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Independent reviewers offer 80 suggestions to make Starliner safer

Enlarge / The Boeing Starliner spacecraft is back home at the company's Commercial Crew and Cargo Processing Facility after its December test flight. (credit: NASA) Following the failed test flight of Boeing's Starliner spacecraft in December, NASA on Monday released the findings of an investigation into the root causes of the launch's failure and...

Congress may allow NASA to launch Europa Clipper on a Falcon Heavy

Enlarge / A full-scale prototype of the high-gain antenna on NASA's Europa Clipper spacecraft. (credit: NASA) The US House of Representatives released its proposed fiscal year 2021 budget for NASA on Tuesday, funding the agency at $22.63 billion. This is the same amount of funding that was enacted for NASA's budget this year. This is just the beginning...

COVID-19 safety: Around the world, many of the elderly can’t be bothered

Enlarge (credit: David Cliff/NurPhoto via Getty Images) There are still a significant number of unknowns about the coronavirus—we're struggling to understand what influences the severity of some cases, why other people remain asymptomatic, and why most people experience only a subset of its total symptoms list. But one thing has been crystal clear...

Toxic hand sanitizers have blinded and killed adults and children, FDA warns

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | Jena Ardell) Adults and children in the United States have been blinded, hospitalized, and, in some cases, even died after drinking hand sanitizers contaminated with the extremely toxic alcohol methanol, the Food and Drug Administration reports. In an updated safety warning, the agency identified five more brands...

Exoplanet in the hot-Neptune desert is the first of its kind

Enlarge / Artist's conception of a gas giant planetary system. Unlike TOI-849b, this one still has its enormous gassy envelope. (credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech) In 2018, scientists monitoring TESS—the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite—discovered a giant planet in close orbit around the star TOI-849, roughly 735 light years away. Nature recently published...

The Norman Conquest didn’t change ordinary people’s lives very much

(credit: By unknown seamsters, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=17141779) When William the Conqueror won the Battle of Hastings, he became King of England in 1066. This changed the political landscape of Europe and the course of world history. For the English aristocracy and religious leaders, the world turned upside...

As COVID-19 spreads, researchers track an influenza virus nervously

Enlarge (credit: Liz West / Flickr) SARS-CoV-2 wasn't the first coronavirus that spawned fears of a pandemic; there were worries about SARS and MERS before it arrived. But influenza viruses have also been a regular source of worries, as they can often spread from agricultural animals to us. Earlier this week, a report was released that described...

NASA’s most iconic building is 55 years old and just getting started

Construction progress of the Vehicle Assembly Building in August 1964. [credit: NASA ] NASA's Kennedy Space Center is now nearly six decades old—it was formally created on July 1, 1962 as a separate entity from Marshall Space Flight Center...

After a second-stage failure, Rocket Lab loses seven satellites

Enlarge / The Pics Or It Didn't Happen mission lifts off. (credit: Rocket Lab) On Sunday morning, local time in New Zealand, Rocket Lab launched its 13th mission. The booster's first stage performed normally, but just as the second stage neared an altitude of 200km, something went wrong and the vehicle was lost. In the immediate aftermath of the...

The explosive physics of pooping penguins: they can shoot poo over four feet

Enlarge / Bombs away! When approaching a brooding penguin in its nest, it's best to beware of flying feces. Penguin poo can travel as far as 1.34 meters (about 4.4 feet), a new study finds. (credit: Wolfgang Kaehler/LightRocket via Getty Images) Nature is a brutal place, so during brooding, chinstrap and Adélie penguins are reluctant to leave their...

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