- The $18 billion Space Launch System is the largest rocket engine ever built
- The SLS will fly astronauts to the Moon and Mars as part of the Artemis mission
- The hot fire test is due to happen at some point on or after January 17
- If this goes to plan the first uncrewed launch will happen later in 2021 and will see SLS launch the Orion spacecraft to the Moon and back
NASA‘s massive Space Launch System (SLS) rocket that will one day take astronauts to the Moon and Mars is to undergo its final ‘hot fire’ engine test later this month.
The space agency confirmed the four massive engines will be bolted to the ground during the firing – the final test before an uncrewed test flight later this year.
The rocket has already undergone a number of static engine tests and the next trial – the hot fire test – will happen at some point from January 17.
SLS is designed to be the backbone of the Artemis programme – which will see the first woman land on the Moon in 2024 and humans land on Mars in the 2030s.
Facebook employees tried to suppress conservative news outlets, report shows
Facebook’s bias is showing — again.
The tech giant’s employees have consistently pushed to suppress or de-platform right-wing outlets such as Breitbart, despite objections from managers trying to avoid political blowback, a scathing report by the Wall Street Journal revealed.
The internal debates — captured in message-board conversations reviewed by the publication — fuel new concerns that the platform is treating news outlets differently based on political slant.
Of special focus in the report was Breitbart, which employees have targeted to remove from the News Tab function, especially amid protests following George Floyd’s death by Minneapolis police last year.
After a staffer asked about removing Breitbart, a senior researcher responded, “I can also tell you that we saw drops in trust in CNN 2 years ago: would we take the same approach for them too?” he wrote.
By 2020, Facebook had begun keeping track of “strikes” for content deemed false by third-party fact-checkers. Repeat offenders could be suspended from posting. Escalations came more frequently against conservative outlets, according to the report.
The report is the latest in a series of bombshell revelations from whistleblowers about the social media colossus’ craving for profits over the needs of its users.
Employees were told in recent days to brace for more disclosures.
Nick Clegg, the vice president of global affairs for Facebook, told workers that “we need to steel ourselves for more bad headlines in the coming days, I’m afraid,” in a Saturday memo obtained by Axios.
The new scoops were expected to come Monday from a number of news outlets that were given leaked material by Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen but an embargo on the information collapsed Friday and more devastating reporting on the company’s internal workings could be released any time.
The story that broke the embargo on Friday involved a new whistleblower who told the Securities and Exchange Commission that Facebook routinely dismissed concerns about hate speech and the spread of misinformation over fears it would hinder the company’s growth.
YouTube deletes rapper’s ‘Let’s Go Brandon’ song claiming ‘medical misinformation’
YouTube told the rapper they are passing the complaint along for ‘re-review’
“YouTube has banned ‘Let’s Go Brandon’ song from YouTube due to ‘medical information,’ Gray posted on Twitter. “What medical misinformation is in the song? Whoa.”
Gray said that initially the lyric version of the video was banned but then the actual music video was taken down.
“Update: The music video was just banned,” Gray tweeted. “@YouTube this is crazy.”
YouTube’s tech support responded to a tweet from Gray and said they are looking into the matter.
“Jumping in – we’re passing this along to the right team for a re-review,” YouTube said on Twitter. “We’ll share updates once we hear back from them. Appreciate your patience in the meantime.”
Drones deliver sushi, ice cream above Tel Aviv
As part of the National Drone Initiative test operation, drones will bring sushi deliveries ordered by customers via a dedicated app and will deliver them to Tzuk beach in Herzliya.
The reality of sushi, ice cream and medicine deliveries by drones moved a step closer on Monday, as Israel’s National Drone Initiative launched its third phase.
Flying over residential areas in Tel Aviv-Jaffa, Ramat Hasharon, Herzliya and Hadera, the pilot program conducted the third stage of eight tests it will run as it moves forward with its mission to create a national drone network.
Over the course of the test, drones operated by the five companies participating in the program will carry out around 300 flights per day above open areas, conducting different kinds of tasks on flight paths assigned by the joint control system.
Among the challenges, drones operated by Cando and High-Lander will bring sushi deliveries ordered by customers via a dedicated app and will deliver them to Tzuk Beach in Herzliya. The companies will also have a drone performing autonomous security missions for an emergency facility (Reading Fire Station) so that the drone located at the charging station is activated autonomously.
In addition, SkyLinx and FlyTech will conduct a pilot program in which customers will be able to enter their order via a dedicated app and receive their ice cream via drones at Charles Clore Park (next to the Manta Ray restaurant).
All participating companies, including Simplex and DownWind, will perform flights over urban areas in the center of Tel Aviv. HarTech Technologies Ltd. and Airwayz will perform flights over the Hadera urban area.
Flights will also deliver donated blood, platelets and plasma from the Magen David Adom blood bank to Sheba Medical Center in Tel Hashomer, with the goal of verifying the method of packaging, flying and procedures so that they meet Health Ministry regulations.
At this stage, the goal is to consolidate the procedures so that other companies will be able to offer similar services at every blood bank and hospital in Israel when required.
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