Month: July, 2018

Qualcomm Releases New Antennas That Will Make 5G Phones A Reality In 2019

Qualcomm actually announced two antenna modules.  The first is called the QTM052 mmWave antenna module and was engineered to “open up spectrum and improve mmWave signal using 5G technologies.”

Since the mmWave signals don’t travel very far and are easily blocked by objects as small as your hand, Qualcomm created this antenna array to overcome those challenges.

It uses something it calls “beam forming, beam steering, and beam tracking for bi-directional mobile mmWave,” allowing it to improve overall range and coverage.

The module is also a series of antennas to be placed in the handset so the beams can move whenever there’s signal blockage.




The second antenna, called the QPM56xx sub-6 GHz RF module, works on lower 3.3-4.2 GHz, 3.3-3.8GHz, or 4.4-5.0 GHz bands. This sub-6 antenna will provide more consistent 5G coverage in fixed locations

These antennas will be used alongside the Snapdragon X50 5G modem that was released in 2016. The two antenna modules will be used in tandem to deliver 5G speeds in a variety of settings.

Several of the world’s largest handset manufacturers, including Xiaomi, Sony, HTC, Samsung, and LG, have already confirmed that they will work with Qualcomm in the coming months to create mobile devices that are compatible with 5G.

These devices should be released during the first half of the year with many likely making their debut at Mobile World Congress next February.

Huawei has also announced it is planning a 5G phone for late 2019. Earlier this year the Chinese tech giant announced its Balong 5G01 modem.

The modem is schedule for the third quarter of 2019, meaning we should see its 5G handset soon thereafter.

And while we’re still many months away from seeing 5G handsets, most of the major networks are quickly building out their 5G networks to prepare for the launch.

AT&T and Verizon have each indicated they plan to release 5G hot spots (also known as pucks) later this year in selected markets so users can get a taste of 5G.

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Have You Ever Wondered Why Does A Paper Cut Hurt So Much?

Have you ever been injured in the classroom or in the library? That might sound like an odd obvious answer, but we bet you have!

As you’ve sorted through a pile of homework papers or dragged your finger along the edges of the pages of a book, we bet that at one time or another you’ve suddenly felt a jolt of pain.

Ouch! What’s going on here? Oh no! It’s a paper cut!

Although pieces of paper don’t otherwise resemble sharp knives, the edges of a piece of paper can at times be razor-sharp.

If you’ve ever gotten a paper cut on your fingertip, you know the pain can feel disproportionate to what seems like a minor cut. So why do paper cuts hurt so badly?

One major reason paper cuts hurt so much is their usual location: your fingertips. You usually don’t get paper cuts on your belly, your knees, or your back. If you did, they wouldn’t hurt nearly as much. Why?




Your fingertips are very sensitive. They’re built to serve as the primary means by which your brain processes your sense of touch. They can feel pressure, pain, and temperature easily.

There are more nerve fibers (called nociceptors) per square inch in your fingertips than most other areas of your body.

When you get a paper cut, the paper slices through these nerve fibers, resulting in many pain signals being sent to your brain. If that wasn’t bad enough, you’ll notice after a paper cut that you can’t just stop using your hands until it heals.

You constantly need to use your hands and, as you do so, your skin moves and the wound gets pressed and pulled upon, which delays healing and renews the pain you feel each time it happens.

The typical location of paper cuts explains why a paper cut on your fingertip hurts more than a similar cut on your belly or leg.

However, a paper cut tends to hurt more than a different kind of cut, like from a knife, on your fingertip. Why is that?

To answer that question, we have to look at the object doing the cutting: the paper. Unlike a knife edge, which is extremely sharp and straight, the edge of a piece of paper is dull and flexible by comparison.

So what can you do when you get a paper cut? Clean it thoroughly and then cover it with a bandage (or a liquid bandage).

Keeping the wound closed and covered will help to reduce the amount of irritation the nerve fibers experience, thereby reducing your pain.

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Signs Of Life On Europa May Be Just Beneath The Surface

If signs of life exist on Jupiter’s icy moon Europa, they might not be as hard to find as scientists had thought, a new study reports.

The 1,900-mile-wide (3,100 kilometers) Europa harbors a huge ocean beneath its icy shell.

What’s more, astronomers think this water is in contact with the moon’s rocky core, making a variety of complex and intriguing chemical reactions possible.

Researchers therefore regard Europa as one of the solar system’s best bets to harbor alien life.

Europa is also a geologically active world, so samples of the buried ocean may routinely make it to the surface—via localized upwelling of the ocean itself, for example, and/or through geyser-like outgassing, evidence of which has been spotted multiple times by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope.

NASA aims to hunt for such samples in the not-too-distant future. The agency is developing a flyby mission called Europa Clipper, which is scheduled to launch in the early 2020s.

