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Soyuz Flight VS09, carrying Europe's fifth and sixth Galileo satellites, lifted off from Europe's Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, on 22 August 2014 on 12:27:11 UTC/14:27:11 CEST.
The two satellites are scheduled to deploy from their Fregat upper stage into free-flight orbit at three hours and 47 minutes after launch, 23 522 km above Earth.
Estimates of power by Oxford researchers are a fraction of those of the Scottish Government
RenewableUK is today hailing the announcement that funding has been secured to build the first phase of the world’s largest tidal energy array in the Pentland Firth region in North Scotland.
The Meygen project has a capacity of up to 398MW and will provide clean electricity for 175,000 homes and 100 jobs in the area upon completion The first phase of the Meygen project alone will almost double the tidal energy capacity installed in UK waters today.
The £51m needed for the 6MW first phase of the project will be partly funded by a £10m grant from the UK Government, with major funding initiatives also coming from Atlantis Resources Limited, Scottish Enterprise, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and The Crown Estate.
The site lies in an area with one of the highest tidal resources in the UK and will greatly advance the operating experience needed to run tidal energy on a greater scale. Construction on the first four turbines is expected to begin later this year with electricity being provided to the grid by 2016.
Tidal stream energy will play an important role in meeting the UK’s carbon reduction targets, as well as providing domestic power, reducing the UK’s growing dependency on energy imports.
RenewableUK’s Chief Executive Maria McCaffery said: “This is a great day for the industry and a major step forward in bringing commercial tidal projects online. We have moved one step closer to seeing tidal energy fulfil its great potential and become a significant contributor to the electricity mix. Collaboration between government and industry, as witnessed in this project, is fundamental to the success of this sector and the fact that 60% of the project cost will be spent in the UK supply chain demonstrates the economic benefits that this can unlock, with potential for thousands of jobs over the next decade. This news further solidifies the UK’s position as the world leader in tidal energy”.
Friday 22 August 2014
Issued on behalf of ISAF
Despite no racing on Friday 22 August the Opening Series has now concluded and all eyes will be on the final stage of the event on Saturday 23 August.
A non discardable, single race for all fleets will bring the Youth Olympic Games Sailing Competition to a close with gold, silver and bronze to be decided in the Girl's and Boy's Byte CII and Techno 293.
The decision to abandon the day of racing was made at 16:30 local time with the breeze on Lake Jinniu not materialising for the second consecutive day. Reports vary for the final day of the competition with some predicting 1-2 knots and others saying 3-6 knots. It will be a case of wait and see on the final day. If racing does not go ahead then Sunday 24 August can be used to complete the competition.
With sailors unable to lose the final race result the stakes and pressure will be high on the final day with those gunning for the medals aiming for good night of refuelling, rest, recuperation and sleep.
China's Linli Wu is perfectly primed to take gold for her nation in the Girl's Techno 293 fleet. The Chinese sailor is seven points clear of Russia's Mariam Sekhposyan and France's Lucia Pianazza and needs to finish seventh or better to claim gold. Wu has yet to finish outside of the top seven and has mastered the light winds of Lake Jinniu so she will be hard to overthrow on the final day.
Behind Sekhposyan and Pianazza, who are tied on 16 points, Aimee Van't Hoff (NED) has 22 points and Duangkamon Phongern (THA) has 31 points. The Dutch sailor will need to put in a good performance to take a medal whilst the Thai racer would need to win the race and hope the others finish at the back of the pack.
It is all to play for in the Boy's Techno 293 with eight points separating the top seven. As it stands, Russia's Maxim Tokarev is at the top of the pack on 16 points but that will count for very little on the final day with Argentina's Francisco Saubidet Birkner a point behind and Dutch sailor Lars van Someren on 19 points.
Israel's Yoav Omer sits on 22, France's Tom Monnet and Hong Kong's Tsz Kit Chan have 23 and New Zealand's Finn Croft has 24 points. The top racers have shared the victories over the six race period and it will be game on for gold on the final day.
Four points separates the leaders and second place in the Boy's and Girl's Byte CII. Odile van Aanholt (NED) tops the pack in the girl's whilst Bernie Chin (SIN) sits in the medal position in the boy's fleet.
The Dutch sailor leads Singapore's Samantha Yom who has worked her way up the field following a 21st in Race 4. Van Aanholt and Yom have a considerable advantage at the top of the Girl's Byte CII leader board with Italy's Carolina Albano 23 points off Van Aanholt in third.
Albano is only a point ahead of Jarian Brandes (PER) in fourth with Kateryna Gumenko (UKR), Caroline Rosmo (NOR), Nur Shazrin Mohamad Latif (MAS), Celeste Lugtmeijer (DOM) and Cecilia Wollman (BER) all in with a shot of the podium.
