NASA Marks 20 Years Since Space Shuttle Columbia Disaster
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – As part of its annual tribute to astronauts who died in space, NASA remembered and honored the 20th anniversary of the Columbia space shuttle disaster on Thursday.
More than 100 people gathered at Kennedy Space Center under a grey sky to remember not only Columbia’s crew of seven but also the 18 other astronauts killed in the line of duty. More than half of the names etched into the black granite of the Space Mirror Memorial result from NASA’s two shuttle accidents; the rest result from plane crashes.
The Columbia astronaut family members did not attend the morning ceremony. But local rabbi Zvi Konikov remembered that Israel’s first astronaut, Ilan Ramon, asked him how to keep the Sabbath while in orbit for two weeks and seeing multiple sunsets daily.
“Ilan delivered a powerful message to us. We must pause and reflect on why we are here on Earth, no matter how fast we are moving or how important our work is, and that is what we are doing today. “We take a moment to remember all those brave souls,” Konikov said.
NASA Ship Was Destroyed Feb. 2003
Columbia was destroyed during reentry on February 1, 2003, because a piece of foam from the fuel tank had broken off and pierced the left wing 16 days earlier when the ship was taking off. The shuttle broke up over Texas only 16 minutes before it was supposed to land in Florida.
Despite the concerns of others, NASA managers dismissed the impact during the flight. The shuttle Challenger was lost during liftoff on January 28, 1986, killing all seven people on board, including schoolteacher Christa McAuliffe.
On January 27, 1967, three astronauts were killed when the Apollo 1 launch pad caught fire.
Because these three dates are so close, NASA dedicates the last Thursday of January to remembering its fallen astronauts. Flags were lowered to half-staff at space centers across the country, and ceremonies were held alongside spaceflight safety discussions.
Former shuttle commander Bob Cabana, an associate administrator at NASA, says that the loss of Columbia could have been prevented, just like other tragedies at NASA.
Three Astronauts Killed
“Why do we have to keep repeating the same difficult lessons?” he asked. “I never want to have to go through Columbia again.”
Columbia’s previous crew included commander Rick Husband, pilot Willie McCool, Michael Anderson, Kalpana Chawla, David Brown, Laurel Clark, and Ramon.
As the ceremony ended, a ship’s bell rang for each of the 25 names read.
Bob and Diane Ka lander’s sailing trip from Jamestown, Rhode Island, to Florida’s Key West was cut short of honoring the shuttle crews. Their daughter and her boyfriend also came to Kennedy.
“People’s memories are fading,” Diane Kalander said. “There has been a de-emphasis on space because people say, ‘Let’s worry about problems on Earth rather than future problems.'” We need to think about the future.”
SOURCE – (AP)
UN Head Says Survival Depends On How People Manage Water In 2023
WATER The United Nations Humanity’s survival depends on how people manage water, said United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Friday at the close of a three-day conference on global water resources, during which developing countries made urgent requests for assistance with cleaner drinking water and better sanitation.
In his final remarks, Guterres stated, “All of humanity’s hopes for the future depend, in some way, on charting a new course to sustainably manage and conserve water.”
He stated that water “needs to be at the center of the global political agenda” and that this implies more aggressive action against climate change.
According to the United Nations World Water Development Report, released on the eve of the conference, 26% of the world’s population—2 billion people — lacks access to safe drinking water, while 46% — 3.6 billion people — lack access to basic sanitation. According to UN studies, nearly half the world’s population will face acute water stress by 2030.
Many rhetorical pledges to enhance water supply were made at the conference, but there needed to be more precise commitments to translate aspirations into better daily lives for regular people.
Throughout the meeting, water-stressed states, particularly those in the developing world
“We have such lovely, ambitious initiatives,” said Lina Taing, senior researcher at the global think tank United Nations University.
“We know that we are completely off track,” she stated, regarding providing them with clean water and sanitation. Taing stated that the world’s actions must be increased “fourfold.”
Throughout the meeting, water-stressed states, particularly those in the developing world, told U.N. members of their need for international aid to provide their people with drinking water and sanitation facilities.
“Waging a war on two fronts at the same time to address water issues and climate change is no easy task, especially for a small island nation like Kiribati, which has very limited resources at its disposal,” said Teburoro Tito, the United Nations representative for the Pacific island nation of fewer than 200,000 people. He claimed that Kiribati was particularly unprepared to deal with natural calamities.
SOURCE – (AP)
Dr. Mario Molina, 1995 Nobel Prize Winner Recognized By Google Doodle.
Dr. Mario Molina, a Mexican chemist who successfully persuaded governments to collaborate to save the planet’s ozone layer, has been recognized by Google Doodle. Molina died of a heart attack in 2020 at 77.
Dr. Molina, a Nobel Laureate in Chemistry in 1995, was one of the researchers who discovered how chemicals deplete the Earth’s ozone shield, which is critical for protecting humans, plants, and wildlife from harmful ultraviolet light.
