Breaking the sound barrier makes a lot of noise, but if supersonic planes can quiet down, the future of air travel could get a lot faster. On Monday NASA announced it's giving Lockheed Martin $20 million to begin designing an experimental plane that uses “boom reduction” technology to muffle the noise from the sound barrier breaking. Instead of a boom, the plane will produce more of a “whump,” or what NASA calls a “supersonic heartbeat.” Since the heyday of the Concorde, several other supersonic passenger jet projects have tried and failed to get off the ground, but NASA is hoping to have a plane in the air by 2020.
How Facebook and Google fund global misinformation
The tech giants are paying millions of dollars to the operators of clickbait pages, bankrolling the deterioration of information ecosystems around the world.
Can Afghanistan’s underground “sneakernet” survive the Taliban?
A once-thriving network of merchants selling digital content to people without internet connections is struggling under Taliban rule.
NASA wants to use the sun to power future deep space missions
Solar energy can make space travel more fuel-efficient.
DeepMind’s AI predicts almost exactly when and where it’s going to rain
The firm worked with UK weather forecasters to create a model that was better at making short term predictions than existing systems.
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