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Messages - adroth

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2
Space / SpaceX Starship Booster 4
« on: Today at 08:29:05 AM »
TBA

3
U.S. Secretary of Defense Welcomes Recall of VFA Abrogation, Reinforces Strong U.S.-Philippine Alliance During Manila Visit

https://ph.usembassy.gov/us-secretary-of-defense-welcomes-recall-of-vfa-abrogation-reinforces-strong-us-philippine-alliance-during-manila-visit/

Manila, July 31, 2021 — On July 29 and 30, U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin III visited the Philippines for the first time as Defense Secretary to reaffirm the strong and enduring U.S.-Philippine alliance as the two sides celebrate 75 years of diplomatic relations and the 70th anniversary of the Mutual Defense Treaty.

While in Manila, Secretary Austin and U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires John Law met with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, Secretary of National Defense Delfin Lorenzana, and Secretary of Foreign Affairs Teodoro Locsin, Jr., emphasizing the centrality of the broad-based U.S.-Philippine partnership within the Indo-Pacific region.   

Following their meeting, Secretary Lorenzana announced President Duterte’s decision to recall the abrogation of the Visiting Forces Agreement.  “A strong, resilient U.S.-Philippine alliance will remain vital to the security, stability, and prosperity of the Indo-Pacific.  A fully restored VFA will help us achieve that goal together,” said Secretary Austin.

During his engagements, Secretary Austin expressed his condolences to the families of the victims of the July 4 C-130 airplane crash, and discussed further strengthening bilateral security ties, supporting Philippine rights in the South China Sea, and U.S. vaccine assistance to the Philippines.

On July 30, Secretary Austin observed the signing of a U.S.-Philippine agreement enhancing mutual cooperation in aeronautical and maritime search and rescue operations.

During his two-day trip, Secretary Austin also visited the American Battle Monuments Commission Manila American Cemetery, where he laid a wreath to honor the more than 17,000 fallen U.S. and Filipino soldiers buried there, and toured the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Manila Outpatient Clinic, meeting with U.S. and Filipino military veterans receiving healthcare services. 

The Philippines was the final stop in a three-country Indo-Pacific trip, following Secretary Austin’s visits to Singapore and Vietnam, where he engaged with Southeast Asian partners to underscore the enduring U.S. commitment to ASEAN and a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

4
https://twitter.com/BoeingSpace/status/1422574713176481795

We're standing down from today's #Starliner Orbital Flight Test-2 launch.

During pre-launch preparations, our engineers detected unexpected valve position indications in the propulsion system.

5
Duterte keeps VFA after getting ‘clarity’ on US commitment to defense treaty
Published July 30, 2021, 12:04 PM

by Genalyn Kabiling

https://mb.com.ph/2021/07/30/duterte-keeps-vfa-after-getting-clarity-on-us-commitment-to-defense-treaty/

The Philippines’ military alliance with the United States remained intact after President Duterte reconsidered an earlier decision to scrap the visiting forces agreement (VFA) on the final year of his presidency.

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque explained that the President’s decision to keep the VFA was reached after getting the US commitment to regard the Philippines as a “sovereign equal” and reaffirm its obligation under the 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT).

< Edited >

6
https://www.facebook.com/ulalaunch/posts/10158936475550379

The countdown has started for today's liftoff of the Atlas V rocket and Boeing’s Starliner on OFT-2 to the International Space Station.
Launch time is 1:20 p.m. EDT, and the live webcast will begin at 12:30 p.m. EDT.

7
General Discussion / Re: Olympic boxing: Nesthy Petecio
« on: August 03, 2021, 01:23:08 PM »
Petecio bags silver in Olympic boxing
By Frederick Nasiad
August 3, 2021

https://www.manilatimes.net/2021/08/03/news/petecio-bags-silver-in-olympic-boxing/1809522

Nesthy Petecio fought gallantly in the women's featherweight Olympic boxing gold medal match but was outpointed by hometown favorite Sena Irie, 5-0, on Tuesday at the Kokugikan Arena in Tokyo, Japan.

Petecio trailed on the scorecards early in the bout as the five judges gave the first round to Irie.

The fighter from Sta. Cruz, Davao del Sur, however, turned on the heat in the second round as she hit her Japanese foe with solid combinations.

