satellites OneWeb and SpaceX almost collided

Спутники Starlink в ночном небе (Patrick Pleul


Two satellites from the fast-growing constellations OneWeb and SpaceX Starlink dodged dangerous convergence with each other in orbit over the weekend, according to representatives of the US Space Force and OneWeb. This is the first known collision avoidance event between two rival companies seeking to create new space broadband networks.

Starlink satellites in the night sky (Patrick Pleul | picture alliance | Getty Images)

Starlink satellites in the night sky (Patrick Pleul | picture alliance | Getty Images)

On March 30, five days after OneWeb launched its next batch of 36 satellites with the help of the Russian Soyuz-2.1b rocket, the company received several “red warnings” from the 18th space control squadron of the US space forces about a possible collision with satellite Starlink. Since the operating altitude of the OneWeb constellation is much higher (about 1200 km from the Earth’s surface), during the launch, the vehicles must pass through the SpaceX Starlink satellite network, which rotate at an altitude of about 550 km.

One warning from the US Space Force pointed to a 1.3% chance of collision, with two satellites approaching 60 meters – dangerously close by the standards of satellites in orbit. If a collision occurs, it could cause disaster: hundreds of debris could damage the following satellites.

A batch of 60 250-kg Starlink Internet satellites (SpaceX)

A batch of 60 250-kg Starlink Internet satellites (SpaceX)

Currently, there is no national or global body that would compel satellite operators to take action in the event of predicted collisions. Following urgent warnings from the U.S. Space Force, the OneWeb and SpaceX Starlink teams had to coordinate satellite maneuvers via email.

In coordination with OneWeb, SpaceX turned off its AI-powered automated collision avoidance system and allowed OneWeb to remove its satellite from the route, OneWeb spokesman Chris McLaughlin said. It was unclear exactly why SpaceX decided to shut down the system – the company is not commenting on this story.

36 ready-to-launch OneWeb satellites (left) and 60 – SpaceX Starlink (OneWeb | SpaceX)

SpaceX’s automated collision avoidance system has previously raised concerns with other satellite operators, who say they have no way of knowing which way the system will move the Starlink satellite in the event of a close encounter. “The problem is in the coordination of actions– says Mr. McLaughlin. – It is not enough to say, “I have an automated system,” because the other party may not have such a system and will not understand what yours is trying to do. “

SpaceX has roughly 1,370 Starlink satellites in orbit and is preparing to launch thousands more, possibly tens of thousands in the future. So far, OneWeb has launched 146 satellites out of approximately 650 that it has planned for a similar global network operating in higher orbits. Jeff Bezos’ Amazon has pledged to join the race and plans to launch more than 3,000 satellites into low Earth orbit. China is also hatching such plans.

One of the satellites of the SpaceX Starlink constellation in orbit around the Earth (SpaceX)

One of the satellites of the SpaceX Starlink constellation in orbit around the Earth (SpaceX)

“This event was a good example of how satellite operators need to be held accountable given the constraints of global best practices, – said the representative of the US Space Force Diana McKissock (Diana McKissock). – They shared their data with each other, contacted, and, I think, in the absence of any global regulation … it was the art of the possible “

By the way, in September 2019, the European Space Agency (ESA) had to use an evasive maneuver on one of its spaceships at the last minute to avoid a possible collision with the Starlink satellite. The collision probability was 1 in 1000. This may seem like a minor threat, but NASA usually sends ships to the ISS with a collision probability of 1 in 100,000. ESA said it had to relocate its satellite because SpaceX did not have an action plan. SpaceX explained that it missed ESA’s emails about this issue due to a “bug” in its communications systems. Overall, it looks like such dangers will become the norm.

The working satellites have thrusters, but some of them fail and cannot be controlled from Earth. They gradually decrease and burn up in the atmosphere, but, while in orbit, they simply turn into a piece of space debris rotating at a tremendous speed. And if there are thousands of them, it may complicate the launch and exploration of outer space in the future.

One of the satellites of the OneWeb constellation in orbit around the Earth (OneWeb)

One of the satellites of the OneWeb constellation in orbit around the Earth (OneWeb)

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Users on average began to spend more than 4 hours a day in mobile applications

Users on average began to spend more than 4 hours a day in mobile applications


The coronavirus pandemic has forced many people to stay at home and has slowed down the pace of life in general. Against this background, users began to spend more time in mobile applications. Over the past two years, the average use time of applications has grown by 30%, and now stands at 4.2 hours per day.

