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Showing posts from May 16, 2013

Singapore's Ng Ser Miang to make IOC presidency bid

Singapore's Ng Ser Miang is expected to announce a bid for the International Olympic Committee (IOC) presidency on Thursday, a source close to the Olympic movement told Reuters on Tuesday. The IOC Vice President is set to become the second candidate for one of the top jobs in world sport after German Thomas Bach, also an IOC Vice President, announced his bid last week.   The 64-year-old businessman has been an IOC member since 1998 and becomes the first Asian to throw his hat into the ring for the election on September 10 in Buenos Aires at the IOC session. Singapore's Ambassador to Hungary and a former nominated member of parliament, Ng has seen his international sports profile considerably improved after he staged successful inaugural Youth Olympics in Singapore in 2010, the brainchild of outgoing president Jacques Rogge. Rogge, who succeeded Juan Antonio Samaranch in 2001, sees his two-term presidency come to a mandatory end in September. Asia will host the 2018 win

Messi likely to miss La Liga season finale

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi is likely to miss the rest of the La Liga season after tests showed he had aggravated a hamstring injury but he should have recovered in time to captain Argentina in two World Cup qualifiers next month. _0"> The lingering injury, sustained in the Champions League quarter-final first leg at Paris St Germain on April 2, has kept the World Player of the Year out of several key games and he was forced off on Sunday during a league match at Atletico Madrid.   "The period of absence will be two to three weeks," Barca said on their website ( Messi is likely to miss Barca's remaining three La Liga matches, including Sunday's game at home to Real Valladolid - the club's first at their Nou Camp stadium since they wrapped up a fourth title in five years at the weekend. The 25-year-old will also miss out on a chance to equal or break his record for league goals of 50 set last season. He currently has 46 from 3

Iran, Russia, U.S. unlikely allies at the U.N. to save wrestling

The United States, Iran and Russia may be at odds over issues including Syria's civil war and Tehran's nuclear ambitions, but on Tuesday their wrestling teams formed an unlikely coalition at the United Nations to keep their sport in the Olympics. _0"> The International Olympic Committee's 15-member executive board sparked outcry in February when it voted to recommend that wrestling be dropped from the 2020 Olympic program in a bid to modernize the event. The committee will make a final decision in Buenos Aires in September on which sport will get the final spot in a revamped line-up for 2020. Wrestling is battling against baseball and softball, karate, rollersports, wushu martial arts, wakeboarding, squash and climbing. Wrestlers from Russia , Iran and the United States held a news conference at U.N. headquarters and weighed in ahead of a competition at New York's Grand Central Terminal on Wednesday designed to draw attention to a global "Keep Olympi

Assistant manager Platt leaves Manchester City

Assistant coach David Platt has left Manchester City following the sacking of manager Roberto Mancini on Monday, the Premier League club said on their website ( _0"> "David was offered the opportunity to continue his work with us but has declined the invitation. He has decided to leave his role with his close friend Roberto Mancini," City said. "David has made a significant contribution to the club's success since joining in 2010 and we wish him well with his career wherever that now takes him." Platt, 46, and Italian Mancini were team mates in Serie A at Sampdoria, then managed by Sven-Goran Eriksson, in the 1990s after the England midfielder had spells at Bari and Juventus.   Platt, who also played for Aston Villa and Arsenal, returned to Sampdoria as manager before taking charge of Nottingham Forest and then the England Under-21s from 2001 to 2004. (Writing by Ken Ferris; editing by Robert Woodward)

Finns edge Latvia to top group, U.S. lose to Slovakia

Antti Pihlstrom's overtime winner completed Finland's comeback from a goal down against Latvia, allowing them to snatch a 3-2 victory in their group at the world ice hockey championships in Helsinki on Tuesday. The victory lifted the Finns above Russia in the Helsinki group and set them up for a quarter-final meeting at home to Slovakia on Thursday.   Beaten finalists in 2012, Slovakia left it late to progress from their group, booking their quarter-final spot by beating the United States 4-1 in their final pool match in Helsinki. That result means the United States, who finished third in the Helsinki group, will face a tough quarter-final test against defending champions Russia, who suffered two surprising defeats en route to second place in the Helsinki group. In Stockholm, Martin Bieber had one goal and one assist as Switzerland beat Belarus 4-1 to round off their best performance in the group stages at the world championships. The Swiss fired 40 shots at the Belaru

