NASA wants your help bringing back pieces of a potentially hazardous asteroid

Posted On Sep 10 2019 by

first_imgOriginally published May 23.  Comment NASA’s on a mission to collect space dirt from a potentially… Tags NASA Space 12 Photos All that’s needed to hang out on the asteroid is a mapping app, a screen large enough to clearly see images of the asteroid’s surface and a mouse or trackpad that can make precise marks. 5:24 Explore asteroid Ryugu with Japan’s Hayabusa 2 spacecraft An interactive tutorial explains how to get around the CosmoQuest app circling craters, measuring boulders and erasing mistakes. CosmoQuest, a project run out of the Planetary Science Institute that supports citizen science initiatives, offers additional user assistance through an online community where mappers can share tips and high-fives and ask questions. CosmoQuest also shares guidance through livestreaming sessions on Twitch. The original design for capturing a piece of the space rock was based on locating a hazard-free zone with a 160-foot (25-meter) radius on Bennu’s surface. However, because of the unexpectedly rocky terrain, the team is yet to identify such a site.The volunteer asteroid mapping is straightforward work that involves dragging and dropping, an eye for detail and a bit of perseverance. When I signed up Wednesday night at about 9 p.m. PT, more than 70 “Bennu Mappers” were online scouring the asteroid’s surface. The Bennu mapping campaign continues through July 10.asteroidAn easy-to-follow tutorial helps Bennu Mappers get going. Screenshot by Leslie Katz/CNET Bennu measures about 1,600 feet (500 meters), only slightly wider than the height of the Empire State Building, and is considered potentially hazardous. “There’s a very small chance that it will impact Earth in the next century,” Burns has said. Which means you probably don’t need to get out your helmet just yet.In its first five months communing with Bennu, Osiris-Rex has already discovered trapped water and determined that Bennu is between 100 million and a billion years old, making it significantly more mature than predicted. But the mission’s coup de theatre, the sample grab, won’t take place until 2020. That’s when the spacecraft’s fancy robotic arm will reach out and tag the asteroid’s surface with its Touch-And-Go Sample Arm Mechanism, or Tagsam.While touching the rock, the arm will blow a burst of nitrogen gas to loosen up bits of debris that will be then be brought back to Earth when the spacecraft returns in September 2023.The asteroid may contain unaltered material from the beginning of our solar system. The hope is that Bennu’s cargo will yield insights into astronomical processes and resources in near-Earth space and improve our understanding of asteroids that could impact Earth.  Share your voice A view of asteroid Bennu’s surface itaken by the PolyCam camera on NASA’s Osiris-Rex on March 21 from a distance of 2.2 miles (3.5 kilometers).  NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona Before NASA’s Osiris-Rex spacecraft can reach out and grab a piece of asteroid Bennu, it needs to find a safe spot on the space rock’s surface. And for that, NASA wants your help. Osiris-Rex, which arrived at Bennu on Dec. 3, 2018, aims to become the first US spacecraft to return a sample from an asteroid to Earth. Japan’s Hayabusa mission brought back asteroid particles in 2010, with another asteroid-wrangling mission out of Japan under way this year.Since the NASA craft arrived at Bennu, the team has discovered an extremely rocky terrain that threatens the vehicle’s safety. So NASA is asking volunteers to develop a hazard map by measuring Bennu’s boulders and mapping its rocks and craters via a web interface. “Bennu has surprised us with an abundance of boulders,” Rich Burns, Osiris-Rex project manager at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, said in a statement. “We ask for citizen scientists’ help to evaluate this rugged terrain so that we can keep our spacecraft safe during sample collection operations.” 1 Now playing: Watch this: Sci-Tech Being Bennu Visit to Bennu reveals rubble trouble and seeds of life Osiris-Rex finds water in its first week at asteroid Bennu Spacecraft drops into orbit around asteroid Bennulast_img read more


