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23
Jun
2017

Orbex scouting for space rocket launch site in Scotland

Orbex plans to launch small payloads from a site in Scotland

Scotland: the land of mist and mountains long associated with kilts, bagpipes, haggis ... and now space launches. Timed to coincide with the Queen's Speech to Parliament, British startup Orbex announced that it will build a new 2,000 m² (21,500 ft²) rocket production facility in Scotland and is scouting for a launch site on the north coast of the country to send small payloads into low Earth orbit.

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Category: Space

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23
Jun
2017

Can magnetic space tugs clean up space junk?

Artist's concept of a magnetic tug nearing a derelict satellite

Space debris is a growing problem, so to keep the orbits around Earth free of manmade hazards, an ESA-funded scientist is developing a magnetic space tug that could lock onto derelict satellites and deorbit them before they become a hazard to navigation. Using cryogenic magnets, the tugs wouldn't have to even touch the derelicts and the targets wouldn't need to be specially modified for towing.

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Category: Space

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22
Jun
2017

Telescoping wooden caravan raises the roof on small living

Woodenwidget's Slidavan at camp

Woodenwidget has managed to put a very interesting spin on the classic pop-up camper. It's designed a sort of wooden gypsy caravan with a two-part body that rises up at camp. The ingenious, little Slidavan tucks low to ride behind the car, then grows to full size to provide a comfy place to cook, eat, sleep and live. And Woodenwidget doesn't want to sell you a Slidavan; it wants you to build your own at home.

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Category: Outdoors

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22
Jun
2017

Artificial iris responds to light on its own

The artificial iris is made from a light-sensitive polymer

While the pupil may be the opening in the eye that lets light through to the retina, the iris is the tissue that opens and closes to determine the size of the pupil. Although mechanical irises are already a standard feature in cameras, scientists from Finland and Poland have recently created an autonomous artificial iris that's much more similar to those found in the eye – it may even eventually be able to replace damaged or defective ones.

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Category: Science

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22
Jun
2017

Diabetes device scrutinizes sweat for a week at a time

A prototype of the wrist-worn sensor

While there are already biosensors that help people manage type 2 diabetes, they're single-use devices that have to be replaced on a daily basis. That could be about to change, however, thanks to research being conducted by scientists from the University of Texas at Dallas. Led by Prof. Shalini Prasad, they've created a diabetes-monitoring tool that's good for up to a week.

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Category: Medical

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