India has successfully launched a rocket carrying a cluster of 10 satellites into space. This is considered as a rare feat for India's space programme.
All 10 satellites were deployed in orbit within moments of each other and the entire operation lasted 20 minutes only.
From the official press release:
ISRO's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, PSLV-C9, successfully launched the 690 kg Indian remote sensing satellite CARTOSAT-2A, the 83 kg Indian Mini Satellite (IMS-1) and eight nanosatellites for international customers into a 637 km polar Sun Synchronous Orbit (SSO). PSLV-C9 in its 'core alone' configuration launched ten satellites with a total weight of about 820 kg.
According to PTI, Last year, Russia launched a rocket carrying 16 satellites - but with a smaller payload.
G Madhavan Nair, chairman (Isro) said:
It is a historic moment for us because it is the first time that we have launched 10 satellites in a single mission. The mission was perfect
In its twelve consecutively successful flights so far, PSLV (Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle) has repeatedly proved itself as a reliable and versatile workhorse launch vehicle. It has demonstrated multiple satellite launch capability having launched a total of sixteen satellites for international customers besides thirteen Indian payloads which are for remote sensing, amateur radio communications and Space capsule Recovery Experiment (SRE-1). The same vehicle will be used to launch Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft, India’s first mission to Moon during this year.
India's space programme is more than 45 years old and real aim is to enter into satellite-launching market and reduce its dependence on foreign space agencies.
The US has successfully struck a disabled spy satellite with a missile fired from a warship in waters west of Hawaii, military officials say. So there is no danger to all of us (hydrazine exposure). As reported earlier the satellite, which no longer can be controlled, could contain hazardous materials, and it is unknown where on the planet it might come down. The Pentagon (the headquarters of the United States Department of Defense, located in Arlington, Virginia.) used a missile to shoot down the satellite:
Operatives had only a 10-second window to hit the satellite - USA 193 - which went out of control shortly after it was launched in December 2006. Officials were worried its hydrazine fuel could do harm, but it is not yet known if the fuel tank was destroyed. On Tuesday, a US State Department spokesman stressed that the action was meant to protect people from the hazardous fuel and was not a weapons test. The US government has also denied claims that the main aim of the operation was to destroy secret components on USA 193. Officials say classified parts would be burned up in the atmosphere and, in any case, that would not be a reason for shooting down the satellite.
=> US missile hits 'toxic satellite'
I was so excited to hear about this discovery. This is really a good news as it is the first planet beyond our solar system that may contain water, and therefore life, was detected by a team of European astronomers.
Scientists have discovered a warm and rocky "second Earth" circling a star, a find they believe dramatically boosts the prospects that we are not alone.
The planet is the most Earth-like ever spotted and is thought to have perfect conditions for water, an essential ingredient for life. Researchers detected the planet orbiting one of Earth's nearest stars, a cool red dwarf called Gliese 581, 20 light years away in the constellation of Libra.
Now the million dollar question - is there life on Gliese 581 c? Nobody has the answer, but it is the closest we've come to finding a planet capable of supporting life outside our own solar system.
'Second Earth' found, 20 light years away
The Universe is defined as the summation of all particles and energy that exist and the space-time in which all events occur. Very little is known about the size of the universe. It may be trillions of light years across, or even infinite in size.
Now we found the hole is nearly a billion light-years across. It is not a black hole, which is a small sphere of densely packed matter. Rather, this one is mostly devoid of stars, gas and other normal matter, and it's also strangely empty of the mysterious "dark matter" that permeates the cosmos. Other space voids have been found before, but nothing on this scale.