Serena gains sisterly revenge on Robson in Rome

World number one Serena Williams inflicted swift revenge on behalf of her older sister when she beat Britain's Laura Robson 6-2 6-2 in the Rome Masters on Tuesday. _0"> Venus Williams was despatched in straight sets by Robson in Monday's first round but Serena, fresh from her defeat of Maria Sharapova in the Madrid Open final at the weekend, was a different proposition once she had warmed up.   Robson broke serve in the opening game but the American quickly hit her stride to take the first set. Robson battled hard early in the second to reach 2-2 but then folded in the face of Williams' power and placement. Robson's second service was picked apart by Williams and the Briton did her chances no good with eight double faults. "It was a good match - she played really well and really smart," said Wiliams. "She's just a great player and I think she has such a big future... "I've played lots of matches, but I'm the kind of player

America's Cup regatta to go on following fatal accident

The America's Cup sailing regatta will go ahead, organizers said on Tuesday, following concerns about safety due to the death of a sailor in a training accident last week. Regatta organizers said they hope within two weeks to complete an investigation of last Thursday's accident that led to the death of British champion sailor Andrew Simpson, a two-time Olympic medalist. Simpson was trapped underwater after the Artemis Racing team's 72-foot catamaran capsized and broke apart in a training run. "The America's Cup remains on track and racing will take place this summer," Tom Ehman, vice commodore of the Golden Gate Yacht Club, told reporters. "We have every reason to believe all four teams will be continuing." Artemis' accident followed numerous warnings about the safety of the sleek, high-tech catamarans, called AC72s, and it marked the second time that one of the boats, estimated to cost around $8 million each, foundered amid the heavy wind

Pacers smother Knicks again in 93-82 win

Indiana grabbed a 3-1 lead over the New York Knicks in their Eastern Conference second round series on Tuesday, the Pacers suffocating the Knicks on defense and winning the battle of the boards en route to a 93-82 victory. _0"> Game Five is in New York on Thursday when the Knicks will have to win to stay alive in the series, while the Pacers can reach the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since the 2003-04 season.   The Knicks, who scored just 71 points in an 11-point loss on Saturday, failed to show much sign of urgency on Tuesday and trailed by 14 at halftime. George Hill scored 26 points for Indiana, who outrebounded the Knicks 54-36 and held them to just 35 percent shooting from the field. Carmelo Anthony scored a team-high 24 points and had nine rebounds but made just nine of 23 shots, while a misfiring J.R. Smith shot 7-for-22. Paul George added 18 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists for Indiana, who are a perfect 5-0 at home in the playoffs. (Writin

Spurs whip Warriors, on brink of West final

The San Antonio Spurs routed visiting Golden State 109-91 on Tuesday to grab a 3-2 lead in the Western Conference second round series. _0"> The Spurs had squandered an eight-point advantage in the fourth quarter of Game Four to let the Warriors even the series, but they much more clinical back at home in the AT&T Center where they only briefly trailed in the first quarter.   Tony Parker recorded 25 points and 10 assists while Tim Duncan had 14 points and 11 rebounds for the Spurs, who will try to close out the series in Game Six on Thursday at Golden State. Harrison Barnes led the Warriors with 25 points and Jarrett Jack had 20 but Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, who had erupted for huge games earlier in the Western Conference semi-final, combined for 13 points and made one three-pointer between them. (Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; Editing by Peter Rutherford)

Cabrera helps Blue Jays bring down Giants

Toronto's Melky Cabrera went 4-for-5 with two RBIs against his former team as the Blue Jays outslugged San Francisco 10-6 on Tuesday. _0"> Cabrera signed with the Blue Jays (16-24) in the off-season after his spell with the Giants ended with a 50-game suspension for using performance enhancing drugs last season.   Toronto starter R.A. Dickey pitched six innings and struck out 10 to get the win and snap San Francisco's (23-16) three-game win streak snapped. In other Major League action, the New York Yankees rallied to beat Seattle 4-3 after Mariners ace Felix Hernandez exited with an injury. Hernandez, who leads the American League with a 1.53 ERA, tweaked his back in the sixth inning and left with a 3-1 lead. The Yankees surged into the lead in the seventh, tying the game with a two-run double from Robinson Cano and moving ahead on a Lyle Overbay sacrifice-fly. CC Sabathia struck out 10 batters in 6 1/3 innings but took a no-decision for the AL East leading Yan

