A Change in the Air
NASA – An international team of astronomers using data from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope made an unparalleled observation, detecting significant changes in the atmosphere of a planet located beyond our solar system.
Exoplanet HD 189733b lies so near its star that it completes an orbit every 2.2 days. In late 2011, NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope found that the planet’s upper atmosphere was streaming away at speeds exceeding 300,000 mph. Just before the Hubble observation, NASA’s Swift detected the star blasting out a strong X-ray flare, one powerful enough to blow away part of the planet’s atmosphere.
The exoplanet is a gas giant similar to Jupiter, but about 14 percent larger and more massive. The planet circles its star at a distance of only 3 million miles, or about 30 times closer than Earth’s distance from the sun. Its star, named HD 189733A, is about 80 percent the size and mass of our sun.
This artist’s rendering illustrates the evaporation of HD 189733b’s atmosphere in response to a powerful eruption from its host star.
By Michael Strain – The fine for not buying health insurance under ObamaCare is quite small — the greater of $695 per year or roughly 2.5 percent of income for a single person. Put more simply, the fine is much less than the cost of an insurance policy for the overwhelming majority of Americans. But many of the law’s supporters have been very optimistic that a large number of the currently uninsured will comply with the mandate and purchase insurance.
Given the small penalties, will people comply with the individual mandate?
The Supreme Court explicitly states (pdf) that noncompliance with the mandate is lawful. This changes the psychology completely. People’s desire to obey the law will allow them to choose the cheaper option and pay the tax. more> http://tinyurl.com/87l2n6u
Posted in Business, Economy, Healthcare
Tagged Government, Health, Health insurance, Individual mandate, Law, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Tax, United States, United States Supreme Court
By Tim Hepher – From Australia to Indonesia, the United States to Norway – and most recently, Reuters has learned, Turkey – the marauding plane giants have spent months taking or defending market share, with world No.1 Airbus aiming deep inside Boeing’s territory and its rival publicly vowing to defend a traditional 50-50 split.
One thing is for sure: if there is a price war, nobody can agree who started it. Each accuses the other of dragging down prices but acknowledges being hurt in the process.
“Airbus and Boeing are a duopoly and can’t collude, but they can signal to each other. And Boeing is sending a clear signal to Airbus that ‘if you price down to get market share we are not getting to let it happen so we both get hurt’,” said Nick Cunningham, managing partner of London-based researchers Agency Partners. more> http://tinyurl.com/c549rjl
Posted in Business, Economy, Product, Transportation
Tagged Airbus, Aviation, Boeing, Industrial economy, Jobs, Manufacturing, Super regions, United States
By Charles Murray – Utility companies have long known how to capture the braking energy from electric trains, but they’ve usually found it difficult to get any large-scale benefits from such projects — until now.
The Recycled Energy and Optimization project takes a different approach. Using a dc/dc converter from Envitech Energy, it senses when track voltage is too high (about 800V). It then sucks DC power out of the third rail and pushes it into a giant lithium-ion battery pack provided by Saft, until it’s needed. “When the third rail’s voltage drops too low, they can bring the power out of the battery and then put it back in the third rail,” McDowall said. more> http://tinyurl.com/covod2n
Posted in Energy, Product, Technology, Transportation
Tagged Business, Direct current, Electric locomotive, Energy, Envitech Energy, Industrial economy, Lithium-ion battery, Renewable energy, Saft
By Benj Edwards – By the time of the PS/2′s launch in 1987, IBM PC clones–unauthorized work-alike machines that could utilize IBM PC hardware and software–had eaten away a sizable portion of IBM’s own PC platform. Compare the numbers: In 1983, IBM controlled roughly 76 percent of the PC-compatible market, but in 1986 its share slipped to 26 percent.
By 1990, it was abundantly clear that IBM no longer guided the PC-compatible market. And in 1994, Compaq replaced IBM as the number one PC vendor in the United States. more> http://tinyurl.com/7z6k6hn
Posted in Business, History, Product, Technology
Tagged Apple, Benj Edwards, Business improvement, Compaq, Hardware, IBM, IBM PC compatible, Personal computer, United States