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Category: Aerospace Engineering

No direct link between North Atlantic currents, sea level along New England coast — ScienceDaily

A new study by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) clarifies what influence major currents in the North Atlantic have on sea level along the northeastern United States. The study, published June 13 in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, examined both the strength of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) — a conveyor belt of currents that move warmer waters north and cooler waters south in the Atlantic — and historical records of sea level in coastal New England. “Scientists…

How do foams collapse? Two distinct physical mechanisms identified for how simple foams collapse — ScienceDaily

Researchers from Tokyo Metropolitan University have successfully found two distinct mechanisms by which foams can collapse, yielding insight into the prevention/acceleration of foam rupture in industrial materials e.g. foods, cosmetics, insulation, stored chemicals. When a bubble breaks, they found that a collapse event propagates via impact with the receding film and tiny scattered droplets breaking other bubbles. Identifying which mechanism is dominant in different foams may help tailor them to specific applications. Foams play a key role in a wide…

Boeing wanted to wait 3 years to fix Max flaw

Credit: CC0 Public Domain Two key lawmakers said Friday that Boeing planned to delay fixing a nonworking safety alert on its 737 Max aircraft for three years and sped up the process only after the first of two deadly crashes involving Max planes last October. U.S. Reps. Peter DeFazio of Oregon and Rick Larsen of Washington disclosed the decision in letters sent to Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration seeking details on what the plane maker and the agency knew…

Origami-inspired materials could soften the blow for reusable spacecraft — ScienceDaily

Space vehicles like SpaceX’s Falcon 9 are designed to be reusable. But this means that, like Olympic gymnasts hoping for a gold medal, they have to stick their landings. Landing is stressful on a rocket’s legs because they must handle the force from the impact with the landing pad. One way to combat this is to build legs out of materials that absorb some of the force and soften the blow. University of Washington researchers have developed a novel solution…

Sandia launches a bus into space

A sounding rocket designed and launched by Sandia National Laboratories lifts off from the Kauai Test Facility in Hawaii on April 24. Credit: Sandia National Laboratories Sandia National Laboratories recently launched a bus into space. Not the kind with wheels that go round and round, but the kind of device that links electronic devices (a USB cable, short for “universal serial bus,” is one common example). The bus was among 16 total experiments aboard two sounding rockets that were launched…

One more thing… new Speed Page

Congratulations on making it through Speed Week. In the last week, Cloudflare has: described how our global network speeds up the Internet, launched a HTTP/2 prioritisation model that will improve web experiences on all browsers, launched an image resizing service which will deliver the optimal image to every device, optimized live video delivery, detailed how to stream progressive images so that they render twice as fast – using the flexibility of our new HTTP/2 prioritisation model and finally, prototyped a…

Nearly all states use drones for range of work

In Utah, drones are hovering near avalanches to watch roaring snow. In North Carolina, they’re searching for the nests of endangered birds. In Kansas, they could soon be identifying sick cows through heat signatures. Public transportation agencies are using drones in nearly every state, according to a survey obtained by The Associated Press ahead of its release Monday. The report from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials shows a sharp increase in their use over the last…

Lab builds autopilot software allowing UAVs to soar on thermals

The Naval Research Laboratory is building solar-soaring drones that harvest energy from the sun and thermals to stay aloft for extended time periods. Credit: Naval Research Laboratory A Navy scientist has re-engineered the software that allows long-endurance drones to powerlessly climb into the sky on bubbles of warm air. In a U.S. patent application published on May 2, Aaron Kahn, an engineer working on the Autonomous Locator of Thermals (ALOFT) project at the Naval Research Laboratory, reported that he has…

Faked Test Result Cost $700 Million, Says NASA

Last Tuesday, April 30, NASA announced the results of a years-long investigation by its Office of the Inspector General (OIG) and its Launch Services Program (LSP).  Back in 2009 and 2011, two climate-change-observing satellites failed to reach orbit and were lost at a total cost of $700 million.  In both cases, the payload fairing—the dome protecting the payload during launch—failed to separate on command, throwing the flight dynamics out of whack and ultimately crashing the satellites before they reached orbit. …

Hubble spots a stunning spiral galaxy — ScienceDaily

NGC 2903 is located about 30 million light-years away in the constellation of Leo (the Lion), and was studied as part of a Hubble survey of the central regions of roughly 145 nearby disk galaxies. Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, L. Ho et al. NGC 2903 is located about 30 million light-years away in the constellation of Leo (the Lion), and was studied as part of a Hubble survey of the central regions of roughly 145 nearby disk galaxies. Credit: ESA/Hubble…