Science News Roundup: NASA will make second lunar rocket launch attempt on Saturday; Fossilized Tusk of Ancient Giant Elephant Discovered in Israel and More
Here is a summary of current scientific news.
NASA will make a second lunar rocket launch attempt on Saturday
NASA is aiming to make a second launch attempt of its giant next-generation moon rocket on Saturday, September 3, five days after a pair of technical issues thwarted an initial attempt to get the spacecraft off the ground for the first time, have agency officials said. tuesday. But prospects for success on Saturday appeared clouded by weather reports predicting just a 40% chance of favorable conditions that day, while the US space agency acknowledged that some outstanding technical issues still needed to be resolved.
Fossilized tusk of ancient giant elephant found in Israel
A fossilized tusk of a giant prehistoric elephant that once roamed the Mediterranean has emerged from a dig site in southern Israel, offering what archaeologists say is a rare glimpse into the lives of the region’s earliest inhabitants. The 2.5 meter long tusk of the ancient straight-tusked elephant (Palaeoloxodon antiquus) is estimated to be around half a million years old and was found in an area where stone and flint tools and other animal remains were recovered.
Russia calls aging space station ‘dangerous’ as it considers successor
The International Space Station (ISS) is dangerous and unsuitable, Russia’s space chief said Thursday, as Moscow pushes ahead with plans to scrap the project and launch its own station. Yuri Borisov, head of the Roscosmos agency, said the massive equipment failures and aging parts put the safety of the crew on the 24-year-old station at risk.
NASA orders five more astronaut missions from Musk’s SpaceX for $1.4 billion
SpaceX will launch five more astronaut missions to the International Space Station for NASA later this decade as part of a $1.4 billion order, the US space agency announced on Wednesday, bringing to 14 the total number of missions under the company’s contract for its Crew Dragon astronaut capsule. The latest boost to SpaceX’s contract with NASA is part of the agency’s effort to ensure a regular series of astronaut flights to the space station as Boeing, the other company with a crew contract similar, is struggling to complete development of its Starliner space capsule.
Analysis: Scientists Seek to Solve Ozone Threat to Africa’s Food Security
Plant specialist Felicity Hayes checks on her crops in one of eight small domed greenhouses set against the Welsh hills. Potted pigeon peas and papayas planted in the spring are leafy and green, and will soon bear fruit. In a nearby greenhouse, those same plants look sick and stunted. Pigeon pea is an aged yellow with seedy leaves; papaya trees reach only half the height.
Arid UAE turns to science to extract more rain from clouds
As a twin-turboprop plane takes off into the scorching desert sun with dozens of canisters of salt strapped to its wings, UAE weather chief Abullah al-Hammadi scans weather maps on computer screens looking for cloud formations. At 9,000 feet above sea level, the plane releases salt flares into the most promising white clouds, hoping to trigger precipitation.
(With agency contributions.)