Στήλη: Science-Technology

Menoitios himself: The Exiled planet.


New research from the «Southern – Western Institute for Space Studies»

By Nikolaou K., Papadopoulos D. & Rodis N. (B ΄ class)
 According to the survey-researcher David Nesvorky’s research paper published in
 «The Astrophysical Letters Journal«, our solar system was in a very different condition than it is today. According to the wheel model and the current motion of the gas giants (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune) in our solar system, because of their orbits, Jupiter should have already cleared from the solar system Uranus and Neptune. 4.5 billion years ago there must have been another gaseous planet between Saturn and Uranus. Sometimes orbit was closer to Jupiter so that the gravity of a large planet sent into exile on this planet. This led Uranus and Neptune to remove even further though of course survived the exile of Zeus would send out of the solar system. This explains some thought and a period of high bombardment by small bodies were the inner planets like Mars, Earth, Venus and Mercury. According to other surveys were also astronomers in our galaxy there are hundreds of planets running alone in the galaxy.

Source: http://astroconfess.com/%CE%B1%CF%83%CF%84%CF%81%CE%BF%CE%BD%CE%BF%CE%BC%CE%B9%CE%BA%CE%AC-%CE%BD%CE%AD%CE%B1/

Deep space photography


By Patty Efthimki


Image1: The stellar warm ngc6093, one of the densest of the 147 known globular star clusters in the Milky Way galaxy. Located about 28000 light years from earth, M80 contains hundreds of thousands of stars, all held together by the mutual gravitational attraction.


 Globular clusters are particularly useful for studying stellar evolution, since all of the stars in the cluster have the same age, about 15billion years, but cover a range of stellar masses. Every star visible in this image is either more highly evolved than, or in a few rare cases more massive than our own sun. Especially obvious are the bright red giants which are stars similar to the sun in mass that are nearing the ends of their lives.


 Image 2: The Hubble space telescope took this family portrait of young ultra stars nested in their embryonic cloud of glowing gases. The celestial maternity wind, called N81, is located 20000 light years away in the small Magellanic cloud a small irregular satellite galaxy of our milky way. This are probably the youngest massive stars ever seen the Magellanic cloud. The nebula offers a unique opportunity for a close up glimpse at the fire stormaccompanying the birth of extremely massive stars each blazing with the brilliance 400000 of our suns. Such galactic fireworks were much more common billions of years ago in the early universe where most star formation took place. The picture was taken with Hubble’s wide field and planetary camera 2.n81_heritage

NASA Chief Tells the Critics of Exploration Plan: “Get Over It’

(By Fotis Giannikopoulos, A class)


For years, critics have been taking shots at NASA’s plans to corral a near-Earth asteroid before moving on to Mars — and now NASA’s chief has a message for those critics: «Get over it, to be blunt.»

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden defended the space agency’s 20-year timeline for sending astronauts to the Red Planet, during the opening session of this year’s Humans 2 Mars Summit at George Washington University in the nation’s capital.

That timeline calls for NASA to develop a new Orion crew capsule and a heavy-lift rocket, called the Space Launch System, while continuing research on the International Space Station. By the mid-2020s, astronauts would travel to a near-Earth asteroid that was brought to the vicinity of the moon. That’d set the stage for trips to Mars and its moons sometime in the 2030s.

Some members of Congress want NASA to forget about the asteroid and go directly to Mars or the moon’s surface instead. But Bolden said NASA needed the asteroid mission as a «proving ground» for the farther-out missions to Mars.

«We don’t think we can just go,» the former astronaut and Marine general said.

Bolden said missions to Mars would be important not only to learn whether life once existed beyond Earth, but also to set the stage for interplanetary settlement. That would serve as an insurance policy against any potentially planet-destroying catastrophe on Earth’s.

«Only multiplanet species survive for long periods of time,» Bolden said, echoing a call for outer-space colonization that has been made by luminaries ranging from physicist Stephen Hawking to SpaceX’s billionaire founder, Elon Musk.

