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Korean boffins vow 1,000km-an-hour supertrain

Thu, 19 Jan 2017 13:05:56 GMT

Anything Elon can do…?

Korean boffins want to create the blueprint for a train capable of operating at 1,000km/h (621mph).…

NASA fires first shot in plan to bring a chunk of asteroid down to Earth

Thu, 19 Jan 2017 05:01:14 GMT

OSIRIS-REx completes initial big burn on the way to asteroid Bennu

NASA's asteroid-exploration mission OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has taken the left turn at Albuquerque on its way to a near-Earth space rock called Bennu.…

Euro space agency's Galileo satellites stricken by mystery clock failures

Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:57:14 GMT

One in eight have stopped, admits org's director general

Europe's GPS-alike system Galileo is suffering a number of unexplained clock failures on its satellites, the European Space Agency has admitted.…

Speaking in Tech: Japan launches rocket with 2 laptops, 8 people

Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:57:11 GMT

Podcast That'll end well...

Boffins link ALIEN STRUCTURE ON VENUS to Solar System's biggest ever grav wave

Wed, 18 Jan 2017 07:19:13 GMT

Akatsuki probe finds huge thing lurking in planet's clouds

An enormous, mysteriously stationary structure high over the surface of Venus may be the largest gravity wave in the Solar System, according to Japanese astronomers.…

Li-ion tamers: Boffins build battery with built-in fire extinguisher

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 21:49:59 GMT

Can we just go ahead and call it 'the Samsung device' now?

Researchers at Stanford University say they have developed a method for building fire-extinguishing materials into standard lithium-ion batteries.…

Stanford boffins find 'correlation between caffeine consumption and longevity'

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 08:43:12 GMT

Make a cup of tea - or a mocha - before you read this if you want a long and happy life

A cup of tea, coffee or even a mocha could extend your life, new research shows.…

Japan tries to launch satellite on rocket the size of a telegraph pole

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 06:00:07 GMT

And fails: the launcher's second stage failed to ignite so it ditched into the sea

From plants to pocket-sized radios, Japan has a long history of miniaturisation, but its first attempt to shrink a satellite-launching rocket has ended with the launcher ditching into the sea.…

RIP Eugene Cernan: Last man on the Moon dies aged 82

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 23:58:12 GMT

Apollo 10 and 17 astronaut, moonwalker, spacewalker, pioneer

Eugene Cernan, the last man to leave footprints on the Moon, has died aged 82.…

Amazon asks for spectrum to try out IoT networking gear

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 14:08:09 GMT

What else do you Tx at 20mW somewhere between 868MHz and 900MHz?

Amazon has filed an application with the US Federal Communications Commission to conduct what looks like Internet of Things wireless networking tech trials.…

SpaceX makes successful rocket launch

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 11:23:11 GMT

Musk's merry men manage it this time

Elon Musk's SpaceX, space cargo contractor and purveyor of space rockets for the well-heeled masses, successfully launched a two-stage rocket into orbit on Saturday.…

Home Einsteins help turn up 13 new pulsars

Sun, 15 Jan 2017 23:57:02 GMT

Distributed 'supercomputer' prises open Fermi 'scope's secrets, sometimes with just 10 photons a day

The Einstein@home project has announced the discovery of 13 neutron stars in its distributed analysis of gamma ray data from the orbiting Fermi telescope.…

Boffins turn timid mice into psycho killers – by firing lasers into brains

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 07:03:12 GMT

Admittedly, we'd all want to tear everything apart if we had kit shoved in our heads

Video Scientists have turned wimpy mice into ferocious hunters by zapping their brains with a laser.…

You know what, maybe Tabby's star ate a planet, ponder space eggheads

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 05:56:10 GMT

So much for the 'alien megastructure' theories

Tabby's star – formally KIC 8462852 – has attracted a new and possibly-plausible explanation for its excess of twinkle: the remnants of a planet destroyed in a collision.…