In the first quarter of 2021, in the United States, Turkey, Mexico and India, the daily time spent by users in the app exceeded four hours for the first time. In Brazil, South Korea and Indonesia, people spend on average more than five hours with a smartphone in their hands. The biggest surge was in India, where residents spent 80% more time in apps in the first quarter of this year than two years earlier.

The most popular apps remain TikTok, YouTube, and Facebook. However, judging by the number of app downloads from stores, there has been a recent rise in popularity of the Signal and Telegram messengers, which are known as some of the safest on the market. It is noteworthy that investment and trading applications are gaining popularity. The growing interest in cryptocurrencies has increased the demand for services such as Coinbase, Binance, and Upbit and Kiwoom Securities Hero S in South Korea. All of these applications allow users to trade cryptocurrency.

In Japan, another type of financial product is in the lead. In the Land of the Rising Sun, PayPay has become the most popular application, which allows users to generate QR codes to make payments. Curiously, the list of the most popular apps in China is very different from the preferences of the rest of the world. Among the inhabitants of the Middle Kingdom, the highest demand is for applications in which the emphasis is on video editing and sharing. We are talking about TikTok, Kwai, CapCut and IQIYI.

As for mobile games, casual games have become the most popular. One of the most successful products this quarter was High Heels, created by Istanbul-based Rollic. In it, the character increases the height of his heels, which helps him overcome obstacles. This game became the most popular in the USA and Great Britain, and in Russia it got the sixth line of the rating. Other hits include Project Makeover, DOP 2: Delete One Part, which has become the most popular in Russia, and Phone Case DIY.

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Xiaomi will release the Mi Pad 5 tablet in two versions with different sizes and filling

gizchina.com


Xiaomi has previously announced that it will update the family of branded tablets, giving the devices truly flagship performance. Now the company’s tablet, codenamed K81C, which is based on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 chip, has acquired new details.

gizchina.com

It is reported that the tablet will receive support for fast charging and will boast a display with a high refresh rate. There is also information that the device will be available in two sizes, differing in screen sizes. At the same time, a tablet with a smaller display will be based on the MediaTek Dimensity 1200 chipset.

gizchina.com

Details have emerged about the older Mi Pad 5 Pro, based on the Snapdragon 870 processor. It is rumored that it will boast an 11-inch LCD display with a 2K resolution and a refresh rate of 144 Hz. The polling frequency of the sensor layer will reach 480 Hz. We can assume that Xiaomi will position the device with such parameters as a gaming one. It is also possible that the tablet will be classified as a premium business device, as it is credited with supporting the stylus. Thus, the Mi Pad 5 Pro will be able to compete with the iPad, Huawei MatePad Pro and Samsung Galaxy Tab S7.

It is worth noting that Xiaomi is planning to release a specially adapted MIUI shell for tablets. It is expected to support a desktop interface that includes elements such as the Windows taskbar and Start menu counterparts. Support for multi-window mode is also reported. The launch date of the Mi Pad 5 tablets is still unknown, but it is highly likely that they will be presented in the coming months.

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RAM modules began to rise in price and are not going to stop

RAM modules began to rise in price and are not going to stop


There have been regular reports over the past few months that DRAM prices are expected to rise significantly this year. It seems that this time is steadily approaching, according to the resource PCWorld, whose employees have analyzed how the cost of the 10 most popular memory modules sold on the Amazon platform has changed. It turned out that the price of each of them has an upward trend.

As an example, there is a graph of changes in the cost of a pair of G.Skill TridentZ DDR4 3200 memory modules with a volume of 16 GB each. They appeared on Amazon in 2017 and cost over $ 400. The minimum price for these modules was fixed in the fall of last year, when they could be purchased for less than $ 200. Recently, however, the price has begun to rise again and reached $ 290.

Popular among Amazon buyers, a set of two Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 3200 8 GB modules each cost about $ 170 at the start of sales in 2015, and in 2016 their price fell sharply to $ 75. In 2018, their price skyrocketed to $ 220, but for most of the last year, it did not exceed $ 80. However, in recent months, the cost has increased by almost 30% to $ 103 for a couple of modules.

The same set of two 8 GB Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 3200 modules in Russia, according to Yandex.Market, has only added in price for the last six months and gained almost 50% of its November price.

The source notes that many people tend to buy RAM now, before its price has risen even more. And buyers can hardly expect a stabilization of prices for DRR4 memory modules in the near future. This is primarily due to the fact that the demand for RAM will remain at a high level throughout the year, which is why its shortage will continue to affect the price.

