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May 4, 2024

Daily Current Affairs- PCS (J) Pre-2024

China’s Shenzhou-18 crew launches to Tiangong space station
• China’s Shenzhou-18 mission has sent three astronauts to the Tiangong space station for a six-month stint, focusing on scientific research and space station maintenance.
• In the latest progress of China’s space program, the Shenzhou-18 mission successfully launched a three-man crew aboard the Shenzhou-18 spacecraft. The mission is aimed at the Tiangong Space Station, another milestone in China’s ambitious space exploration efforts.

Mission Details:
• The Shenzhou-18 spacecraft, dubbed the “Celestial Ship,” lifted off atop a Long March-2F rocket from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center.
• After reaching orbit, the spacecraft will conduct an automated rendezvous to dock with the Tiangong Space Station, located approximately 400 km above Earth.

Objective of Shenzhou-18 Mission:
• Upon arrival at the Tiangong space station, the Shenzhou-18 crew will join astronauts from the Shenzhou-17 mission, which have been at the station since October.
• The primary responsibilities of the Shenzhou-18 crew during their six-month tenure include scientific experiments, spacewalks, and routine maintenance of the space station.
• China’s broader space exploration goals aim to send astronauts to the Moon by 2030, with significant progress in developing key elements for crewed lunar missions.

Sunita Williams set to pilot Starliner spacecraft to ISS.
• Sunita Williams, a veteran Indian American astronaut, is preparing for her third space mission aboard the International Space Station (ISS).
• She will be piloting Boeing’s Starliner spacecraft on its inaugural crewed flight, known as the Crew Flight Test (CFT) mission, scheduled for launch on May 6, 2024.

Mission Details:

• Launch date: May 6, 2024, at 10:34 PM EDT
• Launch vehicle: United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket
• Launch site: Space Launch Complex-41, Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Florida
• Crew: Sunita Williams (pilot) and Barry “Butch” Wilmore (commander)
• Mission duration: Approximately 9 days (docking at ISS on May 8, return to Earth around May 15).

Significance:
• First crewed flight for Boeing’s Starliner spacecraft under NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.
• Test of end-to-end capabilities of the Starliner system, including launch, docking, and return to Earth.
• Marks a major milestone in providing NASA with a reliable, redundant system for ferrying astronauts to the ISS.
• Successful mission paves the way for regular Starliner crew rotations starting in 2025, alternating with SpaceX’s Crew Dragon.

NASA’s Commercial Crew Program:
• stablished in 2010 to develop private spacecraft capable of carrying astronauts to and from the ISS
• Contracts awarded to SpaceX ($2.6 billion) and Boeing ($4.2 billion) in 2014
• Aims to end U.S. reliance on Russia’s Soyuz spacecraft and resume launching American astronauts from U.S. soil
• SpaceX’s Crew Dragon has been operational since May 2020, carrying 50 astronauts, cosmonauts, and civilians to orbit in 12 missions
• With Sunita Williams at the helm, the Starliner spacecraft is poised to become a vital component in maintaining a continuous human presence on the International Space Station.
Former all-rounder Yuvraj Singh appointed brand ambassador for Men’s T20 World Cup 2024

Former Indian cricket team all-rounder Yuvraj Singh has been appointed as the brand ambassador for the Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 by the International Cricket Council (ICC).

Key points :
• Yuvraj Singh expressed his happiness and honor on being chosen as the brand ambassador and recalled the memorable moments of the T20 World Cup, especially his historic achievement of hitting six sixes.
• Additionally, cricket legends Chris Gayle and Usain Bolt have also been appointed as ambassadors of the tournament, which aims to generate excitement among the fans.
• 20 teams will participate in the Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 and a total of 55 matches will be held at 9 venues.
• The final match will be held in Barbados on June 29, and the tournament will begin with the match between the United States and Canada.

ICC Men’s T20 World Cup:
The ICC Men’s T20 World Cup is a Twenty20 international cricket tournament, organized by the International Cricket Council (ICC) since 2007. This event is generally held every two years. This tournament organized by ICC currently consists of 16 teams.
The inaugural T20 World Cup tournament was held in South Africa in 2007, with India defeating Pakistan in the final at the Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg.


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