Warship Of The Future: Super Stealth ‘Ghost’ Skates Above Water To Increase Speed In Stormy Seas (Pictures/Video)

A Glimpse At The Warship Of The Future: Super Stealth Ghost Vessel ‘Skates’ Above Water To Increase Speed In Stormy Seas – Daily Mail

This sinister looking craft might resemble Darth Vader’s imperial shuttle in Star Wars but it is actually a high-speed boat that uses its clever design to reduce the risk of seasickness.

The vessel, called Ghost, uses two 12ft (3.6 metre) winged struts that stand on twin hulls to lift the main craft clear out of the water.

This allows the Ghost to reach speeds of 33 knots (38 mph/61km/h) even when faced with waves of 8ft (2.4 metre) high.

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Ghost was developed by US-based Juliet Marine Systems, founded by entrepeneur Greg Sancoff.

‘Ghost is a reconfigurable high-speed small waterplane area twin hull (SWATH) vessel that delivers significant advantages over alternative vessels in this size class,’ according to the company’s website.

It uses a supercavitation effect to reduce the ship’s drag coefficient by a factor of 900.

The 38-foot (11.5m) long main cabin rests on top of a pair of 12-foot (3.6m) tall struts which, when moving at speed, prop the cabin above the water like a hydrofoil.

The struts swivel at their base, allowing them to be raised and lowered depending on the water depth.

While parked, or traveling through shallow waters, they can be extended to the side.

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In deeper waters, at speeds of eight knots or higher, they can rotate downward to lift the hull into the air, eliminating the jarring impact of waves.

They’re sharpened along the leading edge as well to slice through submerged debris.

At the other end of each strut, a 62-foot (18.8m) long tube houses a 2,000HP gas turbine engine spinning two front-mounted propellers.

These tubes also eject a pocket of air from the front to generate a supercavitation effect that reduces the ship’s drag coefficient by a factor of 900.

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‘It’s a revolutionary program,’ said Greg Sancoff, founder and CEO of Juliet Marine Systems.

‘Nothing like this has ever been built by anybody, not even the Navy.’

The Ghost rides on 12-foot (3.6m) struts connected to engine assemblies Sancoff says take advantage of ‘supercavitation,’ traveling underwater inside a bubble of gas.

It is a new application of technology that the inventor insists will make Ghost fast.

It has so far hit about 38mph (61km/h) but its creator believes it could approach 60mph (97 km/h), while staying stable even in rough seas.

It was announced in December last year that the company will be working with Karmel Technologies, Inc. to bring the Ghost technology to Korea.

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One of these ships would set you back about $10 million (£6.9 million) according to the company website.

‘A squadron of ten stealth Ghosts, carrying torpedos, missiles or cannons, would wreak havoc on any enemy,’ it says.

Business Insider named the vessel one of the top 19 most game-changing weapons of the 21st century at the end of last year.
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SpaceX’s Dragon 2 Crew Capsule Is One Step Closer To Flight (Video)

Watch The SpaceX Dragon Crew Capsule Hover Like A Fiery Bee – C/Net

Commercial spaceflight company SpaceX sure knows how to give its equipment cool names. It has a Falcon 9 reusable rocket. It also has the Dragon 2 crew capsule, designed to ferry people into space and return them gently to Earth. The Dragon 2 sports eight SuperDraco engines (most likely a reference to the Latin for “dragon,” and not Draco Malfoy from “Harry Potter”).

All eight of those engines are on display in footage showing what SpaceX calls a “picture-perfect propulsive hover test” for the Dragon 2. The video was taken on November 24, but released Thursday on YouTube.

The SuperDraco thrusters are paired up around the edges of the capsule. You can see them firing distinctly in the video. SpaceX refers to these pairs as “jet packs,” in keeping with the company’s geeky-cool nomenclature.

The engines produce 33,000 pounds of thrust that allow the capsule to hover like a graceful insect in the air for a few brief moments. The experiment was aimed at “demonstrating vehicle control while hovering.” The project is part of SpaceX’s work with NASA’s Commercial Crew Program, a public-private partnership focused on developing equipment for human space flight.

