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Space

+ - Rosetta To Probe "Pioneer Anomaly"->

Submitted by DynaSoar
DynaSoar (714234) writes "On Friday November 13th, ESA'a Rosetta probe will get its third and final gravity assist slingshot from Earth on its way to it primary targets, the asteroid Lutetia and Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. But the slingshot itself will allow ESA scientists to examine the trajectory for unusual changes seen in several other probes' velocities. An unaccountable variation was first noticed as excess speed in Pioneers 11 and 12, and has since been called the Pioneer Anomaly. More troubling than mere speed increase is the inconsistencies in the variations. While Galileo and NEAR had appreciable speed increases, Cassini and Messenger did not. Rosetta itself gained more speed than expected from its 2005 fly by, but only the expected amount from its 2007 fly by. Several theories have been advanced, from mundane atmospheric drag to exotic variations to special relativity, but none are so far adequate to explain both the unexpected velocity increases and the lack of them in different instances. Armed with tracking hardware and software capable of measuring Rosetta's velocity within a few millimeters per second while it flies past at 45,000 kilometers per hour, ESA will be collecting data which it hopes will help unravel the mystery."
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Communications

+ - New Fast Molecules for Optical Technologies

Submitted by
srizah
srizah writes "New molecules have been reportedly developed by a team of researchers at the Chinese Academy of Science , Washington State University and the University of Leuven in Belgium. These molecules known as chromophores interact with light more strongly than any other material ever tested making them potential candidates for optical switches, optical memory systems, holograms etc. Excerpt from article says: "The internet could soon shift into overdrive thanks to a new generation of optical molecules developed and tested by a team of researchers from Washington State University, the University of Leuven in Belgium and the Chinese Academy of Science in China. The new materials, organic molecules known as chromophores, interact more strongly with light than any molecules ever tested. That makes them, or other molecules designed along the same principles, prime candidates for use in optical technologies such as optical switches, internet connections, optical memory systems and holograms. The molecules were synthesized by chemists in China, evaluated according to theoretical calculations by a physicist at WSU and tested for their actual optical properties by chemists in Belgium. " http://www.wirelessiq.com/content/newsfeed/9124.ht ml"
IBM

+ - IBM's Power6 processor will exceed 5Ghz

Submitted by Jordin Normisky
Jordin Normisky (666) writes "IBM's Power6 processor will be able to exceed 5 gigahertz in a high-performance mode, and the second-generation Cell Broadband Engine processor from IBM, Sony and Toshiba will run at 6GHz. The chip's clock will tick at a rate "over 5GHz in high-performance applications". In addition, the chip "consumes under 100 watts in power-sensitive applications," a power range comparable to mainstream 95-watt AMD Opteron chips and 80-watt Intel Xeon chips."
Biotech

Researchers Work Around Hepatitis Drug Patent 298

Posted by kdawson
from the academia-vs.-big-pharma dept.
Several readers let us know about a pair of British researchers who found a workaround to patents covering drugs used to treat hepatitis C. The developers intend to produce a drug cheap enough to supply to people in the poorest parts of the world. The scientists found another way to bind a sugar to interferon, producing a drug they say should be as long-lasting and effective as those sold (at $14,000 for a year's supply) by patent holders Hoffman-La Roche and Schering Plough. Clinical trials could begin by 2008. The article quotes developer Sunil Shaunak of Imperial College London: "We in academic medicine can either choose to use our ideas to make large sums of money for small numbers of people, or to look outwards to the global community and make affordable medicines."

Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (1) Gee, I wish we hadn't backed down on 'noalias'.

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