Sunday, 3 July 2016

Tennis: Novak Djokovic stunned in early Wimbledon exit

Novak Djokovic admits he may not play again until the Olympics after having his grand slam hopes sensationally scuppered with a shock third-round exit from Wimbledon.
Big-serving American Sam Querrey sent the all-conquering world No.1 crashing out of the championships with a stunning 7-6 (8-6) 6-1 3-6 7-6 (7-5) victory that blew the men's draw wide open.
Already the first man to hold all four major trophies, Djokovic had been bidding to become the first since Rod Laver in 1969 to complete a calendar-year grand slam sweep.
But the 29-year-old was unable to claw back the two-set deficit he slept on after rain forced the suspension of play on Friday with Djokovic's title defence on tenterhooks.
Querrey's earth-moving triumph ended Djokovic's open-era record 30-match winning streak at the slams and consigned the Serb to his earliest departure from a major since the 2009 French Open. "It's disappointing, of course, losing at a grand slam hurts more than any other tournament. There is no doubt about that," Djokovic said.



"Congratulation to Sam. He played a terrific match. "He serves very well, as he usually does. That part of his game was brutal today. He just overpowered me. He was aggressive and it paid off."
 The top-seeded three-time champion had also been striving to become the first player since American Don Budge in 1938 to win five consecutive grand slam titles.

But after quickly taking the third set upon the resumption of play on Saturday, Djokovic was unable to force a decider despite serving for the fourth set at 5-4. He put a forehand volley into the net to allow Querrey to break back before the 28th seed safely held serve for 6-5.

One game away from victory, Querrey had to endure another nerve-wracking hour-long rain delay before taking the tiebreaker to secure a famous victory after two hours and 58 minutes.
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"Incredible," said Querrey as he basked in the glory of the biggest win of his career. "Especially to do it here at Wimbledon, the biggest tournament in the world. I'm so ecstatic."

The stunning result presents a huge opportunity for seven-times champion Roger Federer and other leading seeds Kei Nishikori, Milos Raonic, Marin Cilic, David Goffin and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to make the final.

While Querrey, a former Queen's Club champion on London grass, can look forward to a Monday meeting with unseeded Frenchman Nicolas Mahut for a place in the quarter-finals, Djokovic said he may not return to the court until next month's Rio Games.

"It's been a very successful year so far, but very long one, exhausting one, in every sense of that word. I just need some rest," he said, adding he wasn't 100 per cent healthy against Querrey.

"But it's not the place and time to talk about it.

"I believe in positive things in life. I managed to win four grand slams in a row - two different seasons, though.

"I want to try to focus on that rather than on failure."

Nishikori dispatched Andrey Kuznetsov 7-5 6-3 7-5 to set up a 2014 US Open final rematch with Cilic, who also progressed in straight sets, 6-3 6-3 6-4, over Lukas Lacko.


On the other side of the draw, second-seeded local hope Andy Murray assumed title favouritism with a 6-3 7-5 6-2 victory over Australian John Millman. Nick Kyrgios will play Spanish No.22 seed Feliciano Lopez later on Saturday for a last-16 crack at Murray on Monday.

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Long March 7 should end up playing a large role in the construction of a 60-ton space station that China wants to be operational by 2022

