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— Space

We nearly lost Fermi: The problem of orbital debris

Julie McEnery is NASA's Project Scientist for the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. When she checked her email on March 29, 2012, she was startled to find an automatically generated message stating that in six days, her half-billion-plus dollar satellite was going to cross paths with Cosmos 1805, a Soviet-era spy satellite. The predicted encounter had the two satellites occupying the same coordinates only 30 milliseconds apart. Not only that, but Cosmos was in an orbit moving nearly perpendicular to Fermi such that their collision would be equivalent to tons of high explosives. Essentially total destruction. Read More
— Computers

NVIDIA unveils new Fermi-Class Quadro GPUs

NVIDIA has revealed its new range of Fermi-based Quadro GPUs that the company says deliver performance that is up to five times faster for 3D applications and up to eight times faster for computational simulation. The Quadro Plex 7000 Array is a complete system solution whereas the Quadro 6000, Quadro 5000 and Quadro 4000 are aimed at desktops and workstations. They are all compatible with NVIDIA’s new 3D Vision Pro active-shutter glasses solution, incorporate the new NVIDIA Scalable Geometry Engine and take advantage of NVIDIA Application Acceleration Engines (AXE). Read More
— Science

The most violent gamma-ray explosion ever observed

The Fermi Gamma-ray Space telescope, which was launched on June 11 last year, has borne witness to the most violent gamma-ray burst ever observed – a monster that exceeded the power of 8000 supernovae. The GRB 080916C burst appeared in the Carina constellation, 12.2 billion light years from Earth, and was analyzed by five French teams, which published their results in the February 19 issue of Science Express. Read More