Tag Archives: soviet

Space Travel – Astronomy + Space Exploration – Leisure

Posted: November 8, 2016 at 3:44 pm

Space exploration has captured the worlds interest ever since the famous Space Race between the Soviet Union and the U.S. during the Cold War, which cu…

Space exploration has captured the worlds interest ever since the famous Space Race between the Soviet Union and the U.S. during the Cold War, which culminated in the U.S. landing the first humans on the moon in 1969. In fact, it was only mere decades ago that the idea of space tourismnot just for astronauts and scientific research but for leisure and recreationwas the stuff of science fiction: Star Wars, 2001: A Space Odyssey. Today, space travel for the common man is no longer a matter of if but when, thanks to the ingenuity and imagination of self-funded business magnates with an eye on the sky.

A few major players have emerged in the race towards the first commercial flights to space. Prototypes from Richard Bransons Virgin Galactic space line are readying to take its first passengers on a suborbital space flight to the edge of Earths atmosphere. Meanwhile, SpaceX, an aerospace manufacturer founded by Tesla Motors CEO and investor Elon Musk, has begun launching rockets into orbit, with the ambitious end goal of enabling human colonization on Mars.

Of course, the price of airfare to space is still well beyond most anyones meansa single seat on Virgin Galactic will put you out of $250,000. Luckily, the rest of us can still gaze upon the worlds beyond ours from our backyards. Stargazing remains a beloved nightly pastime, where views of phenomena like the northern lights and lunar eclipses can be seen for free with just the naked eye.

Read the original here:

Space Travel – Astronomy + Space Exploration – Leisure

Posted in Space Travel | Comments Off on Space Travel – Astronomy + Space Exploration – Leisure

Putin takes jab at US, NATO during vast Victory Day parade …

Posted: May 12, 2015 at 1:46 am

May 9, 2015: A Russian air force Mi-26 helicopter, front, flies over Red Square during the Victory Parade marking the 70th anniversary of the defeat of the Nazis in World War II, in Red Square in Moscow, Russia. (AP)

Thousands of Russian troops marched across Red Square under the eye of Vladimir Putin on Saturday to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Soviet Unions World War II victory over Nazi Germany.

The largest Victory Day parade since the fall of the Soviet Union showed off Russias biggest nuclear missiles and some of Mr. Putins best new military hardware, including the much touted Armata T-14 tank.

In comments subtly directed at NATO, Mr. Putin said that military alliances were gaining strength and warned against a unipolar worldshorthand in Moscow for the global influence of the U.S. In another apparent jab at Washington, he said that the principles of international cooperation were being ignored.

We have seen attempts to create a unipolar world. We see how military-bloc thinking is gaining force. All this undermines the sustainability of global development, Mr. Putin said in front of war veterans, their chests heavy with medals, wiping away tears.

Our common goal should be the development of a system of equal security for all governments. System adequate [to deal with] modern threats, built on regional and global nonaligned bases. Only then can we ensure peace and tranquility in the world, he said.

Unlike the parade ten years ago, when U.S. President George W. Bush sat next to Mr. Putin to watch the soldiers march by, this years celebrations, boycotted by most Western leaders, highlighted the divisions wrought by the crisis in Ukraine.

This year, Mr. Putin was flanked by Chinese Premier Xi Jinping, underscoring Russias turn to the East in the face of Western sanctions. On the eve of the parade, Messrs. Xi and Putin signed a raft of deals to cement closer ties, including a promise from China to offer up to $25 billion to Russian companies who are facing an economic crisis at home.

Click for more from The Wall Street Journal.

Read the original here:
Putin takes jab at US, NATO during vast Victory Day parade …

Posted in NATO | Comments Off on Putin takes jab at US, NATO during vast Victory Day parade …

Life Under Atheism = Death – Video

Posted: April 6, 2015 at 3:50 am

Life Under Atheism = Death
How Many People Did Joseph Stalin Kill? In February 1989, two years before the fall of the Soviet Union, a research paper by Georgian historian Roy Aleksandrovich Medvedev published in the…

By: Dave Flang

Read this article:
Life Under Atheism = Death – Video

Posted in Atheism | Comments Off on Life Under Atheism = Death – Video

Man trolling NATO parade – Video

Posted: March 8, 2015 at 4:49 pm

Man trolling NATO parade
Man trolling NATO parade by waiving Russian flag and singing [screaming] Soviet Union anthem.

