Physics news for 28 August 2012
US astronaut Neil Armstrong dies, first man on the Moon
US astronaut Neil Armstrong, the first man on the Moon, has died aged 82. A statement from his family says he died from complications from heart surgery he had earlier this month. He set foot on the Moon on 20 July 1969, famously describing the event as “one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind”.
Ground control to Will.i.am: The Voice judge becomes first person to debut record on Mars
In an unlikely tie-in with NASA, Will.i.am will play his new song — Reach for the stars — through the speakers of the Curiosity robot rover that landed successfully on Mars earlier this month. His new song will beam down from the Curiosity space probe to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, where Will.i.am is hosting an educational initiative on interplanetary exploration with his charity i.am.angel. NASA said last night that the track describes Will.i.am’s passion for science, technology and space exploration.
Ofqual ‘to look closely’ at GCSE grade changes
The examinations regulator Ofqual is to “look closely” at concerns over grade changes to English GCSEs. In a letter to the National Association of Head Teachers, regulator Glenys Stacey said there were “questions” over how grade bands were set. The government is facing a possible legal challenge over grading reforms which appear to have denied thousands in England a C grade in the core exam.