Scientific Science and Technology

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Casual discussion on the breakthrough sciences and technologies which may transform our future.

DARPA’s LUKE Arm
 

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Elon Musk’s Neuralink - Developing ultra high bandwidth brain-machine interfaces to connect humans and computers.
 

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STARLINK - SpaceX is developing a low latency, broadband internet system to meet the needs of consumers across the globe.
 

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Study finds those who did at least an hour per week of weight training had a 40%-70% lower risk of heart attack or stroke compared with those who did not exercise

.)
 

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GPU computing, the way we perceive simulations is changing rapidly, despite of drawbacks in earlier times of GPU computing, particularly due to instruction sets and memory limitations, recent developments has brought GPUs to a new level which can communicate with each other, with enormous amount of memory and fully-fledged libraries.
Parallel computing has already been a leap in history, gpu based computing is another and far higher leap accelerating simulations and allowing new set-ups to run and better optimization routines to be implemented.
The scale of simulations vary from sub atomic level, to the scale of the earth or even solar system, or the universe.

Fluid simulations

Vaccine development

Journey to the Mars
 

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PIPISTREL BEGINS TO ACCEPT ORDERS FOR NUUVA SERIES OF CARGO EVTOL AIRCRAFT


The flagship Nuuva V300 is a revolutionary long-range large-capacity heavy-weight autonomous eVTOL UAV for logistics and aerial cargo delivery. It operates 10x more economically than today’s helicopters, requires no runways, and brings enhanced safety and reliability using type-certified electric engines. The convenience of the smaller Nuuva V20 also unlocks last-mile delivery missions.

AJDOVŠČINA, SLOVENIA – 1 September 2020: Pipistrel, the pioneer of Type Certified electric aviation, is presenting the Nuuva V300 as the flagship model of the Nuuva series of unmanned air vehicles (UAV). This one‑of‑a‑kind aircraft embodies our vision to disrupt aerial cargo transportation by commercializing the use of electrical vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) vehicles. The highly customizable autonomous aircraft can carry up to 460 kg, is easy and economical to operate, and offers the efficiency and reliability of electric powertrains. Entry into service is planned for the second half of 2023.

Currently, precious cargo is delivered to many locations around the world with helicopters, which are excellent for hovering but much less efficient in cruise flight, as they rely solely on their rotor(s) to provide the necessary lift. Their complex flight mechanics also results in a high number of moving parts, requiring frequent maintenance and inspection, further increasing the costs of operation.

The Nuuva family combines the best of both aeroplane and helicopter air cargo transportation principles. The unmanned eVTOL capability enables it to go where no aeroplane is able to, while its hybrid configuration allows it to operate at a fraction of the cost of a helicopter on an equivalent mission. The Nuuva V300, with its simplicity, efficiency, and autonomy, is targeting to deliver a 10x improvement in economics to the operator.

Reliable and simple to operate
The large cargo compartment accepts up to 3 Euro-pallets (EPAL) that can be easily loaded with a regular forklift. The Nuuva V300 then flies a preloaded flight plan fully autonomously, controlled by a highly reliable digital flight control system. Continuous communication allows the ground operator, who manages the vehicle with simple mouse-clicks, to have ultimate control in case of changes or cancellation of the flight.

The Nuuva V300 takes-off and lands using eight independent battery-powered Pipistrel E-811 electric engines, already Type Certified. The whole system is safeguarded by the integrated health self‑monitoring system that alerts of any potential malfunction even before it occurs, increasing the reliability and safety. Nuuva V300’s batteries can be charged by simply plugging-in to a SkyChargeTM by Pipistrel and Green Motion charging station.

A dependable and proven internal combustion engine in the aft fuselage powers the aircraft in cruise flight, offering unbeatable fuel economy and low maintenance costs. A unique tandem-wing configuration with fly-by-wire control surfaces boosts the aerodynamic efficiency and reduces the landing footprint of the vehicle, while assuring a wide centre-of-gravity margin.

Flexibility at a low cost
The Nuuva V300 can be customized for a wide range of missions. For operators that prioritize longer range, the vehicle’s payload capacity and anti-ice capabilities can be traded-off for more usable fuel, being able to transport 50-kg payload for as far as 2,500 km – all this without compromising the ability to take-off and land vertically from altitudes as high as 8,000 ft. At lower take-off altitudes and with shorter mission requirements, the payload can be increased to up to 460 kg, beating the coveted 1,000 lb threshold.

