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TECHNOLOGY

China to launch 11 more BeiDou-3 satellites in 2018

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China will launch another 11 BeiDou-3 satellites by the end of 2018, adding to its domestic BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS), an official said at an academic conference Wednesday. The satellites will provide initial services for countries and regions along the Belt and Road by the end of the year, said Wang Li, chairman of China Satellite Navigation System Committee.  China has already launched eight BeiDou-3 satellites. Addressing the Ninth China Satellite Navigation Conference in Harbin, capital of northeast China’s Heilongjiang province, Wang said the BeiDou system is moving to become a global service provider after offering stable and reliable time and space information for clients in the Asia-Pacific region.

Compared to earlier generation satellites, the BeiDou-3 is able to send signals that are more compatible with other satellite navigation systems and provide satellite-based augmentation, as well as search and rescue services in accordance with international standards. Its positioning accuracy has reached 2.5 to 5 meters.  The BeiDou system will coordinate with other technology, such as remote sensing, Internet, big data and cloud computing, in the future, said Wang.

China launches relay satellite to explore Moon’s far side

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China launched a relay satellite to set up a communication link between Earth and the planned Chang’e-4 lunar probe that will explore the Moon’s mysterious far side. The satellite was carried by a Long March-4C rocket that blasted off at 5:28 am (2128 GMT) from southwest China’s Xichang Satellite Launch Center, according to the China National Space Administration (CNSA). The satellite, named Queqiao, or Magpie Bridge, was developed by China Spacesat Co., Ltd. under the China Academy of Space Technology (CAST).  “The launch is a key step for China to realize its goal of being the first country to send a probe to soft-land on and rove the far side of the Moon,” said Zhang Lihua, manager of the relay satellite project.

About 25 minutes after lift-off, the satellite separated from the rocket and entered an Earth-Moon transfer orbit with the perigee at 200 km and the apogee at about 400,000 km. Meanwhile, the solar panels and the communication antennas were unfolded. China has outlined an ambitious blueprint for deep space exploration, including the Chang’e-5 lunar probe in 2019.  After fulfilling the three steps of its lunar probe program — orbiting, landing and returning — China will further explore the Moon, including landing and probing the polar regions, said Tian Yulong, CNSA secretary general.  China will launch its first Mars probe in 2020, and it is expected to orbit, land and put a rover on the Red Planet.

Ayatollah Khamenei stresses muslim world’s scientific progress

in MIDLE EAST/TECHNOLOGY by

Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei urged efforts for scientific progress in the Islamic world, voicing Iran’s readiness to share its scientific achievements and expertise with other Muslim nations. The Islamic world’s elites should establish a large-scale intellectual movement and a public demand for scientific growth and reaching the peak of science and knowledge,” Ayatollah Khamenei said in a gathering of participants in the Congress on the Role of Shiite Islam in the Emergence and Promotion of Islamic Sciences, held in Tehran on Saturday. Referring to the West’s use of Muslim knowledge to compensate for centuries of scientific underdevelopment, the Leader said Westerners took advantage of the achievements of Muslims to gain wealth and scientific and military power to colonize Islamic nations.

“Such conditions need to change with the scientific progress of Islamic countries, and the Islamic world can once again be at the top of human civilization,” Ayatollah Khamenei added. The Leader also reiterated the call for Muslim unity and avoiding conflicts among Islamic denominations, stressing that any plan helping Muslims gain a better understanding of each other and allowing for synergy will contribute to Muslim solidarity. Ayatollah Khamenei then pointed to reports by international centers that the rate of Iran’s scientific growth in recent years has been 13 times faster than the world average, stressing, “We will continue on this path until reaching the boundaries of science and knowledge.” “Unlike the Westerners, Iran is ready to transfer its achievements and scientific growth to other Islamic countries,” the Leader said.

