37 articles from SUNDAY 31.5.2020

Starwatch: a subtle shadow on the face of the moon

Less spectacular than a total eclipse but no less interesting, the penumbral lunar eclipse to be seen on Friday will be well worth watchingThis week’s astronomical event will be easy to see but hardly anyone will notice it. On 5 June, the full moon will clip the outer portion of Earth’s shadow, creating a penumbral lunar eclipse. This is much subtler than a total lunar eclipse, in which the...

‘Dragon arriving’: For first time, astronauts reach the space station in SpaceX capsule

For the first time in nearly nine years, astronauts have arrived at the International Space Station in a spaceship that was made in the USA. SpaceX's Crew Dragon capsule, which was christened Endeavour soon after Saturday's launch from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, hooked up with the station at 7:16 a.m. PT today. Endeavour brought NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken...

'Shielding' people voice fears over lockdown easing in England

Many opt for caution amid concerns restrictions are being loosened too quicklyCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageFor the last 10 weeks, Graham Bell has been sleeping in a hotel near the Devon hospital where he works as an intensive care nurse, away from his wife and toddler triplets. His wife, Hannah Gallagher-Bell, another nurse, is shielding because of diabetes and...

Covid-19 tests exceed 200,000 a day target, government claims

Testing capacity hit 205,634 on Saturday but full figures for tests carried out not releasedCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageThe government claims to have exceeded its goal of a daily Covid-19 test capacity of 200,000 by the end of May.Boris Johnson set a target 200,000 tests a day earlier this month, but aides later said this referred to operational capacity rather...

SpaceX Dragon crew capsule docks at International Space Station

A milestone for two Nasa astronauts in historic missionFirst such rendezvous by US spacecraft since 2011A mere 19 hours after blasting off from Florida, and with a short break for some Black Sabbath music in between, two Nasa astronauts docked the SpaceX Dragon crew capsule to the International Space Station (ISS) on Sunday in another milestone moment for their historic mission. Related: Trump...

SpaceX’s Dragon, Carrying 2 Astronauts, Docks at International Space Station

(CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla.) — SpaceX delivered two astronauts to the International Space Station for NASA on Sunday, following up a historic liftoff with an equally smooth docking in yet another first for Elon Musk’s company. With test pilots Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken poised to take over manual control if necessary, the SpaceX Dragon capsule pulled up to the station and docked...

SpaceX successfully launches manned rocket into orbit – video

A rocket ship named Dragon breathed new fire into the US’s human spaceflight programme on Saturday, carrying two astronauts on a much-anticipated mission. The launch of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon crew capsule from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center to the International Space Station was the first time since 2011 that humans had blasted off into orbit from US soil.It also heralded a new...

Covid-19 expert Karl Friston: 'Germany may have more immunological “dark matter”'

The neuroscientist who advises Independent Sage on Covid-19 discusses the predictive power of his mathematical modelling and the risk of a second waveCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageNeuroscientist Karl Friston, of University College London, builds mathematical models of human brain function. Lately, he’s been applying his modelling to Covid-19, and using what he...

African nations fail to find coronavirus quarantine escapees

There are more than 130,000 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the continentCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coveragePolice across swathes of Africa have failed to find more than a fraction of hundreds of people who have escaped from often unsanitary and uncomfortable Covid-19 quarantine centres in recent weeks.There are more than 130,000 confirmed...

Coronavirus test and trace system ‘creating false sense of security’

Ministers accused by city leaders and local councils of launching operation before it is ready to contain local outbreaks Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageMinisters have been accused of creating a “false sense of security” by launching a test and trace system that is not yet capable of controlling local outbreaks.A series of concerns have been raised over the gaps...

When there’s an app that can save lives, there will be no need to download it out of a sense of duty

The NHS test and trace app fails on several counts; no wonder ministers are resorting to peer pressure to encourage uptake Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageThe NHS Covid-19 alert app will be available nationwide in June. It’s voluntary, so those of us with smartphones must decide: should we download the app?The health secretary, Matt Hancock, thinks we should,...

The Observer view on the premature relaxation of the lockdown

Boris Johnson’s lack of transparency suggests he is more concerned with a political crisis than a health oneCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageThroughout this pandemic, Boris Johnson has claimed to have been “following the science”. By parroting this epistemological nonsense, ministers are encouraging us to believe that they are only doing what the scientists tell...