Europe Selects Grand Gravity Mission

It is set to be one of the major science projects of the 2030s.

The European Space Agency has just given the green light to the LISA mission to detect gravitational waves.

This will see lasers bounced between three identical satellites separated by 2.5 million km.

By looking for tiny perturbations in these light beams, the trio hope to catch the warping of space-time that is generated by cataclysmic events such as the merger of gargantuan black holes.

Ground-based laboratories in the US have recently begun detecting gravitational waves from coalescing objects that are 20-30 times the mass of our Sun.

But by sending an observatory into space, scientists would expect to discover sources that are millions of times bigger still, and to sense their activity all the way out to the edge of the observable Universe.

It should immeasurably advance our understanding of gravity and how it works; and perhaps even highlight some chinks in Einstein’s so-far flawless equations.

“We have no idea what we will discover, but perhaps we can get closer to the line that divides gravity from quantum physics. This may take us there,” said Esa’s director of science, Prof Alvaro Giménez Cañete.

Read more at this link.

Source: bbc.com

Cleveland Clinic Prioritizes Heart Health in Abu Dhabi

Due to the high volume of diabetes and smoking in the United Arab Emirates, the median age for experiencing a heart attack is just forty-five years old. A whopping ten years lower than their American and British counterparts– despite the equally high rates of obesity between them all. One factor appears to be the sharp decline in tobacco smoking in the UK and US, contrasted with increase in the UAE.

The Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi (http://www.uaeusaunited.com/story/cleveland-clinic-abu-dhabi/) has itself become the figurative heart, at the epicenter of this crisis. The clinic offers an exclusive technology for hybrid robotic heart surgery to the region. Along with more routine procedures, such as stents, cardiograms, and cardio-imaging. The clinic also features an eclectic team of specialists from different scientific fields. These specialists analyze each case from many angles to create a full picture, ensuring the most effective and certain treatment plan.

The clinic was the choice destination for care for nearly two thousand patients last year. Open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, the hospital is fully equipped to immediately address any cardiac related issue.

Inducing stress on the body with a cardio workout is a good Litmus test for heart problems. Considering that you are more likely to notice the symptoms under physical duress. In more extreme cases, you may experience these symptoms with as little exertion as walking or climbing stairs; as an indication of more life-threatening ailments.

One of the primary causes of mortality in the UAE is cardiovascular disease. But, diabetes is the real ticking time-bomb behind it all. Glycosylation is a complex chemical process that scientists now believe to be the actual source of aging. By causing the accumulation of senile cells in the body. This process is increased dramatically; if we allow ourselves to become diabetic through obesity and smoking, and unhealthy lifestyles in general. Glycosylation is also associated with increased free radicals that cause cancers. And is responsible for exponentially increasing the plaques that clog our arteries.

Hope and hype around cancer immunotherapy

Immunotherapy treatments for cancer are having a moment.

Some hospitals and health care systems call it a “miracle in the making” and a “game-changer.” It’s a treatment approach that harnesses the body’s own immune system to target and attack a disease, such as cancer.
Immunotherapy can come in many forms — vaccines, antibody or cellular therapies, or drugs — and can be received through an injection, a pill or capsule, a topical ointment or cream, or a catheter.
Ninety-two-year-old former President Jimmy Carter famously received a form of immunotherapy two years ago that he called “the key to success” in his melanoma fight. He had the treatment along with surgery and radiation.
Yet as promising as the therapy seems, could the spotlight on immunotherapies detract from other areas of cancer research? Some experts argue yes, while many others don’t seem concerned.
Now, cancer researchers from around the world are convening in Chicago on Friday for the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s annual meeting to discuss various treatment methods, including immunotherapy.
Read more here.
Source: CNN.com

United Arab Emirates Efforts to Eradicate Polio

A disease is a scourge meant to cripple the normal functioning of the human body—and in the presence of disease, productivity decreases. Also known as poliomyelitis, the polio virus is one of the diseases known to maim the human structure.