SpaceX has lived through both triumph and heartbreak recently. It successfully returned its reusable Falcon 9 rocket to a landing pad after it launched and delivered 11 satellites into low-Earth orbit on December 21. Last week, the company took a third try at landing the Falcon 9 on a floating barge. For the third time, it failed to stick the landing and exploded.

The successful Dragon 2 hover test is another check mark in the triumph column for SpaceX. Getting humans and gear back and forth to space has always been challenging, but the video is a fascinating glimpse at a future spacecraft that should one day carry people far above our planet.
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SpaceX Makes History: Reusable Falcon 9 Rocket Lands Successfully (Video)

SpaceX Makes History: Falcon 9 Rocket Successfully Lands – Breitbart

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Commercial spaceflight company SpaceX enjoyed a triumphal moment this evening, conducting its first-ever landing of a Falcon 9 rocket on dry land after a successful launch on Monday.

Livestreams from SpaceX’s headquarters showed employees breaking into cheers as the rocket touched down at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida.
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Creating reusable rockets that can land and relaunch is considered a major technological milestone that will significantly lower the cost of space travel. Multiple space companies were competing to achieve this breakthrough, but SpaceX is the first to succeed in landing a rocket for a non-suborbital trip.

Unlike previous attempts, where SpaceX landed their rockets on ocean platforms, this was the first where the Falcon 9 rocket was able to land on dry ground.

The mission’s primary objective was commercial: the company had been commissioned to launch satellites for the New Jersey-based communications company OrbComm. This was also a success, with all 11 satellites now in orbit around Earth.

However, this will likely be dwarfed by the wider significance of SpaceX’s achievement, which has brought us a step closer to cheap, reusable rockets. As this technology develops, it will make recreational space travel, new manned expeditions to the Moon, and even to Mars, considerably more cost-effective.

It’s a welcome end to the year for SpaceX, which had to deal with a debacle in June when a Falcon 9 rocket exploded shortly after takeoff, destroying a supply shipment intended for the International Space Station. According to SpaceX, the explosion was caused by a failed strut in the rocket’s upper state liquid-oxygen tank.

SpaceX is led by Elon Musk, the billionaire founder of Tesla Motors. “It’s a revolutionary moment,” Musk told the press after the landing. “No one has ever brought a booster, an orbital-class booster, back intact.”

It’s unlikely we’ll be wandering around on Mars anytime this year. But the prospect of viable, low-cost, private sector space travel suddenly seems a little less sci-fi.

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Intel Assessment: Obama Regime’s Incompetent Response To Cyber Attacks Encouraging More Of Them

Intel Assessment: Weak Response To Breaches Will Lead To More Cyber Attacks – Washington Free beacon

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The United States will continue to suffer increasingly damaging cyber attacks against both government and private sector networks as long as there is no significant response, according to a recent U.S. intelligence community assessment.

Disclosure of the intelligence assessment, an analytical consensus of 16 U.S. spy agencies, comes as the Obama administration is debating how to respond to a major cyber attack against the Office of Personnel Management. Sensitive records on 22.1 million federal workers, including millions cleared for access to secrets, were stolen by hackers linked to China’s government.

U.S. officials familiar with the classified cyber assessment discussed its central conclusion but did not provide details.

Spokesmen for the White House and office of the director of national intelligence declined to comment.

Recent comments by President Obama and senior military and security officials, however, reflect the intelligence assessment.

Obama said during a summit in Germany June 8 that he would not disclose who conducted the OPM hack. But he said such attacks would continue.

“We have known for a long time that there are significant vulnerabilities and that these vulnerabilities are gonna accelerate as time goes by, both in systems within government and within the private sector,” the president said.

Last week, Adm. Mike Rogers, commander of the U.S. Cyber Command, said the increase in state-sponsored cyber attacks is partly the result of a perception that “there’s not a significant price to pay” for such attacks.

Privately, administration officials said the assessment appears to be an indirect criticism of the administration’s approach to cyber attacks that has emphasized diplomatic and law enforcement measures instead of counter-cyber attacks.

“The administration is expecting more attacks because they’re unwilling to do anything,” said one official. “They’re preparing for more attacks because we’re failing to deter and defend against them.”

Intelligence and cyber security experts agreed with the assessment that weak U.S. responses are encouraging more cyber attacks.