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Super-high-speed single-turn flight scheme to ISS will be tested for the first time in 2022

Фотографии Роскосмоса


Currently, Roskosmos is using several schemes for sending cargo and manned spacecraft to the International Space Station (ISS). And next year another flight program may be introduced.

Photos from Roscosmos

Photos from Roscosmos

Now the fastest is the two-turn circuit. It was under this program that the manned spacecraft Yu.A. Gagarin ”(“ Soyuz MS-18 ”) with the crew of the 65th long-term expedition to the ISS. The flight took approximately 3.5 hours.

It is important to note that the use of a two-turn scheme became possible only with the commissioning of the Soyuz-2.1a launch vehicle, which, according to its technical characteristics and capabilities of the control system, allows spacecraft to be placed into a given orbit with high accuracy. Moreover, to use the two-turn program, preliminary formation of the necessary working orbit of the ISS is required.

The next step will be the implementation of a single-orbit rendezvous scheme with the ISS. In this case, the flight will last only about two hours.

When we are on it [одновитковую схему] will we go out? Probably next year“, – TASS quotes the words of the head of Roscosmos Dmitry Rogozin.

Thus, the first flight of the spacecraft to the ISS according to a single-turn scheme may take place in 2022. First, such a flight program will be tested on the Progress MS cargo vehicle, and then on a manned one.

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Acer will start selling electric scooters in Russia

Acer will start selling electric scooters in Russia


Acer plans to start selling electric scooters under its own brand. Such personal vehicles will appear on the Russian market in the next quarter.

The Kommersant newspaper told about the project. Electric scooters have already been sent to production. It is planned to sell them on the territory of the Russian Federation through Acer branded showrooms and federal retail chains specializing in electronics.

The first batch will amount to several thousand pieces. Acer will offer four models of scooters, the cost of which will range from 40 to 80 thousand rubles. New items will be focused primarily on ordinary buyers, and not on sharing services.

Per-minute rental services remain the largest consumers of electric scooters, but Acer, according to market participants, will have to target a narrower audience already familiar with the brand.“, – says the publication.

According to Yandex.Market estimates, sales of electric scooters soared 144% last year compared to 2019. The M.Video – Eldorado Group notes that the electric transport market in Russia in 2020 amounted to about 2 billion rubles, and three quarters of the vehicles sold were electric scooters.

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An engine demonstrator for advanced orbital aircraft and hypersonic missiles was tested in Russia

Источник изображения: Ростех


As reported on the Rostec website, the United Engine Corporation of Rostec has completed the first stage of testing a demonstrator of a ramjet pulsating detonation engine. Simplicity of design and increased efficiency and thrust promise a qualitative development of Russian rocket and space systems.

Image source: Rostec

Image source: Rostec

During tests in individual modes, the power plant demonstrated an increase in specific thrust up to 50% in comparison with conventional engines. This can be converted into the range and payload of missiles or orbital aircraft by increasing one of these parameters by 30-50%.

“The pulsating detonation engine is a new type of power plant for aviation, – the document says. – It implements a more economical thermodynamic cycle, in contrast to the one used in existing gas turbine engines. In the OKB them. A. Lyulki (a branch of PJSC “UEC-UMPO”) a separate direction for the development of such power plants has been formed. “

The proposed engine can be used on orbital aircraft, supersonic and hypersonic aircraft, and promising rocket and space systems. Thanks to the new engines, the aircraft’s maneuverability will also increase and the flight dynamics will improve. Such engines can be both an addition to and a replacement for traditional engines in air-breathing propulsion systems.

“The simplicity of the design and the relatively low requirements for the values ​​of the gas-dynamic parameters make it possible to apply the technologies developed on the previous generations of engines during its creation. This gives a great commercial and economic advantage in comparison with the developed promising engines of traditional schemes “, – noted the General Designer-Director of the A. Lyulka Design Bureau Evgeny Marchukov.

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GlobalFoundries owners begin preparations for a public offering of shares

Источник изображения: CNET


The management of GlobalFoundries does not hide that it plans to go public by 2022. According to unofficial data, preparations for this step have already begun; as a result of the relevant measures, the company expects to gain at least $ 20 billion.

