Month: August 2019

Researchers prove existence of antiproton radiation belt around Earth

first_img Citation: Researchers prove existence of antiproton radiation belt around Earth (2011, August 5) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-08-antiproton-belt-earth.html Explore further More information: arxiv.org/abs/1107.4882 Italian researchers using data from the satellite PAMELA have proven that theories showing there ought to be a ring of antiprotons encircling the Earth due to cosmic rays colliding with nuclei in the upper atmosphere are correct. Piergiorgio Picozza from the University of Rome, Tor Vergata, and a host of colleagues have published the results of their findings in arXiv. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img © 2010 PhysOrg.com Physicists have theorized that the constant stream of cosmic rays (generally comprised of protons, electrons and helium nuclei) generated by the sun and other little understand sources must produce a shower of sorts of smaller particles when they collide with other nuclei in the Earth’s upper atmosphere and break apart. Some of those smaller particles have been assumed to be antiprotons, many of which would be annihilated when colliding with particles of ordinary matter. Those particles that don’t collide with ordinary matter however, should remain in the atmosphere, forming a belt, called the Van Allen radiation belt, around the planet. It’s this belt that the researchers set out to prove existed, which would in turn prove the whole theory to be correct.Because of the earth’s magnetic field, physicists suggest there actually exist two such radiation belts covering the planet, the outer and inner. The outer belt should be comprised of lighter particles such as positrons, while the inner belt would consist of much larger particles, such as antiprotons because the force of gravity would be able to hold them in.To test the theory, the researchers turned to the Payload for Antimatter Matter Exploration and Light-nuclei Astrophysics (PAMELA) Russian made satellite, which has a cosmic ray detector onboard and regularly passes through a particularly dense section of the Van Allen belt called the South Atlantic Anomaly.Over a period of 850 days, between July 2006 and December 2008, sensors onboard PAMELA detected 28 antiprotons, which the team says, is about three times more than would be found from a random sample of the solar wind, and constitutes the most abundant source of antiprotons ever seen near the Earth.Besides proving the Van Allen radiation belt theory correct, the discovery also opens the door to other possibilities, such as using the discovered antiprotons for manmade purposes, such as one day perhaps serving as fuel for rockets. NASA Finds Lightning Clears Safe Zone in Earth’s Radiation Beltlast_img read more

Southern Europeans have North African genes

first_img Citation: Southern Europeans have North African genes (2013, June 5) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-06-southern-europeans-north-african-genes.html New research raises doubts about whether modern humans and Neanderthals interbred © 2013 Phys.org Population geneticists have formulated three hypotheses to explain the greater genetic diversity of Southern Europeans. One says that about 20,000 years ago, people from all over Europe retreated southward to escape advancing glaciers. When the glaciers receded, only a small segment of the original population recolonized the North.A second explanation, associated with the Neolithic revolution and the development of agriculture in the Near East, about 10,000 years ago, is that people from the Near East migrated westward to Europe, with gene flow varying in different parts of the continent.The third hypothesis says that Southern Europe’s high genetic diversity was caused by recent migration from Africa to Southern Europe, related to the Roman conquest of North Africa and the Moorish occupation of the Iberian peninsula. However, previous studies suggested that Europeans and Africans share only between 1 and 3 percent of their genomes, making this scenario unlikely.These studies looked at populations from sub-Saharan Africa but excluded North African populations. To correct this oversight, Bustamante and his team analyzed data from DNA samples of 2,099 individuals in 43 different populations, including seven from North Africa and three from Spain. They found much higher levels of gene flow from Africa to Europe than earlier studies had indicated.Evidence of North African descent was highest in the Iberian Peninsula and the Canary Islands, with up to 20 percent of individual genomes reflecting shared ancestry. The analysis showed that North Africans must have migrated to Spain at least 240 to 300 years ago.Basques who live on the Iberian Peninsula were an exception. They showed lower levels of shared ancestry with North Africans, closer to those of Europeans from further north. The researchers also looked at the relationship between disease risk and their suggested migration patterns. They studied 134 diseases and found that most of them followed inheritance patterns consistent with their interpretation. However, people from North Morocco and the Western Sahara had a higher risk of multiple sclerosis than expected, while Canary Islanders had a lower risk. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img This image shows the coding region in a segment of eukaryotic DNA. Credit: National Human Genome Research Institute (Phys.org) —Southern Europeans are more genetically diverse than Northern Europeans. Geneticists have several different explanations for this phenomenon, one of which is migration from Africa to southern Europe. However, previous studies, which have relied on samples from sub-Saharan populations, have not revealed much shared ancestry between Africans and Europeans. Recognizing that there are many genetic differences between Northern and sub-Saharan Africans, Carlos Bustamante of Stanford University and his colleagues performed a DNA analysis that included North African populations. The study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, shows high levels of shared ancestry between Southern Europeans and North Africans. Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences More information: Gene flow from North Africa contributes to differential human genetic diversity in southern Europe, Published online before print June 3, 2013, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1306223110AbstractHuman genetic diversity in southern Europe is higher than in other regions of the continent. This difference has been attributed to postglacial expansions, the demic diffusion of agriculture from the Near East, and gene flow from Africa. Using SNP data from 2,099 individuals in 43 populations, we show that estimates of recent shared ancestry between Europe and Africa are substantially increased when gene flow from North Africans, rather than Sub-Saharan Africans, is considered. The gradient of North African ancestry accounts for previous observations of low levels of sharing with Sub-Saharan Africa and is independent of recent gene flow from the Near East. The source of genetic diversity in southern Europe has important biomedical implications; we find that most disease risk alleles from genome-wide association studies follow expected patterns of divergence between Europe and North Africa, with the principal exception of multiple sclerosis.last_img read more

