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China’s Shenzhou-12 with three astronauts blasts into space

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China’s Shenzhou-12 with three astronauts blasts into space. China has effectively launched the Shenzhou-12 – its first manned mission in five years – further accelerating its space program to rival the United States.

Shenzhou-12, signifying “Divine Vessel”, lifted off at about 01:22 GMT on Thursday from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China, according to the live video broadcast on state television, CCTV.

The launch was carried with a Long March-2F carrier rocket.

The spacecraft carried three male astronauts – Nie Haisheng, Liu Boming and Tang Hongbo.

In the CCTV live video, two of the three astronauts made an “Alright” hand gesture as Shenzhou crossed the Earth’s atmosphere and following the critical separation of the four boosters.

“The flight was perfectly smooth,” Chen Shanguang, deputy director of China’s manned space program, was quoted by news reports as saying.

“This is the first step. There are many challenges ahead.”

After entering orbit, the spaceship will conduct a fast automated “rendezvous and mooring with the in-orbit space station core module Tianhe”, according to CCTV.

The astronauts will be stationed in the core module and remain in orbit for three months.

Significant space power by 2030

State-owned Global Times publication quoted Gao Xu, deputy director designer of the Shenzhou-12, as saying that the development of the manned spacecraft followed “the highest standards in the country’s space industry.”

The Shenzhou-12 is made up of three sections – an orbiter module, a return module and a propelling module, and has 14 sub-systems onboard.

In the Global Times interview, Gao referred to the spacecraft as a “vessel of life”, as it won’t only ship the three astronauts to the orbiting Tianhe core module, but is also expected to carry them home to Earth in approximately 90 days.

In an interview with Al Jazeera, Jonti Horner, a space expert from Australia’s University of Southern Queensland, said that the advances being made by China’s program is “incredible”.

“I think China has, in the last 12 months, really put itself front and center in space exploration,” he said, noting how Beijing is fruitful in its first attempt to send a manned aircraft to space, while noting that the country has also sent its first mission in Mars in recent weeks.

China began construction of the space station this year with the launch of Tianhe – the first and largest of the station’s three modules – in late April.

Nie, who comes from central Hubei province and is a former air force pilot, is the lead of the mission.

The Shenzhou-12 is Nie’s third space outing, after the Shenzhou-6 mission in 2005 and the Shenzhou-10 mission in 2013, according to the Xinhua news agency.

It is Liu’s second mission to space, his first being the Shenzhou-7 mission in 2008, which featured a landmark spacewalk. It is Tang’s first excursion into space.

China’s last crewed flight mission was in 2016 when two men – Chen Dong and Jing Haipeng – were sent by means of the Shenzhou-11 spacecraft to Tiangong-2, a prototype of the space station where they later stayed for about a month.

Beijing’s point is for the country to become a significant spacefaring power by 2030, turning space into the newest frontier of its rivalry with the United States.

In May, China became the second country to put a rover on Mars, two years after landing the first spacecraft on the far side of the moon.

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Satellite pictures show underground offices at China’s impending high-altitude air terminal

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Recent satellite pictures propose that the Chinese are developing secured underground offices at the air terminal in Tashkurgan. Still under development, the high-altitude air terminal is often touted as the future base for Chinese desires in Central Asia.

The proposed air terminal in Tashkurgan is in nearness to the borders of Tajikistan, Afghanistan and Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir (PoK). It was in 2015 that China’s civil avionics specialists initially revealed their arrangements to develop an air terminal at the high altitudes of the Pamir level.

Be that as it may, development at this site started only in April 2020. This was nearly 7 days before the main fight among Indian and Chinese armed forces in Ladakh’s Pangong Tso was reported in May 2020.

Analysis of high-resolution business satellite imagery, provided by space firm Planet Labs, affirms the probable double use nature of the impending air terminal.

“These secured underground offices affirm the Chinese goals in the region; the reasonable utilization of these offices isn’t clear at this stage however it will provide a degree of disguise and insurance to the Chinese tasks” Col Vinayak Bhat (Retd) said.

