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Ever have an idea that was so crazy that it just might work? A few weeks ago, members of the InSight Mars team came up with a crazy, counter-intuitive way to try to get dust off the lander’s solar panels: pour *more* dust on the panels.

Yes, that sounds crazy. But yes, it actually worked!

“I’ve been wanting to tell people why we were burying ourselves in dirt for a little while now,” said InSight project scientist Mark Panning on Twitter. “Short answer: people like Matt Golombek, Mariah Baker, Ralph Lorenz and others convinced our engineers that we could get dust off the panels by adding sand. That sounds crazy! But dumping a pile of dirt so that the wind would carry sand grains onto the panel lets sand grains bounce across the panel and kick off dust.”

With my solar panels gathering dust, why would I pour more dirt on myself? My team asked me to try something that seems crazy, but it actually worked! It cleaned some dust off my solar panels, giving me a small power boost.

How it works: https://t.co/v2l5foSqsl pic.twitter.com/oOKBCRcB86

— NASA InSight (@NASAInSight) June 3, 2021

This clever trick boosted InSight’s energy production by about 5%, gaining about 30 watt-hours of energy per sol, or Martian day. The team repeated the process over this past weekend, hoping to gain even more power.

“That isn’t huge, but we’re squeezing everything we can out of each Watt-hour of energy,” Panning added.  “It lets us keep gathering as much data as we can as we move to aphelion where solar energy is low and heating needs are high.”

Aphelion is where Mars is at its farthest point from the Sun. That means less sunlight reaches the spacecraft’s dust-covered solar panels, reducing their energy output. Martian dust has been a nemesis for not only InSight, but for previous Martian craft on the surface, such as the Opportunity rover, which ran out of power back in 2018.

The InSight team has been hoping a dust devil might clear dust off the panels, as happened for the Spirit and Opportunity Mars rovers. Alas, no such luck, and so the team took matters into their own hands, ….er, robotic arm.  

D000M0884 675001430EDR F0000 0904M 1
Raw image from the InSight lander showing the robotic arm about to dump dust on the lander. Credit: NASA/JPL.

InSight’s team timed the crazy maneuver for the windiest part of the day, hoping the larger sand grains blowing around would carry the smaller dust particles off the surface of the panels. Sure enough, with winds blowing northwest at a maximum of 20 feet (6 meters) per second, the trickling of sand coincided with an instantaneous bump in the spacecraft’s overall power, NASA said.

“We weren’t sure this would work, but we’re delighted that it did,” Golombek said in a press release.

It has long been known that the Martian dust has electrostatic “sticky” tendencies – making it stick on the solar panels of all rovers and landers. The idea for “using more dust to create less dust” came when the previously mentioned team members and Constantinos Charalambous saw a similar effect when they used InSight’s robotic arm to drop soil over the seismometer’s tether to better insulate it. They saw dust was blowing downwind after dumps to bury the tether.

One scoop, two scoops, three, four, five! Using my robotic arm to drop soil over my seismometer tether to better insulate it as I listen for marsquakes. I’ve already detected hundreds of quakes. pic.twitter.com/CdFqZiwf1Q

— NASA InSight (@NASAInSight) May 12, 2021

InSight’s panels have outlasted the two-year prime mission they were designed for and are now powering the spacecraft through the two-year extension. NASA says that relying on solar panels for power enables such missions to be as light as possible for launch and requires fewer moving parts – thus, fewer potential failure points – than other systems. Equipping the spacecraft with brushes or fans to clear off dust would add weight and failure points.

NASA noted how some members of the public have suggested using the Ingenuity Mars Helicopter’s whirring blades to clear off InSight’s panels, but
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LATAM crypto exchange Bitso and FMF launch NFT of Mexico’s National Team jerseys

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Bitso, a leading cryptocurrency platform operating in Latin America, and the Mexican Football Federation (FMF), today announced the joint launch of the first collectible NFT of the Mexico National Team’s jerseys that was acquired in cryptocurrencies.

This morning through their social media platforms, the FMF and Bitso announced the opportunity to acquire the new official National Team fan jerseys ahead of the team’s participation in the 2022 World Cup. In just 20 minutes, the entire collection sold out.

bitsonftjeysey
The NFTs of the jerseys have an exclusive design for the metaverse – each is unique on the blockchain and can be resold by its owner in subsequent transactions.

The collection consisted of 100 official physical jerseys, each with a corresponding NFT version of the jersey that fans’ avatars can wear within the Decentraland metaverse. Each physical and NFT jersey set sold for the equivalent of $1,800 MXN in ethers.

“Our mission is to make cryptocurrency useful in the everyday life of Mexicans; we are committed to spreading the technology through innovative opportunities that help people throughout the country familiarize themselves with this new world. We are very excited to offer the incredible, historic opportunity for the fans of our National Team so that through their Bitso account, they can wear the colors of the National Team on and ‘off’ the field in the metaverse.”
– Bárbara González Briseño, General Director of Bitso México

Jersey NFTs

Created by Bitso, the virtual jersey sports the official colors of Mexico and the new National Team shield, characteristics that will make it stand out when users wear it in the virtual world of Decentraland.

The post LATAM crypto exchange Bitso and FMF launch NFT of Mexico’s National Team jerseys appeared first on CryptoNinjas.