Image source: CNET

Image source: CNET

This year GlobalFoundries is going to spend $ 1.4 billion on expansion and modernization of production, next year this amount will be doubled. The entire semiconductor industry will not be able to catch up with demand until the end of 2022 or even later. Public offering of shares in such conditions can become a good source of financing for plans to expand production.

As Bloomberg notes, citing its own sources, the owners of GlobalFoundries, represented by the investment company Mubadala Investment from Abu Dhabi, have already begun preparations for the upcoming IPO. It is still at the stage of seeking consultants, so representatives of both companies refrained from commenting on this topic.

Recall that Mubadala became the owner of AMD’s production assets in 2009, at the same time as a result of a deal with the latter of the companies, GlobalFoundries was formed. Arab investors initially actively financed business development by building new factories in the United States and purchasing Chartered Semiconductor assets in Singapore, but later large volumes of capital expenditures began to burden them, and a few years ago the company abandoned the development of 7nm technology, preferring to focus on more mature technologies. … The current management of GlobalFoundries even believes that in the face of a shortage of semiconductors, the company is in an advantageous position, since its enterprises are concentrated in Germany and the United States, and specialization lies in the use of mature lithography. All that remains is to back up these advantages with capital, which the company intends to do through a public offering.



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A software problem turned the first batch of Ford Mustang Mach-E electric vehicles into a brick

A software problem turned the first batch of Ford Mustang Mach-E electric vehicles into a brick


Some owners of the new Ford Mustang Mach-E electric crossovers are facing a particular problem. Their electric cars refuse to run despite a fully charged main battery. As The Verge found out, this is due to the charging mechanism of the 12-volt battery used to power some parts of the car.

Mustang Mach-E is equipped with two batteries: traction lithium with high voltage for powering electric motors, and also 12-volt lead-acid, which is more usual for cars, for powering many systems, such as lighting. A Ford EV keeps its 12-volt battery charged by consuming power from the main battery. According to the owners, the small battery for some reason consumes energy every time the electric car is connected to the network to charge the main battery. Electric vehicle owners in cold climates are particularly affected by this issue, as Ford recommends that they leave their Mustang Mach-E plugged into a charger to warm up before driving.

The 12-volt battery powers nearly all Mach-E systems, so when it is discharged, the vehicle won’t start and the FordPass app tells it to be in deep sleep. Some users have already dubbed this problem “Electric Brick”.

Ford recently filed a maintenance bulletin with the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, confirming that the problem is with the transmission control module software. The company said it only applies to Mustang Mach-E manufactured up to and including February 3rd, which is roughly a few dozen electric vehicles.

Interestingly, owners of defective vehicles cannot receive a software patch wirelessly. To do this, they need to deliver their electric car to an authorized dealer, which in itself may not be very convenient. Ford says it will release a wireless update later this year that may fix the problem. The company says that copies released after February 3rd are not affected by this issue.

Of course, if you need to urgently solve the problem, you can replace the 12-volt battery with a charged one, but this will require a number of actions that are likely to scare off inexperienced vehicle owners. The thing is that the battery is located behind the front trunk, which is locked with a lock, which is powered by the same battery. Therefore, to access the battery, you will have to open the panel in the front bumper and gain access to the wires that allow you to open the cover in a roundabout way. However, access to the battery terminals is impeded by the vehicle design, and some users have to cut the vinyl to get to them.

Of course, Ford offers free roadside assistance to electric vehicle owners, which includes starting the vehicle from a 12-volt battery and the ability to tow the Mustang Mach-E to the dealer.

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10 little-known features of the Google Chrome browser / software

10 little-known features of the Google Chrome browser / software


Google Chrome needs no introduction. For 12 years of development, it not only earned the trust of the network audience and became the most popular browser in the world, but also managed to set new standards for quality, performance, reliability and security in its segment. It is not surprising that a web browser attracts the attention of millions of users, often unaware of its many useful functionalities. Today’s publication is devoted to a brief overview of the latter.

Creation of user profiles and guest mode. Chrome allows you to store each user’s data separately, be it bookmarks, browsing history, passwords and browser settings. This feature can be useful if you share your computer with other people (for example, different family members) or if you have several accounts (for example, personal and for work), access to which needs to be delimited.

Chrome also supports guest mode. When this function is activated, the pages viewed are not saved in the browser history and do not leave any traces on the computer, such as cookies. When you exit this mode, all information about the user’s actions in the browser is automatically deleted. Guest mode may be required when using someone else’s or public PC, for example, in a library or cafe.