Swiss TV apologizes for fake crowd noise at deserted derby

Swiss broadcaster SRF has apologized for adding fake crowd noise to try and liven up its coverage of Sunday's Zurich derby, which kicked off in a near deserted stadium. _0"> Viewers of the edited highlights were baffled to hear chanting at the start of the FC Zurich-Grasshoppers game even though pictures showed that almost nobody was present in the Letzigrund stadium for kickoff due to a protest by fans.   "In order to make the report as attractive as possible, the chants of the fans were subsequently edited into highlights of the game," SRF said in a statement on Wednesday. "The decision was taken under great time pressure. It was wrong, we apologize for it. Manipulation of sounds or images is not allowed." Fans of both teams agreed to enter the stadium 10 minutes after the start of the match in protest at tighter security measures aimed at combating hooliganism. (Reporting by Brian Homewood in Berne; Editing by John O'Brien)

Soccer: Lyon women's team offer Cup replay after referee's error

Olympique Lyon have offered to replay their women's French Cup semi-final against Montpellier after going through on penalties thanks to a refereeing mistake, they said on Wednesday. _0"> Twice women's Champions League winners Lyon won 6-5 on penalties following a 1-1 draw after the referee had ruled out Montpellier's final attempt in the shootout. However, TV replays showed the ball had crossed the line after hitting the post and bouncing against the keeper's arm.   "Olympique Lyon confirm they have offered Montpellier a replay of their French Cup semi-final... (for reasons of) fair-play and taking into account the good relationship between the clubs," they said in a statement. "They (the women's team) have done it like Arsenal and their coach Arsene Wenger did in 1999," Lyon added, referring to an FA Cup fifth round game against Sheffield United at Highbury. Wenger offered to replay a game Arsenal won 2-1 having scored the secon

Honda to return to F1 in 2015 with McLaren: sources

Honda will return to Formula One in 2015 as McLaren engine partners, replacing Mercedes, sources close to the company said on Wednesday. Honda's Chief Executive Takanobu Ito is set to make an official announcement as early as Thursday, one of the sources added. The Japanese automaker quit the sport at the end of 2008, handing over their team to then-principal Ross Brawn who went on to win both titles in 2009 with Mercedes-powered Brawn GP.   One source said Honda hoped Formula One's new engine regulations for 2014 would help develop technology for its mass volume road cars, adding: "That incubator aspect of the sport makes Honda's participation worthwhile." Formula One is set to introduce a new 1.6 liter V6 engine next year aided by high-power turbo technology with energy recovery systems. The news about Honda's return to Formula One was reported earlier on Wednesday in Japanese media including public broadcaster NHK and Asahi newspaper. "There i

Soccer: Man charged with murder after death of Fenerbahce fan

A 20-year-old man has been charged with murder after a Fenerbahce fan was stabbed to death on Sunday at an Istanbul bus station hours after a tense soccer derby against arch-rivals Galatasaray. _0"> The suspect was caught after he fled Istanbul by bus, Dogan news agency reported on Wednesday. Police said the accused man did not know his victim, 19-year-old Burak Yildirim. "His only motive behind the murder seems to be the football rivalry, which is really sad," Istanbul police chief Huseyin Capkin told reporters. Capkin said on Monday that the suspect's uncle had given police officers a blood-stained Galatasaray jersey. More than one hundred people were detained after the game, which Fenerbahce won 2-1 at home. The tense atmosphere on the pitch resulted in two red cards and Galatasaray striker Didier Drogba and Ivory Coast team mate Emmanuel Eboue were heckled. Fenerbahce are second in the league behind Galatasaray, who wrapped up the title three weeks be

Mistake led to Georges' failed dope test: team

French AG2R rider Sylvain Georges's positive test at the Giro d'Italia occurred because he mistakenly took a performance-enhancing drug, team director Vincent Lavenu said on Wednesday. _0"> Georges tested positive for the stimulant Heptaminol in a sample taken on May 10, the International Cycling Union (UCI) had earlier said in a statement.   "I just talked to him on the phone. He told me he had used a product because he had heavy legs, thinking it was harmless," Lavenu told Reuters. "There was no intention to dope. But it's a silly mistake that hurts him and the whole team. The consequences are disastrous compared to the original action." Georges pulled out of the Giro before Wednesday's stage 11 and would not ride again until the issue was settled, said Lavenu, whose team are part of the Movement for Credible Cycling (MCCC), that has a strong anti-doping stance. The 29-year-old Georges, who won a stage of the Tour of California last

