NASA – The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket soared into space from Space Launch Complex-40 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, carrying the Dragon capsule to orbit at 3:44 a.m. EDT on Tuesday, May 22, 2012. The launch is the company’s second demonstration test flight for NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services, or COTS, Program. During the flight, there will be a series of check-out procedures to test and prove Dragon’s systems, including rendezvous and berthing with the International Space Station. If the capsule performs as planned, the cargo and experiments it is carrying will be transferred to the station. Image Credit: NASA/Alan Ault
Posted in Science, SPACE WATCH, Technology, Transportation
Tagged Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Space Launch Complex 40, Commercial Orbital Transportation Services, Dragon, Falcon 9, Florida, International Space Station, NASA
By Phil Angelides and Bart Dzivi – Banking in the United States is a heavily subsidized industry. The two primary and on-going sources of subsidy are the insurance of deposits, backed by the full faith and credit of the United States, and access to extraordinarily cheap money from the Federal Reserve. And that doesn’t even count the trillions of dollars showered on banks to keep them afloat during the financial crisis.
Betting on financial derivatives, where one party is long the contract, and another party is short the contract, is not an activity that can credibly lay claim to public subsidies. It does not expand capital access for businesses that put people to work and provide goods and services to the economy. It is simply a zero-sum game of chance dominated by a handful of giant banks. more> http://tinyurl.com/crtupbg
Posted in Banking, Economy
Tagged Banking in the United States, Banking reform, Derivative (finance), Federal Reserve, Federal Reserve System, Financial crisis, Government, JPMorgan Chase, Phil Angelides, United States
By Michael Sivy – The scenario everyone recognizes is based on Greece reviving its traditional drachma currency. What this means is that salaries and prices within Greece would be converted from euros to drachmas, and then the drachma currency would be allowed to depreciate to make the Greek economy more competitive. The problem comes with debts that are denominated in euros, especially if the lenders are outside of Greece. These lenders would naturally resist being repaid with less valuable drachmas. However, if Greek borrowers have to repay the loans with euros, the debt would become more expensive for them to pay off after the drachma is devalued. more> http://tinyurl.com/bq9vjvn
Posted in Banking, Business, Economy, Leadership
Tagged Capital, Currency, Economy of Greece, European Union, Eurozone, Government, Greece, Greek drachma, Leadership, Politics of Greece
R&D Mag – If you are not a condensed matter physicist, vanadium oxide may be the coolest material you’ve never heard of. It’s a metal. It’s an insulator. It’s a window coating and an optical switch.
So what is vanadium oxide? It’s an oxidized form of the metal vanadium, an ingredient in hardened steel. When oxygen reacts with vanadium to form vanadium oxide, the atoms form crystals that look like long rectangular boxes. The vanadium atoms line up along the four edges of the box in regularly spaced rows. A single crystal of vanadium oxide can have many of these boxes lined up side by side, and the crystals conduct electricity like wire as long as they are kept warm.
“The weird thing about this material is that if you cool it, when you get to 67 C, it goes through a phase transition that is both electronic and structural,” said Rice’s Douglas Natelson, lead co-author of the study in Nature Nanotechnology. more> http://tinyurl.com/ch3c72y
Inside Job: the Financiers Who Pulled Off the Heist of the Century, Author: Charles Ferguson.
By Charles Ferguson – Many people who saw my documentary Inside Job found that the most disturbing portion of the film was its revelation of widespread conflicts of interest in universities, at think-tanks, and among academic experts. Viewers who watched my interviews with eminent professors were stunned at what came out of their mouths.
Yet we should not be surprised. Over the past couple of decades medical professionals have amply demonstrated the influence money can have in a supposedly objective, scientific field. In general, medical schools and journals have responded well, adopting disclosure requirements. The economics discipline, business schools, law schools and political science schools have reacted very differently. more> http://tinyurl.com/bqyxbu7