February 6, 2010

Top News Stories –

UN to discuss Air Traffic Control for outer space –
An international air traffic control for outer space should be set up to prevent damage to satellites and spacecraft orbiting the Earth, according to proposal to be discussed at the United Nations next week. There are thought to be more than 19,000 pieces of debris larger than 4 inches across racing around the Earth at high speeds, while there are more than 500,000 bigger than a postage stamp. The number of particles smaller than this are thought to exceed tens of millions. Despite their relatively small size, most are travelling faster than 15,600mph and at these speeds a fleck of paint could do as much damage as a .22-calibre rifle bullet. [Daily Telegraph]

Treo the dog awarded animal VC –
A heroic military dog is to be honoured with the animal version of the Victoria Cross. Treo, an eight-year-old black Labrador, saved countless lives in Afghanistan last year by locating hidden roadside bombs. The search dog twice saved soldiers and civilians from catastrophe while out on patrol in Helmand province by sniffing out explosives which had been wired together in a daisy chain and hidden in the path. The medal was created by leading veterinary charity the PDSA and is recognised as the highest award an animal can receive for conspicuous gallantry or devotion to duty while serving in military conflict. (See List of the Day for human honours) [Daily Telegraph]

Cat owners ‘more educated than dog owners’ –
Cats have long been thought to be cleverer than dogs – and now it seems the same is true of their owners. People with cats are more likely to have university degrees than those with dogs, according to a scientific survey of pet ownership. The study also revealed that the combined cat and dog population of Britain is more than 20.8 million – 50 per cent higher than previously thought. Researchers at the University of Bristol say that the superior intelligence of cat owners is unlikely to be caused by their exposure to the famously cunning and selfish pets. Rather, more educated people tend to work longer hours and choose a pet to fit their lifestyles. Unlike dogs, cats require no walking and can manage with little human company.[Daily Telegraph]

Video of the Day –

flight patterns from Charlie McCarthy on Vimeo.