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Category: Aerospace Engineering

The light-bending dance of binary black holes — ScienceDaily

A pair of orbiting black holes millions of times the Sun’s mass perform a hypnotic pas de deux in a new NASA visualization. The movie traces how the black holes distort and redirect light emanating from the maelstrom of hot gas — called an accretion disk — that surrounds each one. Viewed from near the orbital plane, each accretion disk takes on a characteristic double-humped look. But as one passes in front of the other, the gravity of the foreground…

Membrane design prevents crossover in polysulfide redox flow batteries

Different processes in PSIBs with a Nafion and CRIS membrane. Credit: Nature Energy (2021). DOI: 10.1038/s41560-021-00804-x Two researchers at the Chinese University of Hong Kong have developed a new membrane design that prevents crossover in polysulfide redox flow batteries. In their paper published in the journal Nature Energy, Zhejun Li and Yi-Chun Lu describe their work with the new membrane design. Wei Wang with Northwest National Laboratory has published a News & Views piece in the same journal issue describing…

Stellar feedback and an airborne observatory; scientists determine a nebula younger than believed — ScienceDaily

In the southern sky, situated about 4,300 light years from Earth, lies RCW 120, an enormous glowing cloud of gas and dust. This cloud, known as an emission nebula, is formed of ionized gases and emits light at various wavelengths. An international team led by West Virginia University researchers studied RCW 120 to analyze the effects of stellar feedback, the process by which stars inject energy back into their environment. Their observations showed that stellar winds cause the region to…

Huge Proposed Increases in USA Government Science and Engineering Support » Curious Cat Science and Engineering Blog

Huge Proposed Increases in USA Government Science and Engineering Support Posted on April 3, 2021  Comments (0) The Biden administration has proposed greatly increasing USA government spending on science and engineering. They are proposing levels last seen in the 1960s when the USA was most committed to science and engineering spending (as most visibly seen in support for NASA). Advance U.S. leadership in critical technologies and upgrade America’s research infrastructure. U.S. leadership in new technologies—from artificial intelligence to biotechnology to…

Keeping an eye on infrastructure systems: 4 tactics

Planning decisions have a long-term impact on the resilience of urban systems—and not just in Singapore. Credit: Colourbox Even minor disruptions in infrastructure systems can have fatal consequences. Researchers and practitioners counter that risk by taking action on multiple levels. Four examples. Urban systems: increase resilience By trade, Božidar Stojadinović is an expert in earthquake-proof construction. Now a Professor of Structural Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering, he specializes in urban systems and how to make them more resilient to earthquakes. “Systems…

Research finds EPA underestimates methane emissions from oil and gas production — ScienceDaily

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is underestimating methane emissions from oil and gas production in its annual Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks, according to new research from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS). The research team found 90 percent higher emissions from oil production and 50 percent higher emissions for natural gas production than EPA estimated in its latest inventory. The paper is published in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics.…

Control system helps several drones team up to deliver heavy packages

Four drones team up to lift a package Researchers have developed a modular solution for handling larger packages without the need for a complex fleet of drones of varying sizes. By allowing teams of small drones to collaboratively lift objects using an adaptive control algorithm, the strategy could allow a wide range of packages to be delivered using a combination of several standard-sized vehicles. (Credit: John Toon, Georgia Tech) Many parcel delivery drones of the future are expected to handle…

Study provides new details on the fate of spilled oil in the marine environment, effectiveness of chemical dispersants — ScienceDaily

A new study lead by scientists at the University of Miami (UM) Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science demonstrates that under realistic environmental conditions oil drifting in the ocean after the DWH oil spill photooxidized into persistent compounds within hours to days, instead over long periods of time as was thought during the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. This is the first model results to support the new paradigm of photooxidation that emerged from laboratory research. After an oil…

‘Wearable microgrid’ uses the human body to sustainably power small gadgets

Biofuel cells harvest energy from sweat. Credit: Lu Yin Nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego have developed a “wearable microgrid” that harvests and stores energy from the human body to power small electronics. It consists of three main parts: sweat-powered biofuel cells, motion-powered devices called triboelectric generators, and energy-storing supercapacitors. All parts are flexible, washable and can be screen printed onto clothing. The technology, reported in a paper published Mar. 9 in Nature Communications, draws inspiration from community…

The U. S. Military’s Threat to Commercial Aviation

  The Global Positioning System (GPS) that allows a few dollars’ worth of electronics to determine your position within a few feet almost anywhere in the world has proved to be a great boon to aviation, which previously relied on an expensive and not that reliable network of ground-based technology for electronic navigation.  Newer aircraft use GPS as an essential part of their autopilot system, for example.  A report in the February 2021 issue of IEEE Spectrum shows that this…