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Scientists discover smallest-ever star

Scientists discover smallest-ever star EBLM J0555-57Ab, as it is called, is located about 600 light years awayScientists have discovered the smallest-known star in the universe — slightly larger than Saturn in size — which may possibly have Earth-sized planets with liquid water in its orbit.Researchers from University of Cambridge in the U.K. identified the star located about 600 light years away, called EBLM J0555-57Ab as it passed in front of its much larger companion.The star is likely as small as stars can possibly become, as it has just enough mass to enable the fusion of hydrogen nuclei into helium, researchers said.Gravitational pullWith a size just a sliver larger than that of Saturn, the gravitational pull at its stellar surface is about 300 times stronger than what humans feel on Earth.The discovery is also the best possible candidates for detecting Earth-sized planets which can have liquid water on their surfaces, such as TRAPPIST-1, an ultracool dwarf surrounded by seven t…

What is the Saraswati supercluster?

What is the Saraswati supercluster? What are galaxy clusters? How big are they?Galaxies are like the building blocks of the universe, they contain a huge number of stars, something like 100 billion at a count. Galaxy groups can have three to 20 galaxies, the richest systems are called clusters (like the Virgo cluster) which can have several hundred galaxies.Superclusters are clusters of clusters. They can have as few as two clusters, and superclusters with two to four clusters are common. Saraswati has 42.Within superclusters, clusters are connected by filaments and sheets of dark matter with galaxies embedded in them.It is supposed that the galaxies are born in the filaments and then migrate towards the intersection of the filaments where they are assimilated into clusters.What are superclusters?These are the largest coherent structures seen in the universe. Firstly there are clusters of galaxies together with associated gas and dark matter. Large groups of such clusters, linked by f…

India overtakes US as Facebook’s No. 1 user

India overtakes US as Facebook’s No. 1 user India has overtaken the US to become Facebook’s largest country audience with a total 241 million active users, compared to 240 million in the US.The change at the top of the platform’s country rankings comes just a few days after Facebook announced it has more than two billion monthly users around the world, a report in The Next Web on Thursday said.The portal was quoting figures that the social media giant released to advertisers.The figures indicate that active users in India were growing more than twice as fast as in the US.“Active users in India are up 27% in the past six months alone, compared to growth of 12% in the US over the same period,” the report added.What was puzzling is that despite being the platform’s largest country audience, the social media penetration in India remained low, with just 19% of its total population using Facebook in June.The figures also lay bare the Facebook’s gender imbalance in India as men still represe…

8GB ASUS ZenFone AR arrives in India at ₹49,999

8GB ASUS ZenFone AR arrives in India at ₹49,999 Aiming for a larger pie of the premium segment in India, Taiwanese electronics giant ASUS has unveiled its flagship ‘ZenFone AR’ smartphone — the world’s first Google Tango-enabled and Google Daydream View-ready smartphone with a huge 8GB RAM — for the consumers.First showcased at ‘CES 2017’ in January this year, the 5.7-inch ZenFone AR with a unique rear tri-camera system and 128GB internal storage (expendable up to 2 TB) will be available exclusively on Flipkart for ₹49,999 from 4 p.m. on July 13.The tri-camera system has 23MP main camera, a depth-sensing camera and motion-tracking camera with a “Super Resolution” mode that can create massive 92MP image and capture 4K-UHD video.The device sports 8MP selfie camera.“With ZenFone AR, we desire to turn your physical world into a magical world by enabling it to perceive space and motion that goes beyond the boundaries of a touch screen,” Peter Chang, Regional Head, South Asia & Country …

St. Petersburg: White Nights calling

St. Petersburg: White Nights calling Whoever called New York “the city that never sleeps” had clearly never been to St. Petersburg in the summer.
The Russian metropolis, which will host seven matches at next summer’s FIFA World Cup, is bathed in almost perpetual daylight between May and June.
If New York dances in the dark, St. Petersburg does a summertime shimmy without dimming the lights.
Developed in the early 18th century under the watchful eye of Peter the Great, the city was home to Tchaikovsky, Pushkin and Dostoyevsky, helping it quickly grow into Russia’s cultural capital.
With its quaint canal-lined streets, it is easy to see why people refer to it as “the Venice of the North.”
On any given summer evening, St. Petersburg’s main vein, Nevsky Prospekt, bustles with musicians, street vendors, shoppers, boat hoppers, idle young lovers, and curious tourists gazing disbelievingly at the pale blue sky and checking their watches.
The Russians call this period of the year Belye Nochi,…

As Indonesia cuts forests, fake nature thrives

As Indonesia cuts forests, fake nature thrives JAKARTA: Indonesia’s capital is lush with fake greenery even as the country is cutting down its precious tropical forests at a record rate.
Jakarta’s gleaming air-conditioned malls have a particular fondness for lifeless extravaganzas of plastic ferns or autumnal trees that don’t drop any leaves.
Construction sites are wrapped in screens printed with giant leaves glistening with dew drops or the picturesque deciduous forests found in temperate climates. A new terminal at the international airport has a mini-jungle within its cavernous air-conditioned interior. Despite the odd inclusion of fake grass it has the slight saving grace that the potted greenery is real.
It’s not that Jakarta lacks real trees. The presidential palace has well-manicured surrounds of park, verges and trees. But elsewhere, against the backdrop of unrelenting traffic and brutalist concrete, the greens often seem weirdly out of place, like an introduced alien species.

British baby Charlie Gard to be evaluated by US doc

British baby Charlie Gard to be evaluated by US doc Baby Charlie Gard, the 11-month-old with a rare, terminal medical condition who has been the center of an ongoing legal battle, will be evaluated by a doctor from the United States.Charlie will be examined early next week, in London, by Dr. Michio Hirano, a neurologist at New York’s Columbia University Medical Center. Hirano is developing an experimental therapy that has been used on at least one American patient with a similar but less severe mitochondrial disease. He specializes in myopathies and other neuromuscular diseases.
Charlie was born in August with mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome, a progressive disease that causes muscle weakness and loss of motor skills, leaving those who have it unable to stand, walk, eat, talk and eventually breathe. Charlie will die from his illness, his doctors have said.
His parents, Chris Gard and Connie Yates, successfully raised money in hopes of bringing their son to the US for an experiment…