NASA signed an agreement with Roscosmos on integrated flights, and Casio released a watch in the style of NASA spacesuits: News Digest

Selection of the most interesting space news for breakfast: The Dragon capsule docked with the ISS. Firefly Aerospace is preparing for the second launch of the Alpha rocket, and China to create radars to track dangerous asteroids.

NASA signed an agreement with Roscosmos on integrated flights

The launch of the Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft with two Russians and an American is scheduled for September 21, 2022. The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the state corporation Roscosmos have signed an agreement on flights of integrated crews on Russian and American manned transport spacecraft.

The agreement guarantees that there will always be at least one American and a Russian aboard the ISS to ensure the smooth operation of both sides of the orbital outpost. According to NASA and Russian officials, the exchange has been in development for a long time and is completed despite tensions over Moscow’s war against Ukraine, which is a sign of continued cooperation between Russia and the United States in space.

Firefly Aerospace is preparing for the second launch of the Alpha rocket

Firefly Aerospace plans to carry out the second launch of its Alpha rocket in the next month or two. They are waiting for a decision from the Federal Aviation Administration and are preparing new contracts with NASA.

The new Alpha is now on the company’s launch pad at Vandenberg Space Force Base. Engineers are completing all the preparatory work. According to the company’s executive director Peter Schumacher, they expect to launch within the next 45-60 days. According to him, the rocket is ready for launch, but we still need to conduct fire tests and a dress rehearsal.

Dragon capsule successfully docks with space station

A SpaceX Dragon cargo capsule met up with the International Space Station (ISS) on Saturday (July 16), delivering more than 5,800 pounds (2,630 kilograms) of supplies to the orbiting lab, including a device for measuring climatic conditions. The docking took place at an altitude of 430 kilometers above the South Atlantic. According to NASA officials, the mission contributes to nearly 40 ongoing research projects conducted on the ISS.

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Asteroids flying past the Earth. Illustration: ESA

China to create radars to track dangerous asteroids 

A leading Chinese university has begun constructing an array of more than 20 large radar antennas to track asteroids that have the potential to be hazardous to Earth. The project, named China Fuyang, is led by the Beijing Institute of Technology. The array aims to bounce signals off asteroids within 150 million kilometers of Earth. This is about the same distance as to the Sun.

This Sunday, at 05:20 p.m., GMT+3, SpaceX sent the 51st batch of 53 Starlink Internet satellites into orbit. The Falcon-9 carrier rocket was launched from the SLC-40 launch complex located at Cape Canaveral in Florida, USA.

The fourth shell will consist of 1,584 satellites with an orbital inclination of 53.2°; it will take about 27 launches to fill this shell. Unlike the first orbital shell consisting of Starlink v1.0 satellites, version 1.5 satellites equipped with laser communication are used for the fourth shell. These improved satellites can communicate with each other directly in orbit and are independent of ground stations.


The Casio G-Shock wristwatch has a bright orange case and a strap in honor of the cosmonauts’ suits. (Source: Casio)

Casio released a G-Shock wristwatch in the style of NASA spacesuits 

Casio has released a limited batch of a new model of G-Shock wristwatches for space lovers. They are made in the bright orange color of the iconic NASA spacesuits. Astronauts wear them before launch and landing. Such a bright color is needed so that in the event of an emergency landing of a spacecraft, they could easily be detected by rescuers. The dial symbolizes the black visor on the helmets, and the thin blue line represents the blue accents of the suits. In addition, the loop of the watch strap is decorated with an image of the American flag, and an image of an astronaut is engraved on the back cover of the case. Their cost is USD 170.

Read also: James Webb noticed “life indicators” at the first planet, and a new way of garbage disposal was tested on the ISS: News Digest

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