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U.S.-Russian crew returns from space station: NASA TV

A capsule carrying two U.S. astronauts and a Russian cosmonaut from the International Space Station landed in snowy Kazakhstan on Wednesday after a five-and-a-half month mission, a NASA TV live broadcast showed. The Soyuz spacecraft brought back Joe Acaba and Mark Vande Hei, from the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and Alexander Misurkin, from Russian space agency Roscosmos. The capsule landed in the snow covered steppe some 90 miles southeast of the central city of Zhezkazgan at 8.31 a.m. (0231…

British astronaut hails ‘groundbreaking’ Airbus satellite

LONDON: British astronaut Tim Peake hailed a "groundbreaking" satellite being built by Airbus which its developers say will bring an unprecedented level of flexibility to space telecommunications. The Eutelsat Quantum satellite is being put together by the multinational company in Portsmouth, on the south coast of England, where it was unveiled on Monday ahead of transfer to France for testing later this year. When launched in 2019 it will for the first time allow a commercial satellite to be fully reconfigurable while…

McCandless, first astronaut to fly untethered, dies at age 80

WASHINGTON: Bruce McCandless, an astronaut who was the first to fly untethered from his spacecraft in a gripping scene watched around the world, has died at the age of 80, NASA announced on its website. The US space agency did not give the cause of death on Thursday for the longtime resident of the western state of Colorado. The son and grandson of decorated war heroes, he graduated near the top of his class at the US Naval Academy. In the navy, he learned to pilot at least nine different aircraft, rising to the rank…

Record-breaking NASA astronaut returns back to Earth

A record-shattering NASA astronaut returns to Earth on Sunday, finishing a 288-day mission that put her over the top as the American who has spent the most cumulative amount of time in space. Peggy Whitson, 57, is also the oldest female astronaut in the history of space exploration, was the first female International Space Station commander, and holds the record for number of spacewalks by a woman. The biochemist is completing a mission at the International Space Station that began in November 2016, covering 122.2…

NASA astronaut releases stunning Northern Lights timelapse

An astronaut aboard the International Space Station has released an incredible video of the a real-life display of the Northern lights from his position 250 miles (402 km) above Earth. Jack Fischer tweeted a time-lapse of the Aurora Borealis taken while on board the International Space Station as it travelled at 17,500 mph (28,164 kph). 'People have asked me what a 'burrito of awesomeness smothered in awesome sauce' is...,' he wrote in a caption. 'Well folks, it looks like this… awesome sauce is green.' Fischer,…

Neil Armstrong’s moon bag sells for $1.8 million at auction

NEW YORK: A bag used by U.S. astronaut Neil Armstrong to bring the first samples of moon dust back to Earth was sold to an anonymous bidder for $1.8 million at an auction in New York on Thursday marking the 48th anniversary of the first moon landing. The bag, which for years sat unidentified in a box at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, was bought by a person who bid by telephone and did not wish to be named publicly, auctioneer Sotheby's said. Auctioneers had expected the bag to fetch between $2 million and $4…

Earth is a jewel, says astronaut after six months in space

Observing Earth from 400 kilometres (250 miles) away has made astronaut Thomas Pesquet aware of the planet's fragility as never before, he told AFP from the International Space Station days before heading home. While on terra firma politicians argued over a pact to preserve Earth's climate for future generations of humans, the Frenchman had six months to contemplate the planet from an unfamiliar vantage point. Not easy to spot the Niagara falls from space, but once you find them, you’re baffled! 🇺🇸 🇨🇦…

US astronaut breaks record for most spacewalks by a woman

MIAMI: American astronaut Peggy Whitson made history when she floated outside the International Space Station on Thursday, breaking the record for the most spacewalks by a woman. Whitson, 57, is making her eighth career spacewalk, surpassing the record of seven previously held by American Suni Williams. The spacewalk formally began at 7:29 am (1129 GMT) when Whitson and Shane Kimbrough switched their spacesuits to battery power before venturing outside the airlock and into the vacuum of space. "Be safe and enjoy…