CSExtra – Thursday, June 28, 2012
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Thursday’s CSExtra offers the latest reporting and commentary on space related activities from around the world. China prepares to end its fourth manned space mission. Astronomers report the first direct observation of an exo-planet. A Canadian aerospace company acquires a U. S. satellite manufacturer. NASA’s Full Fuselage Shuttle Trainer heads for public display at the Seattle Museum of Flight. An ancient mineral surfaces. Astronomer Carl Sagan’s papers reach the Library of Congress.
1. From Space.com: China’s three member Shenzhou 9 crew undocks from the Tiangong-1 orbital space lab late Wednesday and prepares for a descent to Earth. Launched June 16, Jing Haipeng, Liu Yang and Liu Wang carried out the nation’s first manual space docking. The mission marks China’s fourth human spaceflight since 2003. http://www.space.com/16340-china-shenzhou-9-spacecraft-undocking.html
A. From Spaceflightnow.com: China’s three person Shenzhou 9 crew prepares to return to Earth late Thursday. A touchdown in northern China is expected on Thursday about 10 p.m., EDT. Spaceflightnow.com offers updates on the return. http://www.spaceflightnow.com/china/shenzhou9/status.html
B. From Spacepolitics.com: China’s Shenzhou 9 mission, featuring the first manual docking by its crew with the Tiangong-1 space lab, has not become a U. S. political issue. China’s future plans include the assembly of an independent space station as well as robotic and eventual human exploration of the moon. http://www.spacepolitics.com/2012/06/27/fear-of-a-red-moon/
C. From Xinhuanet of China: Mission developments from China include a favorable weather forecast for the Shenzhou 9 crew’s descent to Earth. http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2012-06/28/c_131680850.htm
2. From The Los Angeles Times: Astronomers in Norway report the first direct observations of light coming from an exo-planet. Tau Bootis b, a Jupiter class planet, circles a star 51 light years away. Tau Bootis b was one of the first exo-planet discoveries — announced in 1996. The latest findings were published in the journal Nature. http://www.latimes.com/news/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-elusive-exoplanet-20120627,0,2325996.story?track=rss
3. From Bloomberg News: Canada’s MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates, LTD, purchases the U. S. commercial satellite unit of Loral Space & Communications Inc. The price tag is $875 million. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-06-27/mda-has-record-increase-after-buying-loral-satellite-unit.html
4. From Collectspace.com: NASA’s Full Fuselage Trainer departs Houston’s Ellington Field on Wednesday, starting its journey from the Johnson Space Center to the Seattle Museum of Flight in Washington. As the shuttle program ended in 2011, NASA agreed to dispatch this indoor mock up of the shuttle cockpit and fuselage to the museum for public display. A three-day, four leg trip aboard NASA’s Super Guppy is planned. http://www.collectspace.com/news/news-062712a.html
5. From Space.com: Experts detect an ancient mineral, panguite, in the remains of a 1969 fireball that fell from the skies over Mexico. The titanium based mineral was likely forged in the infant solar system. http://www.space.com/16320-allende-meteorite-panguite-mineral.html
6. From The Washington Post: The personal papers of the late Cornell University astronomer Carl Sagan make their way to the Library of Congress. Sagan, who died in 1996, reached audiences far outside his field with appearances on the Tonight Show and as host of Cosmos, the popular public television series. http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/library-of-congress-obtains-astronomer-carl-sagans-personal-papers/2012/06/26/gJQABdFN5V_story.html
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