a hefty bill for Social Security at 2.2 billion

Available without a prescription and reimbursed at 100% by the Social Security, they are very popular with the population. But the strategy is extremely expensive.

RT-PCR tests with nasopharyngeal swab exceeded one million per week.
RT-PCR tests with nasopharyngeal swab exceeded one million per week. CHRISTOPHE ARCHAMBAULT / AFP

While the accounts of Social Security were to become surplus again, they will plunge back into the red this year, with an abysmal deficit of more than 50 billion euros, a record. The health crisis has brought down contributions entering the funds, while expenses soared on the side of Medicare: it is necessary to finance care, overtime for carers, equipment (masks, gowns, respirators, etc. drugs, etc.) To which must now be added the millions of screening tests.

And the bill for Social Security promises to be steep, since it is “open bar”: anyone can do an RT-PCR virological test, without a prescription and 100% reimbursed by Social Security. “Tourists, foreign seasonal workers can get tested, people who want to fly even take the exam in several labs to be sure to get the results on time.», Indicates François Blanchecotte, president of the National Union of Biologists. And this, even

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NASA researchers discover first “survivor” planet | WEB.DE

Updated on September 22, 2020, 10:48 a.m.

An international team of researchers has discovered what may be the first survivor planet in the universe. The Jupiter-sized celestial body with the name WD 1856 b orbits its white dwarf, a star corpse, in a very close orbit – and thus would have miraculously survived the violent death of its mother star.

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WD 1856 b could the first discovered “survivor” planet our universe. It is called the “survivor” planet by its discoverers: He has the death of his mother star – in this case a white dwarf named WD 1856 + 534 – survived. The results were published in the magazine “Nature”.

One White dwarf emerges, when a normal star his Has run out of fuel. It then inflates extremely and its gas envelope devours all planets in the near orbit. Finally, it sheds its shell, losing around 80 percent of its mass and finally ending up as a starry corpse.

WD 1856 b puzzles researchers: How did planet explosion survive?

This process makes WD 1856 b so special and puzzles researchersAs Andrew Vanderburg, assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and co-author of the study, explains: “The process of birth of a white dwarf destroys all surrounding planets and everything that comes too close to the star’s corpse is actually torn apart by immense gravity Therefore the question arises: How did WD 1856 b get into its current orbit without suffering this fate? “

So far were about star corpses only fragments, comets and dust discs detected. One intact planet to find was therefore one surprise – but is but explainable. According to the scientists’ calculations, the celestial body must have emerged about 50 times further than from its current position. It is now orbiting its star in a 34-hour orbit. This corresponds to 60 times the orbital speed of Mercury around our sun. The researchers have several theories as to how this came about:

  • For one, there could be more big planets caused the orbit to spiral inward. Similar effects are known from other extrasolar solar systems.
  • That would also be possible Other stars fly by. Since the white dwarf WD 1856 + 534 is also part of a triple star system, corresponding constellations could have led to the migration of the planet.

An international team of researchers has discovered what may be the first survivor planet in the universe. The Jupiter-sized celestial body with the name WD 1856 b orbits its white dwarf, a star corpse, in a very close orbit – and thus would have miraculously survived the violent death of its mother star. © YouTube

Planet discovered by data from TESS satellite

Discovered the planet was through Data of Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) NASA. The satellite examines the light from the stars and pays attention to fluctuations in brightness. These can be clues to an exoplanet if it moves in front of its star during a so-called transit.

So far have been no other worlds in the system around the star WD 1856 + 534 discovered. On the one hand, this can be due to the fact that the star is very faint, and on the other hand, it would also be possible that the plane in which other planets orbit the star is tilted so that their orbit does not cross the line of sight from Earth. It is also possible that there are simply no other planets.

Further investigations of the TESS data should provide new insights.

Sources used:

  • NASA-Mitteilung: NASA Missions Spy First Possible ‘Survivor’ Planet Hugging White Dwarf Star
  • Nature: A giant planet candidate transiting a white dwarf



Breathtaking exoplanets with two suns, protoplanetary disks around young stars, a black hole that eats planets: artists regularly create impressions from space for NASA that no telescope in the world can capture.

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Is hydroxychloroquine widely used around the world, as Didier Raoult asserts?

THE CHEKING PROCESS – The Marseille professor assured the senators that 4.6 billion people live in a country where this treatment is recommended against Covid. Really ?

“The publications on the use of hydroxychloroquine show that it reduces mortality between 30 and 50%;  they are accumulating, it keeps coming out, it comes out every day, you will see! ”, declared Professor Raoult.
«Lhe publications on the use of hydroxychloroquine show that it reduces mortality between 30 and 50%; they are accumulating, it keeps coming out, it comes out every day, you will see!», Declared Professor Raoult. AFP / CHRISTOPHE ARCHAMBAULT

THE QUESTION. As he had already done in June before the parliamentary committee on the management of the health crisis, Professor Didier Raoult again defended the interest of hydroxychloroquine against Covid-19 during his hearing in the Senate on Tuesday , even though the vast majority of doctors today agree that the molecule is not effective against the disease.