An important feature of profiles in Chrome is that they cannot be password protected, and any user can switch between them. That is why it makes sense to create additional accounts in the browser only for trusted persons or for personal purposes. For more reliable protection of user data, it is recommended to use the account and access control tools that are available in all modern operating systems.

Play audio and video files without third-party programs and extensions. With the implementation of support for the HTML5 standard, the Chrome browser has built-in tools for playing multimedia content in MP3, MP4 and WebM formats. To watch video or listen to audio, simply drag and drop the file into the web browser window. The player’s interface is extremely simple and does not require additional explanations. Picture-in-picture mode is supported.

Automatic transcription of audio and video recordings. Thanks to the Live Caption function, Chrome browser can recognize speech in any media content and add subtitles to it in real time. However, so far only in English. This tool can be useful for people with hearing impairments, as well as in cases where the environment is not conducive to listening to something. He can do good service to those who study a foreign language.

Live Caption can be enabled in the browser settings. To do this, go to the “Accessibility” section, switch the “Automatic subtitles” slider and wait for the files necessary for work to be loaded. After that, it remains to restart Chrome and make sure that a switch has appeared in the multimedia content management menu, which is located to the right of the address bar, allowing you to activate speech transcript. In the future, videos or video chats played on the device will be accompanied by subtitles.

Built-in task manager. Google Chrome was designed from the ground up to be a user-friendly, high-performance web application platform that works equally well for both users and developers. It is for this reason that a full-fledged task manager is implemented in Chrome, which allows you to draw on a pencil all processes processed by a web browser. With its help, you can control the amount of system resources consumed by tabs and extensions, monitor browser calls to the Network and the file cache, unload “frozen” processes from memory and solve other tasks that are relevant in a professional environment.

Built-in antivirus. Google Chrome has an impressive arsenal of security tools. In addition to protecting against phishing and potentially dangerous resources, it has a malware scanner. It blocks the download of malicious files with programs that may contain viruses to a computer or mobile device, collect personal user data, change the operating system and browser settings, and force the installation of extensions. Chrome’s built-in antivirus works automatically and periodically scans the device for malicious software. If necessary, the scan can be initiated manually in the browser settings (menu “Reset settings and remove malware”).

Checking the security of saved passwords. With Chrome, you don’t have to worry about the strength of the passwords used when working with network resources. Tools built into the browser allow you to identify compromised user accounts and “weak” passwords that can be easily compromised by intruders. To check the safety of the saved passwords, you need to go to the settings and in the “Autocomplete -> Passwords” menu, click on the “Check passwords” button.

In addition to this, it is recommended that you enable pop-up notifications for revealed passwords. This can be done in the program settings in the section “Privacy and security -> Notify if passwords were disclosed as a result of data leakage”.

Grouping of tabs. This feature is useful for users who interact with a large number of sites. With its help, you can combine tabs into groups, assigning each of them its own color and title (for example, “News”, “Social networks”, etc.). This approach greatly simplifies the work with heterogeneous web content and large amounts of information. To create a new group, just right-click on any tab, select the appropriate option, set a name and select a color scheme. The creation of any number of groups is supported, so that you can distribute and conveniently organize all the tabs open in the browser.

Broadcast tabs, media content and PC screen to TV screen. This opportunity can be used by those who have Set-top box or smart TV with Chromecast technology. You can stream Chrome browser tabs, audio and video files, and computer desktop content. Thus, for example, you can show presentations on a large screen to a wide audience or watch films with your family. For the Chromecast function to work properly and pairing devices, the TV and PC must be connected to the same Wi-Fi network.

Configuring site permissions. Chrome allows you to manage permissions for specific network resources and delete data stored by them. Using this feature is very simple: just go to the desired web page, click on the icon located to the left of the web address and select “Site Settings”.

In the site settings, you can allow or block images, unsafe content, JavaScript, cookies, intrusive advertising banners, sound, pop-ups, notifications. You can control access to the computer’s camera and microphone, geolocation data and the clipboard, as well as other permission settings for selected Internet sites.

Fast forwarding of links, tabs and phone numbers to your smartphone. Thanks to the built-in synchronization tools, Chrome allows you to send various data to your mobile device with one click of the mouse through the context menu. In this case, the latter must also be installed “Chrome” with a similar Google account.

At the end of the review, we note that you can send data to a smartphone or tablet without Chrome installed on a mobile gadget – using QR codes, which can also be created from the browser’s context menu.

Anything to add on the topic of the material? Write in the comments!

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