“Until we redefine warfare in the age of information, we will continue to be viciously and dangerously attacked with no consequences for those attackers,” said retired Army Lt. Gen. Mike Flynn, a former Defense Intelligence Agency director.

“The extraordinary intellectual theft ongoing across the U.S.’s cyber critical infrastructure has the potential to shut down massive components of our nation’s capabilities, such as health care, energy and communications systems. This alone should scare the heck out of everyone.”

James Lewis, a cyber security expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, agreed. Lewis said the defensive approach that emphasizes closing vulnerabilities to cyber attacks is not working.

“Unless we punch back, we will continue to get hit,” Lewis said.

Lewis says that conducting retaliatory cyber strikes without starting a war is difficult but not impossible.

“There are a lot of ways to do this – leaking some party leader’s bank account could be a good start,” Lewis said. “Many people think a cyber response is the best way to signal where the lines are the other side should not cross.”

“We’re all coming to the same place – that a defensive orientation doesn’t work,” he added.

Rogers, the Cyber Command chief who has stated in the past that he favors more aggressive U.S. responses, acknowledged that the U.S. response to the OPM hack has been muted compared to the government’s highly-public response to North Korea’s damaging cyber attack in November against Sony Pictures Entertainment. The Sony hack was a failed bid by the North Koreans to derail the release of a comedy film critical of dictator Kim Jong Un.

Major incidents in recent months include the Sony attack; cyber attacks against the health care provider Anthem that compromised the records of some 80 million people; attacks against State Department and White House networks from suspected Russian government-linked hackers; the OPM hacking; and an Iranian-backed cyber attack against the Sands casino in Las Vegas.

Asked about the increase in state-sponsored attacks, Rogers said during a security conference in Colorado that one factor has been a lack of response.

Rogers earlier in congressional testimony has suggested a more muscular cyber policy that would include demonstrations and threats of retaliatory cyber attacks against hackers in a bid to create deterrence similar to the Cold War-era strategic nuclear deterrence.

In addition to more capable hackers, “you’ve got a perception, I believe, that to date there is little price to pay for engaging in some pretty aggressive behaviors,” Rogers aid.

“Whether it’s stealing intellectual property; whether it’s getting in and destroying things as we saw in the Sony attack; whether it’s going after large masses of data – OPM being the most recent but go back to the summer of ’14 and we saw a successful penetration of a large health insurance company and the extraction of most of the medical records and personal data information that they had.”

Nation states are only one part of the threat. Criminal groups also are conducting large-scale cyber attacks, Rogers said.

In November, Rogers said he argued for going public in naming North Korea’s communist regime for the Sony hack and having the president make a public statement that Pyongyang would pay a price.

Rogers said some officials in the administration favored a less public response to the Sony case.

“So one of my concerns was this time it was a movie,” Rogers said. “What if next time a nation state, a group, an individual, an actor decides I don’t like the U.S. policy, I don’t like a U.S. product, I don’t agree with this particular position taken by a company, or taken by an individual. If we start down this road, this is not a good one for us as a nation.”

Rogers said he argued strongly that “we cannot pretend that this did not happen,” and that the attack had to be linked to North Korea directly.

“My concern was if we do nothing, then one of the potential unintended consequences of this could be does this send a signal to other nation states, other groups, other actors that this kind of behavior [is okay] and that you can do this without generating any kind of response,” Rogers said.

On not naming the Chinese for the OPM hack, Rogers appears to have lost out during the administration’s debate on naming the Chinese.

“OPM is an ongoing issue,” Rogers said, adding that he would not discuss the specifics of internal discussions.

“But I would acknowledge, hey, to date the response to OPM, there’s a thought process and I’m the first to acknowledge to date we have to take a different approach.”

Asked if he agreed with doing nothing about the OPM response, Rogers suggested some action might be forthcoming.

“Just because you’re not reading something in the media does not mean that there’s not things ongoing,” he said. “So I would argue, let’s step back and see how this plays out a little bit.”

He defended the more public U.S. response to the Sony hack that included limited sanctions against North Korean agencies and officials, by noting that to date no similar cyber attacks by Pyongyang have been conducted.

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Customized 3D Printed Food Only A Decade Or Two Away, Experts Claim

Experts Predict 3D Printed Customised Food Items To Rule The Industry In Next 20 Years – 3ders

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The use of 3D printers has the potential to revolutionize the way food is manufactured within the next 10 to 20 years, experts from the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) are claiming.