< Edited >

8
General Discussion / Olympic boxing: Carlo Paalam
« on: August 03, 2021, 01:20:21 PM »
Paalam gives Philippines 4th medal in Tokyo Olympics
By Niel Victor C. Masoy
August 3, 2021

https://www.manilatimes.net/2021/08/03/latest-stories/paalam-gives-philippines-4th-medal-in-tokyo-olympics/1809518

Carlo Paalam stunned 2016 Olympic champion Shakhobidin Zoirov of Uzbekistan via majority decision to enter the semifinals and secure the Philippines its first-ever 4-medal finish in the Olympics on Tuesday in the men's flyweight quarterfinals at the Tokyo Olympics at the Kokugikan Arena.

Four judges scored 20-18 in favor of Paalam, while the other judge scored a 19-19 tie for the boxers when the bout was stopped with 1:44 left in the second round due to cuts on both fighters caused by bumping of heads.

But even before the stoppage, Paalam showed the judges that he has the upperhand in the fight, as he hit Zoirov with clean shots in the first round.

< Edited >

9
Discussions about all nations and places / Re: T-50TH for Thailand
« on: August 03, 2021, 02:42:41 AM »
Thailand signs $78 mln deal to purchase two more T-50 trainers from KAI
Lim Chang-won Reporter
Posted : 2021-08-02 11:40:55

https://m.ajudaily.com/view/20210802112346759

SEOUL -- South Korea's sole aircraft maker has secured a new deal worth $78 million to deliver two more T-50 military trainers by the end of November 2023 to Thailand. The contract comes on the heels of efforts by Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) to sell its trainer to Malaysia and other countries in Africa and South America.

< Edited >

10
Thailand signs $78 mln deal to purchase two more T-50 trainers from KAI
Lim Chang-won Reporter
Posted : 2021-08-02 11:40:55

https://m.ajudaily.com/view/20210802112346759

SEOUL -- South Korea's sole aircraft maker has secured a new deal worth $78 million to deliver two more T-50 military trainers by the end of November 2023 to Thailand. The contract comes on the heels of efforts by Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) to sell its trainer to Malaysia and other countries in Africa and South America.

< Edited >

11
General Discussion / Re: Olympic boxing: Eumir Marcial
« on: August 01, 2021, 04:23:24 PM »
Pinoy boxer Eumir Marcial umabante sa olympics | TV Patrol
Jul 29, 2021

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GW5tGeRp18o


====

Recording of the fight itself. 1st round TKO

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WMP8zY9eL9c&t=273s

12
General Discussion / Re: Olympic boxing: Nesthy Petecio
« on: August 01, 2021, 08:29:05 AM »
Nesthy Petecio two wins away from Philippines' first Olympic boxing gold
JUL 30, 2021 5:41 PM PHT

DELFIN DIOQUINO

< Edited >

Guaranteed of at least a bronze in Tokyo, Petecio will gun for a finals spot in the women's featherweight class when she tangles with Irma Testa of Italy in the semifinals on Saturday, July 31.

< Edited >

13
NASA Statement on GAO Ruling Regarding Human Landing System Protest
Jul 30, 2021
RELEASE 21-102

https://www.blueorigin.com/blue-moon/national-team

The following is the NASA statement in response to the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) decision released Friday on the human landing system protest:

“NASA was notified Friday, July 30, that the U.S. Government Accountability Office has denied the protests filed by Blue Origin Federation and Dynetics and has upheld the agency’s source selection of SpaceX to continue the development of its human landing system. The decision enables NASA to award the contract that will ultimately result in the first crewed demonstration landing on the surface of the Moon under NASA’s Artemis plan. Importantly, the GAO’s decision will allow NASA and SpaceX to establish a timeline for the first crewed landing on the Moon in more than 50 years.

“NASA recognizes that sending American astronauts back to the Moon for the first time since the Apollo program and establishing a long-term presence on the Moon is a priority for the Biden Administration and is imperative for maintaining American leadership in space. In the face of challenges during the last year, NASA and its partners have made significant achievements to advance Artemis, including a successful hot fire test for the Space Launch System rocket. An uncrewed flight of Artemis I is on track for this year and a crewed Artemis II mission is planned for 2023.

“NASA is moving forward with urgency, but astronaut safety is the priority and the agency will not sacrifice the safety of the crew in the steadfast pursuit of the goal to establish a long-term presence on the Moon.