Bolden said getting astronauts to Mars by the 2030s would require «modest increases» in NASA’s budget. Musk has said he could do it sooner, perhaps in 10 years if enough money was available. But Bolden said an Apollo-scale push to Mars isn’t in the cards.

«Reality is the budget,» he said, «and we are not going to get 4 percent of the federal budget to go to Mars or any other place.»

NASA’s current annual budget of $17.65 billion represents about 0.5 percent of the federal spending plan, as opposed to the 4 percent level at the peak of Project Apollo. The current level of space spending has been putting a lot of pressure on NASA to balance its human spaceflight program with its robotic exploration program, which has its own big ambitions for missions to Mars, Europa and elsewhere.

Even though he ruled out an Apollo-level budget, Bolden voiced hope that NASA would someday get a bigger share of the budgetary pie. «One percent would be a gold mine,» he said.

And even though he told critics to get over their objections to NASA’s exploration plan, Bolden signaled that he was still open to constructive criticism. «This is the path we have chosen,» he said. «Help us tweak it.»



images bgh

    Nikiforos Rodis, B2

 Synesthesia is a rare phenomenon of neurological nature, in which two or more senses of a person are somehow interconnected. That is to say that the stimulation of a certain cognitive pathway causes automatic and involuntary experiences in a second, unrelated one. People with synesthesia are called synesthetes.


There are various forms of synesthesia, regarding various senses and perception. An example of this phenomenon is chromesthesia, in which one might “see” or associate colors with certain sounds. The most common form of synesthesia is grapheme-colour synesthesia. In this form synesthetes associate symbols –mainly numbers and letters – with specific colors. For instance, when a person with this type of synesthesia thinks of, or reads a numeric sequence or a sentence, the numbers or letters will somehow appear colored, in his mind. This ability might also be quite helpful when it comes to memorizing phrases or phone numbers, etc. In this way, someone might “perceive” a numeric sequence such as:  “1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9”, like so, in their mind:
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9.  The colors associated with various symbols (numbers, letters) however, might vary significantly from person to person.




Human Cloning: An issue of a great controversy


 By: Trasani Klarissa

 Nowadays, due to the rapid advancement in the fields of biotechnology and medical science, new discoveries seem to give rise to controversies. A very debatable timely issue is “cloning”.


When Dolly was created, the announcement fired the imagination of the people. It was perceived and speculated that the process of human cloning was not far away and there were many who were eager to unravel the mysteries of nature and human life. Indeed, today the modern world has been divided into two opposing sides concerning whether human cloning should be allowed or not. More specifically, the tangible research and improvements paved the way for a series of ethical and legal policy debates in the field of human cloning.


On the one hand, there are many arguments who are in favuor of human cloning. These are:


The Reproductive Cloning: Some people believe that through reproductive cloning, parents will have their children matching their wishes and wills, while


infertile couples will be able to have children.


The Therapeutic Cloning: What is more, a patient, suffering from a disease like cancer, will be able to restore his cells through therapeutical cloning, while


there is the possibility of putting an end to a disease, which would otherwise


be inherited onto the next generations.




However, the creation of human life by humans makes many ordinary people as well as intellectuals, theists or atheists, scientists and humanists to find the idea repulsively offensive and grotesque. Towards this direction, there are some arguments posed by the side opposing the cloning of humans:


Two philosophical objections exist. The first is that cloning violates God’s will


by creating an infant using a “man-made technique”. The other philosophical


objection is that cloning is contrary to nature in a way that does not depend


on the natural process of procreation. Additionally, human cloning is a process that is completely outside common sense and the way we perceive the world. Cloning humans, who constitute a more complex organism than animals, has


not yet be scientifically proclaimed to be safe. Thus, the cloned individual will be prone to diseases as many clones have died fairly quickly due to unexpected complications.




World policies on human or reproductive cloning range from complete prohibition to no policies on record. Over 30 countries, including France, Germany, and the Russian Federation, have banned human cloning altogether. Fifteen countries, such as Japan, the United Kingdom, and Israel, have banned human reproductive cloning, but permit therapeutic cloning.




