Perpetual flight: The incredible technology behind nonstop drones

Modern life hinges on satellite connectivity. President of Kraus Aerospace Fatema Hamdani explains how the science of perpetual flight is unfolding, and how to defend satellites and drones from enemy fire.

  • How far can a drone fly? Kraus Aerospace is developing nonstop drones powered by cutting edge technology, like A.I. that recognizes thermal columns so drones can soar like birds rather than actively expending thrust energy.
  • Watch drone footage in the video above to see this technology in action! These drones can also be hand-launched.
  • Fatema Hamdani, cofounder and president of Kraus Aerospace, explains the enormous cost of landing and relaunching drones and satellites, and why nonstop performance is a desirable alternative. It also has applications in national security and disaster relief: "[With this tech] we would have been able to bring up Puerto Rico from them not having connectivity for months or a whole year, to days," she says.

How childlike curiosity drives scientific discovery

Want to be a great scientist? Think like a child.

Geobiologist Hope Jahren knows that children's questions—why does this tree only grow in a certain place, for example—often hold far bigger answers than the child ever intended, because those simple questions are often gateways to understanding larger concepts. That curiosity into how the world works is the basis for all great scientific reasoning. Hope's latest book is Lab Girl.

The science community has a problem: Its institutions are failing women

Geobiologist Hope Jahren explains why knowing your legal protections is probably more useful than attending another behavioral seminar on avoiding harassment.

Women make up 47% of the U.S. workforce, but only (on average) 23.75% of the science-based jobs out there. Geobiologist and author Hope Jahren wants to make that number higher. She argues that there aren't enough safeguards in place to ensure a safe working environment for women. Are there adequate sexual harassment policies in place, and will the workplace uphold them if need be? Talking about these issues and solving them in public will inevitably draw more women to positions in science, she says, and thus raise the average. Hope Jahren's latest book is Lab Girl, which won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Autobiography.

This Toy Develops STEM Skills and Hands-On Thinking—Especially in Young Girls

Designed by two MIT professors, this build-it-yourself kit teaches kids to "think with their hands" in an effort to bolster STEM skills early on.

Gender disparity in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) continues to be a serious problem. The reasons are complex—from lack of children's stories that feature women scientists, lack of female role models and STEM toys for girls, to persisting biases and stereotypes in schools and universities, and lack of mentorship and flexibility at the workplace. According to the 2016 Science and Engineering Indicators report of the National Science Foundation, women account for only 25 percent of the employment base in the computer and mathematical sciences field and 15 percent of the engineering workforce.

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Want to Raise a Smart, Young Scientist? Try This

Amazon introduces a monthly STEM toy subscription box aimed at kids – because we're all born curious.

Amazon has unveiled a STEM Club subscription plan, that delivers educational toys for $19.99 each month. The program takes a learn-through-play approach, like many STEM programs for kids. It’s a growing product, especially since the future is moving more towards science, technology, engineering, and math-related jobs.

These are the fields of the future as factory and labor jobs move towards automation. For many looking to the future, this is an investment for our economy. But not much is needed to light the spark of curiosity of a child.

“If you’re a child, you are curious about your environment,” Neil deGrasse Tyson told us. “You put things in their midst that help them explore. Why don’t you get a pair of binoculars, just leave it there one day? Watch ‘em pick it up. And watch ‘em look around. They’ll do all kinds of things with it.”

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