Nuuva V20, the last-mile delivery shuttle
The smaller sibling of the Nuuva family, the V20, shares the same architecture and advantages of the larger V300 but is designed as a lightweight cargo courier carrying payloads of up to 20 kg. First customers will be able to take deliveries as early as 2021.

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Wilderness-1030x579.jpg



 

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With latest Starlink launch, SpaceX touts 100 Mbps download speeds and ‘space lasers’

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SpaceX’s latest batch of Starlink satellites deploying into space. Image: SpaceX


During the launch of its latest batch of internet-beaming Starlink satellites, SpaceX revealed key details about the planned constellation’s abilities, claiming that the satellites have shown “super low latency and download speeds greater than 100 mbps.” The speeds are still not as fast as what SpaceX originally claimed for the constellation, but they are slightly faster than what early user testing has shown.

Starlink is SpaceX’s ambitious plan to launch nearly 12,000 satellites into low orbits around Earth in order to provide broadband coverage to the ground below. Users of the system are meant to tap into the constellation using personal antennas on the ground, what SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has described as looking like a “UFO on a stick.” Early photos of the device have been revealed in the source code of SpaceX’s Starlink website.

“INITIAL RESULTS HAVE BEEN GOOD.”

After today’s launch, SpaceX has put more than 700 satellites in orbit, more than the 400 needed to provide “initial operational capability,” according to Musk, and close to the 800 needed to provide “significant operational capabilities.” This summer, SpaceX began early beta testing of the constellation, with employees using Starlink to test out the download speeds. “The Starlink team has been collecting latency statistics and performing standard speed tests of the system,” Kate Tice, senior program reliability engineer at SpaceX, said during the launch broadcast today. “This means that we’re checking how fast data travels from the satellites to our customers, and then back to the rest of the internet. Initial results have been good.”


Tice stated that the download speeds were greater than 100 megabytes per second (MBps), while SpaceX’s Twitter account repeated that claim. The statement seemed to be an error, though, as SpaceX then deleted the tweet to clarify that the download speeds were actually 100 megabits per second (Mbps). Tice also said the latency speeds have been “low enough to play the fastest online video games, and our download speed is fast enough to stream multiple HD movies at once and still have bandwidth to spare.”

“OUR NETWORK, OF COURSE, IS VERY MUCH A WORK IN PROGRESS.”
It sounds impressive, but it’s still not quite the gigabit speeds that SpaceX promised in its original filing with the Federal Communications Commission. SpaceX noted in the filing that it would need to deploy its first full constellation of more than 4,400 satellites to get up to those speeds. Tice also clarified that there is still a lot of work to be done with Starlink, too. “Our network, of course, is very much a work in progress,” she said. “And over time, we will continue to add features to unlock the full capability of that network.”

The 100 Mbps speeds are also slightly more impressive than what early tests have shown through Ookla’s speedtest.net tool, a service designed to test download and upload speeds. In mid-August, Reddit users posted tests from supposed beta testers using the Starlink constellation who were receiving average download speeds of between 11 Mbps and 60 Mbps. Such speeds are on the low end compared to traditional broadband internet, although they may still be faster than speeds currently available in many rural areas of the US. SpaceX does hope to roll out the Starlink service to rural or hard-to-reach areas where even lower speeds might be an improvement of the status quo.

“ONCE THE SPACE LASERS ARE FULLY DEPLOYED, STARLINK WILL BE ONE OF THE FASTEST OPTIONS AVAILABLE.”
Still, demonstrating faster speeds is going to be key for SpaceX, as it’s vying for funds from an FCC auction slated for October of this year. The FCC is offering up to $16 billion to companies that can help bring broadband services to “over six million homes and businesses in census blocks that are entirely unserved by voice and broadband.” And the FCC is looking for downloads speeds of at least 25 Mbps, with upload speeds of at least 3 Mbps.

SpaceX claims that it has just achieved a big breakthrough with its Starlink satellites that could help with data sharing. During the webcast, Tice noted that SpaceX had successfully tested two satellites in orbit that had inter-satellite links, “space lasers” that allowed the satellites to transfer “hundreds of gigabytes of data” between the two spacecraft. Prior to launching its first Starlink satellites, SpaceX said that all of its satellites would have inter-satellite links like the one demonstrated recently. “Once the space lasers are fully deployed, Starlink will be one of the fastest options available to transfer data around the world,” Tice said.

