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Submission + - SPAM: Dawn of a new space war

Taco Cowboy writes: China launched its Aolong-1 robotic satellite, on board of the inaugurated flight of its new Long March 7 rocket on June 25th

According to China, the Aolong-1 robotic satellite, which is equipped with a robotic arm to remove large debris such as old satellites, is tasked to clean up space debris / space junk, but some space experts think that such robotic satellite has a dual-use purpose, and has the potential to be used as an anti-satellite weapon

The Aolong-1 (The Roaming Dragon) is small, weighing only a few hundred kilos, so the prototype could be produced and launched in large numbers. During peacetime, the craft could patrol space and prevent defunct satellites from crashing into big cities such as Shanghai or New Yorkl During wartime, they could be used as deterrents or directly against enemy assets in space

Furthermore, the Aolong-1 robotic satellite can also be said to be a “clean” anti-satellite weapon

China is not alone in this endeavor

The United States Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa) plans to launch a larger, more sophisticated craft for the US Air Force in 2020

Unlike Aolong, the Phoenix in-orbit servicing program would also be able to carry out jobs such as repairing, upgrading and refueling aging satellites

It would even be able to “turn foreign satellites into US spy satellites”, according to the US air force

Chinese researchers with the 502 Institute at the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation said last year that China would launch a multi-tasking space robot similar to the Phoenix, also by about 2020

The China National Space Administration says the nation’s blueprint for its space robots spans missions ranging from low earth orbit to Mars

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Submission + - SPAM: Jupiter Space Probe uses about same amount of energy as a blender

Taco Cowboy writes: Launched on Aug. 5, 2011, NASA's Juno probe has traveled nearly 1.8 billion miles (2.8 billion kilometers) through space to reach Jupiter and study the planet's history and is scheduled to slide into orbit around the solar system's largest planet on the upcoming Monday (July 4)

One amazing fact is that the Juno Space Probe operates on the amount of energy roughly equivalent to that of a blender

Jupiter is located about five times farther from the sun than Earth and receives about 25 times less sunlight, because of Juno's extremely low power consumption, the probe can stay alive by collecting sunlight using three large solar arrays that extend from the spacecraft's hexagonal body

In a web series, called "Crazy Engineering," produced by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Mike Meacham, a mechanical engineer at JPL, discussed Juno's low power needs and the science behind the probe's solar arrays

[spam URL stripped]...

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Submission + - SPAM: China's long march to the Moon

Taco Cowboy writes: Until recently it was fairly easy to dismiss China’s space program

Although largely ignored by the Western world, the Chinese launch marks something of a defining moment for the giant of Asia, a moment when China firmly staked its position as one of the world’s great space-faring nations. More than that, it took a step toward equaling, or perhaps even surpassing, NASA one day

China’s goal appears to be the landing of taikonauts on the Moon in the early- to mid-2030s, and if early robotic missions to the lunar surface are any indication, the country wants to eventually develop a colony and harvest resources there

“The launch of Long March 7 shows them stepping into the modern era if you will,” Leroy Chiao, a former NASA astronaut and commander of the International Space Station, told Ars. “The message is the same that it’s been for some time. They’re in this game to stay. They’re making long-term plans to stay in space and expand their presence in space. For NASA and the United States I’m afraid that we’ve been resting on our laurels for so long that we’re going to lose our leadership in human spaceflight”

China has pressed ahead with plans to launch its own space station by the early 2020s and has sought to position it as a beacon of international cooperation. Earlier this month, the China Manned Space Agency signed an accord with the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs to invite other nations to conduct experiments on China’s space station and to provide flight opportunities for astronauts from those countries. China has previously reached agreements with Russia and the European Space Agency to potentially fly aboard its station. Although there are no firm plans yet for those flights in the 2020s, some European astronauts have begun to learn the Chinese language, according to reports

For its part, the United States plans to fly the International Space Station through 2024 and may potentially extend its lifetime through 2029. After that time it’s plausible that China will have the major hub of international activity in low-Earth orbit. NASA has said it is moving beyond low-Earth orbit in the late 2020s to transition to a deep-space exploration program, first with missions to the vicinity (but not the surface) of the Moon, followed by human crews being sent to the Martian system in the 2030s. However there are significant questions about the viability of this long-term strategy given NASA’s present funding and approach

As part of the Long March 7 launch preparations, Chinese space officials spoke of the next evolution beyond the current booster technology toward a Long March 9 vehicle, a heavy lift rocket in the class of the Apollo program’s Saturn V rocket. This powerful rocket likely remains about 15 years from its debut, but that timing is consistent with the Chinese desire to begin sending humans to the Moon in the early 2030s

“If everybody starts heading toward the Moon, what are we going to do, fly a few Orions around cislunar space?” Chiao asked. “If we don’t go back to the Moon and we try to go directly to Mars, my fear is that it will get canceled because it’s too expensive and too soon, with a price tag that’s too high and with too long of a time frame for the public and Congress”

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Submission + - Demonoid Domains name for sale (pcmag.com)

Pax681 writes: PC World and other sites are reporting of the death of Demonoid "Bad news for those expecting the BitTorrent site Demonoid to somehow spring up from the ashes after last week's alleged bust. The Demonoid domain names are now officially for sale via Sedo, the final nail in the coffin for the popular site that was taken down via a combined assault from the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry and Interpol. "
Would it be fair to assume that the week long DDOS was part of the operation to take the site down? and if so does thing signal that the *IAA's now see it as ok to break the law witha DDOS to enforce their copyright? http://torrentfreak.com/demonoid-domains-go-up-for-sale-120812/ http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57491730-93/domains-seized-from-demonoid-bittorrent-site-up-for-sale/

The Internet

Submission + - How get the fastest speeds from your connection!

Pax681 writes: "A Great way to speed up your net connection for FREE! My cousin who uses the username "Guest_Again" wrote a guide on how to max out your internet connection free without these nonsense apps that say they will and certainly do not. All props to Guest_Again for the info and tutorials! with my www.bethere.co.uk pro connection(24mb/down 2.5mb up) i actually get 23.1 up and 2409 down! check out on how to find the right version of DMT for your router and also how to use DrTCP to sort your Recieve window. all apps are 100% virus/malware/spam/adware and COST FREE All setting are reversable too! All covered in DMT Tool Tutorial DrTCP tutorial DMT Tool Homepage DRTCP Download When you go to the DMT Tool site you will see there are different versions. make sure you shoose the right one for your router. the router versions are listed next to the different versions of DMT tool! Guest_Again wrote THIS TUTORIAL on choosing the right version of DMT for your hardware Guest_Again is ALWAYS happy to give help to anyone wishing to tweak their connections using his method. This page has had over 109,000 hits so far and is used as a reference page for many other sites."
Privacy

Linux-Based Phone System Phones Home 164

An anonymous reader writes to let us know that users of Trixbox, a PBX based on Asterisk, recently discovered that the software has been phoning home with statistics about their installations. It's easy enough to disable, and not particularly steathy (beyond encrypting the data sent back), but customers in the forum are annoyed at not having been informed of the reporting. Trixbox is owned by Fonality, which makes customized PBXs (again based on Asterisk) for paying customers.

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