New wristwatches to live view from space

According to Collect Space, a watchmaker that saw success crafting timepieces from rocket-flown metal is now looking to connect outer space to your wrist.

In 2017, Werenbach crowdfunded more than $785,000 for its first line of watches, which were made out of spent Russian Soyuz rocket stages used in the launch of astronauts and cosmonauts to the International Space Station. On Tuesday (June 12), the Zurich-based company returned to Kickstarter for its next merger of space and time.

“It started with a wild dream: to build a watch from a real space rocket. Now we set out with an even bigger dream to achieve,” Zurich-based Werenbach wrote on the crowdfunding website.

“After one of the most successful watch stories in Kickstarter history, we wanted to return to you, our supporters, with something new once again – a watch with a real piece of rocket at its heart that now also connects you to space to share the view of an astronaut in real time,” the watchmaker announced.

At its heart

Werenbach’s original Earth collection and its subsequently-released Leonov series featured watch dials cut from salvaged rocket parts. Its Soyuz collection added the option of the watch’s case is made from a melted down rocket engine.

Werenbach’s new Mach 33 collection includes flown booster metal “at the heart” of the watch, in the form of a plate on the dial.

“We incorporate real space rocket material into each of our watches, otherwise, it wouldn’t be a Werenbach,” the company said. “The material comes from a Soyuz rocket (MS-02) that transported three astronauts to the International Space Station and was recovered by hand in the Kazakh steppe.”

Soyuz MS-02 launched Oct. 19, 2016, with NASA astronaut Shane Kimbrough and Roscosmos cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Andrei Borisenko to join the space station’s Expedition 49/50 crew.

[Penn State] Atamturktur as head of architectural engineering

According to Penn State News, According to Penn State News, Sez Atamturktur has been named the Harry and Arlene Schell Professor and Head of the Department of Architectural Engineering at Penn State, effective July 1.

Currently, Atamturktur is a provost’s distinguished professor and professor of environmental engineering and earth sciences, mechanical engineering, industrial engineering and civil engineering at Clemson University. At Clemson, Atamturktur spearheaded three institution-level National Science Foundation (NSF) grants including the NSF ADVANCE-funded Tigers ADVANCE program, the NSF NRT-funded Resilient Infrastructure and Environmental Systems (RIES) graduate education program and the NSF RED-funded CULTIVATE program. These institutional initiatives led to university-wide transdisciplinary research activities, curricular innovation and close engagement with industry and national laboratories at Clemson.

In addition, at Clemson, Atamturktur served as the associate vice president for research and is the founding director of its Office of Research Development. In this role, Atamturktur oversaw the university’s limited submission selection process, established university-wide initiatives for junior faculty development, spearheaded strategic large-impact research development efforts and established linkages between the division of research, and foundation and corporate relations offices.

“Professor Atamturktur comes to Penn State having had a tremendous impact as a leading researcher during her tenure on Clemson’s faculty, as well as through her visionary leadership as associate vice president,” Justin Schwartz, Harold and Inge Marcus Dean of Engineering, said. “I am confident that under her leadership the department will reach new heights of international impact.”

Atamturktur believes the field of architectural engineering is poised for major research breakthroughs that will have a significant societal impact. “Safe, healthy and productive living and working spaces is a basic human need. Architectural engineering as a field is dedicated to the betterment of human condition by advancing research and education in design, construction, and maintenance of the buildings we live in,” she said.

How Supernovae affects Earth

According to Astrobio, two nearby supernovae that exploded about 2.5 and eight million years ago could have resulted in a staggered depletion of Earth’s ozone layer, leading to a variety of repercussions for life on Earth.

In particular, two-and-a-half million years ago the Earth was changing dramatically. The Pliocene, which was a hot and balmy epoch, was ending and the Pleistocene, an era of repeated glaciation known as the Ice Age, was beginning. Natural variations in Earth’s orbit and wobble likely accounted for the change in climate, but the simultaneous event of a supernova could provide insight on the diversification of life during this epoch.