In the meantime, SpaceX is about to open up public beta testing. Interested users can sign up through the company’s Starlink website, providing their email and address to see if they qualify for the program. In an FAQ found in the source code of the Starlink website, SpaceX said that beta testing would focus first on rural communities in Washington, expanding to the northern United States and southern Canada. Public beta tests should provide better real-world results than these early beta tests, though users will likely have to sign nondisclosure agreements, according to SpaceX’s original source code. “You may NOT discuss your participation in the Beta Program online or with those outside of your household, unless they are SpaceX employees,” the website’s FAQ stated.

 

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With DUST-2 Launch, NASA’s Sounding Rocket Program is Back on the Range


UPDATE Sep. 8, 2020: The DUST-2 mission was successfully launched at 2 p.m. EDT on Sep. 8. The two-stage Black Brant IX suborbital sounding rocket carried the payload to an apogee of approximately 215 miles before descending by parachute. The payload was recovered and good data was received during the mission.

NASA is preparing for the first launch of a sounding rocket since the coronavirus pandemic began in the United States. The DUST-2 mission, which is short for the Determining Unknown yet Significant Traits-2, will carry a miniature laboratory into space, simulating how tiny grains of space dust – the raw materials of stars, planets and solar systems – form and grow. The launch window opens at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico on September 8, 2020.


DUST-2, a collaboration between NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, follows up on the DUST mission launched in October 2019. Like its predecessor, DUST-2 will fly on a sounding rocket, a suborbital rocket that makes a brief trip into space before falling back to Earth. Sounding rockets provide cost-effective access to space and remain one of the most efficient ways to achieve near-zero gravity, a critical requirement for the mission.

DUST-2’s goal is to study how individual atoms, shed by dying stars and supernovae, stick together. When they do, they form dust grains – some of the basic building blocks of our universe.

“What we're trying to do is duplicate what happens in at least two astrophysical environments,” said principal investigator Joe Nuth, a planetary
scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “One is when [dust] grains form when stars die, as they blow off their outer atmospheres. The other is during the formation of solar systems, where you're actually forming planets from the vaporized dust of star-forming clouds.”



Artist's concept of a protoplanetary disk
An artist's concept of a protoplanetry disk surrounding a forming star that is ejecting jets of material (yellow beams). Such disks contain countless tiny dust grains, many of which become incorporated into asteroids, comets, and planets.
Credits: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

Both environments involve atoms colliding, sticking together, and forming dust grains. But exactly how dust grains form and grow depends on many different factors. Nuth and his collaborator, Yuki Kimura of Hokkaido University in Japan, designed DUST-2 to study which factors are most important.

DUST-2 sounding rocket on the rail
The DUST-2 sounding rocket on the launch rail at White Sands Missile Range.
Credits: NASA/NSROC/Ted Gacek



The refrigerator-sized mini-laboratory will launch aboard a Black Brant IX sounding rocket, reaching an altitude of about 210 miles high before beginning to fall back down to Earth. A lot happens in the next six and a half minutes. Thirty seconds into freefall, the first of its six experiments – all slight modifications of one another – kicks on. Inside a sealed chamber, a tiny filament begins to heat up. The thin coating of iron, silicon, magnesium and other particles sprayed onto the filament diffuse into the surrounding chamber. Some of these atoms will collide and stick – the beginnings of a dust grain – while others ricochet away. Each minute, another chamber turns on until the payload parachutes back to Earth for recovery.



Back in the lab, Nuth, Kimura and their teams will study the grains that formed in each of the six chambers. Hotter particles collide more often, so they will measure how grains formed differently farther or closer to the hot filament. Some elements may block one another from growing dust grains, so they will study which elements ended up in each grain. They’ll also explore a surprise finding from the DUST-1 mission: In that experiment, dust grains that formed in argon gas with a small fraction (5%) of oxygen tended to smush together more than those formed in pure argon, a non-reactive noble gas.


“Without the oxygen, the atoms were like little billiard balls that touched and stuck,” said Nuth. “But with oxygen, when the billiard balls touched, they partially merged together. That was something we didn't suspect.”


Their hunch is that oxygen lowered the melting point of the dust grain, so that incoming particles mashed into partly molten material. To test this idea, DUST-2 removed all oxygen and replaced it with a small quantity (about 5%) of hydrogen.

