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Indian software engineer receives British award for innovation

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London: A software engineer from the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu has received a prestigious British award for developing an innovative electronic smart key system.

Nandagopal Lakshminarayan, who has been working as a knowledge transfer partnership (KTP) associate at Lincoln Security Ltd. for the past two years, won the “Business Leader of the Future” award at Innovate Britain’s “KTP Best of the Best Awards 2015”, a company statement said.

Lakshminarayan was awarded in November but the announcement was made public on Tuesday.

The software for the electronic locking system, called eLOQ, enables the creation and management of electronic keys and locks that cannot be copied or picked.

“The project has enabled me to get involved in both the academic and business sides. The KTP project has presented a unique challenge because it was not just about innovation and technicality, but also about creating awareness of a new product,” Lakshminarayan said.

John Murray, principal lecturer in the University of Lincoln’s School of Computer Science, said: “The project has been very fortunate to have recruited Nanda. He came with a predominantly embedded hardware background which meant that although he had good programming skills, there was a lot for Nanda to learn.”

“However, very quickly he had taken up the challenge and has been one of the most enthusiastic and diligent people I’ve had the pleasure of working with,” he added.

Lincoln Security has established a separate company, Dynamic Access Solutions, in order to take the product to market.

“The KTP between the university and the company has enabled the company to diversify the business and offer a unique product when compared to traditional locking systems that meets the needs of the 21st Century,” said Peter Corlett, managing director for Dynamic Access Solutions Ltd.

“Over the past two years Nanda has provided the company with the necessary skills to develop a high-level online management platform where keys and locks can be programmed and managed,” he said.

Britain’s national KTP scheme helps businesses to innovate and grow by linking them with a university to work on a specific project. (IANS)

(Photo: Huffington Post)

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NASA’s TESS Discovers New Worlds Only 5 Months After Its Launch

With four special cameras, TESS uses a detection method called transit photometry.

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TESS
TESS, the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, is shown in this conceptual illustration obtained by Reuters on March 28, 2018. NASA sent TESS into orbit from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. VOA

A planet-hunting orbital telescope designed to detect worlds beyond our solar system discovered two distant planets this week five months after its launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida, officials said on Thursday.

NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, better known as TESS, made an early discovery of “super-Earth” and “hot Earth” planets in solar systems at least 49 light-years away, marking the satellite’s first discovery since its April launch.

TESS is on a two-year, $337 million mission to expand astronomers’ known catalog of so-called exoplanets, worlds circling distant stars.

TESS
TESS Deputy Science Director Sara Seager. VOA

While the two planets are too hot to support life, TESS Deputy Science Director Sara Seager expects many more such discoveries.

“We will have to wait and see what else TESS discovers,” Seager told Reuters. “We do know that planets are out there, littering the night sky, just waiting to be found.”

TESS is designed to build on the work of its predecessor, the Kepler space telescope, which discovered the bulk of some 3,700 exoplanets documented during the past 20 years and is running out of fuel.

NASA expects to pinpoint thousands more previously unknown worlds, perhaps hundreds of them Earth-sized or “super Earth” sized — no larger than twice as big as our home planet.

Those are believed the most likely to feature rocky surfaces or oceans and are thus considered the best candidates for life to evolve. Scientists have said they hope TESS will ultimately help catalog at least 100 more rocky exoplanets for further study in what has become one of astronomy’s newest fields of exploration.

 

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An artist’s concept provided by NASA shows the Keplar Spacecraft moving through space. VOA

 

MIT researchers on Wednesday announced the discovery of Pi Mensae c, a “super-earth” planet 60 light-years away orbiting its sun every 6.3 days. The discovery of LHS 3844 b, a “hot-earth” planet 49 light-years away that orbits its sun every 11 hours, was announced on Thursday.

Pi Mensae c could have a solid surface or be a waterworld as the composition of such planets is a mixed bag, Martin Spill, NASA’s program scientist for TESS, said in a phone interview.

The two newest planets, which still need to be reviewed by other researchers, offer the chance for follow-up study, officials said.

Also Read: Parker Solar Probe of NASA Sends Back Its First Images

“That, of course, is TESS’ entire purpose — to find those planets around those brightest nearby stars to do this really detailed characterization,” Spill said.

With four special cameras, TESS uses a detection method called transit photometry, which looks for periodic dips in the visible light of stars caused by planets passing, or transiting, in front of them. (VOA)