Today's positive news nuggets from all around the cosmos.
NASA made history yesterday after it was successful in the “near impossible” feat of achieving the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. The $85m helicopter, named Ingenuity, managed to ascend to around three metres above Mars, then hover for 30 seconds and rotate. It's particlarly impressive because Mars' atmosphere at ground level is only 1 percent of that on Earth.
Clarence is the first Official Police comfort dog in the US. The St. Bernard is now roaming the halls of Congress, providing support and lighthearted moments for legislators, staff and other Hill denizens who have seen plenty of heartache in the last few months. Clarence and his handler have turned up in the aftermath of some of the country's worst tragedies, include Sandy Hook and the Boston Marathon bombing. Clarence's latest assignment on the Hill shows there is at least one thing we can agree on in these divided times: there's nothing quite like the comfort and love of a very good dog.
Alaska's forests come back stronger: A new study brings a positive glint of hope from climate science.
Automakers are all moving toward a future that minimises carbon emissions. Now we can add toymaker Matchbox to the list. While Matchbox's cars are already powered by emissions-free energy, the brand has announced that it will make all cars, playsets and packaging with 100 percent recycled, recyclable or bio-based plastic by 2030. The same goes for all brands under parent company Mattel. That means Hot Wheels, Barbie and Polly Pocket will follow suit.
HIV affects more than 38 million people globally. So it's good news that a phase one human trial of a new vaccine produced a 97 percent immune response amongst volunteers.
Gift for tigers in India: A former city dwelling couple give their land to wildlife in Rajasthan.
Scientists from India and Russia have created an edible food wrap for packaging produce, bakery, poultry, meat, and seafood. Designed to replace one of the most un-recycled materials on the planet, the wrap consists of natural ingredients from brown algae that are safe for the environment and humans. The film wraps are water-soluble and dissolve by almost 90 percent in 24 hours.
Direct air capture technology: It strips carbon dioxide out of the air anywhere in the world and is an essential ingredient in tackling climate change. But how does it work? OGN provides an easy summary...
Many who live on America's east coast have, at some point, dreamed of hiking the Appalachian Trail. It's considered the longest hiking footpath in the world, spanning 14 states and nearly 2,200 miles from Georgia to Maine. It's a tall order for anyone, but hats off to Dan Schoenthal, 56, who is determined to do it. Schoenthal was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 2015. Despite the challenges of the disease he took to heart his doctor's advice and has just set out on the epic journey.
A new documentary - The Year Earth Changed - has been released, narrated by Sir David Attenborough. Produced by the BBC, the one hour special is now available globally on Apple TV+, showcasing nature footage from around the world after an unprecedented year of worldwide human quarantine. “The stories of how wildlife responded have shown that making even small changes to what we do can make a big difference,” says Attenborough. Here's the 90 second trailer to whet your appetite.