MIT brainiacs wrangle 2D graphene into super-strong 3D art homework

Thu, 12 Jan 2017 07:36:13 GMT

Hydraulic press action has explosive results

Video Graphene is said to be the wonder material of our age, but it’s largely a 2D affair. Now scientists have made 3D structures out of the stuff that will be an engineer’s dream.…

Now for a really cool micro-drum solo: Boffins chill gizmo below quantum limit

Thu, 12 Jan 2017 07:03:04 GMT

Neat microwave trick could be key to reaching absolute zero

Physicists working at the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have developed a way to theoretically cool an object to absolute zero.…

Binary star bash-up should add new light to Northern Cross in 2022

Wed, 11 Jan 2017 06:02:07 GMT

Explosive union visible with the naked eye

Pics and video The stars of the Northern Cross – one of the most recognisable features in the night sky that has been used as a marker for the seasons for thousands of years – should be getting a bright new addition.…

You know how cop cars pile into each other in old comedy movies? That's how the Moon was built, say boffins

Tue, 10 Jan 2017 06:57:12 GMT

Moonlets glommed together

The birth of the Earth’s Moon didn’t begin with a single huge collision – rather it grew as lots of baby moons from smaller impacts fused together, according to a new theory published in Nature Geoscience.…

Asteroid nearly gave Earth a new feature, two days after its discovery

Tue, 10 Jan 2017 01:04:07 GMT

First flyby for 2017

On Saturday, the Catalina Sky Survey spotted a near-Earth asteroid of respectable heft – and today, it passed between us and the Moon.…

NASA taps ESA satellite Swarm for salty ocean temperature tales

Mon, 09 Jan 2017 09:36:06 GMT

Magnetic method explored, NASA tells The Reg

Research scientists working at NASA have hit upon a potentially revolutionary way of measuring the heat hidden deep in Earth's oceans: track the subtle shifts in our planet's magnetic field caused by tides, swells, eddies, and even tsunamis.…

Weather stops SpaceX from blowing up more satellites

Sun, 08 Jan 2017 20:58:03 GMT

Launch lovers and explosion enthusiasts wait another week

Sorry, Musketeers, you'll have to wait until at least January 14 to see how many satellites SpaceX can get into space.…

Could YOU survive a zombie apocalypse? Uni eggheads say you'd last just 100 days

Fri, 06 Jan 2017 21:24:45 GMT

Model assumes you'd all wave the white flag

Physics students at the UK's University of Leicester have concluded that a "real-life zombie outbreak" would all but eliminate humanity in just 100 days.…

Elon's SpaceX gets permission to blow up another satellite or two

Fri, 06 Jan 2017 20:32:36 GMT

FAA clears Musketeers to, fingers crossed, put whole Iridium birds into orbit

America's Federal Aviation Administration has cleared SpaceX to launch satellites into Earth's orbit using the science upstart's rockets.…

Fatal genetic conditions could return in some 'three-parent' babies

Thu, 05 Jan 2017 10:40:04 GMT

Better mother matching needed

Troubling new findings have been discovered that could affect the lives of (misleadingly* branded) "three-parent" offspring born thanks to breakthrough mitochondrial replacement therapy.…

NASA plans seven-year trip to Jupiter – can we come with you, please?

Thu, 05 Jan 2017 07:01:09 GMT

Mighty Trojan probe will eye up biggest metal ball in Solar System

Vid NASA has OKed two new missions to study some of the most interesting asteroids in our solar system, as part of its ongoing Discovery mission program.…

Puny galaxy packs a big punch: A gazillion joules' worth of radio bursts

Thu, 05 Jan 2017 03:05:13 GMT

Boffins get best fix so far on mysterious 'FRB' location

Sorry to say this, but fast radio bursts still aren't alien communications. There is a surprise, however, in the latest science about them – the only repeating burst yet known comes from a "puny" galaxy with no obvious sources for such a cataclysmic cosmic event.…