Polio Destroys the Human Bone Structure
This disease normally affects infants whose bone and muscle structure is fairly weak. As a result, human mobility is limited. However, polio is an illness that can be controlled and otherwise eradicated. It is a disease commonly found in the Middle East. Unhygienic conditions normally favor the development and spread of the polio virus. Originating from the human body, it can be transmitted through body wastes, especially if they are deposited in water sources.

What The UAE Is Doing as Regards to Polio?
Immunization has been a key drive in the fight to eradicate polio in the Middle East. To date, millions of children from Pakistan have been immunized against the disease. However, a majority of people affected by this illness are located in poorly accessible areas. For this reason, the national and local leadership is working together so as to develop a framework meant to enhance public sensitization and also bring community members together so as to get immunized.

Also, the leadership of the United Arab Emirates has engaged the assistance of international donors, who not only provide finances but also vaccines and human resources. As an incentive to members of the public, polio vaccines are free. For this course, efforts by the UAE to eradicate this illness have borne fruit.

Being a national travesty, immunization is an issue that has been highlighted by leaders across the divide. In addition, public sensitization drives have educated people on how to manage human wastes so that they do not end up in water sources.

The fight against polio has also been echoed by other countries globally. Finally, a lot of money has been used to finance research projects meant to provide insight on how best to fight this scourge.

Future Projections
The United Arab Emirates aims at eradicating this disease from its region for good. To attain this goal, areas once affected by the disease are constantly under surveillance so as to ascertain whether or not the immunization process was a success. Systems have been put in place to ensure that immunization continues even in regions where polio has already been wiped out.

Under Lasers, a Feathered Dino Shows Some Skin

What happens when you shoot lasers at a dinosaur fossil? Some chemicals preserved in the fossil glow, providing a nuanced portrait of the ancient creature’s bones, feathers and soft tissue such as skin.

Soft tissue is rarely preserved in fossils, and when it is, it can be easily obscured. A technique called laser-stimulated fluorescence “excites the few skin atoms left in the matrix, making them glow to reveal what the shape of the dinosaur actually looked like,” says Michael Pittman, a paleontologist at the University of Hong Kong.

Pittman and colleagues turned their lasers on Anchiornis, a four-winged dinosaur about the size of a pigeon with feathered arms and legs. It lived around 160 million years ago during the Jurassic Period. The researchers imaged nine specimens under laser light and used the photos to reconstruct a model of Anchiornis that shows an exceedingly birdlike body, the team writes March 1 in Nature Communications.

Read more…

Source: sciencenews.org

The Benefits of Recycling Styrofoam in Your Community

Every community that is concerned about Styrofoam (a trademark of the DOW Chemical Agency) must do much more than ban the product in their community. Styrofoam will turn up in different parts of the manufacturing process for many companies, and it cannot be rubbed out entirely. This article explains how the product may be recycled, and there is a look at what may be done to improve the community.

#1: Adding Recycling Plants
The recycling plants that will process the product will bring hundreds of jobs to a community, and they offer the community quite a lot of revenue from taxes and extra income. Someone who has been searching for a job will find it in a heartbeat, and they may bring their friends along for their own jobs. The community improves because there are more working adults, and the Styrofoam in the community is processed as it should be.

#2: How Is The Material Used?
The material that is recycled will become the building blocks of something new that is to be manufactured. The industry that produces Sytrofoam need not make too much of it, and they will save money every year as they purchase from the recycling plant. The plant will produce enough raw materials for many different firms, and they will expand when they are successful. Expansion will serve the community, and everyone searching for a job may find one in the second wave of hiring.

#3: Where Styrofoam Used?
Styrofoam that is used by manufacturing companies will be used in the protective materials for their products, and it may be used to serve as filler in a product. There are many places where a business may use the product in lieu of something that is not good for the planet. The companies that are purchasing the products regularly will increase the revenue of the plant, and they will help the plant ensure they have more than enough work for all their employees.

Recycling Styrofoam is the responsible choice for the planet, and it must be done to ensure a community is not filling its trash cans with the product. The older materials may be turned into something new, and they will be quite simple to sell to manufacturers around the country. Anyone who is considering working on a Styrofoam ban must look further to the recycling industry. A plant in the community gives everyone what they need along with new jobs.