In response to senator and doctor Bernard Jomier, who gave a long list of countries now advising against the use of this treatment against Covid – a list that the Marseille researcher rejected – he thus argued that “4.6 billion people live in countries where hydroxychloroquine is recommended“. Before launching shortly after: “publications on the use of hydroxychloroquine show that it reduces mortality between 30 and 50%; they are accumulating, it keeps coming out, it comes out every day, you will see!»What is it?

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A new, more rigorous air quality index implemented in 2021

After more than two years of reflection and studies, air quality experts in France have finally adopted a new index. It will come into force on January 1, 2021. It will integrate a family of additional fine particles, PM2.5 (which are 2.5 microns in diameter) and which are already measured by the 18 Air Quality Agencies in France.

In addition, the main alert thresholds for qualifying the air of poor quality will be lowered. They will concern PM10 (10 microns in diameter), ozone, nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide, to align the French levels, which date back to the 1996 air law, with the thresholds Europeans. The six levels selected will be in line with those taken into account by the European Environment Agency (good, average, degraded, bad, very bad and extremely bad) which are already accessible online (airindex.eea.europa.eu ) for Europe.

The level announced daily for the current day and the next will correspond to the worst index of one of the five pollutants measured. It will be a “New communication tool for the general public, but which will not be binding”, explains Marine Tondelier, general delegate of Atmo-France, which federates the air quality agencies.

Sharp increase in the number of poor quality days

It will therefore not be possible to say that the air is degrading, compared to what is currently measured, since the scales are modified. However, the number of days with poor quality is expected to increase with the new index. For example, according to estimates made by Atmo-France in conjunction with the Ministry of Ecological and Inclusive Transition, the number of days of poor air quality will drop from 6 (with the current index) to 109 (with that of 2021 ) in Grenoble, from 14 to 108 in Lyon, from 10 to 83 in Paris and from 13 to 109 in Strasbourg.

The number of days with a bad index will increase significantly. ATMO France and Ministry of Ecological and Inclusive Transition.

Moreover, taking PM2.5 into account makes it possible to indicate a family of very fine particles which sink very deeply into the lungs. They, along with PM1 and those of smaller sizes, cause the most premature deaths in Europe. However, over twenty years, the concentration of PM2.5 has decreased in France and in Europe.

Decrease in PM2.5

“The annual average of PM2.5 fell by 46% between 2009 and 2019 on average in France. 5% of the territory’s surface remains exposed in 2019 to values ​​above the threshold of the World Health Organization (10 µg / m3), or 28% of the population ”, notes Ineris (National Institute for the Industrial Environment and Risks) in a study on air quality in France.

Finally, the measurements on ultrafine particles are currently being assessed by the Central Air Quality Monitoring Laboratory, in conjunction with the Ministry of Ecological Transition and associations. For PM1s, the European Union does not yet take them into account in its index.

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The race to Venus restarts, towards a private mission in 2023 – Space & Astronomy

Venus returns to ignite the curiosity of researchers, space agencies and individuals, after the discovery in its atmosphere of phosphine gas, considered as a possible indicator of the presence of life. After the announcement made by the Royal Astronomical Society, NASA chief Jim Bridenstine himself wrote on Twitter that “it’s time to prioritize Venus”. And if in about thirty days the Bepi Colombo probe of the European Space Agency (ESA) will ‘touch’ the planet in its long run towards Mercury, a mission entirely dedicated to the atmosphere of Venus is scheduled for 2023, organized by the company US private Rocket Lab.

Currently there is only one probe in orbit around the planet, the Japanese Akatsuki: this is the second launched for a specific mission to Venus in the last thirty years. First there was the European mission Venus Express, which remained in orbit between 2006 and 2014. In both cases the main objective was the study of the atmosphere. Of the surface of Venus, on the other hand, there is a topographical study carried out in the 1990s by the Magellan probe of NASA, with an obsolete resolution. The last landing, on the other hand, dates back to the 1980s.

Things could change in the near future, in light of the different robotic missions that have recently been proposed to space agencies in the United States, Europe, Russia and India. Their approval, however, is not obvious, or at least it has not been so far: NASA, for example, has rejected several projects for Venus in past selections, favoring the exploration of asteroids and other planets, primarily Mars. These hesitations could favor private individuals in the race, such as Peter Beck’s Rocket Lab, which just a few days ago during a press conference said that the exploration of Venus represents “the definitive treasure hunt: in an area of ​​about 50 kilometers l ‘Venusian atmosphere is relatively temperate and, at least in theory, could host life, although perhaps not as we understand it today “.

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