“If that’s the case, we should get none of that merging with hydrogen,” Nuth said. “So we’ll see if it pans out.”


The experiment also includes a new carbon fiber heating filament for more precise control of the temperature. But the biggest difference between DUST-1 and DUST-2 is in mission operations – it’s the first sounding rocket to launch during the COVID-19 pandemic. The team has implemented many new processes in the background to ensure the launch can happen while protecting the health of the workforce.

“As we carefully evaluated each task, we developed new ways to accomplish some of our hands-on work to minimize the risk of exposure,” said John Hickman, deputy program manager for NASA’s Sounding Rockets Program.


Engineers working on the DUST-2 rocket
The payload team conducting Attitude Control System phasing tests at White Sands Missile Range. From left: John Yackanech, Jesus Martinez, Ken Starr, Ted Gacek.
Credits: NASA/NSROC/Ahmed Ghalib


Every four hours, the team sanitizes all surfaces and equipment. “In addition to masks we have eye protection – face shields and safety glasses,” said Eric Roper, NSROC mission manager who oversaw operations at White Sands. “We’ve worked pretty hard to develop a culture of doing these things as second nature.”

It seems to be working – even with the new precautions, launch preparations have proceeded on schedule.



“Honestly it’s going about the same pace as usual,” said Roper. “The team’s done a phenomenal job adapting to the situation.”

 

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PS5 Showcase: How to watch the upcoming PlayStation 5 event


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- The PS5 price and release date reveal is coming

We're soon to find out the last remaining details of the PlayStation 5 ahead of its launch in a couple of months.

Sony held a 'State of Play' event back in June when various games and the console design was revealed. This followed up a technical briefing early in the year that gave us the impressive spec sheet for the console.

Now though, we're ready for the final pieces to fall into place and you'll be able to watch right here with us.

When is the PS5 Showcase?
The PlayStation 5 Showcase event is on Wednesday 16 September at the following times:

  • US West: 1pm PT
  • US East: 4pm ET
  • UK: 9pm BST
  • Central Europe: 10pm CEST


How to watch the PS5 Showcase
We'll embed the video right here for you to watch and it'll also be streamed on PlayStation's YouTube and Twitch channels.

Here's a teaser video PlayStation released for the Showcase:


What to expect during the PlayStation 5 Showcase
In a short blog post, PlayStation said the event "will weigh in at around 40 minutes, and feature updates on the latest titles from Worldwide Studios and our world-class development partners."

It was claimed the previous 'State of Play' event would only show us games, not hardware but in the end Sony revealed the two PS5 consoles - the standard version and PS5 Digital Edition.

This time around, Sony is running out of time to reveal the price and release date for the console given that consumers need some certainty regarding making purchasing decisions and we think that those two things have to be revealed during the Showcase.

As with the previous event, some elements could be streamed using Sony's 360 Reality Audio platform which plays all-round high-resolution spatial sounds which you can hear through decent stereo headphones.

 

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Quantum Computing, the technology that will change the world in 20 years.

 
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Fujitsu to Deliver New FX1000 Supercomputer System for Canon

September 22, 2020

TOKYO, Sept. 22, 2020 — Fujitsu Limited today announced that it has received an order for a new supercomputer system from Canon Inc.
The system consists of a Fujitsu Supercomputer PRIMEHPC FX1000 unit, which harnesses top-class technology from the world’s fastest supercomputer, Fugaku, which was jointly developed by RIKEN and Fujitsu. The new supercomputer will achieve an expected theoretical computational performance of 648.8 teraflops.
Fujitsu-FX1000.jpg
PRIMEHPC FX1000, courtesy Fujitsu
Upon completion, the supercomputer will play a key role in contributing to Canon’s initiative of “no-prototype” product development, delivering enhanced capabilities and scope of applicability of analysis in Canon’s product development process.
This system is planned to begin operations in the first half of 2021.
Background
Canon is promoting a “no-prototype” initiative in the development of its products, such as office multifunction devices and other various types of printers, cameras, and semiconductor lithography equipment. To make this initiative a reality, Canon is leveraging 3D CAD data in analytical simulations to evaluate multiple facets of proposed products, including functionality, as well as ease of manufacturing. In the past, Canon has relied on both a Fujitsu Supercomputer PRIMEHPC FX10 system and a Fujitsu Supercomputer PRIMEHPC FX100 system.
Now, to take its initiative to the next level, Canon has adopted Fujitsu’s PRIMEHPC FX1000 system, which delivers reliable, high performance computing power, with world-leading energy efficiency.
Overview of the New System
Sample image of a drop impact simulation (an inkjet printer being dropped in its packaging) *Produced using the existing system *Image courtesy of Canon
Fujitsu’s new system consists of a PRIMEHPC FX1000 with 192 nodes, with an expected theoretical computational performance of 648.8 TFLOPS. Fujitsu will also deploy Fujitsu Server PRIMERGY systems and Fujitsu Storage ETERNUS systems as peripheral devices. As an important part of Canon’s product development cycle, this system will enable larger scale analyses and simulations in impact analysis experiments evaluating damage to or deformation of a potential product when dropped, including simulations with over 100 million elements, a challenge for previous systems to handle. The new system will also support airflow analysis and electromagnetic wave analysis. These benefits will ultimately help to deliver an enhanced product development flow through Canon’s “no-prototype” initiative.
Fujitsu’s technical computing solutions, particularly the PRIMEHPC FX1000, demonstrate an ongoing commitment to streamlining the performance, quality, and functionality of products while reducing product development times and costs for its customers.
Major Components of the New System
Fujitsu-major-components.png