Alongside the underground offices, development on different parts of the air base is additionally apparent in the satellite pictures dated May 28, 2021. Blacktopping of the runways and development of the terminal area can unmistakably be found in the satellite pictures, alongside deployment of stone pulverizing machines, land moving gear and development trucks.

Attributable to its higher altitude, the 3,800 meter long runway in Tashkurgan is marginally longer than the Hotan air terminal.

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Elon Musk requested Tim Cook to make him CEO from Apple, new book claims

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As though Elon Musk isn’t running enough organizations, he once may have recommended taking over as CEO of America’s most significant business, Apple.

Five years prior, amidst manufacturing delays and different issues tormenting Tesla’s arranged Model 3 dispatch, Musk is said to have had a call with Tim Cook during which the Apple (AAPL) CEO proposed purchasing Tesla. Musk said he’d do it, yet on one condition: “I’m CEO.” It reportedly took Cook a second to realize Musk implied taking his work.

That is as per a Los Angeles Times review of “Strategic maneuver: Tesla, Elon Musk and the Bet of the Century,” a forthcoming book by Wall Street Journal reporter Tim Higgins, who covers Apple (AAPL), Tesla (TSLA) and other tech organizations. The review, distributed Friday, adds that Cook reportedly responded to Musk with a swearword and hung up the telephone.

For their part, Musk and Cook have denied truly speaking to each other.

In December, Musk revealed on Twitter that he had considered selling Tesla to Apple however said he never really conversed with Cook. Replying to a report about Apple’s arrangements to release a battery-powered, mass-market automobile, Musk said he reached out to Cook during the “most obscure days of the Model 3 program” about securing Tesla “for 1/10 of our current worth.”

“He refused to take the gathering,” Musk said.

Musk likewise denied that the cooperation described in the book occurred in a tweet on Friday, following the distribution of the book review.

“Cook and I have never spoken or kept in touch with one another ever,” Musk said, adding that he had once requested a gathering with Cook to examine Apple purchasing Tesla, yet that it didn’t occur and “there were no states of securing proposed at all.”

Higgins, the creator, responded to Musk’s Friday tweet saying the Tesla founder was offered “a lot of chances” to remark on the tale.

“This tale comes from Musk’s own record of the discussion, as indicated by individuals who heard the retelling at that point,” Higgins tweeted.

At the point when gotten some information about the book’s claims, Apple directed CNN Business to an April talk with Cook did with reporter Kara Swisher, who got some information about Musk saying he refused a gathering. “You know,” Cook responded, “I’ve never addressed Elon, in spite of the fact that I have great admiration and respect for the organization he’s constructed.”

Musk and Cook were captured sitting close to each other — with only Oracle (ORCL) CEO Safra Catz between them — in a gathering with former President Donald Trump in December 2016. It’s muddled if the two talked.

“Strategic maneuver” is set to be released on August 3

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Israel’s NSO hinders some government customers from utilizing its spyware over abuse claims: Report

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Israeli cybersecurity organization NSO Group, which is at the center of the Pegasus sneaking around embarrassment, has briefly impeded a few government customers around the world from utilizing its spyware innovation as the firm probes its alleged maltreatments, as per a US media report.

The alleged utilization of the Pegasus software to keep an eye on journalists, human rights defenders, government officials, and others in various nations, including India, triggered worries over issues relating to security.

The suspensions are in response to an investigation by the Pegasus Project, a consortium of media outlets that reported the organization’s Pegasus spyware was connected to hacks and expected observation.

“There is an investigation into certain customers. A portion of those customers have been briefly suspended,” National Public Radio (NPR) cited a source in the Israeli organization as saying.

The source, an organization worker, didn’t name or quantify the government agencies — or their nations — that NSO has recently suspended from utilizing its spyware, attesting that Israeli defense regulations forbid the organization from identifying its customers, the report by NPR, an independent, nonprofit media association, said.

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