HotSpot Episode 80: Space Rotation Algorithm

This week on WDD’s HotSpot:

— Hidden Stonehenge

A recent unprecedented digital mapping project led by the University of Birmingham in conjunction with the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Archaeological Prospection and Virtual Archaeology, has discovered a host of previously unknown archaeological monuments around Stonehenge.

Remote sensing techniques and geophysical surveys have discovered hundreds of new features. The startling results of the survey, unveiled in full at the British Science Festival, include 17 previously unknown ritual monuments dating to the period when Stonehenge achieved its iconic shape.

Dozens of burial mounds have been mapped in minute detail, including a long barrow (a burial mound dating to before Stonehenge) which revealed a massive timber building, probably used for the ritual inhumation of the dead following a complicated sequence of exposure and excarnation (defleshing), and which was finally covered by an earthen mound.

— Space Rotation Algorithm

According to MIT, understanding how objects are spinning, where their centers of mass are, and how their mass is distributed is crucial to any number of actual or potential space missions, from cleaning up debris in the geosynchronous orbit favored by communications satellites to landing a demolition crew on a comet.

The university has developed an algorithm tested aboard the International Space Station that analyzes the rotation of objects in space. The algorithm was very accurate on all but one measure, using two small satellites deployed to the space station through MIT’s SPHERES project, which envisions that herds of coordinated satellites the size of volleyballs would assist human crews on future space missions.

— Cooling Electrons

At the University of Texas in Arlington, researchers have discovered a way to cool electrons to -228 °C without external means and at room temperature, which could lead to electronic devices that function with very little energy.

The process involves passing electrons through a quantum well to cool them and keep them from heating.

The team used a nanoscale structure – which consists of a sequential array of a source electrode, a quantum well, a tunneling barrier, a quantum dot, another tunneling barrier, and a drain electrode – to suppress electron excitation and to make electrons cold.

— Apple Returns

So as most of you have already heard, Apple has announced several new devices to the market, including the iPhone6 and iPhone6 Plus, and its own version of the smartwatch.

Of course it can tell time, however, it’s loaded with a ton of features that have the possibility of changing how you live your life.

Users will be able to unlock doors to hotel rooms at facilities that incorporate the technology into their business; they can check in on airlines, get directions, tweet, call people, pay for stuff, track your health and more!

Moving on to the phones, Apple finally got on the bandwagon of bigger is better with its new iPhone 6 Plus that features a 5.5 inch screen. The new phones also have a new A8 chip, which Apple says is 13 percent smaller and has up to 25 percent better performance.