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Indian Origin Scientist Kailash Sahu and team in US used Albert Einstein’s Theory to Weigh Stars

Kailash Chandra Sahu, an Indian-origin astronomer, led a group of scientists to weigh white dwarf stars using Einstein's General Theory of Relativity.

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Kailash Chandra Sahu
The Hubble Telescope hovering in space. Wikimedia
  • A team of scientists in the US has successfully weighed the mass of a white dwarf star using Einstein’s predictions and theory
  • The group of scientists was led by an Indian-origin astronomer Kailash Chandra Sahu
  • This is the first time that the weight of a star has been measured using Einstein’s theory

US, June 10, 2017: Albert Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity is a century old. Yet, every year new developments in scientific knowledge are emerging through this basic formulated theory by Einstein.

The theory of relativity has once again provided development in our knowledge of the cosmos. In the US, a group of scientists has measured the mass of a white dwarf star by using the century-old theory.

The group was led by an Indian-origin astronomer Kailash Chandra Sahu at the Space Telescope Science Institute. The team used the Hubble Space Telescope to calculate the mass. Sahu is also the lead author of the research paper.

ALSO READ: Albert Einstein’s Century-old Prediction Comes True: Third Gravitational Waves detected by Scientists

The essence of the study lies in the technicality used by the scientists. They observed the white dwarf star as it passed by a distant star. When the two stars closely aligned, scientists analyzed the deflection in the light of the distant star caused by the gravity of the white dwarf star. The deflection in the sky would appear offset by 2 milliarcseconds!

The deflection may be incredibly tiny but it helped the scientists calculate the dwarf’s mass.

Einstein had hypothesized that a ray of light from a different star passing by an object would bend due to the gravity pull of the passing object. The study is published in the journal called Science.

– by Saksham Narula of NewsGram. Twitter: @Saksham2394

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US Preschoolers on Government Food Aid Grown Less Pudgy: Study

Obesity rates dropped steadily to about 14% in 2016

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US, Preschoolers, Government
A photo shows a closeup of a beam scale in a Federal building in Washington, D.C., June 18, 2019. (Photo: Diaa Bekheet). Preschoolers on government food aid have grown a little less pudgy, a U.S. study found. A photo shows a closeup of a beam scale in a Federal building in Washington, D.C., June 18, 2019. (Photo: Diaa Bekheet). VOA

Preschoolers on government food aid have grown a little less pudgy, a U.S. study found, offering fresh evidence that previous signs of declining obesity rates weren’t a fluke.

Obesity rates dropped steadily to about 14% in 2016 — the latest data available — from 16% in 2010, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.

“It gives us more hope that this is a real change,” said Heidi Blanck, who heads obesity prevention at the CDC.

The results were published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

US, Preschoolers, Government
Preschoolers on government food aid have grown a little less pudgy. VOA

The improvement affected youngsters ages 2 through 4 who receive food vouchers and other services in the federal Women, Infants and Children nutrition program. About 1 in 5 U.S. kids that age were enrolled in 2016.

An earlier report involving program participants the same age found at least small declines in obesity in 18 states between 2008 and 2011. That was the first decline after years of increases that later plateaued, and researchers weren’t sure if it was just a blip.

Improvements in food options in that program including adding more fruits, vegetables and whole grains may have contributed to the back-to-back obesity declines, researchers said. Other data show obesity rates in 2016 were stable but similar, about 14 percent, for children aged 2 to 5 who were not enrolled in the program, Blanck noted.

While too many U.S. children are still too heavy, the findings should be celebrated, said Dr. William Dietz, a former CDC obesity expert. “The changes are meaningful and substantial.”

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Dietz said program changes that cut the amount of juice allowed and switched from high-fat to low-fat milk likely had the biggest impact. He estimated that amounted to an average of 9,000 fewer monthly calories per child.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends low-fat milk for children. It also suggests kids should limit juice intake and choose fresh fruits instead.

Further reducing U.S. childhood obesity will require broader changes — such as encouraging families and day care centers to routinely serve fruits, vegetables and whole grains; and employers to extend parental leave to make breastfeeding easier for new mothers, said Maureen Black, a child development and nutrition specialist at the University of Maryland.

Studies have shown breastfed infants are less likely than others to become obese later on. (VOA)