As NASA works toward its plan to sustainably return to the Moon, it will be critical to collaborate with both commercial and international partners along the way, the US space agency said.
NASA is set to collaboratively work with China’s space agency for Moon exploration, in a bid to prepare for setting up a human colony on the lunar surface, as well as future missions to deep space. The US space agency held discussions with the China National Space Administration (CNSA) last month to explore the possibility of observing a signature of the landing plume of their lunar lander, Chang’e 4, which landed on the Moon earlier this month.
As NASA works toward its plan to sustainably return to the Moon, it will be critical to collaborate with both commercial and international partners along the way, the US space agency said. This approach will enable human expansion across the solar system and bring back to Earth new knowledge and opportunities, it said.
NASA’s robotic lunar surface missions, which will begin as early as 2020, will focus on scientific understanding of lunar resources, and prepare the lunar surface for a sustained human presence, to include the use of lunar oxygen and hydrogen for future lunar vehicles. The lunar surface may also serve as a crucial training ground and technology demonstration test site where we will prepare for future human missions to Mars and other destinations, NASA said.
Since the beginning of its mission, NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) has imaged objects impacting the surface of the moon. For a number of reasons, NASA was not able to phase LRO’s orbit to be at the optimal location during the landing, however NASA was still interested in possibly detecting the plume well after the landing.
Science gathered about how lunar dust is ejected upwards during a spacecraft’s landing could inform future missions and how they arrive on the lunar surface. Since the Chinese landing, LRO instruments have been collecting data that are currently being analysed. LRO is expected to image the Chang’e 4 landing site on January 31 in a manner similar to what was done on Chang’e 3.
NASA and CNSA have agreed that any significant findings resulting from this coordination activity will be shared with the global research community at the 56th session of the Scientific and Technology Subcommittee meeting of the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space meeting in Vienna, Austria, in February this year.
All NASA data associated with this activity are publicly available. In accordance with Administration and Congressional guidance, NASA’s cooperation with China is transparent, reciprocal and mutually beneficial, the US space agency said. Such observations are of interest scientifically since they allow NASA to test and constrain models used to understand how water and other volatiles may be transported to the permanently shadowed craters near the lunar poles.
In the coming months, the first Israeli spacecraft will land on the Moon, and partnership with NASA has helped make this possible. NASA will not only help with observations from LRO and communications support during the mission, but has also developed a laser retroreflector that will fly onboard the Israeli lander.
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9-year-old genius to graduate university
(CNN) – A child prodigy from Belgium is on course to gain a bachelor’s degree at the tender age of 9.
Laurent Simons is studying electrical engineering at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) — a tough course even for students of an average graduate age.
Described by staff as “simply extraordinary,” Laurent is on course to finish his degree in December.
He then plans to embark on a PhD program in electrical engineering while also studying for a medicine degree, his father told CNN.
His parents, Lydia and Alexander Simons, said they thought Laurent’s grandparents were exaggerating when they said he had a gift, but his teachers soon concurred.
“They noticed something very special about Laurent,” said Lydia.
Laurent was given test after test as teachers tried to work out the extent of his talents. “They told us he is like a sponge,” said Alexander.
While Laurent comes from a family of doctors, his parents have so far not received any explanation as to why their child prodigy is capable of learning so quickly.
But Lydia has her own theory.
“I ate a lot of fish during the pregnancy,” she joked.
The TUE has allowed Laurent to complete his course faster than other students.
“That is not unusual,” said Sjoerd Hulshof, education director of the TUE bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, in a statement.
“Special students that have good reasons for doing so can arrange an adjusted schedule. In much the same way we help students who participate in top sport.”
Hulshof said Laurent is “simply extraordinary” and praised the youngster.
“Laurent is the fastest student we have ever had here,” he said. “Not only is he hyper intelligent but also a very sympathetic boy.”
Laurent told CNN his favorite subject is electrical engineering and he’s also “going to study a bit of medicine.”
His progress has not gone unnoticed and he is already being sought out by prestigious universities around the world, although Laurent’s family wouldn’t be drawn on naming which of them he is considering for his PhD.
“The absorption of information is no problem for Laurent,” said his father.
“I think the focus will be on research and applying the knowledge to discover new things.”
While Laurent is evidently able to learn faster than most, his parents are being careful to let him enjoy himself too.
“We don’t want him to get too serious. He does whatever he likes,” said Alexander. “We need to find a balance between being a child and his talents.”
Laurent said he enjoys playing with his dog Sammy and playing on his phone, like many young people.
However, unlike most 9-year-olds, he has already worked out what he wants to do with his life: develop artificial organs.
In the meantime, Laurent has to finish his bachelor’s degree and choose which academic institution will play host to the next stage in his remarkable journey.
Before that, he plans on taking a vacation to Japan for an undoubtedly well-deserved break.
New award to honor arts and activism named after Lena Horne
Gang members slam BMW into rival and his 8-year-old son in Harlem
Two gangbangers aimed their BMW like a missile at a father and his 8-year-old son on a Harlem sidewalk in a horrifying incident captured by video distributed by police Thursday.
The BMW — driven by a man police believe is a member of the Gorilla Stone Bloods Gang — was zeroed in on the father, a rival gang member, said cops.
Around 3:45 p.m. Nov. 6, the boy and his father were walking on W. 112th St. by Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd. when the BMW jumped the sidewalk and slammed into them both, said cops.
🚨WANTED for ASSAULT: on 11/6 at approx 3:43 PM in front of 128 West 112th St in Manhattan, a 32 yr old male was walking with his 8 yr old son when a white BMW jumped the curb & hit the father & son. The driver then got out and slashed the father. Call @NYPDTips with any info. pic.twitter.com/cwd79rcM4c
— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) November 15, 2019
Father and son were both knocked through a gate.
The BMW driver then backed up — and its driver and passenger, also believed to be a gang member, jumped out of the car and ran toward the father and the son.
One of the attackers slashed the father, identified by sources as 32-year-old Brian McIntosh, who’s served prison time for robbery and bail jumping.
McIntosh and his son went to Harlem Hospital. Miraculously, the boy escaped serious harm.
McIntosh was so adamant about refusing to help police catch his attackers that the young boy’s mother had to file a police report alleging he was the victim of a crime, police sources said.
Cops released video of the attack, and ask anyone with information about the suspects to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS.
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