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What Does the Future Hold for our Sun.
October 3, 2000
Discovery Ready to Launch
Proton Launches American Television Satellite
New Plan for the X-33
What Does the Future Hold for our Sun?
DISCOVERY READY TO LAUNCH
With Atlantis safely on the ground, the Space Shuttle Discovery is ready to go for its flight to the International Space Station. During its 11-day mission, the crew of Discovery will attach the Unity module to the Z1 truss, which will serve as the station's backbone. The will also transfer some additional supplies for the upcoming permanent crew set to arrive in Early November. This 100th shuttle launch is due to launch Friday morning at 1:38 GMT.
PROTON LAUNCHES AMERICAN TELEVISION SATELLITE
A Russian-built Proton rocket launched a Lockheed Martin GE-1A satellite on Monday. The rocket lifted off at 10:00pm GMT from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, and the satellite separated 6 hours, 40 minutes later. The GE-1A will provide broadcast and communications services to India, China, and Southeast Asia.
NEW PLAN FOR THE X-33
NASA and Lockheed Martin have agreed to a plan to go forward with the X-33 program, which includes an aluminum fuel tank, a revised payment schedule, and a target launch date of 2003. The X-33 was designed as a prototype to test the technologies that will eventually be developed into a replacement for the space shuttle. Unfortunately, problems with original composite fuel tank and a range of other problems caused serious delays to the X-33's schedule, and raising concerns that it would never launch. This revised schedule is 4 years later than the X-33 was originally supposed to lift off.
WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD FOR OUR SUN?
Astronomers at the The Solar Cycle and Terrestrial Climate conference held in Tenerife proposed a new program to monitor large numbers of sun-like stars hopes to give Astronomers valuable insights into their behaviour, and hopefully new tool to help predict what might happen to our own Sun in the near future. In recent observations, one star lost 0.4% of its luminosity in only a few years - if it happened here, it would quickly produce the cold conditions experienced here on Earth 300 years ago.
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