Science News Summary: Deep Sea Mining Tests Continue After Robot Rescues; Vaccine protects COVID-19 survivors from variants and more

Below is a summary of the latest scientific news.

Deep-sea mining tests continue after the robot is rescued from the bottom of the Pacific Ocean

Belgium’s Global Sea Mineral Resources has resumed testing that could lead to the degradation of battery minerals from the bottom of the Pacific Ocean after it managed to recover a robot stranded at a depth of thousands of meters. Global Sea Mineral Resources (GSR) has been testing Patania II, a 25-ton prototype mining robot 4 km below the surface, on its concession in the Clarion Clipperton Zone since April 20.

Vaccine Protects COVID-19 Survivors From Variants; The virus spike protein damages blood vessels

The following is a roundup of some of the latest scientific studies on the novel coronavirus and efforts to find treatments and vaccines for COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus. Vaccine protects COVID-19 survivors from variants

Polish scientists discover that the ancient Egyptian mummy was a pregnant woman

An ancient Egyptian mummy that was once believed to be the remains of a male priest is actually the embalmed body of a woman in her third trimester of pregnancy, Polish scientists said Friday. Marzena Ozarek-Szilke, anthropologist at the Warsaw Mummy Project, was examining a CT scan of a mummy in the National Museum in the Polish capital when she discovered something special.

NASA calls on SpaceX to stop work on lunar landers pending contractual challenges

The US space agency NASA has ordered Elon Musks SpaceX to cease work under a contract to develop a lunar spacecraft pending the challenges of competing bidders at the US Government Accountability Office, the agency said on Friday. NASA’s decision means SpaceX must suspend all work related to the lunar program contract until GAO makes a decision, which is expected no later than August 4th.

NASA’s Mars helicopter Ingenuity is entering a new operational test phase

Now that NASA’s tiny Mars robotic helicopter Ingenuity has surpassed all expectations with its first four test flights, which were the first time an aircraft performed over the surface of another planet, it is ready for graduation. The U.S. space agency announced on Friday that Ingenuity is moving from a pure proof-of-concept technology demonstration mode to a more ambitious mission examining how aerial scouting and other functions will benefit future scientific exploration of the red planet could.

Four astronauts return from the space station aboard the SpaceX capsule

Four astronauts returned safely from the International Space Station to Earth early Sunday in a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule. Their return marked the end of the crew’s first rotation mission to the station by the Crew Dragon spacecraft, which was developed in collaboration between NASA and Elon Musk’s rocket company SpaceX, the agency said in a statement.

(With contributions from agencies.)

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