Hope Spacecraft to Launch in 2020

July 2020 may seem a long way into the future, but for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the United States NASA, it will be here in the blink of an eye. That specific month and specific year holds great importance as the UAE and NASA will launch their mission to Mars, with UAE becoming the first Arab nation to hold this honor.

The Timeframe
The Hope spacecraft, as it has been properly named, would be set to arrive at Mars during the first quarter of 2021. This happens to coincide with UAE’s 50th anniversary of its founding. Back to the importance of the July 2020 timeframe. The main and only significant importance of this date is that this is when Hope has a brief launch window. Earth and Mars orbit our sun at much different rates, allowing for their closest point of alignment only once every two years. If this mission, for some reason, is not ready at any part, UAE and NASA may not get another chance to launch this space mission.

The Hope Spacecraft
Built from aluminum, the UAE space mission aircraft, Hope is not large. It comes in measuring at approximately 7 feet wide by 9 and a half feet high and will weigh a little more than 3,300 pounds. Picture a small car and you will get an overall visual of how big this spacecraft will be.

The Mission
The goals of the Mars mission are many. Mars is losing its atmosphere, so one main goal for Hope is to find out why. Hope will track behavior and escape of hydrogen and oxygen on the Red Planet. Hope will also look for connections in today’s weather and the ancient atmosphere of Mars. UAE, through Hope, will also be looking to create a complete, and first of its kind, global picture of the atmospheric daily and seasonal changes on Mars.

The Hope Team
The UAE Hope team is large in number, 75 strong, and are divided across a number of amazing groups that include: Ground Station, Logistics, Mission Operation, Launch Vehicle, Spacecraft, and Project Science Education and Outreach. Not only will UAE be working together with NASA but research institutes and universities will be lending a hand in this amazing collaboration.

Hard work and passion are bringing this mission to life. July 2020 can’t get here soon enough.

US Fracking Bringing America Back into the Golden Age

With all of the recent press on alternative energy sources fracking and oil shale seem to have been put off to the side. While research of renewable energy sources is important currently oil shale is the most widely used energy source in America with the United Sates being the top oil producer. For a happy, healthy America we need to utilize the tools that we presently have which will enable us to move into a bright future. EIA estimates total U.S. gas production from 2012 to 2040 will increase 56 percent, with natural gas from shale the leading contributor.

Hydraulic fracturing is a combination of advanced hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, commonly referred to a “fracking”. After the well is drilled a mixture of water, sand, and trace additives are pumped into the well, the sand creates small fractures that leak out the oil. This is a method used to retrieve oil from deep within shale and other mineral deposits. This method is used to create new oil wells and to stimulate old wells to produce more oil.

Fracking has benefits to the United States such as increased trade leverage and monetary gains. We’re also seeing a hoard of benefits to the common wealth of America. Most states have been seeing great savings at the gas pump, a notable improvement from the all-time highs of 2012 and 2013. The most surprising benefit, gas bills have been dropping $13 billion per year in recent years. That’s an average of 200 dollars per American household. In some regions families are only saving 181 dollars, however some regions are gaining savings in excess of 432 dollars per person, per household. The money saved on gas goes into other areas of spending and re-stimulates the economy.

Incredibly, fracking has brought 2.1 million jobs to the United States to date. A final thought on fracking, horizontal drilling along with proper well construction and fracking water recycling can all help to minimize the environmental impact of fracking. With this industry booming America should take advantage of the boost its giving the economy and our pockets, meanwhile research and development of alternative energy resources will only increase the potential of our great country and aid to the effectiveness of our country as a whole.

