NASA spacecraft to be sent to fiery death to stop alien invasion

Saturn’s moon Enceladus and spacecraft Cassini–Huygens in front of planet Saturn, rings and other moons (Illustration, elements of this image are furnished by NASA/Shutterstock)
Updated 30 August 2017

NASA spacecraft to be sent to fiery death to stop alien invasion

DUBAI: NASA is about to send one of its spacecraft that has been researching Saturn to a fiery death, to avoid any alien life forms contaminating surrounding planets.
The Cassini spacecraft is due to complete its 13-year mission in mid-September – sending data back to scientists until the very end.
The space experts have said the mission has been “insanely, wildly, beautifully successful,” sending more information from Saturn than ever before.
On the fatal day Cassini will make a final dive between the planet’s rings, toward its surface, causing it to burn up in the atmosphere.
When the craft was first sent into space no one expected it to be such a success. It discovered that Saturn has seasons, that the moon “Titan” looks like Earth in its early stages, and that another moon “Enceladus” could support life.
“The mission has been insanely, wildly, beautifully successful, and it’s coming to an end in about two weeks,” Cassini program scientist, Curt Niebur said.
Data will be sent back to Earth up until the end when it is expected to lose contact at 10:54 a.m. (GMT) according to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
Cassini’s mission has sent information back since July 2004 on Saturn’s 62 known moons, and recorded enough data for approximately 4,000 scientific papers.
But now Cassini’s days are finally numbered. Fuel is low and to avoid any chance of the craft ever colliding with one of the many moons that has the potential of supporting indigenous microbial life, it is being sent in a nose dive into Saturn.
In doing this, NASA believes it will destroy any microbes that hitched a ride from Earth and survived all this time, to avoid any unintended contamination of the moons they might later want to study.


Saudi Arabia, Google partner in plan to ‘level-up’ Mideast

Lino Cattaruzzi, managing director for Google in MENA. (Supplied)
Updated 18 October 2020

Saudi Arabia, Google partner in plan to ‘level-up’ Mideast

  • The program includes cloud training for local businesses, as well as workshops on advanced digital skills, such as a machine learning platform that will teach about 140,000 developers with a focus on women

DUBAI: Several Saudi ministries have teamed up with tech giant Google to launch a set of projects aimed at helping the Kingdom’s economic strategy and digital transformation.

Google said the initiatives will focus on Saudi Arabia and the MENA region and will boost economic recovery amid the coronavirus pandemic. The program, named “Grow stronger with Google,” will include a comprehensive list of digital tools, grants and training opportunities to support local businesses and job seekers across the region. In the Kingdom, Google will target the retail, tourism and technology sectors, including Saudi Post, which will list 100,000 local entities on the company’s digital platform and train employees in online marketing.
“We are proud to partner with Google in this initiative to bring value to Saudi nationals, residents and local businesses, especially SMEs through bringing them together using the Google ‘My Business’ platform,” said President of the Saudi Post Anef Abanomi.
“Through this partnership we aim to list up to 100,000 businesses in the first phase in line with Saudi Post’s strategic transformation objectives to improve quality of life and help SMEs achieve their e-commerce and digitization goals,” he added.
Lino Cattaruzzi, managing director for Google in MENA, said in a press release: “During the pandemic, online tools have been a lifeline for many in Saudi Arabia. Making the most of the online opportunity can help Saudi people, businesses and communities and in the wider region bounce back stronger.” He said the program will equip businesses and individuals in the Kingdom with digital skills, especially in sectors that have been most affected by the pandemic, such as retail and tourism.

HIGHLIGHT

In the Kingdom, Google will target the retail, tourism and technology sectors, including Saudi Post, which will list 100,000 local entities on the company’s digital platform and train employees in online marketing.

The tech giant has also partnered with several Saudi bodies — including the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and the Ministry of Tourism — to implement the programs. One project is set to train 50,000 students and businesses in digital marketing.
“We remain fundamentally optimistic about the future of this region, and we’re confident that by working together with local partners, we can boost recovery and build on the rapid acceleration of tech adoption we’ve seen during the crisis,” Cattaruzzi said.
The program also includes cloud training for local businesses, as well as workshops on advanced digital skills, such as a machine learning platform that will teach about 140,000 developers with a focus on women.
Google said it wants to help 1 million people and businesses throughout the MENA region learn digital skills and grow businesses by the end of 2021.