Recent demonstrations have shown how making use of digital processing technology on board satellites can help emergency services share information more effectively during natural disasters.
SkyPlexNet is a project funded by ESA Telecom. The technology that has been developed makes it possible to access satellite resources directly and manage the distribution of the multimedia contents to the remote users independently. It is relatively simple, low-cost and avoids the need to centralise data management at one location.
A demonstration took place in early June 2004. Using a satellite communications network running SkyPlexNet, the Italian Civil Protection Authorities in Piedmont Italy were able to receive and send information via satellite. They were also able to coordinate operations between a central authority and emergency units based all over the country.
Dominique Detain | alfa
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The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.
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