“As soon as possible, NASA will provide an update on the way ahead for Artemis, the human landing system, and humanity’s return to the Moon. We will continue to work with the Biden Administration and Congress to ensure funding for a robust and sustainable approach for the nation’s return to the Moon in a collaborative effort with U.S. commercial partners.”

14
JUL 26, 2021
Open Letter to Administrator Nelson

https://www.blueorigin.com/news/open-letter-to-administrator-nelson

In an open letter to the NASA Administrator, Jeff Bezos offers to restore competition to the Human Landing System program by closing NASA’s near-term budgetary shortfall and producing a safe and sustainable lander that will return Americans to the surface of the Moon – this time to stay.



The Honorable Bill Nelson
Administrator
National Aeronautics & Space Administration
300 E Street, SW
Washington, DC 20546


Dear Administrator Nelson:

Blue Origin is committed to building a future where millions of people live and work in space to benefit the Earth. We are convinced that, to advance America’s future in space, NASA must now quickly and assuredly return to the Moon. NASA has the opportunity to again inspire a whole new generation of scientists, engineers, and explorers.

This is why Blue Origin answered NASA’s urgent call to develop a Human Landing System. We built the National Team – with four major partners and more than 200 small and medium suppliers in 47 states – to focus on designing, building, and operating a flight system the nation could count on. NASA invested over half a billion dollars in the National Team in 2020-21, and we performed well. The team developed and risk-reduced a safe, mass-efficient design that could achieve a human landing in 2024.

Our approach is designed to be sustainable for repeated lunar missions and, above all, to keep our astronauts safe. We created a 21st-century lunar landing system inspired by the well-characterized Apollo architecture — an architecture with many benefits. One of its important benefits is that it prioritizes safety. As NASA recognized, the National Team’s design offers a “comprehensive approach to aborts and contingencies [that] places a priority on crew safety throughout all mission phases.”

Unlike Apollo, our approach is designed to be sustainable and to grow into permanent, affordable lunar operations. Our lander uses liquid hydrogen for fuel. Not only is hydrogen the highest-performing rocket fuel, but it can also be mined on the Moon. That feature will prove essential for sustained future operations on the Moon and beyond.

From the beginning, we designed our system to be capable of flying on multiple launch vehicles, including Falcon Heavy, SLS, Vulcan, and New Glenn. The value of being able to fly on many different launch vehicles cannot be over-stated. Launch vehicle flexibility is a massive overall risk reduction for both initial and sustaining operations. It decouples any risks associated with launch vehicle stand-downs and ensures competitive launch pricing in perpetuity. Again, NASA recognized this valuable feature when it stated that our design permitted “a launch approach that provides flexibility and minimizes risk. Blue Origin’s initial HLS mission requires only three commercial launches. This very low number...lowers the risk of mission failure due to launch anomalies. This risk is further reduced by the fact that Blue’s HLS elements are capable of interfacing with multiple commercial launch vehicles (CLVs), leaving Blue Origin with near-term options regarding choice of launch vehicle.”

Yet, in spite of these benefits and at the last minute, the Source Selection Official veered from the Agency’s oft-stated procurement strategy. Instead of investing in two competing lunar landers as originally intended, the Agency chose to confer a multi-year, multi-billion-dollar head start to SpaceX. That decision broke the mold of NASA’s successful commercial space programs by putting an end to meaningful competition for years to come. It also eliminated the benefits of utilizing the broad and capable supply base of the National Team (as opposed to funding the vertically-integrated SpaceX approach) and locks every trip to the Moon into 10+ Super Heavy/Starship launches just to get a single lander to the surface. By the Agency’s own admission, it bets our return to the Moon on a single solution of “immense complexity and heightened risk associated with the very high number of events necessary to execute the front end [with] risk of operational schedule delays.”

Instead of this single source approach, NASA should embrace its original strategy of competition. Competition will prevent any single source from having insurmountable leverage over NASA. Without competition, a short time into the contract, NASA will find itself with limited options as it attempts to negotiate missed deadlines, design changes, and cost overruns.  Without competition, NASA’s short-term and long-term lunar ambitions will be delayed, will ultimately cost more, and won’t serve the national interest.

