Friday Futures: inflatable astronauts, black hole, bio-hacking

Image credit: napat intaroon /

Welcome to Friday Futures, our weekly guide to the latest visions of The Future from around the web. This week: inflatable astronauts; a big black hole; bio-hacking; are humans safe in space; artificial muscles.

NASA is inventing inflatable astronauts

Inflatable robots could serve as a lightweight, space-efficient alternative to metallic robots or robotic arms on NASA’s rovers, shuttles, or space stations, IEEE Spectrum reports. Read more…

That black hole is really big, no, really!

The gigantic black hole, not counting the giant rings of trapped light orbiting it, is about 23.6 billion miles (38 billion kilometers) across, according to Science News. Read more…

Can we bio-hack ourselves to cure cancer?

Are humans safe in space?

In space, fluids won’t drain, and astronauts develop red, puffy faces and complain of congestion or pressure in their ears. Read more…

Turns out lightning does strike twice – here’s why

In contrast to popular belief, lightning often does strike twice, but the reason why a lightning channel is ‘reused’ has remained a mystery. Read more…

The weird galaxy that is putting convention to the test

Scientists just brought a pig back to life – some of it

The brain of a postmortem pig obtained from a meatpacking plant was isolated and circulated with a specially designed chemical solution. Read more…

Proper robots will need muscles

(Compiled by Alex Leslie and edited by John C. Tanner)

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