By: Novorossia News Channel

Read the original post:
Man trolling NATO parade – Video

Posted in NATO | Comments Off on Man trolling NATO parade – Video

Russia Has NATO’s Nerves On Edge – Video

Posted: March 5, 2015 at 8:50 pm

Russia Has NATO's Nerves On Edge
Russians un charted flights keeps NATO's nerves on edge and causes countless intercept flights in the skies over the former Soviet States.

By: Steven Ben-DeNoon

See the rest here:
Russia Has NATO’s Nerves On Edge – Video

Posted in NATO | Comments Off on Russia Has NATO’s Nerves On Edge – Video

Freedom of speech means tolerating opposing viewpoints

Posted: March 1, 2015 at 8:49 am

Freedom of speech and expression is very important for a healthy, civilized society. Its how most technological and artistic innovation takes place. A healthy debate or discussion between members of a society is the most efficient way to solve problems. It is how the classical societies in Greece and Rome came up with the most influential pieces of literature that we still study today. Without this right, many ideas, beliefs and inventions would not exist, leaving the majority of the society living in ignorance.

It is considered a basic human right by the U.N. charter and is the basis of functioning democracies. In addition to the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, many state constitutions and state and federal laws protect freedom of speech. One of the major reasons for the collapse of the Soviet Union was the build-up of anger over years because ordinary citizens couldnt express themselves. Its a classic example of societal breakdown because dissenting opinions were suppressed.

However, I have noticed that people become increasingly agitated upon hearing opinions that they consider too dumb or too ignorant, and the discussion quickly descends to insults, comebacks, accusations, unfair comparisons and hyperbole.

This is especially true on the Internet. We have to understand that just because somebody has a differing opinion, that is not an indicator of their intelligence or a marker of how much respect they deserve.

Australian actor Leo McKern said, It is easy to believe in freedom of speech for those with whom we agree. It does not cast doubt over ones status or ability to serve as productive as a member of society. Rather, it shows their willingness to contribute to our society in the way they think best and that is commendable. Insulting someone for an opinion that they hold casts doubt over our faith in democracy and ability to tolerate other people and different opinions.

I love living in a society where people are allowed to express their opinions regardless of how politically incorrect they may be. Regardless of who you are, every human deserves a degree of respect. Disagreements do not necessarily have to result in disputes. We are bonded not by our faiths, our race or our political opinion, but by the air we breathe, the water we drink, the planet we all share and a common desire to better our lives and to secure a bright future. Every other difference is trivial and every other disagreement must be solved, for our future is tied to one other.

Read more:
Freedom of speech means tolerating opposing viewpoints

Posted in Freedom of Speech | Comments Off on Freedom of speech means tolerating opposing viewpoints

Mir – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Posted: February 7, 2015 at 12:46 am

Mir Mir on 9 February 1998 as seen from the departing Space ShuttleEndeavour during STS-89 Mir insignia Station statistics COSPAR ID 1986-017A Call sign Mir Crew 3 Launch 20 February 1986 23 April 1996 Launch pad LC-200/39, and LC-81/23, Baikonur Cosmodrome LC-39A, Kennedy Space Center Reentry 23 March 2001 05:59 UTC Mass 129,700 kg (285,940 lbs) Length 19m (62.3ft) from the core module to Kvant-1 Width 31m (101.7ft) from Priroda to the docking module Height 27.5m (90.2ft) from Kvant-2 to Spektr Pressurised volume 350 m Atmospheric pressure c.101.3kPa (29.91inHg, 1 atm) Perigee 354km (189nmi) AMSL Apogee 374km (216nmi) AMSL Orbital inclination 51.6 degrees Average speed 7,700m/s (27,700km/h, 17,200mph) Orbital period 91.9 minutes Orbits per day 15.7 Days in orbit 5,519 days Days occupied 4,592 days Number of orbits 86,331 Statistics as of 23 March 2001 (unless noted otherwise) References: [1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12] Configuration Station elements as of May 1996.

