Category: Science

Happy birthday North East Bylines!

Scott Hunter

One shrewd editorial policy at the outset set the tone which was that, while those involved in setting up the project shared an interest in politics, Bylines was interested in everything. No boundaries were set on the scope of its content. As a result, Bylines publishes a range of material much more diverse than any regional newspaper: poetry, international affairs, profiles of local sporting legends, it’s all in there.

Why facemasks are a big deal

Richard Henson

I’d like to start with a transcript from a talk, and Q&A, presented by the writer Jay Griffiths, about a month ago. This was on the subject of facemasks. “Here is a facemask. The facemask, I would say, is an emblem of kindness. It doesn’t protect the wearer, but it protects others. It is inherently […]

New new world

Dylan Neri

After its first venture into space, India plans to send another probe to Mars, with the intention to land; Japan has ambitious plans to send a lander to mars, and investigate the Martian moon Phobos; and Russia and Europe will unite to send the ExoMars Rosalind Franklin rover, after a two-year delay owing to the pandemic – any mission to Mars must coincide with the period in which the orbit of Mars brings it nearest the Earth, which is every twenty-six months.

Logics of corruption: the UK state response to the Covid-19 crisis

Colin Gordon

A common theory is that the disaster of Covid-19 suits the UK Brexit regime’s interest by distracting from and/or explaining away the disaster of hard Brexit – a kind of a gigantic diversionary narrative or ‘dead cat’ tactic. This could, incidentally, imply that the regime has no particular interest in managing the pandemic, as long as it can avoid or divert blame for its failure.

Opinion

Bucket Lists?

Mark Bell

Stop and think, please just consider; you cannot sum up the events of a life in a bucket; a finite volume. I believe everyone has to collect their own aqua vitae, learn how to make the bucket first and then drink from the memories, therein. There is no need to write a list; there is no need to consume more and more. If you have the chance to take on an adventure then take it, do it, but do not set out on this adventure with the desire to simply broadcast it.

MP’s Oneweb investigation launches into a low profile orbit.

John Jacobson

If satellites collide, they can produce thousands of pieces of debris that can potentially hit other satellites, as occurred in 2009 when in an active U.S. satellite collided with an old Russian military satellite creating a large cloud of thousands of pieces of dangerous debris.

Has the reopening of schools been planned well?

Giuseppe Bignardi

Schools in the UK have been totally or partially closed since 20th March. This time has not been utilised well to make realistic and sustainable plans for reopening. Boris Johnson has argued that reopening schools in September with full attendance is necessary to restart the economy. He has subsequently put more emphasis on the concept […]

How safe are vaccines?

Giuseppe Bignardi

During this challenging time, discovering and producing a safe and effective coronavirus vaccine in a short period of time is a formidable challenge, but not the only one. Despite the evident benefits of vaccines (10 million deaths were saved by vaccines just in 2010-2015), the influence of anti-vaccination movements is increasing. However, history shows us […]

Cummings, Brexit and Russia: Part 1

Colin Gordon

The first in a 3 part series investigating and analysing the relationships between Brexit and Russia and the part played by Dominic Cummings. Part 1 considers ‘Central Asia’, science, ‘weirdos and misfits’

UK OneWeb: Cummings’ space oddity?

John Jacobson

In December 2018, after a period of failed negotiations with the EU, Theresa May’s government issued a press release which confirmed that the UK would not use the European global positioning system ‘Galileo’ for defence or critical national infrastructure after Brexit. Instead, it would explore options to build its own satellite system which would help […]