Tiny robot able to reorient itself during jumps using actuated tail w

first_img As the researchers note, jumping is a very efficient way to avoid predators in the animal world or to get around obstacles—it consumes far less energy than maneuvering around an obstacle or taking flight. Other jumping robots have been built but on a much larger scale. The TailBot weighs just 28 grams and is a minuscule 6.5 centimeters tall. A smaller robot allows for jumping higher relative to its body size, and for surviving the impact once it returns back to Earth. The TailBot is able leap up into the air as high as 10 times its own body size. By modifying its orientation mid leap, it can prevent being damaged when it falls back down, as well as making sure it lands right side up, ensuring that it can move around again.All in all, the way the robot moves is both unique and interesting. It can roll around via wheels on flat surfaces in a lying down position (looking sort of like someone pedaling a recumbent bicycle). When it “wants” to hop, it pushes itself up into a standing position. Once upright, it crouches then releases, launching itself into the air. While it’s airborne, it moves its tail to change its center of gravity, allowing it to land in its lying down position. Also, once upright, if the robot wants to lie down (to roll around again) it uses its tail to do so in a reasonably graceful manner. Citation: Tiny robot able to reorient itself during jumps using actuated tail (w/ Video) (2013, August 16) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-08-tiny-robot-reorient-actuated-tail.html DALER project shows a walking flying robot (w/ Video) Explore further More information: www.egr.msu.edu/~zhaojia1/doku.php?id=tailbotControlling Aerial Maneuvering of a Miniature Jumping Robot Using Its Tail: www.egr.msu.edu/~zhaojia1/lib/ … tailbot_iros2013.pdf (Phys.org) —A team of researchers at Michigan State University has built a tiny robot (called the TailBot) that is capable of moving itself around on wheels, jumping and also manipulating its body while in mid-air (using its using actuated tail) to assist in a safe and controlled landing. The researchers note that others have built robots with similar abilities but to date, it is their belief that this is the first instance where all three abilities have been implemented in one robot. © 2013 Phys.org Possible uses for such a robot might include search and rescue (because it can get around objects in its path), exploration of unknown terrain (such as on another planet) or perhaps simply as a new kind of toy. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