This supernova is thought to have occurred between 163 and 326 light years away (50–100 parsecs) from Earth. For perspective, our closest stellar neighbor, Proxima Centauri, is 4.2 light years away.

Supernovae can sterilize any nearby inhabited planets that happen to be in the path of their harmful ionizing radiation. Could nearby supernovae wreak havoc on the existing biology of our planet? One researcher wanted to find out. Dr. Brian Thomas, an astrophysicist at Washburn University in Kansas, USA, modeled the biological impacts at the Earth’s surface, based on geologic evidence of nearby supernovae 2.5 million and 8 million years ago. In his latest paper, Thomas investigated cosmic rays from the supernovae as they propagated through our atmosphere to the surface, to understand their effect on living organisms, www.McdVoice.com.

Looking at the fossil record during the Pliocene–Pleistocene boundary (2.5 million years ago), we see a dramatic change in the fossil record and in land cover globally. Thomas tells Astrobiology Magazine that “there were changes, especially in Africa, which went from being more forested to more grassland.”

“We are interested in how exploding stars affect life on Earth, and it turns out a few million years ago there were changes in the things that were living at the time,” says Thomas. “It might have been connected to this supernova.”

Earth’s Shields Protect Life on ‘One Strange Rock’

According to Space.com, planet Earth and the life it contains wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for the sun. But the sun also poses a serious threat to life, by constantly spewing harmful radiation into the solar system. Exactly how life on Earth managed to survive and thrive in the face of this danger is the subject of a new episode of “One Strange Rock,” which airs tonight (April 9) on the National Geographic Channel.

The new series explores all the strange coincidences that allowed life to arise and flourish on Earth. Each episode is narrated by astronauts, invoking the unique perspectives of those who have seen our planet from outer space. The first two episodes focused on how Earth “breathes” and how a violent history of cosmic collisions made our lucky planet the habitable world it is today.

Episode 3, titled “Shield,” will explore Earth’s natural defenses against the sun’s cosmic rays. Retired NASA astronaut Jeff Hoffman — who flew on five shuttle missions and helped to repair the Hubble Space Telescope in orbit — takes the lead. [The Sun’s Wrath: Worst Solar Storms in History]

While Earthlings couldn’t do without the sun, the vast amount of energy the star expels could also completely obliterate life in the solar system. Thanks to a combination of Earth’s atmosphere and a magnetic shell known as the magnetosphere, we don’t have to worry much about subatomic particles or UV radiation bombarding us. With a little sunscreen, we have all the protection we need down on Earth. In space, without our home planet’s natural defenses, the sun is far more hazardous.

Take Mars, for example. Because that planet has a thin atmosphere and no magnetic fields, what looks like it could have been a cradle for lifeis, in fact, a barren, uninhabitable landscape, likewise, scientists believe that Venus could have supported life billions of years ago.

Chinese Space Station will fall to Earth in two weeks

According to Ars Technica, China’s first space station may fall to the ground as soon as one week from now, and certainly, within two, orbital debris experts with the European Space Agency (ESA) say. Scientists, however, still cannot predict with any confidence where pieces of the 10.4-meter long Tiangong-1 station, which is traveling at 17,000 km/h, will land.

The latest estimate from the ESA indicates the station will enter Earth’s atmosphere between March 30 and April 3, at which time most of the station will burn up. However, the station is large enough—it weighed 8.5 tons when fully fueled but has since used much of that propellant—that some pieces will very likely reach the planet’s surface.

Beyond the fact that the station will reach a final impact point somewhere between 42.8 degrees north and 42.8 degrees south in latitude and probably near the northern or southern extremity of those boundaries due to Tiangong-1’s orbital inclination, it is not possible to say where on Earth the debris will land. However, the likelihood of it affecting humans is quite low. Scientists estimate the “personal probability of being hit by a piece of debris from the Tiangong-1” is about 10 million times smaller than the annual chance of being hit by lightning, the liquor store near me.

No nation likes to lose a piece of space hardware like this. NASA, for example, has already spent years developing a plan to ensure the International Space Station is de-orbited over an ocean when it comes down.