Clipper will study Europa up close during dozens of flybys, some of which might be able to zoom through the moon’s suspected water-vapor plumes.

And NASA is also working on a possible post-Clipper lander mission that would search for evidence of life at or near the Europan surface.




 

It’s unclear, however, just how deep a Europa lander would need to dig to have a chance of finding anything.

That’s because Europa orbits within Jupiter’s radiation belts and is bombarded by fast-moving charged particles, which can turn amino acids and other possible biosignatures into mush.

That’s where the new study comes in.

NASA scientist Tom Nordheim and his colleagues modeled Europa’s radiation environment in detail, laying out just how bad things get from place to place.

They then combined these results with data from laboratory experiments documenting how quickly various radiation doses carve up amino acids (a stand-in here for complex biomolecules in general).

The researchers found significant variation, with some Europan locales (equatorial regions) getting about 10 times the radiation pounding of others (middle and high latitudes).

At the most benign spots, the team determined, a lander would likely have to dig just 0.4 inches (1 centimeter) or so into the ice to find recognizable amino acids.

In the high-blast zones, the target depth would be on the order of 4 to 8 inches (10 to 20 cm).

That latter range is still quite manageable, said Nordheim, who’s based at the California Institute of Technology and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, both of which are in Pasadena.

That’s good news for the potential lander mission, Nordheim added: With radiation exposure seemingly not a limiting factor, planners can feel free to target the areas of Europa most likely to harbor fresh ocean deposits—the fallout zone beneath a plume, for example—wherever they may lie.

Scientists still haven’t identified any such promising touchdown areas; the Europa imagery captured to date just hasn’t been sharp enough. But Europa Clipper’s work should change things, Nordheim said.

When we get the Clipper reconnaissance, the high-resolution images—it’s just going to be a completely different picture,” he said. “That Clipper reconnaissance is really key.”

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NASA To Launch Car-Size Probe To Study The Sun In August

US space agency NASA is preparing to launch a probe in August to study the Sun closer than any human-made object ever has, revealing multiple mysteries behind the star.

The car-sized spacecraft called Parker Solar Probe is slated to lift off no earlier than August 6 on a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy, according to NASA, Xinhua news agency reported.

The Sun’s atmosphere constantly sends magnetized material outward, enveloping our solar system far beyond the orbit of Pluto.

Coils of magnetic energy can burst out with light and particle radiation that travel through space and create temporary disruptions in our atmosphere, sometimes garbling radio and communications signals near Earth.

Therefore, the key to understanding its origins lies in understanding the Sun itself and that’s where Parker Solar Probe comes in, according to the researchers at NASA.




The spacecraft carries a lineup of instruments to study the Sun both remotely and directly.

One science task is the mystery of the acceleration of the solar wind, the Sun’s constant outflow of material, and the other is the secret of the corona’s enormously high temperatures, according to NASA.

Also, Parker Solar Probe’s instruments might reveal the mechanisms at work behind the acceleration of solar energetic particles, which can reach speeds more than half as fast as the speed of light as they rocket away from the Sun.

Such particles can interfere with satellite electronics, especially for satellites outside of Earth’s magnetic field. The biggest breakthrough for the spacecraft is its cutting-edge heat shield, according to NASA.

The Thermal Protection System (the heat shield) is one of the spacecraft’s mission-enabling technologies,” said Andy Driesman, Parker Solar Probe project manager at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab.

“It allows the spacecraft to operate at about room temperature.

The heat shield is a sandwich of carbon-carbon composite surrounding nearly four and half inches of carbon foam, which is about 97 per cent air.

The Delta IV Heavy is one of the world’s most powerful rockets.

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Meet Your Future Robot Overlords

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Robots no longer live in science fiction. They’re all around us. Right now. Let’s look at the current most advanced robots and see where things might go in the future.

From their first mention in a Czech play to Elon Musk’s “alien dreadnought” automated factory, robots have been slowly becoming a huge part of our lives.

The types of robots include:
Industrial/Warehouse Robots
Service/Companion Robots
Military Robots
Exploratory Robots

Industrial robots include AMRs, which automate products around a warehouse floor.

Service and Companion robots include Asimo from Honda, Romeo and Pepper from SoftRobotics, and Milo, a robot for autistic kids.

Military Robots are usually funded by DARPA and include the Atlas and Spotmini from Boston Dynamics

Exploratory robots include NASA space probes including the Curiosity Rover.

Can People Catch Cancer? Not Likely, But Some Animals Can

These guys are seriously threatened by a contagious cancer, largely because of how much they love to touch each other’s faces.

Recent headlines about contagious cancers found in some animals may make you wonder: Could I catch cancer? In Australia, Tasmanian devils are dying from aggressive facial tumors caused by a contagious virus.