NASA eyes up supermassive black holes, neutron stars

Wed, 04 Jan 2017 15:13:12 GMT

Hidden wonders of the universe

NASA will embark on a new mission to explore supermassive black holes, neutron stars, and pulsars hidden within the depths of space.…

Astroboffins glimpse sighting of ultra-rare circular galaxy

Wed, 04 Jan 2017 10:26:04 GMT

Double-ring phenomena for the 0.1 per cent fans

A rarer-than-rare galaxy 359 million light years away from Earth has been spotted by physicists.…

Speeding jet of Siberian liquid hot Magma getting speedier, satellites find

Wed, 04 Jan 2017 07:04:04 GMT

Swarm gazers find faster flows in the outer core

A speeding jet of magma 420 kilometres wide, described nearly as hot as the Sun's surface underneath Russia is moving three times faster that previously recorded, scientists say.…

Uh-oh. LG to use AI to push home appliances to 'another dimension'

Tue, 03 Jan 2017 15:22:14 GMT

Deep learning, string theory and er ... kitchen gizmos?

CES 2017 LG Electronics is unveiling a range of home appliances embedded with “deep learning technology” during this year’s Consumer Electronics Show.…

Major maser microwaves Hubble

Tue, 03 Jan 2017 04:05:10 GMT

Space 'scope spots staggering galactic resonator

The name's boring but the science isn't: an entire galaxy spied by the Hubble Space Telescope is acting as a microwave-emitting laser, or maser.…

Elon burning to get Falcon back on the launchpad

Mon, 02 Jan 2017 22:56:08 GMT

Pressure vessel buckled, something sparked, oxygen exploded

Only a regulatory sign-off stands between Elon Musk's SpaceX and the restart of its Falcon 9 launch program within a week. With its anomaly investigation complete, the company hopes to launch a Falcon carrying Iridium's NEXT satellite from Vandenberg on January 8.…

2016 just got a tiny bit longer. Gee, thanks, time lords

Fri, 23 Dec 2016 15:18:07 GMT

Five, four, three, two, one... one

Most people are over 2016 - although god knows what next year has in store. But unfortunately they'll have to endure it bit longer: one second longer to be precise.…

Chinese boffins: We're testing an 'impossible' EM Drive IN SPAAAACE

Thu, 22 Dec 2016 21:12:45 GMT

Time NASA pulled its finger out

A month after NASA published a paper suggesting a controversial electromagnetic engine design appears to work, Chinese eggheads claim they've had similar results – and have sent an EM Drive into space for testing.…

NASA explains how 'Spiders' grow on Mars

Wed, 21 Dec 2016 04:58:10 GMT

Keep your wig on, Ziggy. This is about erosion features. Not our new arachnid overlords

NASA thinks it has found an explanation for the “spiders” it's spotted on Mars.…

Ancient water found in Canada is two billion years old – giving hope to Mars colony dreamers

Mon, 19 Dec 2016 07:02:05 GMT

Could hold secrets to Earth's history and life on other planets

Canada's oldest pool of water, nestled deep within a mine, is approximately two billion years old – and it could have sustained life, scientists have discovered.…

If at first you don't succeed, send another Mars lander – this time a deep driller

Sat, 17 Dec 2016 12:02:11 GMT

ESA signs contracts for ExoMars 2020 mission

Undeterred by the crash of the Schiaparelli Mars probe during the first ExoMars mission, the European Space Agency has signed off contracts that will hopefully deposit a new and more advanced lander directly on the Martian Surface. In one piece.…

NASA – get this – just launched 8 satellites from a rocket dropped from a plane at 40,000ft

Fri, 16 Dec 2016 07:58:09 GMT

You boffins are just showing off now

Video NASA's Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System (CYGNSS) has made it safely into orbit after being air-launched from Orbital ATK's Stargazer aircraft.…

