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BEAM Prototype Habitat, Bigelow's Plans

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The BEAM Bigelow Aerospace habitat module, will be launched toward the International Space Station (ISS) today: if all goes well.

BEAM is packed in the Dragon spacecraft's pressurized section. This cargo run also carries supplies for the ISS crew, and for several dozen of the roughly 250 experiments planned for Expeditions 47 and 48. (SpaceX press kit)

After getting attached to the ISS and inflated, BEAM will mostly just sit there for at least two years: empty except when someone in the ISS takes samples and swaps out radiation sensors. I think that's a good idea, since BEAM is testing technology for Bigelow Aerospace rental properties in low Earth orbit.

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Starbucks and a Religion of Hope

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(From Starbucks, via AP/KOMONews.com, used w/o permission.)

America's presidential campaigns may explain some of this week's sturm und drang:1
"Outcry, pushback escalate over Starbucks holiday cup flap"
Mae Anderson, AP Business Writer, via KOMONews.com (November 10, 2015)"Is Starbucks Waging 'War on Christmas'? Red Cup Stirs Controversy"
Sarah Whitten, CNBC (November 10, 2015)"Starbucks red cup controversy: The view from Chicago"
Greg Trotter, Chicago Tribune (November 10, 2015) I put a mercifully-brief excerpt from each of those items at the end of this post.2

Hats off to the Chicago Tribune's Greg Trotter, for his "extremely unscientific survey" regarding the latest looming crisis.

Tongue in cheek is, I think, a reasonable attitude toward the Starbuck's holiday coffee cups "controversy."

Interestingly, I haven't heard a peep about the Starbucks Veteran's Day cup, which resembled the Japanese flag, with…

Sagittarius B2, Water, and Asteroid Mining

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Scientists have found a complex organic molecule near this galaxy's core; and water vapor in a planet's atmosphere, some 122 light-years away. Closer to home, America's Congress is deliberating on a bill that could allow asteroid mining: if other nations don't get conniptions....

...As usual, I'll explain why I think being human is okay. If you've been here before, feel free to skip to "Organic Molecules in Sagittarius B2," click to something else online, take a coffee break, or whatever....

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