Fujitsu Supercomputer PRIMEHPC FX1000 – Uses the A64FX CPU, which incorporates both the Arm v8-A instruction set architecture and the supercomputer-focused Scalable Vector Extension (SVE). It offers not only high performance for its power consumption, but also high computational efficiency due to its wide bandwidth HBM2 memory, a type of high performance layered memory.

No-prototype initiative – A company-wide initiative promoted by Canon to only build necessary prototypes, eliminating useless product prototyping through the use of testing virtualization technology based on simulation technology.

Elements – In the field of analysis technology, in order to simulate phenomena using computers, items must be broken down into component elements composed of simple shapes. More precise simulations are possible by using larger numbers of small elements.
About Fujitsu
Fujitsu is the leading Japanese information and communication technology (ICT) company offering a full range of technology products, solutions and services. Approximately 130,000 Fujitsu people support customers in more than 100 countries. We use our experience and the power of ICT to shape the future of society with our customers. Fujitsu Limited (TSE:6702) reported consolidated revenues of 3.9 trillion yen (US$35 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2020. For more information, see www.fujitsu.com.


I think this count as a breakthrough, not the Supercomputer, but the way manufacturing had moved from having prototypes to no prototypes at all, highlighting that computers are now powerful enough to do calculations and simulations that will deliver the almost exact parameters as in real life.
 

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Its kind of a hobby too I feel in many ways, so I will place stuff here from time to time and see what happens, what the interest is and also convos etc.

I will be happy to answer questions that I can or just discuss things etc from stuff that I post.

Others can also contribute videos they find that are interesting or in their scope/field....but objective is what you find of highest quality/interest to share with others (and you have some background knowledge/details to expand upon with interested parties)...and hopefully presented in as layman's terms as possible (without too much technical stuff etc which is maybe where further discussion can progress).

Starting off with 7 deadly sins of aircraft design (its a long hour+ lecture, so feel free to watch/listen in parts):


Can reply in thread or simply hit watch thread to get alerts to it.
 

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How torpedoes work; contrast to common belief, they are not intended to have a direct contact on the target.
The phenomena is best seen here:

Stability of the ships, again according to the common belief, the center of gravity shall be stationed below the center of the buoyancy for the balance, but no:
 

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Everyone owes it to themselves (if they haven't already) knowing the basics of semiconductor solar technology, given it is going to be a huge increasing part of electricity generation profile in the years to come.

This video does a very good job in laying out the basics:


It reminds me quite a bit of how my dad (who worked in a semiconductor MNC for his career) would fill my head with all this kind of information when I was still kind of young to really grasp it. I have long since overall understood and used the technology myself haha.

For those that would like a bit more expansion on where the improvement in efficiency is broadly headed....it is by use of a larger profile of semiconductor materials (that have different band gaps to silicon and thus able to use more of the incident sunlight emission spectrum when you multi-layer and multi-junction by stacking them up etc...given lot of these materials are not constrained by silicon's "indirect bandgap" which wastes energy by lattice vibration)

A good summary of this can be found here for those interested:


There are of course engineering, design and cost challenges of this approach (you will notice the page is from 2002) and this forms the ongoing research and development of this technology currently.

Some of the recent news on it (multijunction):

 

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