JUFREX: reform in the Montenegrin media sector

in EUROPE/TECHNOLOGY by

Recommendations for further reform in the Montenegrin media sector were presented within the project funded by the European Union and implemented by the Council of Europe. As part of the Reinforcing Judicial Expertise on Freedom of Expression and the Media in South-East Europe (JUFREX), a group of independent experts was in Montenegro to conduct a detailed analysis of the media sector. It resulted that Montenegro should implement 67 recommendations, which should help the country formulate a national media policy. Some of the topics analyzed include state aid rules, copyright issues, media self-regulation, and freedom of speech in the digital age. Plamena Halacheva, Acting EU Ambassador to Montenegro and Head of the Political Section at the EU Delegation, stated that this is yet another opportunity to emphasize that media freedom is an unquestionable condition for any candidate country on its path to EU membership and an important indicator of functioning rule of law. Indeed, freedom of expression and freedom of the media are the basic elements of key chapter 23, one of the final negotiating chapters. Director General for EU Accession in the Ministry of European Affairs, Jelena Burzan, affirmed that Montenegro, with its work and results in the negotiation process, showed that it is serious in its intention to continuously improve the legislative and institutional framework in this area and to encourage further development in all spheres of society. 

Chinese Space Station Tiangong-1 burns up over the Pacific Ocean

in FAR EAST/TECHNOLOGY by

China’s Tiangong-1 space station re-entered the earth’s atmosphere and burnt up over the middle of the South Pacific. During last week, and yesterday too, many countries, like Italy and Brazil, was worried about eventually large pieces can reaches the ground. Today this danger had already ceased and the station is fully anchored in the ocean.

China’s military fires up world first in revolutionary rail gun technology

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China is believed to be testing the world’s first ship-mounted rail gun, a technology that military experts say has the potential to fire shells with enough force to destroy a warship and precision to shoot down a satellite.
Photographs of a rail gun mounted on a warship docked in Wuhan, Hubei province, have surfaced on Chinese military websites in the last week, indicating the People’s Liberation Army Navy is testing the electromagnetic weapon and has been able to make it more compact. The controversial development comes as China seeks to transform its navy into a blue-water force capable of rivalling the United States and projecting power far from home shores.

China needs more nuclear warheads to deter US threat, military says

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The Chinese military’s mouthpiece said China must expand its nuclear stockpile so it can better deter and hit back at an enemy strike as geopolitical uncertainties mount and the US appears bent on a nuclear build-up.
China had enough nuclear weapons to prevent “bullying” by other nuclear powers but still needed to respond to changes in US strategy. The commentary comes as the administration of US President Donald Trump is expected to unveil its new military weapons policy later this week.

U.S. dismisses Pakistani assertion that American missiles hit Afghan refugees

in AMERICAS/DEFENCE/TECHNOLOGY by

The United States on Thursday dismissed a Pakistani allegation that an American drone had fired missiles at an Afghan refugee camp in Kurram district, in the lawless regions bordering Afghanistan. At the same time, Pakistani security officials who sought anonymity because they were not authorized to disclose the information said the drone strike had killed two members of the militant Haqqani network, which is allied with the Afghan Taliban. Although allies in the war against Islamist militants, the two countries are currently at loggerheads after Washington suspended nearly $2 billion of aid, accusing Islamabad of supporting Taliban militants wreaking havoc in Afghanistan.

The Belene NPP project cannot be implemented without the government’s consensus

in EUROPE/TECHNOLOGY by

The Risk Analysis for Variants of the Belene NPP projects concluded that it is not possible to implement a nuclear project, such as the Belene NPP, without the contribution of the state. They strongly recommend to the Bulgarian government to reconsider their non-participation in this project.

Algeria: “Choose France”: the Algerian group Condor Electronics in the big leagues

in AFRICA/TECHNOLOGY by

Condor Électronics and its CEO have just won international recognition by being invited to the “Choose France” operation, launched by French President Emmanuel Macron. He and his fellow Issad Rebrab of the Cevital group (Fagor-Brandt) are among the 140 leaders who count in the world.At the Palace of Versailles Emmanuel Macron has invited the greatest leaders of the planet to invest in France. Of the 140 guests, there are representatives from Coca-Cola, Alibaba, Siemens and also from the Algerian groups Condor Electroniques. Condor Electronics is particularly diversified:tVs, telephones, computers, appliances and even solar panels. The group have 4000 employees in Algeria.

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