket after it was raised into vertical position on the launch pad on Monday. Image Credits: NASA/Bill Ingalls.

Russia’s Soyuz MS-15 spacecraft rolled out early Monday from its processing facility in Kazakhstan and is now standing vertical at the launch pad at the Baikonur Cosmodrome. Two Expedition 61 crewmates, Jessica Meir of NASA and Oleg Skripochka of Roscosmos, will lift off aboard the Soyuz with spaceflight participant Hazzaa Ali Almansoori from the United Arab Emirates on Wednesday. The trio will reach the orbiting lab less than six hours later and dock to the Zvezda service module at 3:45 p.m.

The last Soyuz-FG is ready to launch Soyuz MS-15

Meanwhile back in space, the six station residents started the workweek with ongoing microgravity research benefitting both Earth and space inhabitants. Two Expedition 60 crewmates are also preparing to depart the station next week after 203 days in space.

Koch was observing tiny free-flying satellites programmed with algorithms to maneuver in formation inside the Kibo laboratory module. Morgan was cleaning up after last week’s rodent research then joined NASA Flight Engineer Nick Hague for eye exams to understand the effects of eye pressure caused by headward fluid shifts in microgravity. Luca Parmitano of ESA (European Space Agency) replaced fuel bottles in the Combustion Integrated Rack before processing samples for a study seeking insights into Alzheimer’s disease.

International Space Station (ISS). Animation Credit: NASA

Finally, Hague and station Commander Alexey Ovchinin are preparing to wrap up their mission that began in March. The two crewmates are packing crew provisions and checking their Sokol launch and entry suits ahead of their Oct. 3 return to Earth inside the Soyuz MS-12 crew ship. The duo will parachute to a landing in Kazakhstan with Almansoori aboard, who will be completing his eight-day mission aboard the station.

Related links:

Expedition 60: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/expeditions/expedition60/index.html

Expedition 61: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/expeditions/expedition61/index.html

Canadarm2: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/structure/elements/mobile-servicing-system.html

Harmony module: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/structure/elements/harmony

Zvezda service module: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/structure/elements/zvezda-service-module.html

NASA TV: https://www.nasa.gov/live

Microgravity research: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/index.html

Kibo laboratory module: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/structure/elements/japan-kibo-laboratory

Fluid shifts: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/experiments/explorer/Investigation.html?#id=1126

Combustion Integrated Rack: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/experiments/explorer/Facility.html?#id=317

Insights into Alzheimer’s disease: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/experiments/explorer/Investigation.html?#id=7383

Space Station Research and Technology: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/index.html

International Space Station (ISS): https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/main/index.html

Image (mentioned), Animation (mentioned), Video, Text, Credits: NASA/Mark Garcia/ROSCOSMOS/SciNews.

Best regards, Orbiter.chArchive link

CASC — Long March-3B launched two new BeiDou-3 satellites

BeiDou Navigation Satellite System logo.

23 sept. 2019

Long March 3B launches pair of Beidou-3 MEO satellites

A Long March-3B launch vehicle launched two new BeiDou-3 navigation satellites from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, Sichuan Province, southwest China, on 22 September 2019, at 21:10 UTC ( 23 September, at 5:10 local time).

Long March-3B launched two new BeiDou-3 satellites

The BeiDou-3 MEO-19 and BeiDou-3 MEO-20 satellites are the 47th and 48th in the BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS), respectively the 19th and 20th for the BeiDou-3 system. China plans to complete the BDS global network by 2020 (Beidou navigation satellites constellation).

CCTV screenshots of the deployment

The MEO satellites are the Medium Earth Orbit component of the third phase of the Chinese Beidou (Compass) satellite navigation system. The satellites are part of a fleet that will expand the system to a global navigation coverage.

BeiDou-3 satellite, as rendered by J Huart

The satellites are using a new bus that features a phased array antenna for navigation signals and a laser retroreflector, with a launch mass 1,014 kg. Spacecraft dimensions are noted to be 2.25 by 1.0 by 1.22 meters. Usually, the satellites reside in a 21,500 – 21,400 km nominal orbit at 55.5 degrees.

For more information about Beidou navigation system: http://www.beidou.gov.cn/

For more information about China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC):

Images, Video, Text, Credits: CASC/Beidou/CCTV/SciNews/Orbiter.ch Aerospace/Roland Berga.

Greetings, Orbiter.chArchive link

‘The Calderstones’ Prehistoric Burial Chamber Remains and Rock Art,...

‘The Calderstones’ Prehistoric Burial Chamber Remains and Rock Art, Calderstones Park, Liverpool, 22.9.19.

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Moel Goedog Prehistoric Ring Cairn 1 at Dusk, Harlech, North Wales, 21.9.19.

Moel Goedog Prehistoric Ring Cairn 1 at Dusk, Harlech, North Wales, 21.9.19.

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The Calderstones Burial Chamber Remains and Rock Art, Calderstones Park, Liverpool,...

The Calderstones Burial Chamber Remains and Rock Art, Calderstones Park, Liverpool, 22.9.19.

I have been looking forward to seeing the six prehistoric Calderstones in their brand new display since the exhibition space opened in Summer this year. The stones were in a poor state, encased in concrete bases and dirty, obscured in an old glasshouse. (You will find them in my older archives.). They now look fully restored and great! The rock art is prolific, varied and impressive.

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Bird Rock Art, The Calderstones Prehistoric Burial Chamber Remains, Calderstones Park,...

Bird Rock Art, The Calderstones Prehistoric Burial Chamber Remains, Calderstones Park, Liverpool, 22.9.19.

Found in 2015 by a school boy on a school trip, this little bird sits near the base of one of the prehistoric stones.

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https://t.co/hvL60wwELQ — XissUFOtoday Space (@xufospace) August 3, 2021 Жаждущий ежик наслаждается пресной водой после нескольких дней в о...