In the Atlantic Ocean, some clams are developing a form of leukemia caused by cancer cells suspended in the water. And scientists have known for years that dogs can spread cancer cells from one to another during intercourse.

Despite recent headlines about cancer being contagious in other species, current data shows it’s virtually impossible in humans,” says Dr. Glen Weiss, Director of Clinical Research and Phase I & II Clinical Trials at our hospital near Phoenix.

“There have been attempts to transfect people without cancer with cancer cells, and it did not work.”

In the 1950s and 1960s, Dr. Chester Southam, a New York immunologist, conducted several controversial experiments by injecting live cancer cells into uninformed cancer patients and healthy prisoners.




While patients in both studies grew tumors, those in the healthy patients were quickly attacked and eliminated by their immune systems.

Foreign cells would more likely be rejected just like an organ donation or bone marrow transplant from a donor,” Dr. Weiss says.

In order to take, a recipient would likely require significant immunosuppression.” Southam was widely criticized for his experiments on humans and his medical license was suspended for one year.

Organ recipients are at a higher risk of developing cancer, but only in rare cases has the cancer been linked to the organ donor having cancer.

Such cases are so rare that some cancer patients are still eligible to donate organs. Some recipients develop cancer because the body’s immune system is suppressed to help prevent organ rejection.

Fortunately, survival of transplanted cancers in healthy humans is exceedingly rare and documented by only a small handful of cases,” Dr. James S. Welsh, a radiation oncologist currently with the Loyola University Health System writes in a 2011 article on contagious cancer.

“Thus, friends and family members of cancer patients and we, as caregivers of cancer patients, need not be unduly concerned with the remote possibility of ‘catching cancer.”

Humans may spread contagious viruses that lead to cancer. For instance, the human papillomavirus (HPV)  is responsible for virtually all cases of cervical cancer.

It is also linked to most cases of vaginal and vulvar cancer and more than half the cases of penile cancer. The virus is also linked to 90 percent of anal cancers and 72 percent of oropharyngeal cancer.

The hepatitis B and C viruses may lead to hepatocellular carcinoma, the most common type of liver cancer.

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How Does Chlorine Work To Clean Swimming Pools?

Chlorine is the chemical most often used to keep swimming pools and Jacuzzis free of bacteria that can be hazardous to humans.

Chlorine kills bacteria though a fairly simple chemical reaction. The chlorine solution you pour into the water breaks down into many different chemicals, including hypochlorous acid (HOCl) and hypochlorite ion (OCl).

Both kill microorganisms and bacteria by attacking the lipids in the cell walls and destroying the enzymes and structures inside the cell, rendering them oxidized and harmless.

The difference between HOCl and OCl is the speed at which they oxidize. Hypochlorous acid is able to oxidize the organisms in several seconds, while the hypochlorite ion may take up to 30 minutes.

The levels of HOCl and OCl vary with the pool’s pH level. If the pH is too high, not enough HOCl is present and pool cleaning can take much longer than normal.




Ideally, the level of pH in the pool should be between 7 and 8; 7.4 is ideal — this is the pH of human tears.

Once the HOCl and OCl are done cleaning the pool, they either combine with another chemical, such as ammonia, or are broken down into single atoms. Both of these processes render the chlorine harmless.

Sunlight speeds these processes up. You have to keep adding chlorine to the pool as it breaks down.

While the bacteria-killing properties of chlorine are very useful, chlorine also has some side effects that can be annoying to humans, and possibly even hazardous.

Chlorine has a very distinctive smell that most find unpleasant, and some find overwhelming. There is also the “itch factor” — chlorine can cause certain skin types to become itchy and irritated.

The hypochlorite ion causes many fabrics to fade quickly when not rinsed off immediately after exiting the pool. This is why your swimsuit looks faded and worn so early in the summer.

Extremely high amounts of chlorine gas hovering above your pool can be hazardous to your breathing. Some companies have developed alternatives to chlorine, including other chemicals and ion generators.

Some of these are good alternatives, but they don’t achieve the cleanliness, oxidation levels or low price that chlorine provides.

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Why Do Websites Break? 4 Common Culprits

Picture this…

You’ve just launched a shiny new responsive website: it’s slick, it’s sexy (hyperbole, I know, but sometimes it’s apropos) and then something breaks.

Why? Why?!” you ask while frustrated that you just invested a substantial amount of money into a now defunct website. It just doesn’t make sense…right?

When reasoning about issues with your website, consider the analogy of a new car. Even with that “new car” price tag, your new vehicle will soon require regular maintenance and care to continue running in top fashion.

And when something unexpected eventually occurs (like a stall or odd noise), the cause could be anything from a needed oil change or loose connection.

In order to get your car up and running again, you’ll need to take steps to correct the issue, which usually requires reinvestment and patience. The same can be said with your website.




