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Monday, Feb 19th

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Scientists invent double-pane solar windows powered by quantum dots

scientists invent double panel solar windowsResearchers at the Los Alamos National Laboratory have designed efficient and cost-effective solar windows by combining quantum dot technology with a double pane structure.

The layers of quantum dots are tweaked to absorb only part of the solar spectrum, allowing the double-pane solar windows to generate energy while providing shade and insulation.

Scientists suggest the new technology will lower the cost of solar electricity.

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FCC approves first 'power-at-a-distance' wireless charging device

Wireless charger approved

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Wednesday for the first time approved a device that can recharge electronics up to three feet away.

The Energous Corporation’s Watt Up device lets users charge their electronics, regardless of the manufacturer, without being connected to the charger through the use of radio frequencies.

According to the company, Watt Up underwent months of rigorous testing to make sure that it met consumer safety and regulatory requirements prior to the FCC's approval.

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Ex-NASA astronaut Bruce McCandless, first to fly untethered in space, dies

Ex-NASA astronaaut Bruce McCandless, dies at 71Former NASA astronaut Bruce McCandless, the first person to fly untethered in space, died this week at 80 years old, the agency said Friday.

McCandless, who died Thursday, became the first astronaut to fly in space without being harnessed to a space vessel on Feb. 7, 1984, while on a mission aboard the space shuttle Challenger. Other astronauts on the mission used a 70mm camera to capture the moment in a now-iconic photograph, NASA said in a release.

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Farewell Cassini: Saturn spacecraft makes fiery, final dive

Cassini makes final, fiery diveNASA's Cassini spacecraft disintegrated in the skies above Saturn on Friday in a final, fateful blaze of cosmic glory, following a remarkable journey of 20 years.

Confirmation of Cassini's expected demise came about 7:55 a.m. EDT. That's when radio signals from the spacecraft — its last scientific gifts to Earth — came to an abrupt halt. The radio waves went flat, and the spacecraft fell silent.

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Massive black hole discovered near heart of the Milky Way

Black hole found at center of Milky WayAn enormous black hole one hundred thousand times more massive than the sun has been found hiding in a toxic gas cloud wafting around near the heart of the Milky Way.

If the discovery is confirmed, the invisible behemoth will rank as the second largest black hole ever seen in the Milky Way after the supermassive black hole known as Sagittarius A* that is anchored at the very centre of the galaxy.

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Astronaut Peggy Whitson home safe after record stay aboard space station

Astonaut Peggy Whitson homeAstronaut Peggy Whitson is home safe after spending a record 288 days on the International Space Station.

Whitson touched down in Kazakhstan at 9:21 p.m. EDT on Saturday aboard a Soyuz capsule. Whitson was joined for the trip home by NASA colleague Jack Fischer and cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikin of Roscosmos.

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'Most bizarre dinosaur ever found' is missing evolutionary link – study

Most bizarre dinosaur ever foundAn unusual vegetarian dinosaur with the silhouette of a flesh-ripping velociraptor, whose fossilised remains were unearthed in southern Chile 13 years ago, is a missing link in dinosaur evolution, researchers have said.

A revised assessment of the kangaroo-sized Chilesaurus diegosuarezi , reported in the journal Biology Letters, bolsters a theory unveiled earlier this year that threatens to upend a long-standing classification of all dinosaurs.

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