In the Boy's Byte CII, Chin took the lead from Pedro Correa after a solid third day of racing that saw him take a 1-5-3, the best performance of the day. Going into the last race Chin, on 33 points, has a slender lead over Correa who has 37.
Nine points splits third to ninth with Rodolfo Pires (POR), Apiwat Sringam (THA), Pavle Zivanovic (CRO), Alastair Gifford, Jonatan Vadnai (HUN), Justin Vittecoq (CAN) and Henry Marshall (USA) all in with a shout of at least bronze.
Racing is scheduled to commence at 11:00 local time on Saturday 23 August. The Byte CII fleets will take to the race course first followed by the Techno 293 fleets.
Opening Day At 2014 Audi Melges 20 U.S. Nationals Puts Jim Wilson's 'Oleander' In The Lead
Jim Wilson's Oleander Team assembles new boat from factory, and manages tricky conditions to take the lead at the U.S. Nationals
Newport, RI - With a brief on-shore postponement by PRO Bill Canfield and his legion of volunteers from Sail Newport, the deep Audi Melges 20 fleet headed North of the Newport Harbor Bridge to kick off the sixth edition of the U.S. National Championship. With past champions, fleet veterans, and several talented newcomers in attendance, what the fleet lacked in size was quickly made up through talent and tight racing.
Once the breeze settled in at 8 knots from the Southwest, Canfield wasted no time getting a race started. North American Fleet President Rob Wilbur on Cinghiale darted out to a nice lead nailing the right side of the course staving off several hard chargers for the left side. What seemed to be a steady, stable breeze quickly faded as the fleet inverted on the downwind. Wilbur was able to maintain a lead, but Marc Hollerbach on Fu and Drew Friedes on Pacific Yankee made huge gains on the run to get in the hunt. Hollerbach would eventually take the bullet after a fierce battle with Wilbur.
With a slight uptick in pressure for the start of Race Two, Hollerbach was back to the front of the fleet to take the lead at the first mark. On the next upwind however, it was Cesar Gomez Neto on Portobello who hit the left side hard out of the leeward gates to get the attention of the leaders. Hollerbach did a nice job of battling back from the right side and taking advantage of some small shifts at the top of the course to maintain a narrow lead and keep the bullet, followed by Gomez and Wilson's Oleander.
In the best breeze of the day that saw pulses to 10 kts, a clean start saw the fleet fighting for the ability to get to the left side of the course. After a few minutes of racing, those who had struggled to keep their lanes had to bail and give up on the left which ended up paying big. Again, Wilbur started with style and was able to cross the fleet on port tack, however Morgan Kiss on Baciami and Wilson were able to follow closely on Wilbur's tail at the top mark.
After an intense downwind battle, many tight crosses and ducks and a windward mark layline missed by some of the lead boats, Wilson took the bullet in his brand new Audi Melges 20 straight from the factory. "Our team arrived yesterday morning, put the boat together for the first time and were able to set it up and have a great day of racing," said Jim Wilson. Drew Wierda on W nabbed second place followed by Gomez's team on Portobello.
Once back to the dock, Audi Melges 20 teams were treated to cold beer, and a bevy of appetizers put on by the staff at Sail Newport. The Audi Melges 20 fleet hunkered down and relaxed after a challenging, yet fun day on the water. The forecast is similar for Day Two, and with the compact, talented fleet the scores from top to bottom are anything but secure. An additional three races are scheduled. With the completion of race number six, a discard of each teams worst score will go into effect.
MEDIA AND RACING COVERAGE
As with other Audi Melges 20 events around the world, racing updates will be posted online at the Official Audi Melges 20 Facebook Page. Be sure to also follow the fleet on Instagram, Twitter and YouTube. Tune in for the latest racing information, results, video interviews, and photos. Race reports, press releases and photos will be available online each day post racing at melges20.com.
TOP FIVE RESULTS (After Three Races)
1.) Jim Wilson/Sam Rogers, Oleander; 5-3-1 = 9
2.) Marc Hollerbach/Jonathan McKee, Fu; 1-1-8 = 10
3.) Drew Weirda/Scott Nixon, W; 6-4-2 = 12
4.) Cesar Gomes Neto/Andre Forseca, Portobello; 13-2-3 = 18
5.) Rob Wilber/Anthony Kotoun, Cinghiale; 2-9-7 = 18
LNG America names bunker barge cryogenics system designer
August 21, 2014—LNG America has selected Taylor-Wharton to start the front-end engineering and design work for the cryogenic topside of its 3,000 cu.m Gemini Class LNG bunker barge scheduled for delivery at the end of 2015. Jensen Maritime is the naval architect for the project and ABS the class society. "Taylor-Wharton has been actively engaged in the development process and instrumental in helping to develop the critical path time line for a late 2015 in-service date," said Keith Meyer, CEO of LNG America.
