Israeli fighter pilot to be part of SpaceX’s private flight for Axiom next year

  • Former Israeli fighter pilot Eytan Stibbe is the second member of the all-private crew that SpaceX is scheduled to launch late next year for Axiom Space, the company confirmed to CNBC on Monday.
  • President of Israel Reuven Rivlin made the announcement shortly after SpaceX launched its Crew-1 mission for NASA on Sunday evening.
  • Astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria, who previously worked for NASA and flew to space four times, will be the mission commander for AX-1, with Stibbe set to serve as a mission specialist.
  • Axiom has yet to name the remaining two members of the AX-1 mission.

SpaceX's Crew Dragon Endeavour seen docked with the International Space Station on July 1, 2020.

© Provided by CNBC
SpaceX’s Crew Dragon Endeavour seen docked with the International Space Station on July 1, 2020.

CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida — Former Israeli fighter pilot Eytan Stibbe is the second member of the all-private crew that SpaceX is scheduled to launch late next year for Axiom Space, the company confirmed to CNBC

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Virgin Galactic Falls After Space-Flight Delay Due to Covid

Virgin Galactic (SPCE) shares fell on Monday after the space-travel company said that a scheduled flight from New Mexico would be delayed due to the pandemic.

“Virgin, in accordance with new guidelines from the New Mexico Department of Health to disrupt the spread of the Covid-19 virus in the state, today announced that it will be minimizing its operational footprint at its New Mexico facilities,” the company, founded and partly owned by the U.K. entrepreneur Richard Branson, said in a statement.

“In consultation with government officials, and as a result of these new operations restrictions, the space flight that was planned to occur between November 19-23 will be rescheduled.” The company said it will reschedule a new test-flight window as soon as it can.

Virgin’s operations base sits at Spaceport America in south-central New Mexico, north of Las Cruces, while its manufacturing and development activity is in California’s Mojave Desert.

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Novavax and Sorrento Therapeutics: Are These Beaten-Down Coronavirus Stocks a Bargain?

COVID-19 stocks have been a hot commodity in 2020. Several companies with anti-coronavirus assets such as antibodies, diagnostics, and vaccines, in fact, have seen their share prices rise by more than 1,000% this year. Even though the outbreak is as strong as ever in countries like the United States, however, a fair number of these former red-hot stocks have pulled back in a big way from their 52-week highs.

This near nichewide correction appears to stem from a slew of factors including the recent approval of Eli Lilly‘s COVID-19 antibody drug bamlanivimab, the likely approval of Pfizer and BioNTech‘s mRNA COVID-19 vaccine in the coming weeks, and the lack of a second stimulus relief bill which may have provided additional funding for research and development. 

Red plastic balls with spikes representing a coronavirus set against a blue background.

Image source: Getty Images.

Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) and Sorrento Therapeutics (NASDAQ:SRNE) have both been hit especially hard by this reversion to the mean among

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Pandemic Presents Make-Or-Break Moment For Bank Credit Risk

It is a critical moment for bank credit risk right now. While US banks were in reasonably good shape heading into the Covid-19 crisis – especially their Tier 1 ratios – credit levels were already high. The initial government stimulus programs have helped lessen the impact of the financial downturn, but many have run their course, and additional stimulus does not appear imminent.

On many levels, the current situation is not easy to read. Direct support from the government has flattered financial metrics for both sound and struggling consumers and small businesses, making true risk differentiation difficult. And the Fed’s broader “easy money” policy has bolstered liquidity, making capital available to companies with unhealthy as well as healthy underlying economics. Meanwhile, the pandemic is not receding and, in many regions, is intensifying, hurting consumers, small businesses and the overall economy. Meanwhile growing geopolitical challenges, including the trade war with

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Scientists stuff graphene with light

No losses: Scientists stuff graphene with light
Credit: Daria Sokol/MIPT

Physicists from MIPT and Vladimir State University, Russia, have converted light energy into surface waves on graphene with nearly 90% efficiency. They relied on a laser-like energy conversion scheme and collective resonances. The paper was published in Laser & Photonics Reviews.

Manipulating light at the nanoscale is a task crucial for being able to create ultracompact devices for optical energy conversion and storage. To localize light on such a small scale, researchers convert optical radiation into so-called surface plasmon-polaritons. These SPPs are oscillations propagating along the interface between two materials with drastically different refractive indices—specifically, a metal and a dielectric or air. Depending on the materials chosen, the degree of surface wave localization varies. It is the strongest for light localized on a material only one atomic layer thick, because such 2-D materials have high refractive indices.

