Oman desert used for Mars mission spacesuit tests

Members of the AMADEE-18 Mars simulation mission wear spacesuits while conducting scientific experiments during an analog field simulation in Oman’s Dhofar desert on February 7, 2018, in a collaboration between the Austrian Space Forum and the Oman National Steering Comittee preparing for future human Mars missions. (AFP)
Updated 13 February 2018
0

Oman desert used for Mars mission spacesuit tests

DUBAI: Oman’s desert town of Marmul will be used to test the first spacesuit to be used on a manned mission to Mars, Omani daily the Times of Oman reported.

The Austrian Space Forum is testing a prototype spacesuit to be worn by astronauts on missions to Mars.

Named “Aouda,” the suit has been in developmental stages since 2011 and contains advanced technological and scientific tools that monitor the stress, fatigue and tension levels of the wearer.

“The chest piece of the suit is made from the same material that is used to make Kevlar armor,” one of the simulation astronauts, Stefan Dobrovolny, told the Times of Oman,

“When we began to look at ways to design the suit, we actually went to museums in Austria to look at medieval armor to see how well they protected people, because that was the inspiration for our suit,” he added.

Other features include a long-range communication system that allows transmission between astronauts and Earth, as well as a five-hour battery and life-support system.

“The batteries of the suit have been designed to last for some five or six hours, but in case one is low on battery, we have a cable that can be used to connect one suit to the other so that charge from one battery can be transferred to the other,” Suit operation crew member Michael Muller told the Times of Oman.


More of the same at more of the cost, is the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 worth it?

Updated 15 August 2018
0

More of the same at more of the cost, is the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 worth it?

  • For a phone that doesn’t seem to look or feel much different to its predecessor, the Note 8, many will ask if it’s worth the splash
  • Samsung does not break out shipments of its smartphone models, but analysts reckon it has shipped around 10 million Note 8 models so far

DUBAI: Through the grand halls of Dubai’s recently opened Habtoor Palace, the region’s tech geeks rejoiced as Samsung Gulf launched its latest Galaxy Note 9 smartphone on Wednesday.

“It is a phone that has all the features you need to work hard and play harder,” said Tarek Sabbagh, Head of IT and Mobile (IM) Division at Samsung Gulf Electronics, adding that “it’s designed for a level of performance, power and intelligence that today’s power users want and need.”

Samsung says the battery will work on a single charge a day. It also boasts a processor that will let users view high resolution movies without having to endure the frustration of constant buffering.

All this for $1,007 for the 128 GB model, while costing almost $300 more for the 512 GB model – for a phone that doesn’t seem to look or feel much different to its predecessor, the Note 8, many will ask if it’s worth the splash.

A tech journalist speaking at the pre-launch lobby certainly didn’t think so.

“I have the Note 8, and apart from the camera and the Bluetooth clicker on the stylus, it’s basically the same,” he told Arab News.

One by one, Samsung’s GCC team made their way up to the stage following snappy, flashy videos introducing the new smartphone’s chic, sexy look – offered in three colors: Midnight Black, Ocean Blue and Lavender Purple.

Probably the most impressive and practical aspect of the new phone is the Samsung DeX. A piece of software that, with the help of a special cable, allows the smartphone to hook up to any screen and run as a desktop, all through the gadget’s processing power. This may prove especially helpful to those who travel often and don’t want to lug a heavy laptop each time.

Another plus for the Note 9 is the dual camera that comes with a dual OIS (Optical Image Stabilization).

The combination of advanced intelligence features and leading premium hardware which allows advanced noise reduction technology, and a lens that adjusts to light just like the human eye, according to the launch data.

Samsung is counting on the Note 9 to outsell the Note 8 to stem a sales slump. It said last month its flagship Galaxy S9 phone missed sales targets, sending profits in the mobile division down by a third in the April-June quarter.

Samsung does not break out shipments of its smartphone models, but analysts reckon it has shipped around 10 million Note 8 models so far.

“The jury is still out if the device can boost sales of Samsung’s premium category,” mobile phone market tracker Counterpoint Research said in a blog, pointing to stiff competition from the iPhone X, Huawei’s P20 Pro and the Find X from China’s Oppo Electronics.

(With Reuters)