Quantcast
Connect with us

American, Italian and Russian blast off for ISS

Published

on

US, Italian and Russian astronauts blasted into space Saturday, headed for the International Space Station, in a launch coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing.

Alexander Skvortsov of the Russian space agency Roscosmos, NASA’s Andrew Morgan and Luca Parmitano of the European Space Agency set off on a six-hour journey to the orbiting science lab from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 1628 GMT.

ADVERTISEMENT

A NASA TV commentator hailed a “textbook launch” minutes after blastoff in “sweltering” weather in Baikonur, where daytime temperatures reached 43 degrees Celsius on Saturday.

The blast coincides with the date that NASA’s Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the Moon in 1969, marking a defining moment in the so-called “space race” with the Soviet Union.

Of the trio launching from the Kazakh steppe, only 53-year-old Skvortsov had been born at the time of the Moon landing.

A veteran of two ISS missions, Skvortsov is the flight commander for the six-hour journey from Baikonur to the ISS.

ADVERTISEMENT

Morgan, 43, is flying for the first time.

“The absolute hardest part: saying good-bye and watching them walk away,” wrote the father-of-four in a Saturday tweet featuring a picture of his wife and children.

Parmitano’s only previous stint at the ISS lasted 166 days and saw him become the first Italian to carry out a spacewalk.

ADVERTISEMENT

“L-2 h 30 min: One more look at my planet… it’s time to climb aboard our rocket. Next stop @Space_Station,” the Italian tweeted.

Skvortsov, Morgan and Parmitano all come from military backgrounds and posed together in uniform in the build up to the launch.

Speaking during a pre-launch press-conference on Friday Skvortsov joked that “two colonels will be taking orders from a colonel” when Parmitano becomes commander of the space station mid-way through his mission — a reference to the military rank the three share.

ADVERTISEMENT

The International Space Station — a rare example of cooperation between Russia and the West — has been orbiting Earth at about 28,000 kilometres per hour (17,000 miles per hour) since 1998.

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and legal efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. And unlike other news outlets, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from billionaires and corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click to donate by check.

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



Report typos and corrections to: [email protected]. Send news tips to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Trump’s ‘indefensible’ comments just made it ‘much much harder’ for GOP to win in 2020: Ex-RNC Chair

Published

on

President Donald Trump's latest anti-Semitic trope is going to make it "much much harder" for Republicans to hold control of the White House in 2020, the former chair of the Republican National Committee (RNC) explained on MSNBC on Tuesday.

Michael Steele was interviewed by MSNBC's Chris Matthews on "Hardball."

"There’s a long-respected leader of what's called Jewish Republicans, Matt Brooks -- I've known him for a long time -- this guy has the job of helping get votes, Republican votes, in the community, which generally votes Democrats," Matthews noted. "What is he going to deal with this baby, this assault on religious identity and trying to claim you must vote your group?"

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Whistleblower alleges misconduct in IRS audits — and it could finally deliver Trump’s tax returns: report

Published

on

On Tuesday, Politico reported that House Democrats received a tip from a whistleblower about possible misconduct at the Internal Revenue Service in audits of presidential tax returns — and plan to use this revelation to bolster their legal case for obtaining President Donald Trump's tax returns.

In a federal court motion, House Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA), who is seeking the president's tax returns, included a letter to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin from earlier this month, informing him that the committee received an "undisclosed communication ... from a Federal employee setting forth credible allegations of 'evidence of possible misconduct' — specifically, potential 'inappropriate attempts to influence the mandatory audit program.'"

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

Washington Post editorial board calls Trump too cowardly to pass background checks in scathing editorial

Published

on

The Washington Post just published a scathing editorial saying that President Donald Trump is far too cowardly to fight for gun safety laws or any kind of gun reform.

For a brief few days, while Trump was on vacation, he was willing to say that background checks needed to be tightened. But once he was on the phone with the National Rifle Association, everything changed. It isn't the first time. When Trump promised action after the Parkland, Florida massacre he said to the faces of parents who'd just lost their children. The next day he reneged. Now Americans are back at step one, where the next shooting is around the corner and even if police are on scene to take the shooter down in less than 60 seconds, people will still die.

Continue Reading
 
 

Thank you for whitelisting Raw Story!

As a special thank you, from now until August 31st, we're offering you a discounted rate of $5.99/month to subscribe and get ad-free access. We're honored to have you as a reader. Thank you. :) —Elias, Membership Coordinator
LEARN MORE
close-link
close-image