Motor racing's Ecclestone denies bribery in German case: lawyers

Lawyers for Formula One Chief Executive Bernie Ecclestone reiterated on Wednesday that he had not bribed a German banker during the 2005-2006 sale of a stake in the motor racing business, after a newspaper reported he had been charged by prosecutors. _0"> German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported on Wednesday that prosecutors had charged the 82-year-old Briton, who has turned the sport into a global money maker over the past three decades, with bribery and inciting others to a fiduciary breach of trust.   "The documents with the charges from the Munich prosecutor's office have not yet been received by the defense," said German law firm Thomas Deckers Wehnert Elsner, acting for Ecclestone. "Therefore, we cannot provide a statement. The defense sticks to its view that Mr. Ecclestone has neither committed bribery nor played any part in committing a fiduciary breach of trust," added the firm, based in the German city of Duesseldorf. The Munich pr

Horse racing: Dettori says he took cocaine

Italian jockey Frankie Dettori has revealed he took cocaine before a positive dope test in France last September that brought him a six months ban. _0"> In an interview with Channel Four television to be broadcast on Thursday, the British-based jockey - one of the biggest names in flat racing - was asked why he took cocaine and in what circumstances. "Things were going bad, I was depressed and I guess a moment of weakness and I fell for it and I've only got myself to blame. I can't blame anybody else," he said in a preview released by the broadcaster.   Dettori, who won all seven races in a single afternoon at Ascot in 1996, said he was so ashamed and embarrassed when the news broke that he hid in his house for a week. "The paparazzi outside. The embarrassment of telling the children, you know. You know they still go to school, they might get bullied and so it was a very, very difficult time," he continued. The interview was Dettori's fi

Cycling: Lithuanian Navardauskas wins stage 11, Nibali leads

Lithuanian Ramunas Navardauskas claimed a solo victory on the summit finish of stage 11 at the Giro d'Italia on Wednesday while Italian Vincenzo Nibali retained the overall lead. _0"> The Garmin-Sharp rider shook off his closest pursuer, Italian Daniel Oss, to go clear five km from the finish line at Vajont. Oss finished in second place, just over a minute back, with Italian Stefano Pirazzi third.   Italy's Vincenzo Nibali of Astana remains the overall leader, finishing safely in the main pack of contenders about five minutes back, with Australia's Cadel Evans in second spot and Colombia's Rigoberto Uran third. The Giro finishes in Brescia on May 26. (Editing by Ken Ferris)

Venezuelan Ubeto tests positive for high-risk drug

Venezuelan Miguel Ubeto Aponte has been provisionally suspended, the International Cycling Union said on Wednesday after a positive test for a drug the World Anti-Doping Agency has warned poses serious health risks. _0"> Ubeto, who joined Lampre this year, returned a sample that showed traces of GW1516, also known as GW501516, following an out-of-competition test taken on April 16, the UCI said in a statement.   "The provisional suspension of Mr. Miguel Ubeto Aponte remains in force until a hearing panel convened by the Venezuelan Cycling Federation determines whether he has committed an anti-doping rule violation," the UCI said. Ubeto can ask to have the B sample tested. WADA issued a warning about the once developmental drug in March, saying it had been withdrawn from research but was available on the black market and contained "serious toxicities". A Lampre team statement said: "Ubeto Aponte had not yet made ​​his debut with the team jersey,

Murray doubtful for French Open with back injury

Andy Murray is a doubt for the French Open after suffering a lower back problem that forced the world number two to retire from the Italian Open on his 26th birthday on Wednesday. _0"> Murray retired from the contest against Spain's Marcel Granollers moments after leveling the second-round match by winning the second set having already had treatment on court. "I pulled out because there is a good chance I wouldn't be playing tomorrow. We'll have to wait for Paris. I'd be very surprised if I were playing in Paris," he said. "I need to make plans and see what to do. Tonight I'll speak with the physio and come up with a plan for the next few days and then make a decision on Paris after the next five days."   The French Open starts on May 26. "I'll need to take some days off and see how it settles down, but a few days can make a difference," Murray was quoted as saying on the official ATP website (

Cosmonauts tackle equipment installation outside space station

A pair of Russian cosmonauts wrapped up a 6-1/2 hour spacewalk outside the International Space Station on Friday, the first of up to eight outings this year to install experiments and prepare the orbital outpost for a new module, officials said. Flight engineers Pavel Vinogradov, 59, a veteran of seven spacewalks and Roman Romanenko, 41, a second-generation cosmonaut on his debut spacewalk, floated outside the station's airlock at 10:03 a.m. EDT/1403 GMT as the station soared 262 miles over the southern Pacific Ocean. The primary purpose of the 6-1/2 hour excursion was to set up an experiment that monitors plasma waves in Earth's ionosphere, the outer layer of the planet's atmosphere that extends to about 370 miles into space. Instruments on two boxes attached to handrails on the forward portion of the station's Zvezda module will measure low-frequency electromagnetic radiation, which, among other triggers, has been tied to earthquakes. At the other end of the Zv

