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June Pelo
13-05-17, 23:02
An agreement has been reached between the governments of China and Finland, that China will loan a pair of pandas to Finland for 15 years. They will be housed at the Ahtari Zoo nature reserve and are expected to arrive by the end of the year.

The first Finnish satellite, the Aalto-2, is now in orbit. The Cygnus, powered by the Atlas V rocket, was loaded with 38 nano satellites and tons of gear, including the Aalto-2, and launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida this week. Although small, the Aalto-2 is equipped with a spectrometer, a compact radiation monitor and an electrostatic plasma brake, which is a new space propulsion method invented in Finland. A team of researchers and students designed the Aalto-2, which is a little bigger than a one-litre milk carton, to be used in space and space tech research.

Finland has a long tradition of burning the top layer of forest underbrush after logging, to replenish the ground for new saplings. Finland's largest forestland owners plan to burn dozens of hectares this year, to make up for recent rainy summers. Ecologists and researchers are now calling for a return to the forest rejuvenation method of old. "Slash and burn" goes back centuries in Finland and was commonplace from the 1700s to the 1900s, when it was widely represented in art and literature.

Finnish law requires that a forest professional always oversee intentional burns. The operation is very cost-intensive, as many people are required to be on hand for technical and safety reasons. It is also a high-risk operation that must be insured. Insurance companies stopped selling the insurance that covers prescribed burns to private forest owners in the late 1960s.

FAR May 2017