In the past few weeks, the shortfalls of this single source selection have been recognized, and NASA has begun to solicit new lunar lander proposals. But, unfortunately, this new approach won’t create true competition because it is rushed, it is unfunded, and it provides a multi-year head-start to the one funded, single-source supplier. The Appendix N and LETS solicitations are just optical substitutes for the real competition that a second, simultaneous dissimilar lander development will provide. The Agency must act now to create the real competition it needs, and it should not repeat work already delivered and investments already made.

In April (prior to your confirmation as NASA administrator), only one HLS bidder, SpaceX, was offered the opportunity to revise their price and funding profile, leading to their selection. Blue Origin was not offered the same opportunity. That was a mistake, it was unusual, and it was a missed opportunity. But it is not too late to remedy. We stand ready to help NASA moderate its technical risks and solve its budgetary constraints and put the Artemis Program back on a more competitive, credible, and sustainable path. Our Appendix H HLS contract is still open and can be amended.

With that in mind and on behalf of the National Team, we formally offer the following for your consideration:

  • Blue Origin will bridge the HLS budgetary funding shortfall by waiving all payments in the current and next two government fiscal years up to $2B to get the program back on track right now. This offer is not a deferral, but is an outright and permanent waiver of those payments. This offer provides time for government appropriation actions to catch up.
  • Blue Origin will, at its own cost, contribute the development and launch of a pathfinder mission to low-Earth orbit of the lunar descent element to further retire development and schedule risks. This pathfinder mission is offered in addition to the baseline plan of performing a precursor uncrewed landing mission prior to risking any astronauts to the Moon. This contribution to the program is above and beyond the over $1B of corporate contribution cited in our Option A proposal that funds items such as our privately developed BE-7 lunar lander engine and indefinite storage of liquid hydrogen in space. All of these contributions are in addition to the $2B waiver of payments referenced above.
  • Finally, Blue Origin will accept a firm, fixed-priced contract for this work, cover any system development cost overruns, and shield NASA from partner cost escalation concerns.

I believe this mission is important. I am honored to offer these contributions and am grateful to be in a financial position to be able to do so. NASA veered from its original dual-source acquisition strategy due to perceived near-term budgetary issues, and this offer removes that obstacle.

If NASA has different ideas about what would best facilitate getting back to true competition now, we are ready and willing to discuss them.

We have seen that there is strong, bi-partisan Congressional support for a second lander and for the Artemis Program in general. Along with that support, we believe this offer provides a strong foundation, both technically and fiscally, for the return of Americans to the Moon – this time to stay.

The National Team stands ready. All NASA needs to do is take advantage of this offer and amend the Appendix H contract we hold today.

Sincerely and with great respect,


15
Space / Re: NASA Picks SpaceX for Artemis Human Lunar Lander Development
« on: August 01, 2021, 05:52:02 AM »
NASA Statement on GAO Ruling Regarding Human Landing System Protest
Jul 30, 2021
RELEASE 21-102

https://www.blueorigin.com/blue-moon/national-team

The following is the NASA statement in response to the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) decision released Friday on the human landing system protest:

“NASA was notified Friday, July 30, that the U.S. Government Accountability Office has denied the protests filed by Blue Origin Federation and Dynetics and has upheld the agency’s source selection of SpaceX to continue the development of its human landing system. The decision enables NASA to award the contract that will ultimately result in the first crewed demonstration landing on the surface of the Moon under NASA’s Artemis plan. Importantly, the GAO’s decision will allow NASA and SpaceX to establish a timeline for the first crewed landing on the Moon in more than 50 years.

“NASA recognizes that sending American astronauts back to the Moon for the first time since the Apollo program and establishing a long-term presence on the Moon is a priority for the Biden Administration and is imperative for maintaining American leadership in space. In the face of challenges during the last year, NASA and its partners have made significant achievements to advance Artemis, including a successful hot fire test for the Space Launch System rocket. An uncrewed flight of Artemis I is on track for this year and a crewed Artemis II mission is planned for 2023.

“NASA is moving forward with urgency, but astronaut safety is the priority and the agency will not sacrifice the safety of the crew in the steadfast pursuit of the goal to establish a long-term presence on the Moon.

“As soon as possible, NASA will provide an update on the way ahead for Artemis, the human landing system, and humanity’s return to the Moon. We will continue to work with the Biden Administration and Congress to ensure funding for a robust and sustainable approach for the nation’s return to the Moon in a collaborative effort with U.S. commercial partners.”

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