Home-Grown Bean to Bar Chocolate Making Is Going Strong

Bean to Bar Chocolate differs from other kinds of chocolate as the bean to bar chocolate makers are involved in the whole chocolate making process from roasting to packaging, and the chocolate is made in small batches. Other chocolatiers may buy chocolate that has already been made or formed and then mold it into bars. The bean to bar chocolate making movement is basically a movement to make chocolate from scratch to provide a better chocolate experience for people to enjoy. The process of making chocolate normally starts with roasting top-quality cacao beans. Once they’re roasted, they are cracked and winnowed and then ground into chocolate liquor. By starting the chocolate-making process this way, these “chocolate artists” have much more control in the development of flavor in the chocolate bar. This is why bean to bar chocolate is known to have a much deeper, richer, and nuanced flavor than other kinds of chocolate.

After it is made into chocolate liquor, the chocolate is conched, meaning it is blended with other ingredients to sweeten it like sugar, flavor it like vanilla, or milk is added for milk chocolate. The chocolate is then refined for things like texture and then mixed and melted (or “conched”) at high temperatures. The chocolate is then tempered which is a process of cooling, warming, and then cooling it off again before other final ingredients are added (like nuts for example) and poured into molds and then cooled until it becomes solid.

The American Bean to Bar Chocolate movement is in full swing. It is not that different from what happened with wine making in America in the mid-twentieth century; a growing interest took hold on wines from the U.S. and California when wine-making techniques were improved. Today in New York, there are many great, home-grown bean to bar chocolate makers. The Mast Bothers are the most famous bean to bar chocolate makers from New York. Rick and Michael Mast began making chocolate in Brooklyn in 2007 and are considered pioneers in the bean to bar chocolate movement and symbols of success for artisanal chocolate in the Brooklyn food scene. Jacques Torres Chocolate in NYC now has five locations, and even with its success and recent growth their chocolates are still artisan-made. It was founded by master pastry chef Jacques Torres who grew up in France and in addition to selling bean-to-bar chocolate also sells champagne truffles, drinking chocolate, and other chocolate delights. Raaka chocolate in Red Hook, Brooklyn NY is also a great bean-to bar chocolate maker and makes chocolate by hand in micro-batches from virgin chocolate. Unlike bean to bar chocolate that is made from roasted cacao beans, Raaka’s chocolate instead takes high-quality cacao beans through the winnowing, grinding, milling and tempering stages without roasting them first. Cocoa Prieto and Sol Cacao are also well-known bean to bar chocolate makers based in New York.

Is Space Travel to Mars in the UAE’s Future?

In 2009, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) launched its first fully government-owned satellite into space. Five years late, the UAE Space program was launched as well. This agency directs national space programs, creates space policy and regulation, and support the development of engineers and scientists. The UAE Space Agency recently joined as a member of the International Space Exploration Coordination Group, the UAE now being the first Arab country to partake.

The program has joined many partners over the years, including it has been working with the National Space Program to encourage youth to become involved in space studies and to create opportunities for research on the International Space Station.

Recently, the UAE unveiled a new concept for a space program with plans to launch a new satellite. In addition to the satellite, it plans to send the first Arab unmanned probe to Mars. The plans are projected to be achieved by 2021. The probe that is expected to be launched on Mars by 2021 by the agency is named “Hope”. “Hope” is planned to circle Mars to collect data on the red planet’s atmosphere and surface features, including volcanoes and deserts.

Currently, approximately 75 Emirati engineers are assigned to the probe project. The agency is projecting twice as many to be working on the “Hope” project by 2020. Yousef Al Otaiba, the UAE’s Ambassador to the United States, likens this project to American historic moments, stating “This is the Arab world’s version of president Kennedy’s Moon shot – it’s a vision for the future that can engage and excite a new generation of Emirati and Arab youth.” His words capture very well the essence of the atmosphere.

Such rapid growth in this space program is making the UAE quickly the Middle East’s leading nation in space. A recent partnership with France’s CNES space agency, and networking with NASA, are both supporting that theory. Looking at the timeline of space exploration in the Middle East, from the first satellite launches for telecommunication occurring in 2000, it is clear that the Middle East is growing rapidly in this area.

In particular, “Hope” brings just that to the UAE – hope, and a vision for a very advanced program in a relatively short amount of growth years. There is no doubt that space travel to Mars, with advanced space plans like the ones described, are in the UAE’s near future.