Tag Archives: Rocket

Syria says repels Israeli air attack, Israel says downs Golan rocket

Syria says repels Israeli air attack, Israel says downs Golan rocketBEIRUT/MOSCOW (Reuters) – Syrian military air defenses thwarted an Israeli attack on Sunday, shooting down seven missiles targeting an airport in southeastern Damascus, Russia’s National Defense Control Center was cited by RIA news agency as saying. Syrian state media also reported the attack. “Our air defense systems thwarted … an Israeli air aggression … and prevented it from achieving any of its goals,” a military source told state news agency SANA.

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Israel says strikes Iranian targets in Syria after rocket

Israel says strikes Iranian targets in Syria after rocketIsrael struck what it said were Iranian targets in Syria on Monday in response to missile fire it blamed on Iran, sparking concerns of an escalation after a report that 11 fighters were killed. Israel announced the strikes against facilities it said belonged to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Force as they were occurring, continuing its recent practice of speaking more openly about such raids. It said the strikes were in response to a medium-range, surface-to-surface missile the Quds Force fired from Syria at the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights on Sunday, which Israeli air defences intercepted.

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Russia says the mysterious hole in its Soyuz rocket may have been sabotage

Russia says the mysterious hole in its Soyuz rocket may have been sabotageWe already knew that Russia was in the midst of an incredibly deep investigation into the origins of a strange hole that was found in a part of its Soyuz space vehicle earlier this year. The part of the ship that was damaged is no more — it was jettisoned during reentry and burned up — but samples taken from the damaged area are now being studied by Russian authorities as they try to explain how such a thing happened.

Sergei Prokopyev, one of the cosmonauts that rode back down to Earth last week aboard the Soyuz craft, told reporters at a new conference that the investigation is still ongoing. Samples gathered during a recent spacewalk should hopefully be the final piece to whatever puzzle officials are trying to piece together.

Russia's handling of the investigation has the full support of NASA, but it's worth noting that the country's messaging hasn't exactly been consistent in the days, weeks, and months following the discovery of the hole.

Initially thought to be damage sustained by a tiny space rock, once the hole was determined to be manmade a whole lot of finger pointing ensued. Russia's Roscosmos chief Dmitry Rogozin seeded the idea that the hole was created while the spacecraft was docked to the ISS, hinting that it might have been the work of someone on board.

Those theories were squashed rather quickly and, in the days after the crew found the leak, word out of Russia suggested a culprit may have already been found. Those unofficial threads never materialized into anything more concrete, and we've now been waiting months for Russia to announce what it has found during the lengthy investigation.

Russia's early assertion that the hole was some kind of sabotage, perhaps during the manufacturing process, is an incredibly serious allegation. It's unclear what punishment one or more individuals might face if the country determines that someone intentionally tried to harm its cosmonaut crew (not to mention NASA astronauts), but now that ship itself is back on solid ground we might learn more before long.

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SpaceX launches cargo, but fails to land rocket

SpaceX launches cargo, but fails to land rocketSpaceX on Wednesday blasted off its unmanned Dragon cargo ship, loaded with supplies, science experiments and food for the astronauts living at the International Space Station but failed to successfully land its booster afterwards. “We have had a great liftoff,” said SpaceX commentator John Insprucker, as the Falcon 9 rocket soared into the sunny, blue sky over Cape Canaveral, Florida at 1:16 pm (1816 GMT), carrying 5,600 pounds (2,500 kilograms) of gear. The mission was SpaceX’s 16th mission for NASA as part of a long-term contract to ferry supplies to space.

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Astronauts blast off for space station on Russian rocket after October crash