IEA ups wind power target for global electricity by 2050

first_img © 2013 Phys.org Since 2008, wind power deployment has more than doubled, approaching 300 GW cumulative installed capacities led by China (75 GW), the United States (60 GW) and Germany (31 GW). The report notes that some European countries already draw 15 percent to 30 percent of their electricity from wind power, thanks to improvements in forecasting, increased interconnections, demand-side response and storage. Policy support has been instrumental in stimulating the growth. At the same time, the geographical pattern of deployment is rapidly changing. Countries belonging to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) led early wind development, but from 2010 non-OECD countries installed more wind turbines. After 2030, non-OECD countries will have more than 50 percent of global installed capacity. The cost of land-based wind power is close to competitive with other sources of electricity in an increasing set of circumstances. In countries such as Brazil, wind power has prevailed over fossil alternatives in auctions for long-term power purchases, thanks to the hedge it provides against possible future price increases for fossil fuels. The new report says that China will replace Europe as the top wind power producer by 2020 or 2025, with the U.S. ranking third.On two other notes, wind power is now being deployed in countries with good resources without any dedicated financial incentives. The very technology of wind power continues to improve rapidly, and costs of generation from land-based wind installations continue to fall. Turbines are higher, stronger and lighter, while masts and blades are growing faster than rated capacity. What’s more, turbines are capturing lower-speed winds and producing more regular output.Nonetheless, the IEA points to numerous challenges for the global wind sector going forward. Those challenges include grid integration, funding and overall public acceptance. For offshore wind, the report said, much remains to be done to develop appropriate large-scale systems and to reduce costs.”To achieve high penetrations of variable wind power without diminishing system reliability, improvements are needed in grid infrastructure and in the flexibility of power systems as well as in the design of electricity markets.” said the IEA. The roadmap both names the challenges and proposes a set of actions to overcome them.The IEA is an autonomous organization that was founded in response to the 1973-1974 oil crisis. Initially, the IEA took on the role of helping countries coordinate a collective response to disruptions in the oil supply through the release of emergency oil stocks to the markets. Since then the IEA has evolved and now considers itself at the heart of global dialogue on energy. The agency provides statistics, analysis and recommendations. Citation: IEA ups wind power target for global electricity by 2050 (2013, October 25) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-10-iea-ups-power-global-electricity.html Localized wind power blowing more near homes, farms and factories (Phys.org) —The new report from the International Energy Agency (IEA) is out with a forecast that wind may generate 18 percent of world electricity by 2050, which is a target higher than the 12 percent estimate posted in its earlier roadmap report in 2009. Wind power currently generates 2.6 percent of the world’s electricity. The new report that came out earlier this month titled Technology Roadmap: Wind Energy – 2013 edition, details the advances in technology that make the rise from the current 2.6 percent possible. In this 2050 scenario, it is offshore wind that will drive much of the growth, with lower costs, down 45 percent, helping to boost offshore’s share of wind power from about 2 percent now to 6 percent in 2020 and 25 percent in 2050. The report carries a number of key findings, some of which are as follows:center_img Explore further More information: www.iea.org/publications/freep … n/name,43771,en.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Contaminated Memories

first_imgI began exploring the intersection of memory and law after hearing the story of Penny Beerntsen, who was assaulted while running on a beach in 1985 — and who misidentified her assailant in the subsequent investigation. There’s a term for what she experienced: “memory contamination.” It’s when investigators influence an interview with a subject, resulting in inaccurate information. Moved by Ms. Beerntsen’s account as well as her openness about it, I wanted to help share her story more broadly. (Her case became well known when her misidentified assailant’s account was featured in the series “Making a Murderer;” the show does not include Ms. Beerntsen’s perspective.) We started working together on this documentary project, in which we tried to capture the concept of memory contamination in a visual way. Read the whole story: The New York Timeslast_img read more

Kolkatans remember Rajen Mookerjee on his 165th birthday

first_imgKolkata: The 165th birth anniversary of the architect of modern Kolkata, Rajen Mookerjee, was commemorated in the city on Saturday.At a function, floral bouquets were placed at the base of his statue at Victoria Memorial Hall. Mookerjee is the only Indian whose statue has been installed at Victoria Memorial Hall in 1938. Mookerjee, who gave Kolkata its modern look, had formed a partnership firm, Martin Burn Company, with Sir Thomas Acquinas Martin. The structures including Esplanade Manson, Victoria Memorial, Chartered Bank building in BBD Bag, Belur Math and Aakashvani Bhavan were built by Martin Burn Company. He was the chairman of the committee that had recommended construction of a cantilever bridge replacing the old pontoon bridge connecting Kolkata with Howrah.Mookerjee was born at Bhabla in North 24-Parganas.last_img read more

