The RLV-TD winged body spacecraft takes off Monday morning.For the last several years, India has been making steady progress with its space program, including the successful insertion of a spacecraft into Mars orbit in 2014, something previously only the United States, Soviet Union, and the European Space Agency had accomplished.At 7am local time, the HS9 solid rocket booster fired for 91.1 seconds, lifting the RLV-TD winged body spacecraft to above 50km.After separating from the booster, the spacecraft crested to an altitude of 65km, nearly two-thirds of the way to outer space, before beginning its descent.Enlarge / The RLV-TD vehicle on the ground, before being mated to its boosterThe RLV-TD flown Monday will not be recovered from the sea, but the 1.75-ton vehicle will undergo successive test flights during the coming years to demonstrate landing capability.ISRO must also continue development of an air-breathing scramjet engine that will help power the vehicle all the way into space.
Angry Birds maker Rovio long boasted about its ambitions to become the next Disney, and now that goal has kinda-sorta come to fruition: The Angry Birds Movie is playing on thousands of screens around the globe.Strategy is minimally important; in fact, the game constantly suggests matches, making it tough to consider your own pairings.And when it released in 2014, that caused some well-earned franchise fatigue.Now you can use your birds in whichever order you d like, plus you ll typically complete three or four different areas in each level—which expands the size of the game, but also is punishing if you lose on the last part.And while the original focus on holidays and seasons remains mostly intact, the game has taken amusing deviations as well—like the NBA-themed update.Shifting to outer space means playing with gravitational pull, letting you use the fields around planets to slingshot you into birds and asteroids, or send objects crashing down.
A company called Star-ALE wants to take fireworks to the next level.Essentially Sky Canvas is a man-made meteor shower created by shooting little pellets from a series of microsatellites orbiting the Earth.Each of those satellites would carry 500-1000 special pellets that are able to glow intensely in different colors as they enter the Earth's atmosphere.The combustible pellets would be made from different elements or metals that would glow in different colors.This simulates the friction the pellets would encounter as they enter the Earth's atmosphere.The pellets would ignite 35 to 50 miles above the surface of the Earth and would be viewable from the ground in an area 120 miles across.
NASA/Handout via Reuters Elon Musk's SpaceX made waves by announcing in late April that it planned to field a Mars mission by 2018.While it's fairly clear on exploratory issues, it's much less clear on exoplanetary settlements and exploitation of resources.The U.S. Government is working through the issues raised by SpaceX's planned mission, Motherboard reports.Digital Trends was able to confirm Motherboard's story, and NASA and SpaceX already have a "no-funds exchanged" agreement to work together at least on logistics and support for the mission.More from Digital Trends:Such an agreement is vital, considering Article VI of the treaty states that signees "shall bear international responsibility for national activities in outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, whether such activities are carried on by governmental agencies or by nongovernmental entities," and that the signee governments "require authorization and continuing supervision by the appropriate State Party to the Treaty."This likely means whatever shape SpaceX's mission does take in the end, it will likely be in some form of a public-private partnership to ensure the company is within the limits of international law.
Angry Birds maker Rovio long boasted about its ambitions to become the next Disney, and now that goal has kinda-sorta come to fruition: The Angry Birds Movie is playing on thousands of screens around the globe.Strategy is minimally important; in fact, the game constantly suggests matches, making it tough to consider your own pairings.And when it released in 2014, that caused some well-earned franchise fatigue.Now you can use your birds in whichever order you d like, plus you ll typically complete three or four different areas in each level—which expands the size of the game, but also is punishing if you lose on the last part.And while the original focus on holidays and seasons remains mostly intact, the game has taken amusing deviations as well—like the NBA-themed update.Shifting to outer space means playing with gravitational pull, letting you use the fields around planets to slingshot you into birds and asteroids, or send objects crashing down.
Study co-authors Adam Frank and Woodruff Sullivan looked at recent discoveries of potentially habitable exoplanets and considered the odds of whether sophisticated civilizations existed on them in the past or present.In 1961, astronomer Frank Drake — founder of the SETI Institute SETI stands for Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence — devised what is now known as the Drake equation to estimate the number of planets that may be home to civilizations with the ability to communicate beyond their world.While the Drake equation calculates the number of advanced alien civilizations that could exist in the Milky Way galaxy, Frank and Sullivan s equation expands the question to calculate the number of advanced civilizations that have existed in our galaxy throughout the whole history of the universe.After that, it s just a matter of counting up the tally of stars in the visible universe, and saying that — with all the suitable real estate that s out there, if we re the only place with intelligent life, then we ve really won the mother of all lotteries.Shostak cautions against being overly optimistic or pessimistic about the SETI Institute s searches for intelligent signals from possible neighbors in outer space.It s a bit like an ant coming out of its hive, seeing the enormous amount of real estate stretching in all directions and deciding that, if its home is the only ant hill, then its existence is a near-miracle.
The Olympics may be all about athletic prowess, but its opening ceremonies have always been about showmanship.A startup called Star-ALE is bidding for the right to create a meteor shower over the Japanese capital city of Tokyo, which will serve as the highlight of the 2020 Olympics opening ceremony.Apparently, the company has tested this concept on Earth, placing pellets into a vacuum and hitting them with gas moving at supersonic speeds, creating an artificial environment similar to that of re-entering Earth s atmosphere.Theoretically, when these pellets are launched from outer space, they ll ignite when they re about 35 to 50 miles above our heads, and will be visible to around 30,000,000 people in Tokyo and its nearby areas.It is artificial but I want to make really beautiful meteors that can impress viewers, Lena Okajima, CEO and founder of ALE, said to AFP.But hey, for an event that only happens once every four years, maybe creating a meteor shower of your own is worth the cost.
Elon Musk s SpaceX made waves by announcing in late April that it planned to field a Mars mission by 2018.While it s fairly clear on exploratory issues, it s much less clear on exoplanetary settlements and exploitation of resources.The U.S. Government is working through the issues raised by SpaceX s planned mission, Motherboard reports.Such an agreement is vital, considering Article VI of the treaty states that signees shall bear international responsibility for national activities in outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, whether such activities are carried on by governmental agencies or by nongovernmental entities, and that the signee governments require authorization and continuing supervision by the appropriate State Party to the Treaty.This likely means whatever shape SpaceX s mission does take in the end, it will likely be in some form of a public-private partnership to ensure the company is within the limits of international law.This might be the most important part of the two entities work together, considering Musk s ultimate goal is a permanent settlement on Mars spearheaded by SpaceX itself.
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