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Now we help China grow vegetables on the Moon!

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now we help china grow vegetables on the moon

Their mission: to boldly grow where no man has grown before.

A team of British scientists has been signed up to join an ambitious Chinese project to produce food on the Moon.

Their aim is to send greenhouses to the lunar surface in the hope of growing wheat, sweet potatoes, carrots, onion, basil and garlic that could ultimately feed astronauts based there.

A team of British scientists has been signed up to join an ambitious Chinese project to produce food on the Moon

A team of British scientists has been signed up to join an ambitious Chinese project to produce food on the Moon

The first are expected to be sent into space as part of China’s robotic Chang’e 6 lunar mission scheduled for 2023 or 2024, named after the Chinese goddess of the Moon. The research could prove invaluable for future manned missions to Mars.

However, China’s ambitions in space have caused alarm in the West, especially among the military, with the US government banning Nasa from collaborating with scientists from the regime it considers a technological and territorial rival.

The UK team is headed by Professor Javier Martin-Torres at the University of Aberdeen, who was an adviser on the 2015 sci-fi film The Martian.

The movie told of an astronaut, played by Matt Damon, who becomes stranded on the Red Planet and has to grow potatoes to ensure his survival.

‘If you go to the Moon or Mars, you have to look at a greenhouse where you can grow plants which you can use to feed the astronauts there,’ said Prof Martin-Torres.

‘In these places, there is no oxygen and you have a lot of ultraviolet radiation that will kill the plants so you have to have an environment that is controlled.

‘The problem with the Moon and Mars is how expensive it is to produce resources there. At some point, we want to colonise the Moon and Mars – in the sense of having a base for astronauts there – so will need to know how to produce in-situ resources. This is why producing oxygen, water, fuel is very important.’

The tiny £100,000 greenhouse his team is developing is called Gaspar, which is short for Gaseous Atmospheres in Space: Production, Adaptation and Resources.

Each is about the size of a shoebox and made from titanium. They need to withstand massive changes in temperatures, from 260F (130C) in the lunar day to -280F (-170C) at night. The Moon’s lack of atmosphere would also expose the plants to deadly solar radiation.

The UK team is headed by Professor Javier Martin-Torres at the University of Aberdeen, who was an adviser on the 2015 sci-fi film The Martian, pictured

The UK team is headed by Professor Javier Martin-Torres at the University of Aberdeen, who was an adviser on the 2015 sci-fi film The Martian, pictured

Gaspar will provide a hermetically sealed, controlled environment to provide optimum levels of water, oxygen and light, which will come from LEDs within the unit. The project will be monitored by scientists on Earth.

‘All the materials are space-qualified,’ Prof Martin-Torres said. ‘They have to withstand vibrations and high pressure at launch, high temperatures and very cold temperatures on the Moon and radiation.

‘Seeds are generally strong against radiation and extreme temperatures. Moreover, they have been proved by China to survive the travel to the Moon. Some micro-organisms, called extremophiles, can survive in very harsh conditions, such as very low and high temperatures, and they will be helpful creating a nice ecosystem for growing plants.

‘In principle, the best plants to grow in a greenhouse in space are sweet potatoes, carrots, onions, kale, dandelions, basil, garlic and hops. There have been studies showing that they can grow very easily in Martian soil simulant, tasting no different than their terrestrial counterparts.’

China signed an agreement with Russia in 2017 to co-operate on lunar exploration and last year became the first nation to land an unmanned station on the far side of the Moon.

Beijing has also announced plans to build a scientific research station on the lunar south pole within ‘about ten years’.

In response, one US politician claimed: ‘They very much have military thoughts in mind.’

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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French pack bars before national lockdown that will force all hospitality to close until December 1

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french pack bars before national lockdown that will force all hospitality to close until december 1

Parisians made the most of their final night of freedom as they packed the bars ahead of new lockdown restrictions which come into force on Friday.

Emmanuel Macron announced new measures on Wednesday in an effort to curb the rising Covid infections across the country.  

