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News briefs: June 7
Posted: Sat, Jun 8, 2002, 12:32 PM ET (1632 GMT)
  • A Proton booster is ready to launch a Russian civil communications satellite early Monday, RIA Novosti reported Friday. The Proton is scheduled to launch from Baikonur at 0114 GMT Monday (9:14 pm EDT Sunday) and place the Express-A1R satellite into orbit. The satellite, built in cooperation with Alcatel, will provide Russian television broadcasts and other communications services.
  • The US military is unlikely to make exclusive purchases of imagery from commercial remote sensing satellite, as it did last year in Afghanistan, Aerospace Daily reported this week. The director of the National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA) said that future purchases would be done on an "extremely limited basis" and only if NIMA and other agencies need the images from commercial satellites like Ikonos and QuickBird. NIMA purchased all the images taken by Ikonos of the Afghanistan region for two months in late 2001 as military action took place there, denying those high-resolution images other potential customers, including the media and foreign governments.
  • The crew of the International Space Station are among the few people missing out on the World Cup, Reuters reported Friday. The article cited an interview published in Itar-Tass with Rosaviakosmos official Viktor Blagov, who said that the ISS crew are not receiving video highlights of World Cup matches, unlike past crews on Mir. Previous reports had indicated that World Cup updates were indeed being passed along to the crew.
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