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LIGO May Detect the Collision of Neutron Star and Black Hole Next Year

Penelitian - Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) may detect gravitational waves from the collision of a neutron star and a black hole next year. Yanbei Chen, professor of Physics at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), said LIGO is currently under commissioning, and is planned to reoperate early next year.

"The second observing run ended on Aug. 25 of last year and the detectors are right now being commissioned and upgraded for better sensitivity. This will increase our reach into the universe," said Chen.

Gravitational waves are ripples of space-time curvature, just like a stone thrown into water will stir ripples. Compact objects in the universe, such as black holes and neutron stars, can generate gravitational waves as they collide.

These waves were predicted by Albert Einstein more than a hundred years ago, but took scientists years to find experimental evidence. LIGO constructed two 4,000-meter L-shaped laser interferometers at Hanfor…
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India to Send Team to Indonesia Seeking Behind Bio Farma’s Polio Vaccine Contamination

Penelitian - A four-member expert team will leave for Indonesia on 22 October to check pharmaceutical company, PT Bio Farma, seeking to solve the mystery behind the contamination of some batches of a polio vaccine that now threatens to change India’s status as a polio-free nation.

India’s drug regulator had requested the health ministry to advance their trip so that they start investigation without any further delay. The Indonesian company supplies the key starting material (KSM), the active raw materials used in a vaccine that give it a therapeutic effect, to Indian manufacturers that make polio vaccines in oral forms.

“Four drug inspectors from CDSCO (Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation) will be travelling to inspect Indonesia’s PT Bio Farma. The investigation will start from October 22-26. It provides KSM to the companies here to prepare polio vaccine. We were to leave on 29 October, but proposed to advance the trip, which has now got an approval,” an official in the regula…

China Begins Constructing Offshore Wind Farm With Biggest Installed Capacity

Penelitian - China has begun constructing an offshore wind-power project with the biggest installed capacity in the country. The wind farm's first turbine was installed Monday in waters off Nanpeng Isle of the city of Yangjiang, south China's Guangdong Province.

The project, with a planned installed capacity of 400,000 kilowatts, is expected to generate about 1.46 billion kwh of electricity annually when it goes on stream in 2020, according to its developer, China General Nuclear Power Corporation (CGN).

"As a coastal province, Guangdong enjoys abundant wind resources. Wind farms will play an important role in adjusting the province's industrial and energy structure, so as to promote green and high-quality development," said Chen Yabin with CGN.

Guangdong plans to build 23 offshore wind farms before 2030, wth the combined installed capacity to hit 66.85 million kilowatts. Wind has become China's third largest power source after coal and hydro.

According to th…

Asteroid Nanrendong Named After Founding Scientist of FAST Telescope

Penelitian - An asteroid has been named after Nan Rendong, the founding scientist of China's Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST), with approval from the International Astronomical Union (IAU).

Asteroid Nanrendong, coded 79694, was discovered on Sept. 25, 1998, by astronomers with the Beijing Schmidt CCD Asteroid Program at the Xinglong observatory in northern China, according to a recent IAU communique.

An official with China's National Astronomical Observatories read the communique at a ceremony Monday in southwest Guizhou Province.

A sculpture of Nan was unveiled at the ceremony to mark the naming. FAST is the world's largest single-dish radio telescope. It was set up in 2016 on the same day as the asteroid was discovered 20 years ago.

Nan worked as the chief scientist in charge of the FAST site selection and construction from 1994. He aimed to build it as the largest super-sensitive "ear" on Earth to seek distant sounds in the universe…

China Fines Company for Illegal Human Rabies Vaccine Production

Penelitian - Chinese authorities on Tuesday handed out penalties totaling more than 9.1 billion yuan ($1.32 billion) to a company for the illegal production of a human rabies vaccine.

The Changchun Changsheng Life Sciences Limited violated China's laws and regulations on drug management and production supervision in producing a human rabies vaccine, according to administrative penalty decision made by national and local drug authorities.

Violations included blending different batches of vaccine fluid, falsifying dates of production and using expired fluid to produce some of the batches, the document said.

The National Medical Products Administration annulled the rabies vaccine approval document and the certificates for related products from the company and imposed a fine of 12.03 million yuan.