Revellers seized the opportunity to spend one final evening with friends and family on Thursday before bars and restaurants are closed.

Parisians made the most of their final night of freedom as they packed the bars ahead of new lockdown restrictions which come into force on Friday

Parisians made the most of their final night of freedom as they packed the bars ahead of new lockdown restrictions which come into force on Friday

Revellers seized the opportunity to spend one final evening with friends and family on Thursday before bars and restaurants are closed

Revellers seized the opportunity to spend one final evening with friends and family on Thursday before bars and restaurants are closed

On Thursday, the French public health agency announced 47,637 new infections in 24 hours and 235 deaths, pushing the overall tally beyond 36,000

On Thursday, the French public health agency announced 47,637 new infections in 24 hours and 235 deaths, pushing the overall tally beyond 36,000

On Thursday, the French public health agency announced 47,637 new infections in 24 hours and 235 deaths, pushing the overall tally beyond 36,000. 

The national measures will take effect from Friday morning until December 1 and are considered to be ‘more flexible’ than the country’s first lockdown, with all public services, schools and essential workplaces to remain open.

But people on the streets will still have to carry documents justifying their reason for leaving home – that will be subject to police checks – and bars and restaurants will close. State-approved reasons for leaving home include buying essential goods, seeking medical attention or taking a daily one-hour allocation of exercise. 

Stores and businesses across France were also filled by people racing to get supplies on Thursday – and maybe a last-minute haircut – ahead of the new lockdown.

Emmanuel Macron announced new measures on Wednesday in an effort to curb the rising Covid infections across the country

Emmanuel Macron announced new measures on Wednesday in an effort to curb the rising Covid infections across the country

The national measures will take effect from Friday morning until December 1 and are considered to be 'more flexible' than the country's first lockdown

The national measures will take effect from Friday morning until December 1 and are considered to be ‘more flexible’ than the country’s first lockdown

Stores and businesses across France were also filled by people racing to get supplies on Thursday - and maybe a last-minute haircut - ahead of the new lockdown

Stores and businesses across France were also filled by people racing to get supplies on Thursday – and maybe a last-minute haircut – ahead of the new lockdown

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Essentials like pasta and toilet paper were in high demand, as were printer ink and electronics for working from home, while yoga mats were not to be found at many sporting goods stores.

‘I’m stocking up, since we don’t know when this will end,’ said Catherine Debeaupuis, shopping at an electronics retailer in central Paris.

Just under 33 million people watched President Emmanuel Macron announce the grim news in a prime-time address Wednesday – a mere five days after having said: ‘it’s still too early’ to consider new lockdowns.

The president said hospitals would soon be overwhelmed by a virus that is spreading ‘at a speed that even the most pessimistic did not predict.’  

People will be allowed to leave home only if armed with a self-signed certificate stating their urgent business – food shopping, taking the kids to school, going to work if this cannot be done from home, going to the hospital or a pharmacy.

This map shows the 14-day Covid-19 infection rate in Europe. Most of France is in the highest category of 240 or more cases per 100,000 people, along with most of Spain, all of the Czech Republic, the North of England and many other regions around the continent. French leader Emmanuel Macron last night announced a new nationwide lockdown, claiming that 400,000 people will die of coronavirus if the country does nothing to control a second wave that will be 'more deadly' than the first

This map shows the 14-day Covid-19 infection rate in Europe. Most of France is in the highest category of 240 or more cases per 100,000 people, along with most of Spain, all of the Czech Republic, the North of England and many other regions around the continent. French leader Emmanuel Macron last night announced a new nationwide lockdown, claiming that 400,000 people will die of coronavirus if the country does nothing to control a second wave that will be ‘more deadly’ than the first

A certificate would also be needed by people wishing to go for a jog or walk their dog, within a limit of one hour and no further than one kilometre (0.6 miles) from home.

Funeral attendance will be limited to 30 and six for weddings.

Those found breaking the rules, which will be policed, risk a fine of 135 euros.

