Following is a summary of current science news briefs.
Blue Origin sees clear skies for inaugural space flight by Bezos and crewmates
Billionaire American businessman Jeff Bezos and his three crewmates are engaging in a crash course of training on Sunday in preparation for his company Blue Origin’s inaugural flight to the edge of space planned for Tuesday. The suborbital launch from a site in the high desert plains of West Texas marks a crucial test for Blue Origin’s New Shepard spacecraft, a 60-foot-tall (18.3 meters) and fully autonomous rocket-and-capsule combo that is central to plans by Bezos to tap a potentially lucrative space tourism market.
Scientists stunned by rare Arctic lightning storms north of Alaska
Meteorologists were stunned this week when three successive thunderstorms swept across the icy Arctic from Siberia to north of Alaska, unleashing lightning bolts in an unusual phenomenon that scientists say will become less rare with global warming. “Forecasters hadn’t seen anything like that before,” said Ed Plumb, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Fairbanks, speaking about the storms that started on Saturday.
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