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SPACEX ROCKET BOOSTER MAKES BREAKTHROUGH LANDING AT SEA
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blasted off from Florida on a NASA cargo run to the International Space Station on Friday, and its reusable main-stage booster landed on an ocean platform minutes later in a dramatic spaceflight first.
The successful autonomous touchdown of the booster at sea marked another milestone for billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk and his privately owned Space Exploration Technologies in the quest to develop a cheap, reusable rocket, expanding his edge in the burgeoning commercial space launch industry.
The liftoff at 4:43 p.m. EDT (2043 GMT) from Cape Canaveral Air Station also marked the resumption of resupply flights by SpaceX for NASA following a launch accident in June 2015 that destroyed an earlier cargo payload for the space station.
About 2-1/2 minutes after Friday’s launch, the main part of the 23-story tall, two-stage SpaceX rocket separated, turned around and headed toward a landing platform floating in the Atlantic about 185 miles (300 km) northeast of Cape Canaveral.
A live video feed broadcast on NASA television showed the rocket booster, its four landing legs extended, descending over the ocean before settling itself upright on the barge-like platform, roughly eight minutes after launch.
IIT-KGP WINS TOP AWARD FOR PATENTS
The IIT-Kharagpur has won an award by the Indian government for being the top academic institute for patents in 2016.
IIT-Kgp director Partha Pratim Chakraborty said they have received a letter from the Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry saying the Institute has been awarded the prize for ‘Top Academic Institute for Patents 2016’.
The Indian Intellectual property office confers national intellectual property awards on outstanding innovators, organisations and companies in the fields of patents, designs, trademarks, and geographical indications on the occasion of World IP Day every year. The National IP Award carries an amount of Rs.1,00,000, a citation and a memento. To simplify the process of patent filing by students as well as professors who have done some substantial research within the institute, the IIT has been running an IP Portal.
A FIRST: U.N. TO OBSERVE AMBEDKAR’S BIRTH ANNIVERSARY
The birth anniversary of B.R. Ambedkar, the architect of the Indian Constitution and Dalit rights activist, would be observed at the United Nations for the first time with focus on combating inequalities to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The Permanent Mission of India to the U.N. in association with the Kalpana Saroj Foundation and Foundation For Human Horizon will commemorate the 125th birth anniversary of the Dalit icon on April 13 at the U.N. headquarters here, a day before his birthday.
‘N. KOREA TESTS ENGINE FOR MISSILE THAT CAN TARGET U.S.’
North Korea said Saturday it had successfully tested an engine designed for an inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM) that would “guarantee” an eventual nuclear strike on the U.S. mainland.
It was the latest in a series of claims by Pyongyang of significant breakthroughs in both its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programmes.
Outside experts have treated a number of the claims with scepticism, suggesting the North Korean leadership is attempting to talk up its achievements ahead of a showcase ruling party congress next month.
According to the North’s official KCNA news agency, the ground engine test was ordered and personally monitored by leader Kim Jong-un.
As soon as Mr. Kim flagged off the test, “the engine spewed out huge flames with deafening boom”, KCNA said.
CONTRACTS WORTH RS. 60,000 CR IN PORTS
The Centre will sanction contracts worth Rs.60,000 crore in ports by May 26, Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Saturday.
The ‘Sagarmala’ project, aimed at promoting port-led development along India’s 7,500 km coast, has been finalised with the views of all stakeholders present in the meeting. “We will soon submit the plan to the Prime Minister who will launch the ‘Sagarmala’ at the Maritime India Summit [to be held between April 14 and 16],” Mr. Gadkari said. The government was hopeful of investments worth Rs.4 lakh crore and one crore jobs under the ‘Sagarmala’ project.