Meanwhile in Germany, Angela Merkel warned of a ‘difficult winter’ and Spain’s parliament voted to extend the country’s state of emergency.

During a meeting with European health ministers, WHO’s European regional director Dr. Hans Kluge said ‘hospitalizations have risen to levels unseen since the spring’ and deaths have sharply risen by more than 30 per cent. 

He noted that Europe has now reported more than 10 million coronavirus cases and ‘is at the epicenter of this pandemic once again.’

Coroanvirus cases are rising rapidly in most major European countries, prompting leaders to consider more lockdown measures. Curfews are now in place in Spain, Italy, and UK, with France and Germany announcing circuit breaker shutdowns

Coroanvirus cases are rising rapidly in most major European countries, prompting leaders to consider more lockdown measures. Curfews are now in place in Spain, Italy, and UK, with France and Germany announcing circuit breaker shutdowns 

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The national measure will take effect from midnight on Friday and is considered to be ‘more flexible’ than the lockdown first imposed on France in March

‘At the risk of sounding alarmist, I must express our very real concern,’ Kluge said.

Speaking to Germany’s parliament ahead of a virtual summit of EU leaders on Thursday evening aimed at better coordinating Europe’s response to the disease, Merkel said her country faces ‘a dramatic situation at the beginning of the cold season.’

Germany’s disease control agency said local authorities reported 16,774 new positive tests for COVID-19 in the past day, pushing the country’s total close to the half million-mark. The death toll stood at 10,272.

‘The winter will be difficult, four long, difficult months. But it will end,’ Merkel told lawmakers.

Under new restrictions going into effect Monday, German restaurants, bars, sports and cultural venues will be shut for four weeks. Gatherings are limited to 10 people from a maximum of two households and all non-essential journeys will be discouraged. Schools, kindergartens, stores and places of worship will remain open – albeit with safety precautions.

Merkel said authorities had no choice but to drastically reduce social contacts as three-quarters of infections in Germany now are no longer traceable.

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Spain and Italy have both seen deaths increase in recent weeks, although they are lower than during the first wave – unlike in the Czech Republic and other countries in Eastern Europe where deaths have risen to record levels  

‘If we wait until the ICUs are full, then it will be too late,’ she said.

Opposition leader Alexander Gauland of the far-right Alternative for Germany party accused Merkel’s government of ‘wartime propaganda’ and likened the pandemic to traffic, arguing that society accepts a certain number of car deaths each year but doesn’t ban driving.

Berlin announced a new 10 billion-euro (£9billion) fund for businesses affected by the additional measures. 

In Spain, authorities have been imposing incremental restrictions on free movement, nightlife and social gatherings, but they have refrained from a strict stay-at-home order like the one that curbed the first wave of infections but scarred the economy.

Angela Merkel said her country faces 'a dramatic situation at the beginning of the cold season', with 16,774 new positive tests for COVID-19 in the past day

Angela Merkel said her country faces ‘a dramatic situation at the beginning of the cold season’, with 16,774 new positive tests for COVID-19 in the past day

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But with officials predicting that current levels of infection will produce a serious shortage of intensive care beds in November, some experts are already calling for a full lockdown.

Spanish regions like Catalonia and La Rioja have already closed bars and restaurants, while most of the rest have imposed curfews limiting nightlife. But extra subsidies have not accompanied the restrictions, prompting loud protests in Barcelona this week by business owners who banged pots, waved cocktail shakers and chanted ‘We want to work!’

Spain’s parliament, meanwhile, voted by a majority to keep the country’s newly declared state of emergency in place until May to try to rein in the resurging pandemic, despite objections by some opposition parties. A vote to lift the measure could be held in March should things improve.

Spain has officially recorded more than 1.1 million COVID-19 cases, although authorities say the true figure could be at least three times higher. Its virus death toll is at least 35,000.