State mulls introduction of Marketing Groups to help SHGs

first_imgKolkata: The state government is planning to introduce Marketing Groups that will act as a link between Self-Help Groups (SHGs) and major markets and promote the products manufactured by the SHGs.With the introduction of the Marketing Groups, the SHGs will get immensely benefitted as the products manufactured by them will be marketed properly.The Marketing Groups will be procuring goods from SHGs and the same will be marketed in major markets.The state government will be extending support to the Marketing Groups and they will also be helped with bank finance. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedIt may be mentioned that the state government has taken several steps for the promotion of SHGs and to help them in taking up projects to ensure a better livelihood.Thousands of women from districts are now involved with SHGs and several steps were also taken for better marketing of their produce. Now, with the introduction of the Marketing Groups, the scope of distribution of the products prepared by SHGs will get widened and the problem of finding market for their products will no longer exist. Also Read – Naihati: 10 councillors return to TMC from BJPSince there is a need of special training for marketing a product, the Marketing Groups will be specialized in doing the same. The members of the Marketing Groups will also be from SHGs. But their main task will be to ensure a better market, promotion and sell of the goods. Hence, the members of SHGs, who are directly involved with production of goods, will no longer have to worry for the marketing of the same.There could be training programmes for the members of the Marketing Groups for skill development and promotion of goods prepared by SHGs.It may be mentioned that the state Cooperation department has also taken up the initiative of developing resource persons from Self-Help Groups for preservation and easy processing techniques of fruits and vegetables.It will help in checking the wastage of fruits and vegetables, besides making it available in off-seasons. At the same time, it will also create job opportunities for many.last_img read more

Fair to showcase intimate apparel

first_imgTaking Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recently launched “Make in India” initiative forward, the Intimate Apparel Association of India (IAAI) will hold a two-day trade fair that will focus on intimate wear manufacturing in India. Santosh Kumar Gangwar, Minister of State for Textiles (Independent Charge)will inaugurate the exhibition. The Joint Secretary for Textile Exports, Sunaina Tomar and Arti Mehra, General Secretary, BJP, will also be present. The exhibition will be held at Crowne Plaza, Rohini on August 26 and 27. This year, in the fourth edition of India’s biggest intimate apparel trade fair, Galleria Intima, one of the focal points is the development of the intimate apparel sector of the country—to make it emerge as the next major hub of intimate wear manufacturing. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The show will focus on the strengths of the Indian industry that can be leveraged to position India as a leading manufacturing destination for intimate wear. The event will showcase all the elements of intimate apparel such as fibres, laces, hooks and overall packaging. It is expected to draw visitors from a wide variety of sectors including brand owners, manufacturers of intimate wear, designers, export houses, large format retailers and online retailers. More than 1000 brands from India alone are expected to visit along with 80 exhibitors from 10 plus countries.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixAbout 15 Chinese companies are also expected to participate, bringing with them their storehouse of raw materials, making the fourth Galleria Intima exhibition, an all-encompassing platform for intimate apparel.At Galleria Intima 2015, the central aim would be to proceed with  Make In India initiative and sell the “Made in India” products in the International market as well as derive the benefit of increasing domestic consumption.India’s global trade of apparels for the financial year 2013 stood at $379 billion, out of which only nine per cent of this total outcome was occupied by the intimate wear category, thus highlighting the immense untapped opportunity this sector represents.  The intimate apparel category includes a vast range of clothing items, varying from lingerie, underwear, loungewear and nightwear to shape-wear, swimwear, socks, stockings and more. India has seen a remarkable growth in exports through the years as well, with intimate wear accounting for $1.2 billion in the financial year 2013, a contribution of 4 per cent of total global trade in the intimate apparel category.India has an abundance of raw materials as well as a large pool of inexpensive workforce to provide cost effective solutions to lingerie manufacturing. Not only this, India also presents a growing middle-class, fashion-conscious consumer market that demands top quality products from well-established global brands.last_img read more