4 Common Culprits of Broken Websites

Browser Updates & Compatibility: From Chrome to Internet Explorer and beyond, internet browsers frequently push new updates to provide users with improved experiences.

These updates reduce vulnerabilities to viruses, hackers, etc. and help reduce the likihood of site crashes. With that in mind, most new websites are developed to support the most current browsers.

If you don’t update your browser regularly, you’re probably not viewing websites as they were intended to be seen (not to mention, you probably experience more crashes that most users).

Software Updates: Websites are hosted by computers, which run on… you guessed it… software! Just as your personal computer requires updates to its operating system and programs, the same is true for the software hosting your website.

These updates may need to be performed directly to your website’s content management system or to its software environment, which includes its operating system, database, etc. In order to maintain your site’s security and performance, updates are essential.

Keep in mind, however, that updates always have the potential to cause compatibility issues so it’s important to work closely with your “mechanic” when installing them.

User Error: Websites that utilize a content management system (CMS) are a convenient way for admins without programming knowledge to easily update a website.

With that benefit, there is also potential for untrained or hurried users to break items within a site. To limit user errors from occurring, I recommend limiting website admins to one or two people.

Admins should receive proper CMS training from your website creator before stepping into this important role.

Lastly, it’s important to request documentation from your website creator to reference when you have questions about updating your site; then remember to use it!

Third Party Updates: Similar to browser updates, third party applications like plugins typically push regular updates, which improve security features and provide fixes to aging programming code.

As mentioned above, it’s possible when you update your WordPress website, that a plugin used by your site may be built for an older version of WordPress and will no longer be compatible.

In this case, you would need to either update the plugin or replace it if an update is not available.

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Bill Gates’ Terrapower Project And The Traveling Wave Reactor

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Bill Gates has become one of the most powerful philanthropists in the world through the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation, and one of the projects he’s supported is a company called Terrapower, which is researching and building a new type of nuclear reactor, known as the Traveling Wave Reactor, that could provide 80% of our energy needs for the next 1000 years.

Here’s Bill Gates’ Ted Talk: Innovating to Zero:

Astronomers Have Found A New Crop Of Moons Around Jupiter, And One Of Them Is A Weirdo

Ten more moons have been confirmed to orbit around Jupiter, bringing the planet’s total known satellite count to 79.

That’s the highest number of moons of any planet in the Solar System. And these newly discovered space rocks are giving astronomers insight as to why the Jupiter system looks like it does today.

Astronomers at Carnegie Institution for Science first found these moons in March 2017, along with two others that were already confirmed in June of last year.

The team initially found all 12 moons using the Blanco 4-meter telescope in Chile, though finding these objects wasn’t their main goal.

Instead, they were searching for incredibly distant small objects — or even planets — that might be lurking in our Solar System beyond Pluto.

But as they searched for these fringe space rocks, they decided to take a peek at what might be lurking around Jupiter at the same time.




Now, the moons they found have been observed multiple times, and their exact orbits have been submitted for approval from the International Astronomical Union, which officially recognizes celestial bodies.

These moons are all pretty tiny, ranging between less than a mile and nearly two miles wide. And they break down into three different types. Two orbit closer to Jupiter, moving in the same direction that the planet spins.

Farther out from those, about 15.5 million miles from the planet, there are nine that revolve in the opposite direction, moving against Jupiter’s rotation.

But in this same distant region, one strange moon that astronomers are calling Valetudo is moving with Jupiter’s spin, like the two inner moons.

That means it’s going in the opposite direction of all the other moons in the same area. “It’s basically driving down the highway in the wrong direction,” Scott Sheppard, an astronomer at Carnegie who led the discovery team said.

That’s a very unstable situation. Head-on collisions are likely to happen in that situation.

Valetudo isn’t the only moon of Jupiter that acts this way. Another moon called Carpo also orbits far out from Jupiter, moving in the opposite direction of many other moons in the area.

The small dot between the yellow lines in these photographs is the newly discovered moon Valetudo.

However, Valetudo orbits much farther away than Carpo, and it may actually be the smallest moon Jupiter has.

Now with this discovery, astronomers think it’s good evidence that moon-on-moon collisions have happened in Jupiter’s past, and these are responsible for the lunar landscape around the planet today.

Valetudo, at just 1 kilometer across, is probably the last remnant of a much larger moon that’s been ground down into dust over time,” says Sheppard.

Finding moons around Jupiter can be tough. As the biggest planet in our Solar System, it has a very large area of influence, so there’s a lot of space where moons could potentially be.

It’s difficult to search that area in a timely manner with a telescope. “It’s like looking through a straw, and you’re just covering as many points around Jupiter as you can looking for these things,” says Sheppard.

And since Jupiter is so large, it reflects a whole lot of light. That means there can be a lot of glare when searching for super faint moons around the planet.

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