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As EU leaders met, officials in Brussels urged them to approve rapid virus tests, which are less reliable than standard kits but far quicker to provide results, and to prepare the vast amounts of cold storage that will be needed to keep large stocks of any virus vaccine once it becomes available.

With Belgium, France and Spain warning that their intensive care units could be overwhelmed within two weeks, the officials say it’s vital that EU countries agree to share information about ICU capacity so patients can be treated across borders if necessary.

Russia, meanwhile, said that it has no plans to impose a nationwide lockdown.

‘Despite a difficult epidemiological situation, right now we’re much better prepared for working during an epidemic,’ Russian President Vladimir Putin said. Russia has recorded more than 1.5 million confirmed coronavirus cases, the highest number in Europe and the fourth largest tally worldwide.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Marcus Rashford praises great-great grandmother, 89, baking pies to feed children during half-term

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marcus rashford praises great great grandmother 89 baking pies to feed children during half term

Footballer Marcus Rashford has praised the efforts of a great-great-grandmother who has baked hundreds of pies to help feed hungry children during half-term.

Flo Osborne, 89, has rallied to the Manchester United player’s calls and has thrown herself into pie-making to help feed those going hungry – producing as many as 20 pies a day.

Flo can bake two or three pies in one go in her tiny kitchen in Harwich, Essex, but has made hundreds through lockdown for her community – and now many that will feed children over the half term break. 

Flo Osborne, 89, has made hundred of pies in her tiny kitchen in Harwich, Essex during lockdown and has recently concentrated her efforts to help feed hungry schoolchildren during half-term

Flo Osborne, 89, has made hundred of pies in her tiny kitchen in Harwich, Essex during lockdown and has recently concentrated her efforts to help feed hungry schoolchildren during half-term 

The great-great-grandmother of five rallied to the Manchester United player's calls and has made as many as 20 pies a day

The great-great-grandmother of five rallied to the Manchester United player’s calls and has made as many as 20 pies a day

Last night, 22-year-old Marcus Rashford tweeted his appreciation for Flo to his 3.7 million followers, writing: ‘I’m going to leave you with Flo because she is amazing.’

And he re-tweeted another Twitter account affiliated with his #EndChildFoodPoverty campaign, which also posted about Flo’s amazing efforts.

The account, named The Rashford Way, posted: ’89 years old, baker Flo Osborne has thrown herself into pie-making during lockdown to help feed the hungry.

‘My question is simple, what are you waiting for then? Help in any way possible.

‘Flo is a true angel and a mother to many vulnerable. Thank you so much ma’am.’ 

Many of Rashford’s followers replied praising Flo, calling her an ‘amazing woman’, with one person writing: ‘New slogan – don’t be a Boris, be a Flo.’

Flo, who is a great-great grandmother of five, gets up at the crack of dawn – sometimes as early as 4.30am – to get to work in her small kitchen in her sheltered accommodation in Harwich.

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Last night Marcus Rashford, 22, tweeted about Flo, writing: 'I'm going to leave you with Flo because she is amazing'

Last night Marcus Rashford, 22, tweeted about Flo, writing: ‘I’m going to leave you with Flo because she is amazing’

She said she had seen Rashford’s campaign on the news, and thought it was a ‘lovely idea’.

Flo said: ‘I have been baking pies throughout lockdown to help vulnerable people in the community, and I love doing it. 

‘It keeps me going, and gives me something to do.

‘But I thought, I would love to help the little ones, too. I’ve even been thinking about baking miniature pies for the children.

‘Some people say I’m mad, but I just tell them that I love to help other people. If I can help them, I will.’

Flo, who pays for all her own ingredients for the pies, says that her most popular pie is her cherry pie – but that she also likes to bake apple pies, and even makes savoury steak pies.

Flo, who pays for all her own ingredients for the pies, says that her most popular pie is her cherry pie - but that she also likes to bake apple pies, and even makes savoury steak pies

Flo, who pays for all her own ingredients for the pies, says that her most popular pie is her cherry pie – but that she also likes to bake apple pies, and even makes savoury steak pies

She also does not follow any recipe, and does not weigh any of her ingredients out – having learnt to bake simply from watching her own mother.