CM holds meet with vicechairman of Niti Aayog

first_imgKolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee held a meeting with Niti Aayog’s vice-chairman Rajiv Kumar at Nabanna on Tuesday. Finance minister Amit Mitra and Chief Secretary Malay De were also present in the meeting.The Chief Minister had detailed discussions with the vice-chairman over certain issues. Kumar entered the state secretariat at around 1 pm and stayed till around 3.15 pm. There were also discussions over various issues to ensure further development. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeIt may be recalled that it had not been possible for Banerjee to attend the meeting of the sub-group of Chief Ministers, for coordination of policy approach on agriculture sector and the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS), held on July 12, as she had received the notice in this connection just a couple of days ahead of her administrative review meeting in North Bengal.However, she had given her suggestions for consideration in the meeting, stating that “all attempts have to be made to increase the income of farmers substantially within the shortest possible time and for this purpose, all the programmes of the government have to be converged on farmers’ welfare.” Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedShe had also urged for adequate budgetary provision by the Centre to ensure that individual loans for farmers, especially small and marginal ones, are waived. At the same time, minimum support price for procurement of major crops of different states must be declared and an institutional mechanism may be put in place to ensure that the farmers get the minimum support price, besides ensuring Kisan Credit Cards for all farmers with provision of average loan of Rs 2 lakh.Another crucial meeting was held in the state secretariat on Tuesday between the Finance ministers of Bengal and Punjab. Bengal Finance minister Amit Mitra had a detailed discussion with his counterpart from Punjab Manpreet Singh Badal on Tuesday evening and the meeting continued for more than an hour.last_img read more

Writing has always been my passion Kapil sibal

first_imgOther than being a politician, Kapil Sibal, is also a passionate writer and a poet. He has recently written the lyrics for a song ‘Tere Bina’, for an upcoming film Shorgul, voiced by Arijit Singh. When Millennium Post approached him to gather knowledge of his experience in debuting into Bollywood, a happy Kapil Sibal opened up his mind and spoke about his journey.Please enlighten us on the storyline of Shorgul and your song in it. Shorgul is a political drama that brings out real life relatable issues with a contemporary twist. The script is gripping and it throws light on various subjects of today. It highlights the misuse of religion and brushes upon various stereotypical ideologies that are detrimental to our society and nation. Overall, it has a strong message and anyone who sees this film is definitely going to get up and think and question and take a stand.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’With such a wonderous Political Drama I immediately connected with the subject and decided to write lyrics for it. I’m sure is going to create a lot of conversation upon releasing.‘Tere Bina’- These two words say it all. It’ s a magical romantic song, that envelopes a mix bag of feelings – love, separation,belongingness, hope, craving for the loved one. Once I met Niladri Kumar and we go to work on the track, from inception to the final product, it took at least a month or more. I really wanted the lyrics to do justice to the emotion of the character, and only add to the wonderful melody composed by Niladri. When I heard his instrumental ‘Tere Bina’ it stirred such emotion that with words I only wanted it to fair better.  I was constantly in touch with Samira(CEO 24FPS and Creative Head) and together she kept pushing my potential, till we thought that we found the best fit. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixWhat led you to venture into Bollywood as a film lyricist?I have always been writing poetry, and my works have been published in two books. However, cinema remains the widest platform of expression and reach. I had the opportunity to decide to write lyrics for Bollywood, when I was in conversation with various people from the industry. It’s been an interesting journey. Although ‘Tere Bina’ from Shorgul is always going to be a memorable experience for me.What are your favourite genres of films?I enjoy watching any film that has a gripping story line, fine acting and is along the line of strong human emotion. I enjoy some of the old Hindi movies quite a lot.Which was the last movie that you enjoyed watching a lot?It’s been a while since I saw a film. After Shorgul’s release on June 24, is when you should ask me this question. (smiles)Who are you favourite movie directors in India?India has a talented lot of filmmakers and I enjoy their work. Rakesh Om Prakash Mehra, Imtiaz Ali, Anurag Kashyap, Raju Hirani they’re all great and make super films.Please tell us about your inspiration behind writingWriting has always been my passion. I find it the strongest medium to express what I feel and experience in a simple manner. When I have a fleeting thought or a memory, writing becomes a mechanism for me to encapsulate it and allow it to be shared with anybody who can connect with it.last_img read more