According to a July 12th symposium at IFT15: Where Science Feeds Innovation hosted by the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) in Chicago, advances in 3D printed technology will radically change the way food is produced, impacting everything from how military personnel get food on the battlefield to how long it takes to get a meal from the computer to your table.

“The price of 3D printers has been steadily declining, from more than USD 500,000 in the 1980s to less than USD 1,000 today for a personal-sized device, making them increasingly available to consumers and manufacturers,” researchers said.

“No matter what field you are in, this technology will worm its way in,” said Hod Lipson, a professor of engineering at Columbia University and co-author of the book Fabricated: The New World of 3D Printing.

“The technology is getting faster, cheaper and better by the minute. Food printing could be the killer app for 3D printing,” said Lipson.

For example, Lipson said, users could choose from a large online database of recipes, put a cartridge with the ingredients into their 3D printer at home, and it would create the dish just for that person.

The user could customise it to include extra nutrients or replace one ingredient with another.

Anshul Dubey, research and development senior manager at PepsiCo, said 3D printing already is having an impact within the company, even though it is not yet being used to make food.

For example, consumer focus groups were shown 3D-printed plastic prototypes of different shaped and colored potato chips. He said using a prototype such as that, instead of just a picture, elicits a more accurate response from the focus group participants.

The US military is just beginning to research similar uses for 3D food printing, but it would be used on the battlefield instead of in the kitchen, said Mary Scerra, food technologist at the US Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Centre (NSRDEC) in Massachusetts.

She said that by 2025 or 2030, the military envisions using 3D printing to customise meals for soldiers that taste good, are nutrient-dense, and could be tailored to a soldier’s particular needs.

“Imagine warfighters in remote areas – one has muscle fatigue, one has been awake for a long period without rest, one lacks calories, one needs electrolytes, and one just wants a pizza,” Scerra said.

“Wouldn’t it be interesting if they could just print and eat?” Scerra said.

She noted that there are still several hurdles to overcome, such as the cost of bringing the technology to remote areas, the logistics of making it work in those locations and, perhaps most importantly, making sure the food tastes good.

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After 9 1/2-Year, 3 Billion-Mile Journey, NASA’s New Horizons Spacecraft Reaches Pluto

NASA’s Three-Billion-Mile Journey To Pluto Reaches Historic Encounter – Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

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NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft is at Pluto.

After a decade-long journey through our solar system, New Horizons made its closest approach to Pluto Tuesday, about 7,750 miles above the surface – roughly the same distance from New York to Mumbai, India – making it the first-ever space mission to explore a world so far from Earth.

“I’m delighted at this latest accomplishment by NASA, another first that demonstrates once again how the United States leads the world in space,” said John Holdren, assistant to the President for Science and Technology and director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. “New Horizons is the latest in a long line of scientific accomplishments at NASA, including multiple missions orbiting and exploring the surface of Mars in advance of human visits still to come; the remarkable Kepler mission to identify Earth-like planets around stars other than our own; and the DSCOVR satellite that soon will be beaming back images of the whole Earth in near real-time from a vantage point a million miles away. As New Horizons completes its flyby of Pluto and continues deeper into the Kuiper Belt, NASA’s multifaceted journey of discovery continues.”

“The exploration of Pluto and its moons by New Horizons represents the capstone event to 50 years of planetary exploration by NASA and the United States,” said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. “Once again we have achieved a historic first. The United States is the first nation to reach Pluto, and with this mission has completed the initial survey of our solar system, a remarkable accomplishment that no other nation can match.”

Per the plan, the spacecraft currently is in data-gathering mode and not in contact with flight controllers at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physical Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland. Scientists are waiting to find out whether New Horizons “phones home,” transmitting to Earth a series of status updates that indicate the spacecraft survived the flyby and is in good health. The “call” is expected shortly after 9 p.m. tonight.

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The Pluto story began only a generation ago when young Clyde Tombaugh was tasked to look for Planet X, theorized to exist beyond the orbit of Neptune. He discovered a faint point of light that we now see as a complex and fascinating world.