The existing schemes for converting light to SPPs on

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Victor Glover becomes first Black astronaut on NASA’s extended space station

The Daily Beast

One of Biden’s First Acts as President-Elect Was to Antagonize Kim Jong Un

SEOUL—President-elect Joe Biden is signaling a return to reality in U.S. policy toward North Korea after President Trump failed to sweet talk Kim Jong Un into giving up his nukes and the missiles that could fire them at distant targets, including the U.S.While Kim and the North Korean state media machine remain silent on the election, Biden chose to mark Veterans’ Day with a visit to a memorial to Korean War veterans, paying homage to their sacrifice and U.S. support of South Korea against the North.The decision of Biden, with his wife Jill, to lay a wreath at the memorial in Philadelphia “should send a positive message about reinforcing and sustaining the strength of the alliance,” said David Maxwell, a retired Army special forces officer who served five tours in South Korea.Maxwell, now senior

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What Is a Supernova? – How Supernovas Impact Earth’s Climate

crab nebula

NASA, ESA, J. Hester, A. Loll (ASU)

  • Supernovas may have affected the Earth’s climate in the last 40,000 years.
  • Tree-ring data suggests supernovas caused spikes in radiocarbon.
  • Could the next nearby supernova cause a collapse of civilization?

    Dendrochronology is a fancy word for tree-ring dating, where the age of a tree can be determined by the number of growth rings across its trunk. But there’s a lot more to learn from looking at a tree’s rings than simply its age.

    Dive deeper. ➡ Get unlimited access to the weird world of Pop Mech.

    Like fingerprints, tree rings give scientists clues to what the world was like when a tree was alive. By studying tree rings, we can determine when the tree lived, the climatic conditions through which it lived, and possibly, what was happening in the universe at the time.

    In a new study published in the International Journal

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    ‘New Era’ Begins with Crewed Launch of SpaceX and NASA Crew-1 Mission

    What seemed impossible not long ago is now on the verge of becoming routine. A SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule successfully launched into orbit on Sunday night from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, setting four astronauts on a course for the International Space Station (ISS). It’s the second crewed launch for SpaceX this year.

    By Monday night, the four astronauts will rendezvous and dock with ISS. They’ll spend the next six months carrying out scientific experiments alongside fellow astronauts and cosmonauts who are already on board, bringing the total number of crew members on the space station to seven. 

    This particular Crew Dragon capsule mission is named Resilience, a nod to the extreme difficulties that were overcome to make this historic launch happen, including this year’s COVID-19 pandemic. 

    “The message that [the crew] wanted to convey is resilience,” NASA’s ISS program manager Joel Montalbano said at a briefing on Friday.

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    Weather on Jupiter and Saturn may be driven by different forces than on Earth

    Credit: CC0 Public Domain

    A trio of researchers, two with Harvard University, the other the University of Alberta, has found evidence that weather on Saturn and Jupiter may be driven by dramatically different forces than weather on Earth. In their paper published in the journal Science Advances, Rakesh Kumar Yadav, Moritz Heimpel and Jeremy Bloxham describe computer simulations showing that major weather systems on Jupiter and Saturn might be driven by internal rather than external forces, resulting in outcomes such as the formation of large anticyclones like Jupiter’s famous red spot.

    Weather on Earth is primarily driven by processes that take place in a thin layer of the atmosphere near the planet’s surface. For many years, it has been thought that similar processes drive weather on other planets, such as Jupiter and Saturn. In this new effort, the researchers demonstrate that such theories may be wrong.

    The work involved creating

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    Jackery Explorer 1000 Portable Power Station + Solar Saga 100W Solar Panel

    One of the lessons we keep learning repeatedly is that it can be a mistake to count on always having easy access to power. From natural disasters like hurricanes or wild fires, to shutdowns because of construction or accidents, to outdoor activities like camping, there’s not always an electrical outlet when you need one. And we need power more than ever… That’s why it’s a great idea to own a portable power station. As the summer wound down, I wrapped up my evaluation of a potent combination from Jackery: the Explorer 1000 Portable Power Station, and the Solar Saga 100W Solar Panel. The combination effectively gives you an eco-friendly solar generator that can provide power for everything from smartphones to appliances.

    About Jackery

    Before getting into details, I wanted to touch base on Jackery. High capacity lithium

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