Galileo! Galileo! Galileo! Galileo! Galileo fit to go: Europe's GPS-like network switches on

Thu, 15 Dec 2016 21:52:39 GMT

More accurate than American system and open to all

After a long and much-delayed 17-year gestation, Europe's answer to America's GPS system has been switched on.…

Climate change bust up: We'll launch our own damn satellites if Trump pulls plug – Gov Brown

Wed, 14 Dec 2016 22:01:06 GMT

Super Cali goes ballistic over claims global warming's bogus

California Governor Jerry Brown promises that no matter how "absurd" the upcoming Republican presidential administration's response to climate-change science, the state of California will be ready with a robust response – with weapons ranging from satellites to databases to lawyers.…

Bill Gates joins $170bn climate change investment club

Tue, 13 Dec 2016 15:31:12 GMT

Clean tech on the list

Bill Gates is leading a $1bn climate-change venture with a roll-call of tech’s biggest names.…

SpaceX delays manned Dragon capsule launch

Tue, 13 Dec 2016 13:55:07 GMT

Setback follows Falcon 9 explosion

Elon Musk's SpaceX has delayed the first manned launch of its Dragon capsule intended to carry astronauts into orbit by one year.…

Europe to launch legal action against countries over diesel emissions cheating

Tue, 13 Dec 2016 12:02:13 GMT

UK, Germany, Greece and others rapped for not acting on evidence

The European Commission has begun legal action against seven member states over emissions cheating in the "dieselgate" scandal.…

Men! If you want to win at board games this Christmas, turn off the rock music – scientists

Mon, 12 Dec 2016 22:38:33 GMT

Blokes are worse at playing while listening to heavy metal

Chaps, listen. Are you sick of losing at Monopoly every Christmas? Do you dread the sight of backgammon or the sound of rattling Scrabble tiles? The trick to winning board games could be to avoid listening to rock music, apparently.…

Remember that brightest supernova ever seen? It wasn't one

Mon, 12 Dec 2016 11:01:05 GMT

Just a star being ripped apart by a black hole

Last year, astronomers spotted what looked like a massive supernova, 200 times brighter than any seen before.…

ESA to try tank-to-tank fuel switch on sat that wasn't designed to do it

Mon, 12 Dec 2016 07:29:07 GMT

XMM-Newton X-ray telescope has enough fuel to keep going, if the juice can be loosed

The European Space Agency is planning what it thinks is a world-first transfer of fuel between tanks on an orbiting satellite that wasn't designed to do the job.…

Japanese robot space maid will incinerate Earth's dead satellites

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 22:03:26 GMT

Caretaker craft launched today in ISS cargo supply run

Vid Good news: the latest resupply mission to the International Space Station has taken off without exploding or any of that kind of nonsense.…

RIP John Glenn: First American in orbit – and later, the oldest, too

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 01:20:08 GMT

Last of the Mercury 7 crew passes on

Obit John Glenn, America's first man into orbit and the oldest person ever to make it into space, has died at the age of 95 after a short illness.…

Latest loon for Trump's cabinet: Young-blood-loving, kidney-market advocate Jim O'Neill

Thu, 08 Dec 2016 22:47:17 GMT

President-elect considering friend of Thiel as FDA head

Having chosen a climate-change denier to head the US government's environment agency, an opponent of minimum wage for the Labor Department, a creationist for Education Secretary, a mine-owner for Commerce, and a wrestling exec to oversee small businesses – president-elect Donald Trump is now considering putting a man with very strange ideas about medicine as head of Uncle Sam's Food and Drug Administration.…

Earth days are getting longer – by 1.8 milliseconds per century

Thu, 08 Dec 2016 16:01:34 GMT

I thought it was getting dark later and later

We know the Earth’s rotation is slowing, hence leap seconds, but by how much? Now we have a new number: 1.8 milliseconds per century for the last 2,720 years.…