“Pluto was discovered just 85 years ago by a farmer’s son from Kansas, inspired by a visionary from Boston, using a telescope in Flagstaff, Arizona,” said John Grunsfeld, associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington. “Today, science takes a great leap observing the Pluto system up close and flying into a new frontier that will help us better understand the origins of the solar system.”

New Horizons’ flyby of the dwarf planet and its five known moons is providing an up-close introduction to the solar system’s Kuiper Belt, an outer region populated by icy objects ranging in size from boulders to dwarf planets. Kuiper Belt objects, such as Pluto, preserve evidence about the early formation of the solar system.

New Horizons principal investigator Alan Stern of the Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) in Boulder, Colorado, says the mission now is writing the textbook on Pluto.

“The New Horizons team is proud to have accomplished the first exploration of the Pluto system,” Stern said. “This mission has inspired people across the world with the excitement of exploration and what humankind can achieve.”

New Horizons’ almost 10-year, three-billion-mile journey to closest approach at Pluto took about one minute less than predicted when the craft was launched in January 2006. The spacecraft threaded the needle through a 36-by-57 mile (60 by 90 kilometers) window in space – the equivalent of a commercial airliner arriving no more off target than the width of a tennis ball.

Because New Horizons is the fastest spacecraft ever launched – hurtling through the Pluto system at more than 30,000 mph, a collision with a particle as small as a grain of rice could incapacitate the spacecraft. Once it reestablishes contact Tuesday night, it will take 16 months for New Horizons to send its cache of data – 10 years’ worth – back to Earth.

New Horizons is the latest in a long line of scientific accomplishments at NASA, including multiple rovers exploring the surface of Mars, the Cassini spacecraft that has revolutionized our understanding of Saturn and the Hubble Space Telescope, which recently celebrated its 25th anniversary. All of this scientific research and discovery is helping to inform the agency’s plan to send American astronauts to Mars in the 2030’s.

“After nearly 15 years of planning, building, and flying the New Horizons spacecraft across the solar system, we’ve reached our goal,” said project manager Glen Fountain at APL “The bounty of what we’ve collected is about to unfold.”

APL designed, built and operates the New Horizons spacecraft and manages the mission for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate. SwRI leads the mission, science team, payload operations and encounter science planning. New Horizons is part of NASA’s New Frontiers Program, managed by the agency’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

Follow the New Horizons mission on Twitter and use the hashtag #PlutoFlyby to join the conversation. Live updates also will be available on the mission Facebook page.

For more information on the New Horizons mission, including fact sheets, schedules, video and images, visit www.nasa.gov/newhorizons.

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China’s Top Internet Provider Builds Headquarters That Look Like Starship Enterprise

Chinese Millionaire Builds Company Headquarters To Look Like The Starship Enterprise – Oddity Central

The headquarters of NetDragon Websoft – China’s most popular internet provider – looks quite conventional from the ground, but aerial footage shows that the building is actually a replica of the iconic Starship Enterprise!

NetDragon chairman Liu Dejian, a huge Star Trek fan and self-described ‘Uber Trekkie’, reportedly spent $150 million over a span of six years to construct the USS Enterprise-shaped office. When it was finally ready in 2014, he chose to remain rather low-key about it. But when a fan spotted a satellite image of the badass building – about the size of three football pitches – it eventually stirred up a social media frenzy. Drone footage was soon released online, making Star Trek fans all over the world drool with delight.

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Mashable reports that the premises looks like a mashup of the Enterprise-E, Enterprise-D, and the starship design from the J.J. Abrams reboot movies, but die hard Star Trek fans disagree – they say it looks more like the Voyager. As smashing as its exteriors are, we’re not sure if the NetDragon office mimics the Enterprise’s cool interiors as well. Some reports suggest that it has a few awesome features inside, like automatic sliding gates, 30-foot slides connecting the third floor to the first, and a giant T-Rex replica.

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Liu, whose $600 million fortune is larger than the Queen of England’s, is fondly called ‘big child’ by the Chinese media. The man is famous for indulging his employees and filling his offices with fun gadgets like pinball machines, batman toys, and segways. His obsession with Star Trek began when he was a student at the University of Kansas. So he reportedly obtained a special license from CBS, allowing him to build a replica of the spaceship.

Star Trek fans, if you aren’t able to make it to China, you can get a clear view of the office on Google Maps!

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