She said: ‘People always ask me for my recipe, or ask me what my secret is.

‘But there’s no secret, it’s just comes naturally.

‘I just mix the pastry up the way I want it to. I know what it should feel like so I go with that.’

Flo has baked almost 200 pies since the beginning of April, which she donates to community group North Essex Support Team, run by firefighter Les Nicoll. 

She said she had seen Rashford's campaign on the news, and thought it was a 'lovely idea'

She said she had seen Rashford’s campaign on the news, and thought it was a ‘lovely idea’

Les, 69, said: ‘We love Flo. She’s an absolute dream, she’s amazing.

‘We have lots of people who send us cheesecakes or cupcakes to help us out with our food deliveries – but none of them are 89. She’s definitely our oldest baker.

‘We probably get about 20 pies from Flo every fortnight, and each of them make about 16 servings.

‘But she’ll always make extra pies so that our volunteers can enjoy them, too.’

And he added that she is helping them with extra pies this week during school half-term, as they support extra struggling families who are not getting free school meals for their children. 

Manchester United star has campaigned tirelessly for free school meals provision and this week his petition to the government to end child food poverty passed one million signatures

Manchester United star has campaigned tirelessly for free school meals provision and this week his petition to the government to end child food poverty passed one million signatures 

Les said: ‘We have been approached by social workers who have let us know which families are really struggling during the half-term week.

‘So we’re doing a separate hot menu especially for those families this week, where we’ll be delivering portions of spaghetti bolognese out to them.

Rashford has called on Boris Johnson to extend the free school meals vouchers over the half-term break

Rashford has called on Boris Johnson to extend the free school meals vouchers over the half-term break

‘And without a doubt they’ll also be getting a slice of Flo’s pie with custard. Everybody we deliver food to gets a slice of Flo’s pie.’

Meanwhile, Flo’s son Graham has said how proud he is of his mum for her efforts during lockdown.

He said: ‘I’ve always been proud of her. She’s great, and she’s been doing amazing.

‘I grew up with her baking, so I think I kind of took it for granted. But I think what she’s been doing is brilliant, it’s really excellent.

‘Even now, at almost 90, if I turned around to her and said, ‘Do you think you could bake 20 pies today?’, she wouldn’t flinch.

‘She says it gives her something to do during the day, and gives her a reason to get up in the morning.

‘She’s very caring. If she thinks she can do something for someone, she will.’

And as for Flo, she said: ‘I’ll keep on baking for as long as I can.’

Marcus Rashford (middle) was recently awarded an MBE for his work feeding underprivileged children

Marcus Rashford (middle) was recently awarded an MBE for his work feeding underprivileged children

This comes as Marcus Rashford’s petition to the government to end child food poverty passed one million signatures on Wednesday evening. 

The Manchester United striker was recently granted an MBE in the Queen’s birthday honours list for his services for his work in feeding underprivileged children. 

Earlier this year, Rashford forced Boris Johnson into a U-turn over providing free school meal vouchers for 1.3million children during the summer holidays.

He has renewed his fight against food poverty and hopes the petition will shame the Government into action into extending the voucher system over the October half-term break.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Ex-Team GB boxer Louis Adolphe, 28, is spared jail after SPITTING at a bus driver in road rage fury

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ex team gb boxer louis adolphe 28 is spared jail after spitting at a bus driver in road rage fury

An Olympic boxer who spat at a bus driver in a road rage incident has been spared jail and ordered to attend an anger management course instead.

Former Team GB member Louis Adolphe, 28, lost his temper with Ataulmonam Rana during the morning rush-hour on 22 January.

The driver flashed his lights at Adolphe, who was blocking his route after he changed his mind about turning right, Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court heard on Thursday.

The 2012 ABA light-welterweight champion was traced by a DNA swab of spit taken by the driver when he returned to the bus depot. 