Mir (Russian: , IPA:[mir]; lit.Peace or World) was a space station that operated in low Earth orbit from 1986 to 2001, owned by the Soviet Union and later by Russia. Mir was the first modular space station and was assembled in orbit from 1986to1996. It had a greater mass than that of any previous spacecraft. Until 21 March 2001 it was the largest satellite in orbit, succeeded by the International Space Station after Mir’s orbit decayed. The station served as a microgravity research laboratory in which crews conducted experiments in biology, human biology, physics, astronomy, meteorology and spacecraft systems with a goal of developing technologies required for permanent occupation of space.

Mir was the first continuously inhabited long-term research station in orbit and set the record for the longest continuous human presence in space at 3,644 days until 23 October 2010 when it was surpassed by the ISS.[13] It holds the record for the longest single human spaceflight, with Valeri Polyakov spending 437 days and 18 hours on the station between 1994 and 1995. Mir was occupied for a total of twelve and a half years out of its fifteen-year lifespan, having the capacity to support a resident crew of three, or larger crews for short term visits.

Following the success of the Salyut programme, Mir represented the next stage in the Soviet Union’s space station programme. The first module of the station, known as the core module or base block, was launched in 1986, and followed by six further modules. Proton rockets were used to launch all of its components except for the docking module, which was installed by space shuttle mission STS-74 in 1995. When complete, the station consisted of seven pressurised modules and several unpressurised components. Power was provided by several photovoltaic arrays attached directly to the modules. The station was maintained at an orbit between 296km (184mi) and 421km (262mi) altitude and traveled at an average speed of 27,700km/h (17,200mph), completing 15.7 orbits per day.[6][7][8]

The station was launched as part of the Soviet Union’s manned spaceflight programme effort to maintain a long-term research outpost in space, and, following the collapse of the USSR, was operated by the new Russian Federal Space Agency (RKA). As a result, the vast majority of the station’s crew were Russian; however, through international collaborations such as the Intercosmos, Euromir and Shuttle-Mir programmes, the station was made accessible to astronauts from North America, several European nations and Japan. Mir was deorbited in March 2001 because of a lack of funding. The cost of the Mir programme was estimated by former RKA General Director Yuri Koptev in 2001 as $4.2 billion over its lifetime (including development, assembly and orbital operation).[14]

Mir was authorised in a decree made on 17 February 1976 to design an improved model of the Salyut DOS-17K space stations. Four Salyut space stations had already been launched since 1971, with three more being launched during Mir’s development. It was planned that the station’s core module (DOS-7 and the backup DOS-8) would be equipped with a total of four docking ports; two at either end of the station as with the Salyut stations, and an additional two ports on either side of a docking sphere at the front of the station to enable further modules to expand the station’s capabilities. By August 1978, this had evolved to the final configuration of one aft port and five ports in a spherical compartment at the forward end of the station.[15]

It was originally planned that the ports would connect to 7.5 tonne modules derived from the Soyuz spacecraft. These modules would have used a Soyuz propulsion module, as in Soyuz and Progress, and the descent and orbital modules would have been replaced with a long laboratory module.[15] However, following a February 1979 governmental resolution, the programme was consolidated with Vladimir Chelomei’s manned Almaz military space station programme. The docking ports were reinforced to accommodate 20tonne (22short tons) space station modules based on the TKS spacecraft. NPO Energia was responsible for the overall space station, with work subcontracted to KB Salyut, due to ongoing work on the Energia rocket and Salyut 7, Soyuz-T, and Progress spacecraft. KB Salyut began work in 1979, and drawings were released in 1982 and 1983. New systems incorporated into the station included the Salyut 5B digital flight control computer and gyrodyne flywheels (taken from Almaz), Kurs automatic rendezvous system, Luch satellite communications system, Elektron oxygen generators, and Vozdukh carbon dioxide scrubbers.[15]

By early 1984, work on Mir had ground to a halt while all resources were being put into the Buran programme in order to prepare the Buran spacecraft for flight testing. Funding resumed in early 1984 when Valentin Glushko was ordered by the Central Committee’s Secretary for Space and Defence to orbit Mir by early 1986, in time for the 27th Communist Party Congress.[15]

