The Antares rocket with the space vehicle-truck Cygnus was launched from wallops flight facility in Virginia on the US East coast. This is the second flight of Cygnus to the International space station and the first of eight scheduled flights that are under contract with the National Agency of Aeronautics and space will carry out a private firm Orbital Sciences.
The docking of Cygnus with the International space station is scheduled for Sunday, January 12th. The ship will deliver to the station’s scientific equipment, as well as clothing and food for the ISS crew.
Initially, the launch of Cygnus was scheduled for December 19, but the launch was postponed for technical reasons.
The launch was performed the next day after NASA announced the decision to extend its participation in the ISS project until 2024, that is four years longer than previously planned.
Today, however, flights of private vehicles is not a novelty. The first launch of “private owners” was completed on may 22, 2012, then the Dragon spacecraft headed successfully to the international space station. American South African-born entrepreneur Elon Musk, sold in 2002, he created PayPal, decade put to private ships plied the space. It took him less than $1 billion of private investment to a hitch, which NASA refused for lack of funds. Continue reading
China completed test heavy carrier rocket “Changzheng-5” (“long March 5”), which will be the basis for its lunar missions. Federal news Agency – at what level is the celestial space.
About the end of the test “Changzheng-5” according to the Chinese media. The development of these rockets was originally planned to be completed in 2008, but funding was only allocated in 2007. In the end, the first tests began in September of last year, and the first test flight is scheduled for September. In 2017 it is planned with the help of this rocket launch to the Earth return vehicle “Chang’e-5” to collect the local soil.
“Changzheng-5” refers to the basic Chinese family of rockets, named in honor of the legendary long March of the Communists in the Civil war in China. “Changzheng-1” was created on the basis of a ballistic missile with a nuclear warhead “Dongfeng-4”, launched in 1970 the first Chinese satellite. In fact, from this time begins the history of taikonautti – space Chinese.
However, prior to the 1990-2000-ies the development of the Chinese space was neither good, nor bad. And only in the last 10-20 years there was a serious success. But the speed of development was downright cosmic. Continue reading
The U.S. space Agency plans to launch a probe, equipped with a solar sail. He will leave earth orbit and go to the distant asteroid due to the pressure of sunlight. Like the ships of the discoverers of the 15th century, in 2018, a small space probe will unfurl the sail and start a journey to a faraway asteroid, marking the beginning of a new phase in space exploration.
The idea of using solar sails for space flight was proposed almost a hundred years ago, Soviet rocketry pioneer Friedrich Zander. It was based on the fact that Photons of light can exert pressure on the illuminated surface, giving him his momentum. Therefore, if you expand behind the ship a giant mirror, his speed will gradually increase without using fuel.
However, the first experimental devices were established only at the very end of the twentieth century. This is because space sailboats should be very easy, and their embodiment in life became possible only after the emergence of a truly compact electronics. Continue reading