          China is now one of the precious few countries that knows how to refuel satellites in space. The nation's Tianyuan-1 system (launched aboard the Long March 7) has successfully topped up at least one satellite in orbit. Officials aren't describing the process beyond likening it to that for airplanes, but the result is clear: the refueling should help satellites stay in orbit for longer, or make adjustments that would otherwise be impractical.
           Refuelling systems could become a non-event in a few years thanks to robotic spacecraft. However, there's a strong incentive to get this technology into space as quickly as possible. If you can keep a satellite in orbit for even a year or two longer, you can save massive amounts of money by reducing the number of vehicles you need to deploy. The move could also help with the fight against space junk by slowing the proliferation of dead or useless satellites. The ultimate goal is to completely avoid fuel in the first place, but efforts like China's represent an important first step.
          China successfully launched a new rocket and a prototype next-generation crew capsule Saturday (June 25) in the first-ever liftoff from the nation's new launch center.The Long March 7 rocket — which China developed in part to help build and service a crewed space station that the nation plans to have up and running by the early 2020s — blasted off on its maiden flight from Wenchang Satellite Launch Center at 8 a.m. EDT Saturday (1200 GMT; 8 p.m. local time), Chinese officials said.
                     The uncrewed liftoff aimed to test both the new rocket and the launch facility, which is located on the island of Hainan, off China's southern coast. But there were other objectives as well; the Long March 7 also carried a scaled-down version of a future crew capsule, a satellite-deploying upper stage, and technology demonstrations in space-junk cleanup, satellite refueling and other fields, Chinese officials have said.
                    The prototype capsule made a parachute-aided touchdown and was successfully recovered in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region on Sunday (June 26), according to Chinese media reports.
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            The powerful Long March 7 stands 174 feet (53 meters) tall and weighs 658 tons (597 metric tons) at liftoff, according to the Chinese MannedSpace Engineering (CMSE) office."It is capable of sending 13.5 tons of payloads to low Earth orbit. Using new equipment such as the LOX/Kerosene engine, Long March 7 is a pollution-free launch vehicle and will boost China's space capabilities," CMSE officials wrote in an update after Saturday's launch.
                 The Long March 7 fired its engines for a little over 10 minutes on its maiden flight, entering an elliptical orbit that gets as close as 124 miles (200 kilometers) to Earth, and as far away as 245 miles (394 km), CMSE officials added. (For comparison, the International Space Station circles the planet at an average altitude of about 250 miles, or 400 km.)The Long March 7 should end up playing a large role in the construction of a 60-ton space station that China wants to be operational by 2022, Chinese officials have said.
                "The first mission of Long March 7 achieved the planned goal and opened a new chapter in China's space lab project. Its success laid a solid foundation for the project's upcoming missions," CMSE officials wrote in the update.

Long March 7 should end up playing a large role in the construction of a 60-ton space station that China wants to be operational by 2022

          China is now one of the precious few countries that knows how to refuel satellites in space. The nation's Tianyuan-1 system (launched aboard the Long March 7) has successfully topped up at least one satellite in orbit. Officials aren't describing the process beyond likening it to that for airplanes, but the result is clear: the refueling should help satellites stay in orbit for longer, or make adjustments that would otherwise be impractical.
           Refuelling systems could become a non-event in a few years thanks to robotic spacecraft. However, there's a strong incentive to get this technology into space as quickly as possible. If you can keep a satellite in orbit for even a year or two longer, you can save massive amounts of money by reducing the number of vehicles you need to deploy. The move could also help with the fight against space junk by slowing the proliferation of dead or useless satellites. The ultimate goal is to completely avoid fuel in the first place, but efforts like China's represent an important first step.

China successfully launched a new rocket and a prototype next-generation crew capsule Saturday (June 25) in the first-ever liftoff from the nation's new launch center.
             The Long March 7 rocket — which China developed in part to help build and service a crewed space station that the nation plans to have up and running by the early 2020s — blasted off on its maiden flight from Wenchang Satellite Launch Center at 8 a.m. EDT Saturday (1200 GMT; 8 p.m. local time), Chinese officials said.

                     The uncrewed liftoff aimed to test both the new rocket and the launch facility, which is located on the island of Hainan, off China's southern coast. But there were other objectives as well; the Long March 7 also carried a scaled-down version of a future crew capsule, a satellite-deploying upper stage, and technology demonstrations in space-junk cleanup, satellite refueling and other fields, Chinese officials have said.
                    The prototype capsule made a parachute-aided touchdown and was successfully recovered in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region on Sunday (June 26), according to Chinese media reports.
video
            The powerful Long March 7 stands 174 feet (53 meters) tall and weighs 658 tons (597 metric tons) at liftoff, according to the Chinese MannedSpace Engineering (CMSE) office."It is capable of sending 13.5 tons of payloads to low Earth orbit. Using new equipment such as the LOX/Kerosene engine, Long March 7 is a pollution-free launch vehicle and will boost China's space capabilities," CMSE officials wrote in an update after Saturday's launch.
                 The Long March 7 fired its engines for a little over 10 minutes on its maiden flight, entering an elliptical orbit that gets as close as 124 miles (200 kilometers) to Earth, and as far away as 245 miles (394 km), CMSE officials added. (For comparison, the International Space Station circles the planet at an average altitude of about 250 miles, or 400 km.)The Long March 7 should end up playing a large role in the construction of a 60-ton space station that China wants to be operational by 2022, Chinese officials have said.
                "The first mission of Long March 7 achieved the planned goal and opened a new chapter in China's space lab project. Its success laid a solid foundation for the project's upcoming missions," CMSE officials wrote in the update.