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.

Creating Linkages Between Entrepreneurs and Venture Capitalists Using the Internet

One important way to spur innovation and business development is by creating linkages between entrepreneurs and venture capitalists. Such linkages, between entrepreneurs and venture capitalists, can (among other ways) be created using the Internet.

The way to go about creating the linkages between the entrepreneurs and the venture capitalists using the Internet is actually very simple. It usually boils down to setting up a website, where the entrepreneurs and venture capitalists can get to interact. The interaction has to be structured though: it can’t, for instance, be simply a question of going to the Sbcglobal.net login page, or to the Att.net email login page, and using a system like SBCGlobal email to have the entrepreneurs communicate with the venture capitalists. You have to appreciate that the venture capitalists are often ‘serious’ people: the sorts of folks who cut big-deals through major investment banks such as JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley. Thus, as the person trying to create the linkages, you need to ensure that you only link the venture capitalists with reasonably serious entrepreneurs.

For taking the trouble to create linkages between entrepreneurs and venture capitalists through the Internet, you are likely to end up being rewarded very handsomely. So the whole thing is worth the trouble.

How to Create Linkages Between the IT Department and Staff in Other Departments

Computers play a central role in today’s businesses. As a consequence, in majority of business organizations, the IT department (which is in charge of computers) plays a very central role. People in other departments have to be well linked to the IT department, to ensure that the IT problems they encounter are resolved quickly, in order to enhance efficiency at work.

One way to create linkages between the IT department and staff in other departments is by setting up a phone number which anyone within the organization who encounters an IT problem can call. This is the most commonly used model, and it works well in small organizations where the offices of the IT department are within a walking distance from the offices of the other departments.

Another way to create linkage between the IT department and staff in other departments is by setting up a mechanism for the people in the IT department to be able to provide IT support remotely. This is possible using the sort of technology that is deployed at a site like www.logmeinrescue.com: that being the remote support technology. In big organizations such as the United States department of agriculture, this model would make a lot of sense.

How to Package Vacuum Cleaners in Readiness for Export

If you are involved in the manufacture of vacuum cleaners for export, then one of the most important tasks for you will be that of packaging the machines in readiness for export.

The first step in the process of packaging vacuum cleaners in readiness for export is the one where you effectively wrap them in protective packaging. The idea is to avoid a situation where the vacuum cleaners are so badly knocked about in the course of transportation (say, in turbulent seas) that they develop technical problems even before they arrive at the intended markets.

The second step in the process of packaging vacuum cleaners in readiness for export is the one where you put them in appropriately branded and labeled cartons/boxes. If, for instance, you want them to be perceived as being the best hard floor vacuum cleaners, this should come out clearly from the branding. The packaging should also be well labeled, to indicate the intended final destination for the vacuum cleaners.

The third step in the process of packaging vacuum cleaners in readiness for export is the one where you put them in shipping containers. Nowadays, this is essential, especially if you are to transport the vacuum cleaners by sea, using global shipping agencies like Maersk and others like it.