China, too, had initially planned for a controlled reentry for the Tiangong-1 station. The vehicle launched in 2011, and it served as an initial test bed for life-support systems in orbit and as a precursor for China’s plans to launch a larger space station in the 2020s. For several years, the Chinese space agency employed periodic re-boosts to keep Tiangong-1 at an altitude of 300km to 400km above the Earth’s surface.

Scott Kelly’s ‘Space Genes’

According to Futurism, Scott and Mark Kelly are identical twin brothers. They’re also both former astronauts. Scott spent a year living in the International Space Station, while Mark was here on Earth. The Twin Study, as it was called, was an effort to help scientists understand the effects of extended time in space. NASA already has a pretty good grasp of what happens to the body after six months on the ISS. But the effects after a year are far more important if we’re going to eventually send people to Mars, and beyond.

Though Scott Kelly returned to Earth in March 2016, scientists are still running the data to figure out the effects on his body and mind. At the 2018 Investigator’s Workshop for NASA’s Human Research Program in January, NASA released its findings, revealing that Scott returned safely, but something about his gene expression had changed, the liquor store near me.

NASA measured Scott’s metabolites, cytokines, and proteins before, during, and after his mission. Researchers learned that spaceflight is associated with oxygen deprivation stress, increased inflammation, and dramatic nutrient shifts that affect gene expression.

Furthermore, Scott’s telomeres (the ends of chromosomes that shorten as people get older) become longer while in space but shortened again within 48 hours of Scott returning to Earth.

Perhaps the most interesting discovery is the change to Scott’s genes. 93 percent remained unchanged after the year-long stay in space, but the remaining 7 percent — referred to as “space genes” — were expressed differently (the DNA itself wasn’t fundamentally altered, as some headlines stated and The Verge notes). These changes might have long-lasting effects on the immune system, DNA repair, bone formation networks, hypoxia (oxygen deficiency in tissue), and hypercapnia (an abundance of carbon dioxide in the bloodstream). 7 percent might sound insignificant, but in fact, it amounts to several hundred of genes.

SDG’s renewable energy and linkages

According to IISG, the SDG Knowledge Weekly follows the energy-related event in Geneva and Bangkok. This is while the stakeholders and governments start to prepare for the review of SDG 7 at UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development 2017 (HLPF), which address a clean and more affordable energy.

SDG 7 was reportedly conducted last February 21-23 in Bangkok Thailand. It was organized by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Thai Ministry of Energy, and UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific. The said gathering addressed the constant struggle on energy access and at the same time, its progress in the Asia-Pacific region. ESCAP Executive Secretary Shamshad Akhtar revealed that the region is “the most energy-intensive” in the world.

Here is the SDG Knowledge Hub summary of the meeting is here:

  • A series of 27 policy briefs were developed by the Ad Hoc Informal Multi-stakeholder Technical Group of Advisors on SDG 7 as an input to the assessment.
  • It also contains brief features such as statistics on progress, key messages, and priority actions to press on towards the goal. This was categorized into four sections: advancing SDG 7 implementation, inter-linkages between SDG 7 and other Goals, regional perspectives; and toward a sustainable and equitable energy future.

Moreover, the briefing or electricity access cites the difference between having a universal access and a source of electricity. This only proves the former cannot guarantee the latter. On the other hand, brief on cooking emphasizes how 40 percent of the households or over 3 billion people are still using traditional stoves when preparing meals, which can cause them not only health issues but environmental.

In addition, the brief to increase the share renewable reveals how the total energy’s 80 percent consumption is derived from fossil fuels but 60 percent can be generated by the renewable in 2030. Check out this site for your Pizza feedback!

Tourism Linkages Speed Networking

Tourism Linkages Speed Networking Event has added new services this year, which slated for March 15 launch at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in St. James. According to Jamaica Information Service, these are security, insurance, architectural services and tour operation.

Meanwhile, Tourism Linkages Network’s head name Carolyn McDonald-Riley says the aim is to diversify the businesses participating. This can only be done by obtaining more service-oriented organizations. She also shared how speed networking event will take in the form of breakout sessions and meetings, which involve the products and services’ local suppliers, as well as the owners and managers of the properties, attractions, restaurant and other tourism-related establishments.