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By: CryptoNinjas.net
Title: LATAM crypto exchange Bitso and FMF launch NFT of Mexico’s National Team jerseys
Sourced From: www.cryptoninjas.net/2022/07/29/latam-crypto-exchange-bitso-and-fmf-launch-nft-of-mexicos-national-team-jerseys/
Published Date: Fri, 29 Jul 2022 15:19:02 +0000

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Long-running crypto exchange EXMO unveils “lively” rebrand amidst growth

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EXMO, a crypto exchange platform operating since 2014, announced this week a rebranded visual identity with includes a new logo, brand colors, and design features. This new branding comes as EXMO continues to grow its crypto platform while also seeking to expand its presence in other jurisdictions.

Some new developments underway at EXMO:

Soon, users will be able to earn passive income from EXMO’s new staking platform.Plans to launch an EXMO crypto debit card.Expansion of its services in international markets with the opening of offices in Poland and Lithuania.

EXMO’s new logo

The rationale for the re-brand:

“At EXMO, we have a vision of a world where crypto is in every wallet. Hassle-free. We want to achieve this by making crypto as simple and accessible to everyone as possible. And we know that you already appreciate EXMO for offering user-friendly services and helpful support. Also for the opportunity to trade anywhere and anytime, closing deals in just a few taps. Such important changes required a rethinking of our corporate style, which has long needed a massive upgrade. So today we are introducing a new brand identity for EXMO with a completely new visual concept. We are launching a new logo, brand colors, and design elements. Our key design principles are simplicity, boldness, and a pinch of fun. But most importantly, we have changed our logo. Simple and easily recognizable, it represents the humanity of our brand. The logo stands out due to the wavy letter ‘m’ which symbolizes exchange rate charts and also resembles a spring that will launch you into the crypto world.”
– The EXMO Team regarding the re-branding

The post Long-running crypto exchange EXMO unveils “lively” rebrand amidst growth appeared first on CryptoNinjas.

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By: CryptoNinjas.net
Title: Long-running crypto exchange EXMO unveils “lively” rebrand amidst growth
Sourced From: www.cryptoninjas.net/2022/07/26/long-running-crypto-exchange-exmo-unveils-lively-rebrand-amidst-growth/
Published Date: Tue, 26 Jul 2022 08:10:38 +0000

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Stitching together the grid will save lives as extreme weather worsens

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The blistering heat waves that set temperature records across much of the US in recent days have strained electricity systems, threatening to knock out power in vulnerable regions of the country. 

The electricity has largely stayed online so far this summer, but there have been scattered problems and close calls already. 

Heavy use of energy-sucking air-conditioners is the biggest problem. But intense heat can also reduce the output of power plants, blow transformers, and force power lines to sag. Severe droughts across large parts of the country have also significantly reduced the availability of hydroelectric power, according to the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC). 

It’s unlikely to get better soon. A number of grid operators may struggle to meet peak summer demand, creating the risk of rolling blackouts, the NERC report notes.

The nation’s isolated and antiquated grids are in desperate need of upgrades to keep the lights, heat, and air-conditioning on in the midst of extreme weather events that climate change is making more common, severe, and dangerous. One clear way to ease many of these issues is to more tightly integrate the country’s regional grids, stitching them together with more long-range transmission lines. 

If electricity generated in one area can be more easily shared across much wider regions, power can simply flow to where it’s needed at those moments when customers crank up air-conditioners en masse, or when power plants or fuel supply lines fail amid soaring temperatures, wildfires, hurricanes, or other events, says Liza Reed, a research manager focused on transmission at the Niskanen Center, a Washington, DC, think tank.  

The problem is it’s proved difficult to build more long-range transmission and grid interconnections for a variety of reasons, including the permitting challenges of erecting wires through private and public lands across cities, counties, and states and the reluctance of local authorities to forfeit control or submit to greater federal oversight.

The case of Texas

The unreliability of the US grid is not a new problem. Severe heat and winter storms have repeatedly exposed the frailty of electricity systems in recent years, leaving thousands to millions of people without power as temperatures spiked or plunged.

One of the fundamental challenges is that the grids today are highly fragmented. There are three main electricity networks within the US: the Eastern Grid, the Western Grid, and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). But there are numerous regional transmission organizations within those first two systems, including the California Independent System Operator, Southwest Power Pool, PJM Interconnection, New York ISO, and more. 

These grids form a complex web of networks operating under different regulators, rules and market structures, and often with limited connections between them.

Map USA grid
A variety of regional transmission organizations oversee different parts of the nation’s aging and fragmented grids, which operate under different rules and with often limited connections between them.
legend

ERCOT is especially isolated, in part because of the desire among local politicians, citizens, and power companies to avoid added competition, the hassle of following other states’ rules, and oversight from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). But the state offers a case study in why that can be a serious problem amid increasingly harsh climate conditions, Reed says.

The Texas grid operator pleaded with customers several times earlier this month to cut electricity use as blistering summer temperatures created  demand surges that threatened to outstrip supply and require rolling blackouts.  Low wind conditions, cloud cover, and outages at fossil-fuel power plants added to the strains.

Shutting off the electricity needed to run air-conditioning in triple-digit temperatures

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By: James Temple
Title: Stitching together the grid will save lives as extreme weather worsens
Sourced From: www.technologyreview.com/2022/07/28/1056483/stitching-together-the-grid-will-save-lives-as-extreme-weather-worsens/
Published Date: Thu, 28 Jul 2022 08:00:00 +0000

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