Tech Digest daily round up: NASA instrument produces Oxygen from Mars


An instrument aboard Nasa’s latest Mars rover has produced oxygen from some of the Red Planet’s thin carbon dioxide rich atmosphere, an advance that could lead to new ways for future astronauts to produce breathable air on the planet. According to the US space agency, the breakthrough also opens new doors for future missions where oxygen gas produced from the Martian atmosphere could be stored to help power rockets and lift astronauts off the planet. The experimental demonstration by the toaster-sized instrument aboard the Perseverance rover – the Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment, or MOXIE – is a critical first step at converting carbon dioxide to oxygen on Mars. Independent

MI5’s launch of an official Instagram account will allow it to “keep the country safe” by expanding the Secret Service’s reach, its director general Ken McCallum says. Users will be able to follow the Secret Service via @mi5official in an effort by the organisation to be more transparent about its work. It plans to use the platform to bust popular myths and reveal never-before-seen material from its archives. Mr McCallum said the service would still need to keep many of its secrets so it can operate undetected in dangerous environments. Yahoo! News

For National Pet ID Week, IAMS has developed a creative way to identify dogs and keep them from getting lost for long. According to a release from the pet brand, 10 million pets are reported lost or stolen in the U.S. every year. To help combat this scary statistic, IAMS created its NOSEiD app — a beta version of which is currently available in Nashville and the surrounding area. The app works by relying on helpful animal lovers and a pooch’s nose print. Like the human fingerprint, each dog’s nose print (the patterned texture on the tip of a pup’s snout) is unique, making it a great, non-invasive way to identify your pet. People 

George Rawlings and Matt McNeill Love want to eliminate all the elements of dating that have made it start to feel like a chore: the evenings spent swiping, the conversations fizzling, the admin of planning your week around possible evenings your match might like to go for a drink. After 13 months spent staring at screens, “lockdown has made dating stale”, they say, listing the reasons for launching their new dating app, Thursday. Thursday’s solution? Bringing the thrill back – hopefully – by only making the app available for one day a week (yep, you got it). Evening Standard

The Met Office is working with Microsoft to build a weather forecasting supercomputer in the UK. They say it will provide more accurate weather forecasting and a better understanding of climate change. The UK government said in February 2020 it would invest £1.2bn in the project. It is expected to be one of the top 25 supercomputers in the world when it is up and running in the summer of 2022. Microsoft plans to update it over the next decade as computing improves. BBC 

Second-hand CD and DVD website MusicMagpie will start trading on London’s junior Aim market today, netting founders Steve Oliver and Walter Gleeson a total of £22.5m. MusicMagpie is floating with a market capitalisation of £208m, having grown into one of the most prolific sellers of second-hand goods on eBay and Amazon since it was founded in 2007. It currently lists more than 1.1m items for sale on eBay alone. The company is raising £15m in the float, which it has said will be used to broaden its operations in selling refurbished smartphones, games consoles and other gadgets. Telegraph

Chris Price
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