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Thriving settlements on Mars, mining operations on the moon, exploration teams heading out into the universe - humankind may one day be able to establish a presence far beyond its home planet. The EU-funded SR2S project strives to remove one of the main obstacles by developing a magnetic shield to protect astronauts from radiation in deep space.
Published: 18 May 2015
Solar eruptions release huge amounts of energetic particle radiation. While most of these events will only affect satellites and other spacecraft, particularly large eruptions will also make themselves felt on Earth-in aviation and radio communication, for example. The EU-funded SEPServer project has developed a web-based tool to help scientists investigate solar energetic particles (SEP) and their origin.
Published: 12 May 2015
The melt rate of Europe's snowy peaks and glacial lakes can have a huge impact on both daily activities and planning in many countries. EU-funded researchers have developed applications that use satellite data to tell them just that, in close to real time.
Published: 22 April 2015
Powerful modelling tools developed by European researchers have been commercialised to provide forecasting services for coastal sea conditions in Europe and beyond. Applications range from storm forecasts for beach and coastal defence management to efficient route planning for shipping, and contingency planning for oil spills.
Published: 9 March 2015
For years, the European Space Agency (ESA) has been studying the Earth's magnetosphere - a 'bubble' in which the Earth's magnetic field is present. Huge amounts of supporting data have been gathered. EU-funded researchers have made this data available in an easy-to-use, open-access format, giving scientists the information they need to improve space weather forecasting - important for protecting European satellite and ground-based infrastructure.
Published: 9 February 2015
In more than 15 years since the first vehicle drove on the surface of Mars, no rover has had the ability to make its own decisions about where to go and what objects to examine. This has limited rovers' capacity to explore a planet with varied landscapes that include sand dunes, steep cliffs, or valleys deeper than the Grand Canyon. The European Union (EU)-funded project PRoViScout has developed a navigation system that enables a rover to decide on its own which geological features to inspect.
Published: 8 December 2014
Today's personal transportation is mainly made up of ground vehicles, which are limited by low speed and high fuel consumption. To make travel quicker and more efficient, the European Union (EU)-funded project PPlane has taken the first steps to developing a Personal Air Transport System (PATS) that aims at providing additional links between remote locations and international hubs.
Published: 23 October 2014
More than 10,000 asteroids and comets are within striking distance of the Earth. An asteroid as small as 50 metres wide that penetrates the atmosphere could damage an entire city or part of a country. To prevent such a possible disaster, a European Union (EU)-funded project, NEOShield, is studying ways to deflect an incoming asteroid or destroy it before it has a chance to collide with the Earth.
Published: 14 October 2014
Solar flares can strongly influence life on Earth-causing power outages, disrupting radio communication and airplane navigation, and posing potential threats to astronauts and spacecraft. The European Union (EU)-funded project HESPE has developed advanced techniques to better understand these cosmic events in order to anticipate their effects.
Published: 26 September 2014
Climate forecasts depend in particular on precise information - not only to estimate how living conditions on Earth may change, but also how humanity will have to adapt to these changes. A European Union (EU)-funded project, MACC, has developed an innovative system to collect and coordinate precise information to aid in these climate forecasts.
Published: 16 September 2014