Astronauts blast off for space station on Russian rocket after October crashA Russian, an American and a Canadian astronaut have taken off for the international space station in the first manned launch of a Soyuz rocket since a harrowing crash in October.  Monday's launch of the MS-11 ship was a closely watched test for Russia's space industry, which has suffered several high-profile failures in recent years but remains the only reliable way to deliver crew to the orbiting station.  A source of national pride for both the Soviet Union and Russia under Vladimir Putin, missions into the cosmos are virtually the only area of cooperation left between Russia and the United States after the Ukraine crisis.  Space station veteran and mission commander Oleg Kononenko, 54, Quebec family doctor David Saint-Jacques, 48, and Anne McClain, 39, a US army helicopter pilot who earned masters degrees from the University of Bath and Bristol in the UK, lifted off in a cloud of flame and smoke from Kazakhstan's Baikonur cosmodrome on Monday afternoon. From bottom, Oleg Kononenko, Anne McClain and David Saint-Jacques board their Soyuz MS-11 spacecraft in Kazakhstan on Monday Credit: Shamil Zhumatov/Reuters In the course of an eight-minute flight through the atmosphere, the craft first jettisoned its boosters and then its second stage rocket to successfully deliver the spacecraft into orbit.  The trio were scheduled to dock with the space station six hours later to relieve the current crew, which will return home on December 20.  On Tuesday, Elon Musk's SpaceX plans to launch from Cape Canaveral a long-delayed reusable Falcon 9 rocket with 5,600 pounds of research equipment and supplies including holiday food for the space station. The MS-11 mission was moved up after the same kind of Soyuz spacecraft and FG rocket booster crashed at Baikonur in October, risking the lives of Russian commander Alexei Ovchinin and Nasa astronaut Nick Hague. One of the four boosters caught on the second stage as they detached, sending the rocket careening toward the ground a little more than two minutes after takeoff. The capsule automatically aborted the mission and parachuted the two men to safety about 250 miles away on the plains of Kazakhstan.  Soyuz MS-10 takes off from Baikonur before its crash in October Credit: Dmitri Lovetsky/AP Russia blamed the crash on a sensor in the booster separation system that was damaged during installation in what the space agency head could have been an act of sabotage. Having taken apart two rockets during an investigation, its specialists have now fixed the problem, a special commission said. Arianespace launched a European weather satellite into orbit on an unmanned Soyuz rocket last month. Monday's mission follows a scare at the space station in August when a drop in pressure was traced to a small hole in a panel in a Soyuz MS-09 module, which had docked with the station in June.  Russia's space czar at one point suggested the hole could have been drilled by the German or American crew member on the station. MS-11 crew member Anne McClain said she had absolute confidence in the Soyuz despite the crash, telling CBS News she “would have gotten on a rocket the day after that happened”.  But crashes of unmanned Russian spacecraft in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 have called into doubt the viability of the country's space industry, where low wages have reportedly hurt operations. In the most egregious incident, an unmanned Soyuz rocket carrying 19 international satellites crashed in November 2017 after it was programmed with the coordinates for the wrong launch site.  A Russian Orthodox priests blesses the MS-11 spaceship with holy water on Sunday Credit: Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP Monday's mission started from the same launchpad that Yuri Gagarin did when he became the first man in space in 1961. Russian Orthodox priests flicked holy water on the rocket, launch team and assembled journalists during a blessing the day before. On Friday, Russia launched three communications satellites into space and an unidentified fourth object that some think could be a new spy satellite.  

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Israeli air strikes target Gaza Strip after rocket fire

Israeli air strikes target Gaza Strip after rocket fireIsrael’s military said it was carrying out air strikes “throughout the Gaza Strip” on Monday after a barrage of rocket fire from the Palestinian enclave towards its territory. Israel reported some 80 “launches” from the Gaza Strip towards its territory — reportedly rockets and mortars — with a number intercepted by missile defences. It also said an Israeli bus was hit by fire from the Gaza Strip.

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Syria ordered Gaza rocket fire at Israel with Iran backing: army

Syria ordered Gaza rocket fire at Israel with Iran backing: armyThe Israeli army accused the Syrian government Saturday of instructing a Palestinian militant group to fire dozens of rockets at Israel from Gaza with Iran’s supported and vowed to respond where it chose. “The rockets that were launched against Israel… we know that the orders, incentives were given from Damascus with the clear involvement of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Force,” army spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Conricus said, referring to the Guards’ foreign operations unit. At least 39 rockets have been fired at southern Israel by the Islamic Jihad group since late Friday, with 17 of them intercepted by the Iron Dome air defence system, and the rest hitting open fields, the army said.

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Israel accuses Syria, Iran of ordering Gaza rocket fire

Israel accuses Syria, Iran of ordering Gaza rocket fireThe Israeli army accused the Syrian government and Iran on Saturday of ordering Palestinian militants in Gaza to fire dozens of rockets into southern Israel, and threatened to retaliate wherever it chose. The barrage of rockets, which began late Friday and continued into Saturday morning, triggered extensive retaliatory strikes by Israeli aircraft against Gaza that risked escalating into a wider conflict.

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Palestinian rocket attack on Israeli city draws Gaza air strikes

Palestinian rocket attack on Israeli city draws Gaza air strikesEgypt, which sent a delegation to Gaza on Tuesday for the latest round of talks on a long-term ceasefire, postponed a visit there by its intelligence chief, Abbas Kamel, following Wednesday’s surge in violence, Palestinian officials said. The family living there managed to take shelter in a reinforced room after alert sirens sounded, said officials in the city about 40 km (25 miles) from the Gaza Strip. Another rocket launched from Gaza and aimed at central Israel fell into the Mediterranean Sea, the military said.

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Rocket fired on Israel from Gaza: Israeli army

Rocket fired on Israel from Gaza: Israeli armyA rocket was fired on Israel from the Gaza strip early Wednesday, the Israeli army and police said, causing damage in a southern city. It is one of the first projectiles fired in recent weeks from the Palestinian territory under Israel’s blockade and comes at a time of renewed tensions between Israel and Palestinian armed groups. “At 4:00 AM (0100 GMT) Israelis in the city of Be’er Sheva were running to bomb shelters after a rocket was launched from the Gaza Strip at Israel,” the Israeli army tweeted.

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