It was clear that the planned processing flow could not be followed and still meet the 1986 launch date. It was decided on Cosmonaut’s Day (12 April) 1985 to ship the flight model of the base block to the Baikonur cosmodrome and conduct the systems testing and integration there. The module arrived at the launch site on 6 May, with 1100 of 2500 cables requiring rework based on the results of tests to the ground test model at Khrunichev. In October, the base block was rolled outside its cleanroom to carry out communications tests. The first launch attempt on 16 February 1986 was scrubbed when the spacecraft communications failed, but the second launch attempt, on 19 February 1986 at 21:28:23 UTC, was successful, meeting the political deadline.[15]

The orbital assembly of Mir began in February 1986 with the launch of the core module on a Proton-K rocket. Four of the six modules which were later added (Kvant-2 in 1989, Kristall in 1990, Spektr in 1995 and Priroda in 1996) followed the same sequence to add themselves to the main Mir complex. Firstly, the module would be launched independently on its own Proton-K and chase the station automatically. It would then dock to the forward docking port on the core module’s docking node, then extend its Lyappa arm to mate with a fixture on the node’s exterior. The arm would then lift the module away from the forward docking port and rotate it on to the radial port that the module was to mate with, before lowering it down to dock. The node was equipped with only two Konus drogues, however, which were required for dockings. This meant that, prior to the arrival of each new module, the node would have to be depressurised to allow spacewalking cosmonauts to manually relocate the drogue to the next port to be occupied.[6][17]

See the original post:
Mir – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Posted in Space Station | Comments Off on Mir – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

How Shostakovichs The Bolt changed ballet history

Posted: December 31, 2014 at 2:40 pm

Vividly energetic designs influenced by constructivism costume/design workshop for The Bolt, 1931.

. Photograph: Grad and St Petersburg State Museum of Theatre and Music

In Soviet Russia in 1930, the cultural energies of the revolution the jazz, the constructivist art, the Meyerhold experiments in theatre were still alive and bubbling. But Stalin was already turning revolution into a brutal state orthodoxy. With the launch of his 1928 five-year plan, and its attendant political persecutions, artists found themselves in serious danger if they were considered to have fallen foul of the official cultural line.

One early victim of these hardening times was The Bolt, a 1931 ballet with designs by Tatiana Bruni, music by Dmitri Shostakovich and choreography by Fedor Lopukhov. Its currently the subject of an exhibition at Londons Gallery of Russian Art and Design, which showcases a fabulously intact collection of Brunis costume designs and even a few of the actual costumes.

The designs have a vivid energy. Theres the clear influence of constructivism and Soviet poster art in their bright blocks of colour, their vibrant patterns and geometric lines, but also a dash of futurism and even a possible reference to Parade (the 1917 cubist ballet designed by Picasso) in the comically stereotyping costumes worn by dancers representing the American and Japanese navies.

That mix, however, was already too avant-garde for a state rapidly embracing the ersatz traditionalism of socialist realism, and the ballet as a whole was too playful. Despite its seemingly impeccable narrative of industrial espionage being routed by heroic factory workers, its creators were too tempted to have fun with their cast of baddies (the Lazy Idler, the Petty Bourgeois Woman, and the decadent, western types satirised by the local amateur theatre troupe). They were too obviously bored by the decent workers, the earnest members of the local Komsomol group the young communist league.

The Bolt was judged to have shown a dangerous levity in the handling of serious issues; Shostakovichs flippant score veered too close to western dance music, and the innovative wit of Lopukhovs choreography was condemned as grotesque. One critic complained about the dancification of industrial processes, while the chorus of Red Army cavalry, sitting astride a line of chairs, was considered an outrageous mockery.

The ballet was banned after just one performance, and Lopukhov was sacked from his position as artistic director of the Mariinsky or the Leningrad State Academic Ballet as it was then called. Yet, as precarious as this ballet had proved, in 1935 Lopukhov and Shostakovich attempted one more collaboration a comedy set on a collective farm. The Bright Stream was acclaimed at its early performances at the Maly theatre in Leningrad, but when it transferred to Moscow it came under the close scrutiny of Stalins cultural police. After Pravda denounced the work as ballet falsehood, the librettist Adrian Piotrovsky was sent to the gulag, and a fearful Shostakovich cancelled the premiere of his newly composed Symphony No 4.

Lopukhov, whod been in line for directorship of the Bolshoi, had to remove himself fast, and spent the next eight years as an itinerant ballet master, travelling as far away as Tashkent. Even though he was briefly back in charge of the Mariinsky (by now the Kirov Ballet) during the war years, and was kept on in the company as a teacher, his choreographic career was essentially over.