Jilin Food and Drug Administration revoked the company's pharmaceutical production license, confiscated the illegally-produced vaccines and total income of 1.89 billion yuan from defecti…

Stephen Hawking: Superhumans Able to Manipulate Their Own DNA Would Replace Us

Penelitian - Stephen Hawking, the physicist whose bodily paralysis turned him into a symbol of the soaring power of the human mind, feared a race of “superhumans” capable of manipulating their own evolution.

Before he died in March, the Cambridge University professor predicted that people this century would gain the capacity to edit human traits such as intelligence and aggression. And he worried that the capacity for genetic engineering would be concentrated in the hands of the wealthy.

Hawking mulled this future in a set of essays and articles being published posthumously Tuesday as Brief Answers to the Big Questions, a postscript of sorts to his 1988 A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes, which has sold more than 10 million copies.

An excerpt released two days in advance by the Sunday Times sheds light on the final musings of the physicist and bestselling author, who was beset by a degenerative motor neurone disease similar to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or L…

Tanzanian rangers harness new technology to fight poachers

Penelitian - In Tanzania’s Grumeti Game Reserve, next to Serengeti National Park, elephants roam, rangers sleep more peacefully at night, and poachers have been put on notice, thanks to new technology designed to protect one of the world’s most endangered species.

In response to the surge in ivory poaching in Africa, where the elephant population fell by around 20 percent between 2006 and 2015, U.S. philanthropist and Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and technologists from his company Vulcan Inc. have developed EarthRanger.

Their tech platform aggregates remote sensor readings of animal movements, trackers on radios and vehicles, camera trap photos and data from GPS-powered “geo fences” to give rangers in wildlife reserves and parks such as Grumeti a clear view of protected areas. The platform alerts them when threats are picked up through the data.

“EarthRanger takes you from being reactive and always behind and always after an animal has been killed, or a ranger has been injured or …

Chandra X-ray Observatory Resume After Cause of Safe Mode Identified

Penelitian - The cause of Chandra's safe mode on October 10 has now been understood and the operations team has successfully returned the spacecraft to its normal pointing mode.

The safe mode was caused by a glitch in one of Chandra's gyroscopes resulting in a 3-second period of bad data that in turn led the on-board computer to calculate an incorrect value for the spacecraft momentum. The erroneous momentum indication then triggered the safe mode.

The team has completed plans to switch gyroscopes and place the gyroscope that experienced the glitch in reserve. Once configured with a series of pre-tested flight software patches, the team will return Chandra to science operations which are expected to commence by next week.

At approximately 9:55 a.m. EDT on Oct. 10, 2018, NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory entered safe mode, in which the observatory is put into a safe configuration, critical hardware is swapped to back-up units, the spacecraft points so that the solar panels get m…

Elizabeth Warren DNA Analysis Points to Native American Heritage

Penelitian - Responding to years of derision by President Donald Trump and other critics, Sen. Elizabeth Warren on Monday released a report on a DNA analysis that provides strong evidence she does, in fact, have Native American heritage.

The analysis on the Massachusetts Democrat was done by Stanford University professor Carlos D. Bustamante. He concluded Warren’s ancestry is mostly European but says “the results strongly support the existence of an unadmixed Native American ancestor.”

Bustamante, a prominent expert in the field of DNA analysis, determined Warren’s pure Native American ancestor appears “in the range of six to 10 generations ago.”

That meshes with Warren’s narrative that her great-great-great-grandmother, O.C. Sarah Smith, was at least partially Native American. That would make Warren 1/32nd Native American.

But if her ancestor is 10 generations back, that could mean she’s just 1/512th Native American, according to the report. That could further excite her critics inst…

Acceleration of Electrons in the Plasma Wakefield of a Proton Bunch

Penelitian - The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), operators of the world's largest particle physics lab, near Geneva, Switzerland, is said to be the largest particle accelerator in the world.

The accelerator lies in a tunnel 27 kilometers in circumference, as deep as 175 meters beneath the French-Swiss border. This, by the way, has helped scientists uncover the Higgs boson, the last particle predicted by the Standard Model in 2012.

Following the discovery of Higgs, a primary scientific goal of high energy physicits has been to characterize the properties of this new particle and to discover oher high-energy physics phenomenon.

As a result, there have been some rapid developments in high-energy particle accelerator technology to support high-energy physics research. However, the technologies used to date can only be improved and expanded at great expense. For this reason, making high-energy accelerators more affordable is urgentl…