To sum up, human cloning does not hold a good or bad meaning. On the


contrary, it itself is neutral; the ethical aspect of cloning exactly depends upon the intentions of the cloners whereas ethical values seem the only voice left that speaks up to defend the central core of our humanity.


How many people can live on planet Earth?

By Christina Diamantopoulou (B Class)

people on earth 

   Earth, our planet is home to million different species but only one of them dominates everything: human beings .There are nearly 7 billion of us living on Earth and the human population is increasing by nearly 2 people every second, that means 200.000 every day. Each of us needs food, water, energy, shelter and hopefully a whole lot more.

  It is expected that by the middle of the century we will reach the number of 9 billion people and our planet will need to accommodate almost 3 billion more of us. This number is larger than the current population of Europe or Africa. Scientists believe that the least developed countries will experience the most rapid growth and this will not only affect their natives, it will affect all of us. Until now, the population was kept under control by nature. Just like the other animals we would thrive when there was enough food and water but when diseases or droughts stroked, life would be cut short. But those environmental limits are being reduced, since we fought many infectious diseases. Living healthily and long has consequences; the productive capacity of the Earth has limits that will finally determine how many human beings it can support.

  We call Earth “blue planet” because about 70% of its surface is covered in water. But most of that is sea and only 2, 5% of it is available for human use. Additionally, there is no more water on the planet than what there was when life first appeared. However, distribution has changed and more than a billion people lack access to clean drinking water. At some point, wars are going to happen for water instead of oil and we are wasting it when we should be conserving it. As the impact of human demand begins to be seen from space we are taking advantage of half the available water to serve our needs. Desalination might be a solution but with the current economy, it is a very expensive procedure. As you can see for yourselves, the prospect of providing water to 3 billion more of us does not look good, but in many ways this is the least of our worries…

  When it comes to the world’s food supply we are using almost all that’s available to us to get great agriculture potentials and there is hardly any extra land. If the population grows as much as it is expected we will need to double the amount of food that we have at the moment. Food production cannot increase as rapidly as human reproduction does and demand will eventually outstrip supply. Doubling productivity sounds ambitious but we have done even better in the past. In the 20th century industrialization managed to triple farming goods my using new machines, the least developed parts of the world kept on using traditional methods until the 60’s. Then, Norman Borlaug decided to do something about it. 

   He is credited with saving million lives in what’s became known as the “green revolution”. Borlaug developed disease-resistant crops and taught Indian and Mexican farmers how to get the most out of them with modern farming methods. This allowed many countries to become self-sufficient in food. In 1970 he received the Nobel Peace prize for his work. Thanks to him much of the world is now fed.
     Today, international corporations and governments of the most powerful countries on the world seek to take advantage of some of the last remaining areas of undeveloped farmland. Urban land suitable for cultivation is becoming a scarce commodity and countries find it more and more difficult to produce enough food to feed their populations so they are now trying to achieve it by buying land abroad. Their aim is to introduce intensive farming methods and export the food back to their home countries. These deals are often shrouded in secrecy and we’re not always certain that local communities will benefit from them…
   Today’s population requires the equivalent of one and a half Earths to support our current way of life. We are simply living beyond the means of our environment to sustain us. In order to remain within the productive capacity of the planet, people in industrialized countries will have to give up consumption of a great deal to create the needed ecological space. If we do not make these compromises we are going to reach a point we will really suffer. As I see it, there are only three ways to avoid that. We can stop consuming so many resources, we can change our technology and we can reduce the growth of our population. We will probably need to do all three.

  The understanding of the natural world is crucial for all of us. After all, we depend on it for our food, the air we breathe, and some would say for our own very sanity. It is a relationship that we are stretching to a breaking point as we continue to grow in numbers. I am fully aware that this article can be seen as depressing. But human beings have capabilities that animals do not. We think rationally, study and plan ahead. We are at crossroads where we can choose to cooperate or carry on regardless what … and I hope our intelligence saves us!


Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dN06tLRE4WE