SpaceX launches three Canadian radar surveillance satellites into space

The U.S. private space company SpaceX successfully launched its Falcon 9 rocket carrying three Canadian radar satellites on a $900 million mission focused on maritime surveillance, resource management, disaster relief and the effects of climate change, from Vandenberg Air Force Base in the state of California. The three radar satellites were made up of three identical Earth-observing satellites, which is led by the Canadian Space Agency. It is one of the most expensive missions in the history of the country's space program as more than 125 Canadian companies helped to develop and build it. The three Radarsat satellites lifted off from Space Launch Complex 4-East at Vandenberg at 7:17:10 a.m. About eight minutes after launch, the first stage of the booster touched down near the launch site. About one hour later, the three radar-imaging satellites were deployed to orbit. Accor… read more
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Boeing's Starliner test flight delayed

NASA is fast running out of seats on Russian Soyuz capsules, so the long-delayed Commercial Crew Program will soon be the only way to get astronauts to and from the International Space Station (ISS). SpaceX is on-target to get its Dragon II capsule ready for crewed flights this summer, but Boeing has fallen behind with its CST-100 Starliner. According to a new report, it may be looking at another multi-month delay. Initially, the Commercial Crew Program was supposed to deliver US-based private spacecraft several years ago. However, building and testing a vessel rated for human use is challenging. SpaceX and Boeing were the only companies that made it all the way through the design and prototyping process, and have been working to ready their crew capsules over the last few years. SpaceX successfully tested the Dragon II in its crewed configuration several weeks ago. It docked with… read more
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Two astronauts complete 6.5-hour spacewalk, swapping batteries

Two flight engineers of the United States space agency NASA completed the first spacewalk of this year out of the International Space Station (ISS) on Friday to upgrade the space lab's power system. Nick Hague and Anne McClain wrapped up their spacewalk at 2:40 p.m. American Eastern Time, lasting about six hours and 39 minutes, according to NASA. The two astronauts replaced nickel-hydrogen batteries with three newer, more powerful lithium-ion batteries for the power channel on one pair of the station's solar arrays. They installed adapter plates and then hooked up electrical connections on the starboard truss, showed NASA's live broadcast online. The batteries were transported to the station in September 2018 aboard the Japanese H-II Transfer Vehicle. The batteries store power generated by the station's solar arrays to provide power to the station when the… read more
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SpaceX capsule docks with space station

SpaceX has successfully launched the Crew Dragon, and it is currently on the way to the International Space Station. Elon Musk says that they might fly people aboard it by summer if things go according to plan. On Saturday, the Crew Dragon capsule was launched for the first time. It lifted off from the Kennedy Space Center, sitting atop SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket. The Crew Dragon is made to carry humans, but for the test launch, it only carried a sensor-equipped dummy called Ripley, named in honor of the Alien movies. The capsule is expected to reach the International Space Station and dock with it autonomously for the first time. It is scheduled to return back to earth on March 8 when it will splash down off the coast of Florida. The unmanned test flight is intended to demonstrate SpaceX’s ability to safely and reliably carry astronauts to and from the ISS. The data gathered from… read more
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Israel's first spacecraft to moon sends a selfie

Israel's Space IL lunar spacecraft Beresheet has taken a selfie in outer space, 37,600 kilometres from Earth, using a special selfie camera with which it will snap itself after landing on the moon on April 11. The selfie, which will be taken next month will prove that Israel has become the fourth country to land on the Moon after the US, Russia and China. Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI) (TASE: ARSP.B1), which manufactured Space IL and leads Israel's moon landing program, said that Australia can be seen in the selfie taken today. The picture, taken during a slow orbit, also includes a board attached to the spacecraft with the Israeli flag and the words in Hebrew "Am Israel Chai," the people of Israel lives and Small Country Big Dreams. The selfie is the most distant picture ever taken by an Israeli instrument. In about two days, Beresheet is expected to u… read more
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Scientists discover another moon for Neptune

A newly discovered small moon of Neptune is coming into clearer focus as astronomers have now pinpointed this tiny rock’s orbit and where it might have come from. The moon’s existence heightens the possibility that there are even more tiny worlds around Neptune that we just haven’t seen yet. Astronomers first spotted this moon in 2013 by combing through images of Neptune that were taken by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope. The discoverers have now dubbed the world Hippocamp, the name of a horse-like sea monster from Greek mythology. The title fits in nicely with the theme of Neptune’s 13 other moons, all of which are named after Greek gods of bodies of water. Before this discovery, many of Neptune’s inner moons had been found by NASA’s Voyager 2 spacecraft, which flew by the cold, gassy planet on its tour of the outer Solar System. Voyager snapped images of five new moons that were n… read more
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Japan's Hayabusa2 probe lands on asteroid

A Japanese probe sent to examine an asteroid 300 million kilometres from the Earth for clues about the origin of life and the solar system landed successfully on Friday, scientists said. Data from the probe, Hayabusa2, showed changes in speed and direction, indicating it had touched down on the asteroid and was blasting back to its orbiting position, according to officials from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). A live webcast of the control room showed dozens of JAXA staff members nervously monitoring data ahead of the touchdown before exploding into applause after receiving a signal from the probe, Hayabusa2, that it had landed. "We confirmed the touchdown," JAXA spokeswoman Chisato Ikuta told AFP. urn:publicid:ap.org:30a058513b3342f5b89a4921df5445d0.jpg This computer graphic image provided by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) shows the J… read more
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