Border tracts attract lease sale bids
The Western Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 238 attracted $109,951,644 million in high bids for 81 tracts covering 433,823 acres on the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf offshore Texas.
Tuco books second ProZero workboat sale
The creation of the ProZero series has been targeted to make an even lighter range of vessels, that include both FRBs, Workboats and Daughter Crafts.
Scottish shipbuilder books fish farm vessel orders
The contract is for four 150 t steel feed barges and two 15 m landing craft general purpose fish farm vessels.
Havyard starts fitting out offshore wind service vessel
Havyard, already experienced in designing and building vessels for the fishing and offshore oil industries, sees the ESVAGT orders as opening the door to a new market: renewable energy.
Title Alexander Gerst inside ATV-5 after hatch opening
Released 14/08/2014 10:58 am
ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst inside ATV Georges Lemaitre for the first time on orbit after hatch opening.
Alexander wears a facemask to protect against inhaling any fine particles of dust or debris that might have shaken lose at launch. One of first things the crew does is install fans and air cleaners to run for several hours inside ATV.
The fifth and last Automated Transfer Vehicle docked with the International Space Station a day earlier on 12 August 2014.
ATV-5 delivers 6.6 tonnes of supplies to the ISS including food, water, fuel, clothes and experiment hardware.
More about ATV-5 in the blog: blogs.esa.int/atv
22 August 2014
As International Space Station crewmen unpack the many cargo bags delivered aboard ESA’s ATV space freighter, they are working with some of the cleanest items – carried within one of the cleanest interiors – yet flown in space.
Any unwanted contaminants on the ATV that docked at the International Space Station on 12 August could impact both the astronauts, who have weakened immune systems as a consequence of spaceflight, and the Station itself.
To prevent this, ATV Georges Lemaitre (ATV-5) was built in a clean, sterile environment and was subject to rigorous cleaning to eradicate any unwanted contamination.
Cleanliness campaigns have been carried out for all five of the spacecraft, with specialists from ESA’s Directorate of Technical and Quality Management working alongside the ATV programme team, Arianespace, Airbus and other ISS partner nations. Procedures have grown more rigorous over time.
Workers building and outfitting ATV-5 donned full body ‘bunny suits’, incorporating breathing filters. This is essential because the human body is itself a significant source of contamination. Breath, sweat, shedding hair and skin cells are all potential carriers for unpleasant things.
Checking cleanliness of ATV cargo bag
Microbial cleaning – preventing hitch-hikers in the galaxy
The Russian Mir space station, at the end of its 15 year lifespan, fell victim to an acid-producing fungus. This affected the plastic, glass and titanium surfaces on board.
To prevent these kinds of events the team in French Guiana regularly exposed containers of nutrient gel in and around the ATV 5 vessel. Working with the Pasteur Institute in nearby Cayenne, they then incubated the gel to measure the microbe colonies that developed on it.
ATV-5 was of course manufactured and packed in cleanroom surroundings, but some bacteria, viruses and fungi inevitably make it through, demanding strict cleaning procedures.
“The disinfection process is carried out using hydrogen peroxide (H202)” explains Stéphanie Raffestin, ESA’s microbiologist leading the ATV disinfection team.
“Also widely used in hospitals, H202 has the advantage of rapidly breaking down into hydrogen and water, so there is no chemical residue, and no damage to the equipment it cleans.
“Follow-up sampling is then performed to check the disinfection process has been effective – typically it has.”
In addition the team tested all of the cargo bags used to carry the payloads, and whenever any last-minute additions are made, the tests were carried out again, repeating the process.
Controlling particulates – gathering up dust
‘Foreign object debris’ is a term for any small particles or even tinier particulates that could be inside or outside the spacecraft. In advance of launch outside surfaces were cleaned, visually spot-checked then checked again under intense lighting.
Any layer of dust might not have allowed a seal to properly form when it came to docking. Indeed, foreign material might even have interfered with the sensors guiding ATV-5 to dock with the ISS.
Larger floating particles, such as those produced by screwing in base plates, had to be monitored because of the inhalation risk or the potential damage they could do to the eyes of astronauts in microgravity.
Preparing final inspection
Once identified, particulates were removed in various ways, starting from small-scale wiping and vacuuming up to flushing and replacing all the air within the ATV and surrounding launch fairing.
One final cleanliness inspection was carried out before the late-loading vertical ATV hatch was closed for good, in advance of launch. A worker and camera were lowered down on a hoist that had itself been thoroughly cleaned first.
All materials other than metals give off fumes over time – think of the distinctive smell of a new car. The problem is, above certain concentrations, these ‘volatile organic compounds’ might actually be hazardous, especially for the astronauts charged with opening the ATV .