One of the great questioning talents of the Soviet ballet was thus more or less relegated to a footnote in history, and much of his choreography was lost including these two offending ballets, although theyve been recently and very successfully re-created by Alexei Ratmansky for the Bolshoi ballet.

View post:
How Shostakovichs The Bolt changed ballet history

Posted in Futurism | Comments Off on How Shostakovichs The Bolt changed ballet history

Can NASA's Orion program reinvigorate human spaceflight? (+video)

Posted: December 21, 2014 at 3:40 pm

Rising on a tongue of flame and easing to a gentle splashdown in the Pacific Ocean nearly 4-1/2 hours later, the National Aeronautics and Space Administrations newest spaceship for human exploration made its debut earlier this month in a virtually flawless initial test flight.

Dubbed Orion, the craft has been hailed as NASAs first step toward putting humans on Mars by the 2030s. Indeed, its purpose is to reinvigorate the agencys human spaceflight program in the post-shuttle era.

But look deeper at Orions potential path to Mars, and the assumptions surrounding it, and the way ahead appears to be littered with question marks.

What will Orion do before then? Will it make enough flights to justify the program? Are NASA budgets big enough to develop the technologies needed for interim missions, let alone realistically fund a trip to Mars? In a time of fiscal austerity, will subsequent presidents and Congresses even want to make that commitment?

Since the last American set boots on the moon in 1972, politicians and NASA officials have struggled with a stubborn question: What now? The money needed to send humans to intriguing places beyond low-Earth orbit is, well, astronomical. The fall of the Soviet Union made it harder politically to justify such big budgets for human spaceflight.

Orion and its goal of a journey to Mars give NASA a fresh start. And the agency is already applying lessons learned from the recent past, looping in other countries to help pick up the tab for the spacecraft.

But the question remains: Can NASA execute a human space-exploration program on tight budgets? With Mars rovers and probes sent to the outer solar system, NASA has worked wonders with its unmanned missions. In many ways, Orion and the journey to Mars represent a test of whether the agency can do the same with its manned-exploration program.

On the plus side, Americas astronaut corps appears to be excited again.

I think youd be hard-pressed to find an astronaut past, present, or future who wouldnt love to fly in Orion, said Rex Walheim, a space shuttle mission specialist and an astronaut liaison to the team building the craft, following the Dec. 5 test flight. This is the true exploration that we live for.

But NASAs current plans for human exploration of space could span six presidential elections and a dozen sessions of Congress. How solid or consistent will Washingtons willingness to send astronauts on deep-space exploration missions be?

Read more:
Can NASA's Orion program reinvigorate human spaceflight? (+video)

Posted in Post Human | Comments Off on Can NASA's Orion program reinvigorate human spaceflight? (+video)

Russia considers building its own space station to rival ISS: report

Posted: December 16, 2014 at 5:46 am

Russian state space agency Roscosmos is considering building its own space station, RIA news agency quoted its chief as saying on Monday, underlining how international tensions are affecting space co-operation.

Such a project would rival the International Space Station, an orbiting laboratory that involves 15 nations including Russia and the United States. Moscow has cast doubt on the ISSs long-term future as ties with Washington plummet over Ukraine.

I confirm we are considering such an option. This is a possible direction of development, RIA quoted Roscosmos head Oleg Ostapenko as saying when asked about whether Russia has plans to develop it own space station.

He said such a space station could become a key part of Russian missions to the moon.

It is not clear how such a project would be financed as Russia is widely expected to enter recession next year and the economic crisis is aggravated by Western sanctions over Russias policy in the Ukraine crisis.

Washington wants to keep the $100-billion ISS in use until at least 2024, four years beyond the previous target. But a Russian government official said in May that Moscow would reject Washingtons request to prolong its operations.

The Russian space station Mir, launched by the Soviet Union in 1986, operated until 2001 and President Vladimir Putin is now seeking to reform Russias once-pioneering space industry after years of budget cuts and a brain drain that led to a series of embarrassing and costly failed launches in recent years.

Read the original:
Russia considers building its own space station to rival ISS: report

Posted in Space Station | Comments Off on Russia considers building its own space station to rival ISS: report