Mysterious News Briefly — December 10, 2021
The crew onboard China’s still under construction space station gave students a live science lesson focused on physics – showing how being in a weightless environment affects buoyancy, the movement of objects and optics. Like normal kids, they were hoping a substitute would fill in and show a Star Trek movie instead.
The Blanco Transform Fault Zone off Oregon’s coast had at least 50 earthquakes in just 24 hours, including two that reached a 5.8 magnitude, but authorities assured the public “The Blanco Fracture Zone is not connected directly to the subduction zone so it won’t affect the big fault under land.” And if you believe that, they have some houses for sale on the fault line.
During her last-ever public appearance at the L.A. Comic Con, NASA saluted 88-year-old Nichelle ‘Communications Office Uhura’ Nichols with a video highlighting her work that culminated in a NASA-funded campaign to recruit the first women and Black astronauts in the 1970s. Tribbles are still waiting for their video.
A statistician issued a report showing that there’s a 1 in 4240 chance of death from a furniture accident, which is a higher chance than dying from sunstroke at 1 in 9000, and much higher than death by banana peel, which has a 1 in 3,500,000,000 chance of happening. If you walk in the kitchen past a table while eating a banana and looking out the skylight, it’s been nice knowing you.
After years of winning mocking SpaceX while slowly losing the business of shuttling crews to the International Space Station, Dmitry Rogozin, head of Russia’s space agency Roscosmos, announced on Twitter that Russia will send cosmonaut Anna Kikina to the International Space Station next year on board a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule instead of a Soyuz capsule. Will she have to salute the picture of Elon Musk on the wall?
In India, a 70-year-old man claimed to set a new national record after allegedly spending an entire hour staring directly at the sun without sunglasses and without blinking once – doctors who examined him afterward said his eyesight was normal as was his overall eye health. Sounds like the perfect spokesperson for an eyedrops company and the “Kids, Don’t Try This At Home” movement.
NASA’s Ingenuity helicopter has far exceeded its 30-day mission on Mars – it’s been operating nearly flawlessly for 7 ½ months and just completed its 17th flight – but its control personnel on Earth are already planning for a very emotional day when the little Martian helicopter that could can’t anymore. The recent tissue shortage wasn’t caused by the supply chain.
Despite near record cold temperatures in some areas of Siberia, as low as -76 degrees Fahrenheit, The Siberian Times reports that underground zombie fires fueled by peat continue to smolder eight years after they started with no signs of ending the release of massive amounts of carbon dioxide into the air. Siberians don’t think Underground Zombie Fire is a good name for a band.
The Artificial and Mechanical Intelligence lab at the Center for Robotics and Intelligent Systems at the Italian Institute of Technology released a video of the iRonCub, a small robot with a creepy clown face wearing a jetpack that will eventually allow it to fly like a mini Ironman and “help and collaborate with humans in dangerous and industrial environments.” Is this more exciting for Tony Stark or Stephen King?
Officials at the Tahlequah Municipal Airport in Oklahoma are baffled by the mysterious appearance of an upside-down crashed Piper Tri-Pacer plane in a remote area, with no sign of the pilot or passengers and no indication of when the crash occurred. Did they check if Harrison Ford is shooting a movie in the area?