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Mars Helicopter Flight Test Promises Wright Brothers Moment for NASA

NASA hopes to score a 21st-century Wright Brothers moment on Monday as it attempts to send a miniature helicopter buzzing over the surface of Mars in what would be the first powered, controlled flight of an aircraft on another planet.Landmark achievements in science and technology can seem humble by conventional measurements. The Wright Brothers’ first controlled flight in the world of a motor-driven airplane, near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, in 1903 covered just 120 feet (37 meters) in 12 seconds.A modest debut is likewise in store for NASA’s twin-rotor, solar-powered …


Israel Lifts Its Mask Mandate on Sunday

With nearly 60% of its population receiving the first COVID-19 vaccine, Israel is lifting its requirement Sunday to wear masks outdoors. The mask mandate remains in place, however, for enclosed spaces.Beginning April 24, France will require all travelers from Brazil to quarantine for 10 days.Brazil has 13.9 million COVID cases, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. Only the U.S. and India have more cases, at 31.6 million and 14.5 million, respectively.More than 371,000 people have died in Brazil from COVID, Johns Hopkins reported. The U.S. is the only …


Nearly 700 Patients Evacuated in Johannesburg Hospital Fire

Nearly 700 patients were evacuated Saturday from Johannesburg’s Charlotte Maxeke Hospital, where a fire blazed through parts of the facility in South Africa’s largest city.No injuries or casualties have been reported. The fire has been contained but the hospital has been closed for seven days, said David Makhura, premier of Gauteng province where Johannesburg is located.Early Saturday morning the fire caused the third floor of the hospital’s parking garage to collapse.Sixty firefighters battled the blaze through the night. The fire started Friday morning and had been doused by the afternoon …


US, China ‘Committed to Cooperating’ on Climate Crisis: Joint Statement

The United States and China are “committed to cooperating” on the pressing issue of climate change, the two sides said in a joint statement Saturday, following a visit to Shanghai by U.S. climate envoy John Kerry.”The United States and China are committed to cooperating with each other and with other countries to tackle the climate crisis, which must be addressed with the seriousness and urgency that it demands,” said the statement from Kerry and China’s special envoy for climate change Xie Zhenhua.Kerry, the former U.S. secretary of state, was the …


‘Godzilla’ Shark Discovered in New Mexico Gets Formal Name

The 300-million-year-old shark’s teeth were the first sign that it might be a distinct species.The ancient chompers looked less like the spearlike rows of teeth of related species. They were squatter and shorter, less than an inch long, around 2 centimeters.”Great for grasping and crushing prey rather than piercing prey,” said discoverer John-Paul Hodnett, who was a graduate student when he unearthed the first fossils of the shark at a dig east of Albuquerque in 2013.This week, Hodnett and a slew of other researchers published their findings in a bulletin …