“Individual payloads are tested for what we term ‘off-gassing’,” explains Thomas Rohr, overseeing ATV’s air quality effort.
“The challenge is that while the payloads are compliant individually, all the off-gassing constituents of the entire cargo module may still add up to a slightly unpleasant or unhealthy environment,” adds Thomas.
Once ATV is docked, air toxicity predictions performed on the ground before launch were used to calculate if any risk existed for the crew.
For additional certainty an air scrubber was installed to clean the air for a few hours before the crewmen made their entry.
NASA's spaceflight experts in the Commercial Crew Program (CCP) met throughout July with aerospace partners to review increasingly advanced designs, elements and systems of the spacecraft and launch vehicles under development as part of the space agency's Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) and Commercial Crew Development Round 2 (CCDev2) initiatives.
Blue Origin, The Boeing Co., Sierra Nevada Corporation and SpaceX are partners with NASA in these initiatives to develop a new generation of safe, reliable, and cost-effective crew space transportation systems to low-Earth orbit.
Company engineering representatives meet regularly with NASA engineers and specialists to survey advancements. As progress is checked off, larger, more formal reviews are conducted to show the achievement of milestones in system development. Each of the reviews also addresses points brought up in prior sessions and ends with areas to look into before the next session is held.
"These discussions capitalize on all the aspects of working as partners instead of working solely as a customer and supplier," said Kathy Lueders, manager of NASA's Commercial Crew Program. "The partners are innovative in a number of developmental areas. We have a set of detailed criteria drawn up so we can adequately evaluate what they are doing and they can tell us where adjustments fit in with their system's overall success. It's exactly what we had in mind when we kicked off this effort four years ago."
The next milestone for Blue Origin will be a subsystem interim design review that will assess the progress of the company's Space Vehicle design.
Development of the Boeing CST-100 continued throughout July with two milestone reviews conducted. The spacecraft phase two safety review demonstrated the CST-100 design follows the NASA safety analysis process, including documenting spacecraft hazard reports. The integrated critical design review demonstrated the design maturity of the integrated spacecraft, launch vehicle and ground systems are at their appropriate points.
Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC), which is working on the Dream Chaser lifting-body spacecraft, is expected to complete the review of its fifth design cycle in the coming weeks. The company also completed a review of the engineering test article with CCP and NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center specialists ahead of its second free-flight test later this year. SNC continues to vacuum test its reaction control system ahead of its incremental milestone test review.
SpaceX will conduct a critical design review of its ground systems and mission and crew operations plans toward the end of August as it advances Dragon V2 through development. The company also is coming up on the primary structure qualification for the Dragon V2, which is a more advanced version of the cargo-only spacecraft SpaceX uses to transport supplies to the International Space Station.
In August or September, NASA plans to award one or more contracts that will provide the agency with commercial services to transport astronauts to and from the International Space Station by the end of 2017.
For more information about NASA's Commercial Crew Program, visit:
21 August 2014
Arianespace has announced the next launch attempt for Soyuz VS09 with Europe's fifth and sixth Galileo satellites is 22 August at 12:27 GMT, 14:27 CEST.
The launch was originally scheduled for 21 August but was postponed due to unfavourable weather conditions over the Guiana Space Centre.
Follow the launch live, streaming starts at 12:07 GMT/14:07 CEST.
The destructive results of a mighty supernova explosion reveal themselves in a delicate blend of infrared and X-ray light, as seen in this image from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope and Chandra X-Ray Observatory, and the European Space Agency's XMM-Newton.
The bubbly cloud is an irregular shock wave, generated by a supernova that would have been witnessed on Earth 3,700 years ago. The remnant itself, called Puppis A, is around 7,000 light-years away, and the shock wave is about 10 light-years across.
The pastel hues in this image reveal that the infrared and X-ray structures trace each other closely. Warm dust particles are responsible for most of the infrared light wavelengths, assigned red and green colors in this view. Material heated by the supernova’s shock wave emits X-rays, which are colored blue. Regions where the infrared and X-ray emissions blend together take on brighter, more pastel tones.
The shock wave appears to light up as it slams into surrounding clouds of dust and gas that fill the interstellar space in this region.
From the infrared glow, astronomers have found a total quantity of dust in the region equal to about a quarter of the mass of our sun. Data collected from Spitzer’s infrared spectrograph reveal how the shock wave is breaking apart the fragile dust grains that fill the surrounding space.
Supernova explosions forge the heavy elements that can provide the raw material from which future generations of stars and planets will form. Studying how supernova remnants expand into the galaxy and interact with other material provides critical clues into our own origins.
Infrared data from Spitzer’s multiband imaging photometer (MIPS) at wavelengths of 24 and 70 microns are rendered in green and red. X-ray data from XMM-Newton spanning an energy range of 0.3 to 8 kiloelectron volts are shown in blue.