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NASA studies bigger, better Mars helicopter

NASA studies bigger, better Mars helicopter

Science
ORLANDO, Fla., July 15 (UPI) -- As the Mars helicopter Ingenuity breaks interplanetary records and captures the public's attention, NASA is quietly researching a bigger, better Mars chopper to navigate the Red Planet's rough terrain. The next aircraft sent to Mars has no budget, no confirmed design and no launch date, but researchers at NASA and various universities have studied possible destinations for such a mission. "We're trying to look at building on the success of Ingenuity, and what we could accomplish with a larger, more capable aircraft to Mars in terms of the science we could do and the distances we could go," Teddy Tzanetos, a NASA robotics technologist, said in an interview. The new Mars aircraft either would be a larger version of Ingenuity, with two rotors, or a much bigger...
U.S. retail sales declined in December, but were better than 2019, Commerce Dept. says

U.S. retail sales declined in December, but were better than 2019, Commerce Dept. says

Business
Jan. 15 (UPI) -- Retail sales in the United States continued to slide in December for the third straight month, the Commerce Department said in is monthly economic assessment Friday. Seasonally adjusted retail and food sales for December totaled $ 541 billion, a decline of 0.7% from November, the department said in its report. Advertisement The overall non-adjusted sales figure, however, is still 3% better than it was in December 2019. The report also said total sales for all 12 months of 2020 was up 0.6% over 2019. The report also revised its November estimate down from the initially reported 1.1% decline to 1.4%. Economists expect the $ 900 billion COVID-19 stimulus package that Congress passed last month to improve retail sales for January. Retail sales in the United States have been a...
Chancellor: UK economy will get worse before it gets better

Chancellor: UK economy will get worse before it gets better

Business
The chancellor has warned that there are tough times ahead for the UK economy as it struggles through a third national lockdown.In an update to MPs on Monday, Rishi Sunak said: "We should expect the economy to get worse before it gets better." Mr Sunak said restrictions placed on people and businesses were necessary to limit the spread of the coronavirus but that they would also have a "significant" economic impact.Last week the chancellor launched a £4.6bn support package for businesses and he has previously announced emergency help for the economy worth £280bn.The latter figure includes the job protection and furlough scheme which is to run until the end of April. ...
Climate change: Better warning systems needed for extreme weather – UN

Climate change: Better warning systems needed for extreme weather – UN

Science
A new UN report says the world needs to rapidly raise investment in early warning systems for extreme weather events.Over the past 50 years, recorded disasters have increased five-fold, thanks in part to climate change.The study warns that one in three people on Earth are not adequately covered by warning systems.The numbers of people in need after natural disasters could increase by 50% over the next decade. The State of Climate Services 2020 has been produced by experts from 16 international agencies and financial institutions, and co-ordinated by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). Over the past 50 years, it says, some 11,000 disasters involving weather, clim...
SBI relocates financial inclusion, micro market division to Delhi for better synergy with govt

SBI relocates financial inclusion, micro market division to Delhi for better synergy with govt

Finance
New Delhi: In a bid to promote financial inclusion and better coordination with the government, State Bank of India (SBI) on Friday relocated the financial inclusion and micro market (FI&MM) division from its Mumbai corporate office to the national capital. The FI&MM division takes care of 8,000 rural and semi-urban branches catering to bottom of the pyramid segment and 64,000 customer service points (CSPs) managed by business correspondents and 58,000 ATMs. Besides, the division is responsible for running all the government-sponsored schemes, including direct benefits trasfer like PM-KISAN, in coordination with various departments and ministries. According to SBI Chairman Rajnish Kumar, the focus of the Delhi-based division will be community service, financial inclusion and runn...