“It is a 15-minute opportunity for persons to sell their business, meet and introduce themselves to the tourism side to say, ‘I have business for you, so do business with me.’ It is not a display of goods and services, so there won’t be people showcasing products…persons may bring samples but the intention is not to display goods and services but to present your company or business in the best way in 15 minutes,” Mrs. McDonald-Riley revealed.

Moreover, she explained industry players will seat as suppliers move around for quick interactions based on scheduled appointments. A lot of people are welcome to attend the event including businesses that offer products and services like the following:


  • chemicals and cleaning products
  • cosmetic and spa items
  • toiletry and guest amenities
  • craft
  • furniture
  • bedding
  • food and beverage
  • meat
  • uniform
  • printing and packaging
  • fresh produce
  • construction
  • training
  • information and communications technology (ICT)
  • electrical and entertainment

McDonald-Riley further explained that the overall goal of the said event is to strengthen the partnership, linkages, and increase the business between local manufacturers or suppliers and players in the tourism sector. After all, the results of the previous speed networking events were remarkable. In 2017, over 172 representatives from 98 supplier companies and 79 buyer representatives from 55 tourism establishments participated. Look at the Kroger Survey for the event results!

How to create linkages in Africa’s investment space

African tech space has been recently the home of more linkages since many are required to do so within it. These are both for encouraging more investments and making sure the startup that indeed raises funds in the bank are served better.

According to Disrupt Africa, the year 2017 was a record-breaking time when it comes to African’s tech fundraising. However, investors of all level are still lacking. The report also pointed out to angel investors’ case as dozens of angel groups are forming across the continent under African Business Angel Network, also known as ABAN’s, general banner. To build linkages is particularly difficult on angel investing.

Collins Onuegbu expressed his thoughts towards the matter saying, “Initially we could not get traction because we did not have enough members. We needed to build enough capacity to allow us to invest.” Onuegbu is a partner at the Lagos Angel Network (LAN) and he believes that getting enough people involved in the most basic struggle.

He added, “Doing that allowed us to expand our base. What we have done as LAN itself is still a work in progress. We are using syndicates to expand our capacity. We have a secretariat that has helped us build the structure that we need. It helps us link up with the startups and the pipelines.”

Moreover, the founder of NewGenAngels named Sean Obedih has addressed the need for additional linkage between African startups and Africans in the diaspora.

“There is a big part of the African population that lives outside of Africa. Everyone talks about the diaspora sending money back home, but nobody talks about what that is being used for. There is no infrastructure for channeling it into companies. That infrastructure to invest in things is what is required more than the money,” Obedih explained.

Types of Linkages That Exist Between Universities and the Communities Around Them

Certain types of linkages tend to develop between universities and the communities around them. We venture to look at some of those linkages.

Firstly, we have the situations where the universities tend to be major employers of the people from the communities around them. Granted, the professors and other members of the high level teaching staff cadre tend to be from far away. But the support staff members tend to be drawn from the communities around the universities. And even the staff members who initially come from far away tend to settle and subsequently become bona fide members of the communities around the universities.

Secondly, we have the situations where the universities tend to be major markets for the products made by the members of the communities around them. Where, for instance, we have farming communities, you tend to have the universities being major consumers of the farm produce. In places where you have trading communities, the students and staff members in the universities tend to be key customers. To prove this, you can try selling any sort of products, like, say the best wireless headphones around a university. Or you can try selling something else, like, say, professional headphones around a university. What you will quickly come to learn is that the people from the university are likely to be key customers for you.

Thirdly, we have the situations where the universities tend to have some members of the communities around them as students. Thus, the universities provide educational opportunities to the surrounding communities. Granted, in the hard-to-get-into universities, like those in Ivy League, the local communities tend to be poorly represented in the student body (as the bulk of students come from all over the country, and even from abroad). But for other classes of universities, you tend to have local communities very well represented in the student populations.