Last-minute glitch postpones debut of new U.S. rocket

A U.S. company hired by NASA to fly cargo to the International Space Station canceled plans to launch its new Antares rocket on a demonstration mission on Wednesday after a last-minute technical glitch, officials said. The 13-story rocket developed by Orbital Sciences Corp had been slated to lift off from a new commercial spaceport in Virginia at 5 p.m. EDT (2100 GMT) and place a dummy cargo capsule into orbit.   The test flight is expected to clear the way for the company's trial cargo run to the International Space Station later this year. If successful, Orbital Sciences would then start working on an eight-flight, $1.9 billion contract to fly supplies to the station for NASA. About 12 minutes before launch from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport on Wallops Island, Virginia, an umbilical line on the rocket's upper-stage fell away prematurely, prompting a cancellation, said NASA launch commentator Kyle Herring. The next launch attempt is targeted for no earlier than F

Bad weather again keeps new U.S. rocket on the ground

The test-launch of a new U.S. rocket to fly cargo to the International Space Station was canceled on Saturday due to a second day of poor weather at the Wallops Island, Virginia, launch site, officials said. Liftoff of the Orbital Sciences Corp's Antares rocket was rescheduled for 5 p.m EDT on Sunday.   "Excessive wind levels have caused mission managers to delay the launch attempt (Saturday) of Orbital Sciences' Antares rocket at the Wallops Flight Facility, Va.," NASA wrote on its website. "We will try again tomorrow," Orbital Sciences wrote on Twitter. The Virginia-based company is one of two firms hired by NASA to keep the station stocked with food, supplies and science gear for the six live-aboard crewmembers following the retirement of the space shuttles in 2011. Privately owned Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, completed two test flights of its Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon cargo capsules and last year began delivery services under a 12-

New U.S. rocket blasts off from Virginia launch pad

A privately owned rocket built in partnership with NASA to haul cargo to the International Space Station blasted off on Sunday for a debut test flight from a new commercial spaceport in Virginia. The 13-story Antares rocket, developed and flown by Orbital Sciences Corp, lifted off at 5 p.m. EDT from a Virginia-owned and operated launch pad at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility on Wallops Island, Virginia.   "Beautiful view," said NASA launch commentator Kyle Herring as live video from the rocket, broadcast on NASA TV, showed the booster riding atop a bright plume of fire above the Atlantic Ocean. Ten minutes later, the rocket deposited its payload - a 8,380-pound (3,800-kg) dummy capsule - into an orbit 158 miles above the planet, fulfilling the primary goal of the test flight. Orbital Sciences and privately owned Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, hold NASA contracts worth a combined $3.5 billion to fly cargo to the space station, a $100 billion research outpo

New U.S. rocket blasts off from Virginia launch pad

A privately owned rocket built in partnership with NASA to haul cargo to the International Space Station blasted off on Sunday for a debut test flight from a new commercial spaceport in Virginia. The 13-story Antares rocket, developed and flown by Orbital Sciences Corp, lifted off at 5 p.m. EDT (2100 GMT) from a Virginia-owned and operated launch pad at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility on Wallops Island, Virginia.   "Beautiful view," said NASA launch commentator Kyle Herring as live video from the rocket, broadcast on NASA TV, showed the booster riding atop a bright plume of fire above the Atlantic Ocean. Ten minutes later, the rocket deposited its payload - a 8,380-pound (3,800-kg) dummy capsule - into an orbit 158 miles above the planet, fulfilling the primary goal of the test flight. Orbital Sciences and privately owned Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, hold NASA contracts worth a combined $3.5 billion to fly cargo to the space station, a $100 billion res

