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Astronomy & Space

NASA selects 9 groups to check unopened Apollo moon samples

March 14, 2019 • By
Apollo 17 commander Gene Cernan approaches the crew’s lunar rover throughout one among three sample-collection moonwalks in the course of the remaining Apollo mission in 1972. Unopened samples from that flight and two others are being made accessible to 9 analysis groups. Picture: NASA

NASA has chosen 9 analysis groups to analyse pristine samples of lunar soil returned to Earth by the Apollo astronauts and left untouched for the previous 5 many years. The U.S. house company has allotted $eight million for the analysis below the Apollo Subsequent Technology Pattern Evaluation program, or ANGSA.

“When the previous generations did Apollo, they knew that the technology they had in that day was not the technology we would have in this day,” mentioned NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. “So they (decided) to preserve samples, because they knew there would be a day when better technology would be able to better assess the history of the moon.”

Bridenstine made the announcement whereas unveiling NASA’s $21.5 billion 2020 finances request from the Trump administration, a finances that helps the company’s plans to return astronauts to the moon by 2028.

“We have nine teams that will be examining nine unopened samples that have come back from the moon,” the administrator mentioned. “We feel like we can do that because there are more lunar samples on the horizon where we’re going to be able to learn more than we’ve ever learned about the moon before. So I’d like to thank the Apollo generation for preserving these samples so that our generation can have this opportunity.”

The samples have been collected in the course of the Apollo 15, 16 and 17 missions. An Apollo 17 pattern, for instance, can be studied by the College of New Mexico’s Institute of Meteoritics, which can obtain about 800 grams (1.eight kilos) of fabric from a core pattern that was sealed in a vacuum container on the floor of the moon.

The group will measure the chemical constituents of the pattern and “prepare us to explore and sample potential resources for future human activities,” mentioned analysis assistant Charles Shearer. “Further, this will be the first analysis of a core through a lunar landslide deposit and will further our understanding of the timing, triggers, and dynamics of these events. The deposit may contain new lunar rocks never sampled before.”

One other pattern can be assessed by Darby Dyar on the Planetary Science Institute.

“This project brings massive state-of-the-art synchrotron and infrared analysis to bear on tiny lunar samples to unlock the secrets of the lunar interior,” mentioned Dyar, a senior scientist at PSI. “We will use state-of-the-art synchrotron technology and a mapping FTIR spectrometer to measure gradients of volatiles ­ hydrogen and oxygen – preserved in lunar glass beads.”

Such beads are shaped by “rapid cooling of droplets from explosive lunar fire fountains, like those seen in Hawaii,” she mentioned. “We will map changes from core to rim that reveal hydrogen and oxygen pressures in the lunar interior and before, during, and after eruption.”

One other analysis group, led by Jessica Barnes, an incoming assistant professor on the College of Arizona’s Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, will search for traces of water in a 110-gram (four ounce) pattern that was collected by the Apollo 17 crew. Like the opposite samples, the soil was moved right into a freezer inside a month of the astronauts’ return.

“The question we want to answer is, are we measuring the true Moon signature? Or are there terrestrial influences that have affected the samples during their storage?” Barnes mentioned. “The beauty of a frozen sample is that it’s been kept curated in a different way from the samples stored at room temperature. We could not do this research without opening the frozen samples.”


Crimson Sox proprietor John Henry says spending extra tends to helps groups win

February 19, 2019 • By

FORT MYERS, Fla. — In obvious contradiction to his personal commissioner, Boston Crimson Sox proprietor John Henry stated Monday that, whereas there’s not an ideal correlation between an even bigger payroll and profitable, “spending more money helps.”

His Crimson Sox had the very best payroll within the sport in 2018 and received their fourth World Collection title since Henry grew to become principal proprietor of the franchise in 2002. Throughout a media session on Sunday in West Palm Seashore, commissioner Rob Manfred, addressing the chilly free-agent winter that has Bryce Harper and Manny Machado nonetheless unsigned, stated, “I reject the notion that payroll is a good measure for how much a team is trying or how successful that team is going to be.”

  • Aiming to hurry up the tempo of play in baseball, Main League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred says the league will start implementing pitch clocks in spring coaching video games.

Requested about that remark and whether or not there’s a correlation between spending and profitable, Henry replied, “I think the Baltimore payroll was double what the Tampa payroll was last year. Close to double. There is a correlation, I’m sure there is a correlation, but it’s not as perfect. It’s very difficult to predict things in baseball, to predict player performance. Spending more money helps.”

Many imagine the luxurious tax is working as a de facto wage cap, driving down spending, particularly in free company. Henry did not fully agree with that assertion, nevertheless.

“It has an influence, but the biggest influence is trying not to lose money,” he stated. “I was talking to an owner of a big team at the owners’ meeting and he had the same viewpoint. It’s not the luxury tax he worries about. … Even though people are frustrated and the players are frustrated with free agency, we’re finding ways to spend money on other areas in baseball.”

The Crimson Sox and Nationals have been the one groups to exceed the $197 million luxurious tax threshold in 2018, with the Crimson Sox paying an $11.95 million penalty. The mixed penalty between the Crimson Sox and Nationals was lower than $15 million, the primary time the mixed tax was that low since 2003. The tax threshold will increase to $206 million for 2019 after which $208 million and $210 million the following two seasons.

Baseball reported income of $9.four billion in 2018, up from $9.1 billion in 2017, however general spending on crew payroll declined $18 million, the primary lower since 2010 and solely the second drop since 2004.

Throughout an interview final Friday on 590 The Fan in St. Louis, Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright stated, “I think unless something changes, there’s gonna be a strike 100 percent. I don’t think anybody’s hiding that. I just worry people are going to walk out midseason.”

The present collective bargaining settlement between the house owners and gamers expires after the 2021 season. Henry was on the negotiating committee that struck that deal and advised if the union is sad, it wants to return to the desk with concepts.

Requested about Wainwright’s remark, Henry stated, “That is loopy. Lots has been stated concerning the free-agent market, however it’s a free-agent market. It is a free market, and a free market does not at all times do what you need it to do.

“It is vital for the union to have interaction firsthand on what they want to change. This has been a sequence of negotiations that led to the sort of market we’ve right now.”

Henry and crew chairman Tom Werner additionally addressed the crew’s potential signing of Chris Sale and Xander Bogaerts to long-term extensions. Each are eligible free of charge company after the 2019 season, and each have had discussions with the crew.

Henry addressed Sale, saying, “He is a particular participant. We might love to have the ability to signal him, and he want to, as effectively, however there are the realities of {the marketplace}, budgets. That is his alternative to be a free agent. We might wish to keep away from it, and I feel he would, as effectively, so one thing may occur.”

Requested if the gradual free-agent market may doubtlessly assist the Crimson Sox signal each gamers, since they could be uncertain about what would possibly occur in free company, Werner was extra elusive.

“Clearly, we’re at a time limit — I feel individuals are referring to the truth that Bryce Harper and Manny Machado have not signed — however at this level final 12 months, we hadn’t signed J.D. Martinez, so in some methods I feel we are able to reply that query higher in a month.”

The Crimson Sox ended up giving Martinez a five-year, $110 million contract that features opt-out clauses after each the 2019 and 2020 seasons. He responded with a monster season, hitting .330 with 43 house runs and a league-leading 130 RBIs and ending fourth within the MVP vote.