3D Prosthetic Hand For Ukraine

Since the start of the war in Ukraine, the need for prosthetic hands has increased sharply. In Netherlands TU Delft researcher Gerwin Smit has designed a prosthetic hand that can be made through a combination of 3-D printing and laser-cutting, which means that they be produced easily and relatively cheaply in countries that have little money to spend on such things.

These prosthetic hands are already being used in India and now, the Indian technology company Vispala has donated 350 of Smit’s 3D-printed prosthetic hands to war victims in Ukraine, sponsored by the American IT-company, Cisco. Biomechanical engineer Gerwin Smit is the designer of the so-called ‘Hundred Dollar Hand’ which is easy and inexpensive to produce using a combination of 3-D printing and laser-cutting. 80% of people needing a prosthetic hand live in countries which have little money for such things so Smit’s robust and artificial hand offers a robust and reliable solution. Last year, the social enterprise, Vispala made the Hundred Dollar Hand design ready for production and already, several hundred have been made and distributed around India since 2021.
Meanwhile, Gerwin Smit and his team are monitoring the use of these prosthetic hands  and are gathering feedback to see how the design can be made even better.

Source: https://www.tudelft.nl/ 

Russia Makes Veiled Threat to Destroy SpaceX’s Starlink

Russia has issued a veiled threat to “retaliate” against SpaceX’s satellite internet system Starlink for aiding the Ukrainian military.

A Russian representative named Konstantin Vorontsov issued the warning last week at a United Nations working group meeting on reducing space threats.

Vorontsov—who was reportedly a former acting Deputy Director of Russia’s Foreign Ministry Department—didn’t name SpaceX or Starlink by name. But he noted: “We would like to underline an extremely dangerous trend that goes beyond the harmless use of outer space technologies and has become apparent during the events in Ukraine. Namely, the use by the United States and its allies of the elements of civilian, including commercial, infrastructure in outer space for military purposes,” according to the unofficial translation  of his statement.

Vorontsov then issued his veiled threat by saying: “It seems like our colleagues do not realize that such actions in fact constitute indirect involvement in military conflicts. Quasi-civilian infrastructure may become a legitimate target for retaliation.”

https://www.pcmag.com/

Ukraine says Elon Musk’s Starlink has been ‘very effective’ in countering Russia. China is paying close attention

Since the start of the Russian invasion, the US and its NATO and European allies have sent Ukraine security, economic, and humanitarian aid worth tens of billions of dollarsAssistance to the embattled Ukrainians has come from the general public and private sector too. One of the most notable contributions has been that of Starlink, a satellite communication system run by Elon Musk’s SpaceX.

SpaceX says it has delivered 15,000 Starlink kits to Ukraine since late February. The devices provide the Ukrainian military with a resilient and reliable means of communication. Ukrainian troops have used them to coordinate counterattacks or call in artillery support, while Ukrainian civilians have used the system to stay in touch with loved ones inside and outside of the country.

Besieged Ukrainian troops in the plant in Mariupol Azovstal steelworks were only able to communicate with Kyiv and the world because they had a Starlink device.

https://www.businessinsider.com/

Mach 4 Portable Missile Delivered to Ukrainian Army

Military experts believe footage of a Russian helicopter being blown out of the sky by a missile in Ukraine shows a British-made weapons system in action. In March, the UK government announced it may send Starstreak, a form of man-portable air-defence system (MANPADS), to Ukraine to help the country defend itself against the Russian invasion. UK defence minister Ben Wallace insisted the technology falls within the definition of defensive weapons, as he confirmed on March 16 to the BBC the UK was sending the weapon to Ukraine. A video circulating on social media shows a helicopter being hit by a missile, reportedly in the Luhansk region, in the east of Ukraine.

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Starstreak is a highly portable, short-range air-defence system, manufactured in the UK. The manufacturer, the french company Thales, says the weapon is “optimised to provide defence against air threats including fixed-wing Fighter Ground Attack aircraft and late unmasking Attack Helicopters“. It can be moved by a person (in the MANPAD role) or mounted onto a vehicle, making it highly flexible and adaptable to different battlefield situations.

One of the standout features is the speed of the projectiles fired from the system. Thales says the missile is made up of three tungsten darts, which reach speeds in excess of Mach 3 (more than 3,700 km per hour). According to multiple sources including Defence News, this makes STARStreak the fastest short-range surface-to-air missile in the world.

https://www.euronews.com

SpaceX Sent Starlink Internet Terminals to Ukraine

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk sent a truckload of Starlink antennas — which can be used to connect to the company’s satellite-based internet service — to Ukraine this week, responding to a plea from the country’s vice prime minister amid fears that Ukrainians could lose internet access if Russia continues its attacks on communication infrastructure. But using satellite services can be dangerous in wartime, as evidenced by a history of states using satellite signals to geolocate and target enemies, cybersecurity experts said.

If an adversary has a specialized plane aloft, it can detect [a satellite] signal and home in on it,” Nicholas Weaver, a security researcher at the University of California at Berkeley, explained via email.

It isn’t necessarily easy, but the Russians have a lot of practice on tracking various signal emitters in Syria and responding. Starlink may work for the moment, but anyone setting a [Starlink] dish up in Ukraine needs to consider it as a potential giant target.

In short: “It may be useful, but for safety’s sake you don’t want to set it (or really any distinctive emitter) up in Ukraine anywhere close to where you would not want a Russian bomb dropping,” Weaver said.
Shortly after this story was originally published, Musk also weighed in on Twitter, saying “Important warning: Starlink is the only non-Russian communications system still working in some parts of Ukraine, so probability of being targeted is high. Please use with caution.”
He went on to advise users in Ukraine to “turn on Starlink only when needed and place antenna away as far away from people as possible,” and to “place light camouflage over antenna to avoid visual detection.”