Slow is scary if France quits nuclear : state institute

A long slow retreat from nuclear power in France or indecision over policy could be very risky as skilled staff retire and young people reject careers with an uncertain future, the state-funded atomic safety research institute said. If France does decide to pull out of atomic energy it should follow Germany's example and do it quickly, or face operating with inadequate personnel, said Jacques Repussard, who heads the Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety (IRSN).   "You can't spread the exit of nuclear over half a century. It's very dangerous," he said, adding that this consideration partly explained Germany's decision to opt for a fast exit to avoid a loss of skills. France's state-owned utility EDF, which operates its 58 nuclear reactors, faces a wave of retirements and will have to replace half its nuclear staff by 2017-18. While Socialist President Francois Hollande has undertaken to cut the country's reliance on atomic ene

Campaigners call for ban on killer robots

Machines with the ability to attack targets without any human intervention must be banned before they are developed for use on the battlefield, campaigners against "killer robots" urged on Tuesday. The weapons, which could be ready for use within the next 20 years, would breach a moral and ethical boundary that should never be crossed, said Nobel Laureate Jody Williams, of the "Campaign To Stop Killer Robots".   "If war is reduced to weapons attacking without human beings in control, it is going to be civilians who are going to bear the brunt of warfare," said Williams, who won the 1997 peace prize for her work on banning landmines. Weapons such as remotely piloted drones are already used by some armed forces and companies are working on developing systems with a greater level of autonomy in flight and operation. "We already have a certain amount of autonomy," said Noel Sharkey, professor of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics at the Univ

Hubble telescope spies incoming Comet ISON

A recently discovered comet, dazzlingly bright even though it is still almost as far away as Jupiter, is racing toward a November rendezvous with the sun, officials said on Tuesday. If it survives the encounter - and that's a big if - the comet may be visible even in daylight in Earth's skies at the end of the year. Discovered by amateur astronomers in September 2012, Comet ISON is about to reach the outer edge of the asteroid belt, located some 280 million miles (451 million km) from Earth, said William Cooke, lead scientist at NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.   The comet is shedding dust from its nucleus at a rate of more than 112,000 pounds (50,802 kg) per minute, the result of heating by the sun, observations from NASA's Swift telescope show. That level of activity is unusual for a comet still so far away from the sun. It could spell its doom. Preliminary measurements made with the Hubble Space T

Why does anything exist? Scientists find a bit of the answer

Scientists probing the nature of antimatter have found a bit more evidence to explain why the universe is not an empty husk, although not enough to account for the billions of galaxies strewn across the cosmos. Physicists believe that equal amounts of matter and antimatter were created in the Big Bang at the birth of the universe 13.8 billion years ago. Within one second, however, the antimatter had all but disappeared.   That vanishing act - leaving us in a universe with a surplus of matter forming the stars, the Earth and all known life - must be due to a subtle difference between matter and antimatter. Researchers said on Wednesday they had found tiny variations in the way a type of particle decayed into matter and antimatter during collisions in the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the giant particle-smasher buried 100 meters (330 feet) underground at the foot of the Jura mountains outside Geneva. The latest findings are the first to show that a particle known as a Bs meson has

Space junk needs to be removed from Earth's orbit: ESA

Space junk such as debris from rockets must be removed from the Earth's orbit to avoid crashes that could cost satellite operators millions of euros and knock out mobile and GPS networks, the European Space Agency said. At the current density of debris, there will be an in-orbit collision about every five years, however research presented at a conference hosted by ESA in Germany showed that an increase in such junk made more collisions likely in the future.   Five to 10 large objects need to be collected from space a year to help cut down on smashes and stem the risk of fragments being sprayed into space that could cause more damage, it said. Scientists estimate there are about 29,000 objects larger than 10 cm (4 inches) orbiting Earth at average speeds of 25,000 kph (15,500 mph) - about 40 times faster than airplanes travel. At that speed, even small pieces of fast-travelling debris can damage or destroy spacecraft and satellites - which could cost billions of dollars to r

Alexander Graham Bell speaks, and 2013 hears his voice

Nine years after he placed the first telephone call, Alexander Graham Bell tried another experiment: he recorded his voice on a wax-covered cardboard disc on April 15, 1885, and gave it an audio signature: "Hear my voice - Alexander Graham Bell." The flimsy disc was silent for 138 years as part of the Smithsonian Museum's collection of early recorded sound, until digital imaging, computer science, a hand-written transcript and a bit of archival detective work confirmed it as the only known recording of Bell's voice.   Carlene Stephens, curator of the Smithsonian's National Museum of American history, first saw this disc and nearly 400 other audio artifacts donated by Bell when she joined the museum in 1974, but she didn't dare play them then. "Their experimental nature and fragile condition ... made them unsuitable for playback," Stephens said by email. "We recognized these materials were significant to the early history of sound recordin