Adolphe’s solicitor earlier said his client was going through a ‘mad phase’ at the time, due to paranoia from being stabbed last year.

Former Team GB boxer Louis Adolphe has been ordered to take an anger management course after spitting as a bus driver. Pictured: Adolphe after winning a fight in London on October 2018

Former Team GB boxer Louis Adolphe has been ordered to take an anger management course after spitting as a bus driver. Pictured: Adolphe after winning a fight in London on October 2018

Adolphe accepted he had ‘underlying issues’ to deal with and complained publicity about the incident made him too embarrassed to return to work with children.

Mr Rana had been driving a 131 bus along Worple Road in Wimbledon at around 8.40am on January 22 this year.

Norleen Ibe, prosecuting, said: ‘When the victim reached the traffic light the defendant pulled into the other side of the road, in oncoming traffic.

‘He was shouting but the driver could not hear because the window was closed, he asked him to open the window.

‘He asked: ‘Why did you flash your lights at me?’ ‘Because you’re blocking me that’s why’.

‘He said he made a mistake, he didn’t want to turn right, the victim then asked ‘Why did you break harshly?’

‘At this point he spat and shouted ‘you f-king bastard,’ he was leaning across to the passenger side window. 

‘Spit landed on his face and work jumper, he’s then driven off, contacted his controller and returned to the bus garage, a swab of spit was taken off his face.’

Reading Mr Rana’s victim personal statement, Ms Ibe said: ‘He made me feel upset.

‘I feel this is disgusting, this has made me upset, feel like a bit of rubbish.

‘As I was driving after it made me feel like crying, I did not ask to be treated this way.’

Pictured: Adolphe hitting opponent William Warburton during a Boxing Show in October 2018. The prizefighter said his road rage incident may have been sparked by 'issues' he was dealing with after being stabbed last year

Pictured: Adolphe hitting opponent William Warburton during a Boxing Show in October 2018. The prizefighter said his road rage incident may have been sparked by ‘issues’ he was dealing with after being stabbed last year

Representing himself, Adolphe told magistrates: ‘The last time I was in court everything I said ended up in The Sun newspaper because I was a professional fighter, this has affected me.

‘I’m a professional fighter, I had a very outstanding career, unfortunately I was stabbed.

‘After that I then moved my career to work with children.

‘This going into the paper affected my work, would you want your own children to be around someone with these characteristics?

‘They spoke about my personal issues and personal life.

‘I’m suffering now, this is enough punishment, I can’t work with children now.

‘I’m too embarrassed to go into my working space.

Adolphe was sentenced to an 18 month community order and ordered to pay a total of £275 including £100 in victim compensation. Pictured: Adolphe celebrating his victory in a July 2014 fight in London

Adolphe was sentenced to an 18 month community order and ordered to pay a total of £275 including £100 in victim compensation. Pictured: Adolphe celebrating his victory in a July 2014 fight in London

‘I’m happy to take any punishment you give me, because I done wrong.

‘Maybe I do have underlying issues to deal with and I could do some sort of course.

‘I never want to be back in here again.

‘There was a lot of trauma, a lot of pain in the last year.

‘I was in work but with the Covid thing things have slowed down.’

Magistrate Margaret Pretty said: ‘Well Mr Adolphe, this was a road rage incident when you forced a bus to stop, you abused the driver and spat at him through an open window, causing distress.

‘If you wish to avoid court again you need to address your anger and temper, we have decided a community order is the best way to do this.

‘The probation service will decide how those 20 days are spent, we’re hoping that will include an anger management course so you can deal with those situations better, and also a thinking skills [course].

‘See this as an opportunity.’

The fighter replied: ‘Thank you very much’.

Adolphe, of Poleston Gardens, Wimbledon, admitted assault by beating and was sentenced to an 18 month community order with 80 hours unpaid work, 20 days of rehabilitation activity requirement including anger management and thinking skills courses.

He was also ordered to pay £85 costs, £90 victim surcharge, £100 compensation to the victim.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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