Sri Lanka beefs up tourist hotspot security after violence

Posted On Sep 3 2019 by

first_imgAn elephant plays basketball during a show at the national zoological gardens in Colombo, Sri Lanka March 21,2018. File photo : ReutersSri Lanka announced Friday it would establish new police posts and step up patrols at popular resorts after a spate of sexual attacks and violence targeting foreign tourists.Police chief Pujith Jayasundara said 20 new stations would be established at holiday hotspots to protect visitors from touts and criminals, despite concerns his force was already overstretched.”I wish we had more men and resources for this job, but we are making adjustments to our deployments to ensure better productivity,” Jayasundara said.He added the measures were decided after a Dutch tourist was sexually harassed and several other tourists were assaulted by a gang at a hotel in the southern resort town of Mirissa last week.Five Israeli tourists were beaten up in the same area this week and 14 men have been arrested over the two incidents, police said. Local media reports have catalogued several sexual harassment complaints by foreign tourists, with many reluctant to make official complaints for fear of drawn-out court proceedings.Tourism Minister John Amaratunga appealed to victims to come forward and promised to cover the expenses of those who return to the island to help identify perpetrators.The US State Department warned last year that sexual crimes against women were on the rise in Sri Lanka.While most reported incidents involved non-physical acts such as cat calls and verbal harassment, there were several serious incidents of sexual threats, groping and rape.”Incidents have also occurred at tourist beaches and smaller hotels in the Southern province,” the travel advisory noted.In 2014, a Sri Lankan court sentenced a local politician and three of his supporters to 20 years in jail for the 2011 murder of British tourist Khuram Shaikh on Christmas Eve and gang rape of his Russian partner.Shaikh, a 32-year-old Red Cross worker, had tried to stop a brawl at a southern beach resort when a gang attacked and killed him.His girlfriend, who was knocked unconscious in the brutal assault, returned to Sri Lanka in 2014 to give evidence and identified one of her attackers in court.last_img read more


Taming makes wave in Indias hair care industry

Posted On Aug 31 2019 by

first_imgThe beauty and hair care industry in India is witnessing a growth with new products and processes making inroads every season. Hair taming is one such method that seems to have made it big in the “evolved” hair care industry as women are loving the “no side effects and no harmful chemicals” procedure. Talking about the changing trends, experts say: “Earlier, when women used to use heat appliances like straightening iron, blow dryers onto their strands or undergo hair treatments like rebonding, hair smoothening, they faced many difficulties with the texture of the hair, which resulted in dissatisfaction. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf”When hair taming came into the Indian market, people gradually started getting the hold of it. Hair taming gives the desired texture to the hair with its 100 per cent protein treatment known as keratin, which is infused into the cuticles to make hair healthier and shinier.”Speaking further, they revealed how hair taming has become a new age trend in the market as it rejuvenates strands from the roots while relaxing it. “As compared to rebonding or hair smoothening, taming involves more natural protein-based process which uses relatively fewer chemicals. Women prefer hair taming rather than going for artificial hair treatments because it helps them in managing hair easily, without any worries of frizz and damage,” experts told. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe treatment lasts for up to 4 months depending upon quality of the hair. It conditions hair while infusing natural keratin deep into the cuticle of the hair shaft. There is no better treatment than this when it comes to silky, smooth and frizz free hair. Hair taming treatment has been successful so far in delivering these results which is why even the biggest brands are getting into this treatment.The future of hair care industry lies in the products and treatments which restore the hair back to natural state with no side effects, no harmful chemicals and no artificial look, one of the experts, who has been observing the changing trends pointed out. “The changes were less prominent and slow in the beginning as people were in the process of adapting this change. But by the 20th century, keratin treatment became a hype in the market across the globe and that’s how eventually all the big brands and salons started including keratin treatment in their products and services,” experts said.Many brands are focusing on keratin treatments for smooth hair. So how effective is it for long hair and how can one avoid the complications?”After getting the treatment done, one has to be very careful while buying hair products and has to look into the chemicals and ingredients added to it. Try switching to sulphate-free products which keeps the moisture intact. Also, some shampoos will have keratin infused in them. These are great as long as they don’t contain sulphate,” they stated.Also, though there are no hard and fast rules before getting the keratin treatment done, it’s still better if you don’t have any metallic dyes or henna coating on your hair as that doesn’t get you the great results. However, post treatments, you need to take care of a few things for two days — like don’t tie your hair back, stay away from heat and sweat and other little things. Avoiding such factors would help you to get the best results.Also, it is vital that after the treatment, you only use sulphate-free shampoos and the shampoos that are specially created for post-keratin treatment. Doing so elongates the life of the treatment and gives you frizz free hair for a longer period,” said an expert.last_img read more