Chemicals in hair spray and refrigerators have been wreaking havoc on the ozone layer, the protective shroud that shields us from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet radiation, for years. However, it wasn’t until 1974 that people started paying attention.
Mexican scientist Mario Molina published a study that year demonstrating that chlorofluorocarbons, widely used in refrigerator coolants, spray paint, deodorant sprays, and other aerosol products, depleted the ozone layer. The consequences were dire because our planet would be uninhabitable if the ozone layer did not protect us from the sun. His work had an impact on global environmental policy.
On Molina’s 80th birthday, Google created a Doodle to honor his pioneering efforts to combat an environmental disaster.
Dr. Mario Molina received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1995. He was one of the scientists who discovered how chemicals deplete the Earth’s ozone shield.
Dr. Mario Molina, born on March 19, 1943, in Mexico City, was drawn to science at a young age, converting his home’s bathroom into a makeshift laboratory for his chemistry sets.
“I was already fascinated by science before entering high school,” wrote Dr. Mario Molina in his Nobel biography. “I remember being ecstatic when I first saw paramecia and amoebae through a rather primitive toy microscope.”
After being sent to a Swiss boarding school at 11, Molina returned to Mexico to study chemical engineering at the National Autonomous University of Mexico before receiving a doctorate in physical chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1972.
In 2013, President Obama awarded Molina the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor in the United States.
President Barack Obama awarded Dr. Mario Molina the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2013, the highest civilian honor in the United States.
A year later, while working with F. Sherwood Rowland of the University of California, Irvine, Molina discovered that CFCs in the upper atmosphere could be broken down by ultraviolet radiation, releasing chlorine atoms that destroyed ozone molecules.
Their findings were published in the journal Nature in 1974.
Their findings were slammed by CFC-using industries, with one executive claiming that the pair’s theory was “orchestrated by the Ministry of Disinformation of the KGB.” On the other hand, British scientists discovered a massive hole in the ozone layer over Antarctica in 1985.
Because of this discovery, governments worldwide signed the Montreal Protocol in the 1980s to phase out the use of ozone-depleting substances. The agreement has been dubbed “the most successful international effort to combat climate change and environmental degradation” by Science magazine.
In 1995, Molina and Rowland were awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry alongside Paul J. Crutzen of the Max Planck Institute in Germany. In announcing the award, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences stated that the researchers “have contributed to our salvation from a global environmental problem that could have catastrophic consequences.”
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Scientists Create Mice With Cells From 2 Males For 1st Time
Scientists have produced baby mice from two guys for the first time.
Although specialists caution that only a few mice embryos matured into live mouse pups, and no one knows whether it will work for humans, this raises the remote potential of employing the same approach on people.
But even so, “It’s a pretty creative method,” said Diana Laird, a stem cell and reproductive person at the University of California, who was not involved in the study. It’s a crucial phase in both reproductive biology and stem cell research.
Researchers revealed their work in a paper published in the journal Nature on Wednesday.
First, they created “induced pluripotent stem cells” from skin cells removed from the tails of male mice. These cells can differentiate into a variety of different cell or tissue types. They then developed functioning egg cells by converting male mouse stem cells into female cells by expanding them and administering medication. The embryos were then placed into female mice after being fertilized. 7 of the 630 embryos, or around 1%, developed into living mouse pups.
Last week, scientists at the Third International Conference on Human Genome Editing heard from research leader Katsuhiko Hayashi of Kyushu University and Osaka University in Japan that the pups appeared to develop properly and could become parents on their own in a typical way.
Laird and her colleague Jonathan Bayerl wrote a commentary that was published alongside the Nature publication in which they stated that the work “opens up new pathways in reproductive biology and mice fertility research” for both people and animals. In the future, it is feasible to procreate endangered mammals from a single male.
Unclear why so few embryos implanted into surrogate mice survived.
They said it “could even give a pattern for enabling more people to produce biological children while avoiding the ethical and legal concerns of donor eggs,” such as male same-sex couples.
However, they issued multiple warnings. Which is the most notable? The method could be more effective. They claimed it was unclear why so few embryos implanted into surrogate mice survived; there may be technical or biological reasons for this. However, they emphasized that it is still too early to determine whether the approach would even function with human stem cells.
Before employing stem cells to create eggs, Laird added that researchers must consider the mutations and mistakes that might be made in a culture dish.
The most recent study explores novel approaches to in vitro mouse embryogenesis. This summer, researchers in Israel and California developed “synthetic” mouse embryos from stem cells that lacked a mother’s ovum or egg. Up to 8 12 days after conception, those mice embryos had the same characteristics as typical mouse embryos, including one that resembled a beating heart. The achievement, according to scientists, could one day serve as a model for producing artificial human embryos for future research.
SOURCE – (AP)
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