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Russian Spy Ship Returns to East Coast of U.S.

Feb. 27, 2014: A Russian spy ship Viktor Leonov SSV-175, is seen docked at a Havana port. REUTERS

Russian spy ship that made a foray near a U.S. Navy submarine base in Connecticut in February is once again in international waters off the East Coast of the United States, presumably to monitor activity at American Navy bases.

The Viktor Leonov spy ship is now 50 miles east of the U.S. Navy’s submarine base at Kings Bay, Georgia, according to a defense official. The ship traveled there from a port in Havana, Cuba, where it docked for five days.

The Leonov’s earlier visit off the Eastern Seaboard in mid-February drew international attention although American officials noted at the time that the visits have become a regular occurrence in recent years.

Serena Marshall/ABC News The Russian spy ship Viktor Leonov CCB-175 is parked at a Havana port as the US starts talks Cuba, Jan. 21, 2015.

Serena Marshall/ABC News. The Russian spy ship Viktor Leonov CCB-175 is parked at a Havana port as the US starts talks Cuba, Jan. 21, 2015.

For one day in February the ship was offshore of the U.S. Navy submarine base in New London, Connecticut, the furthest north the Russian intelligence ship had ever traveled up the East Coast of the United States.

Following that brief stop off New England, the Leonov headed south where it spent almost two weeks east of the U.S. Navy base at Norfolk, Virginia. Read the rest of this entry »

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Blood Moon/Supermoon Lunar Eclipse 2015 Live Stream: NASA, Slooh Coverage Online

Tonight’s the night — a rare blood moon total lunar eclipse.

And you can watch it all live, as the supermoon turns blood red tonight during a total lunar eclipse September 2015.

[Find out more about tonight’s supermoon eclipse times here.]

NASA will offer the blood moon (supermoon) lunar eclipse live stream from the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, and you can watch it unfold here.

Others will be live streaming it as well (see the end of this post for links to your favorite blood moon (supermoon) lunar eclipse live streams and feeds.

The supermoon will rise at about 6:30 p.m. CDT across Alabama. (Get moonrise times for other locations throughout the United States here.) The lunar eclipse will begin at 8:07 p.m. CDT (or 9:07 p.m. EDT and 6:07 p.m. PDT).

The total eclipse will last over a hour and begin at 9:11 p.m. CDT (or 10:11 p.m. EDT or 7:11 p.m. PDT)

Not only will there be an eclipse, but the moon will also be about 14 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter than usual — a supermoon.

Supermoons are not not rare. In fact this is the fifth one in 2015 alone. But Sunday’s moon will be the closest to Earth in all of 2015, coming within 221,753 miles of our planet.

Tonight’s supermoon is rare because of its timing with the total lunar eclipse. The last time it happened was in 1982, and the next time it will happen will be in 2033.

This eclipse will also bring about the fourth and final blood moon of a lunar tetrad that began in 2014. (A lunar tetrad is used to describe four total lunar eclipses in a row, separated by six lunar months or six full moons).

So it will be a skywatcher’s extravaganza. But what if the weather doesn’t cooperate?

[Supermoon eclipse weather forecast: Who will get to see it?]

There are many opportunities to view the eclipse online tonight.

The Marshall Space Flight Center plans to offer views of the eclipse from the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles, the Adler Planetarium in Chicago, the Fernbank Observatory in Atlanta and other locations across the United States.

Here are other places to view the eclipse as well: Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] Isn’t the ‘Blood Moon’ Special?

The first of two lunar eclipses visible in the U.S. this year will take place early Saturday morning. NASA explains why the first one is so special.

 


BREAKING: Pentagon Identifies Russian Spy Ship Operating Near U.S.

Feb. 27, 2014: A Russian spy ship Viktor Leonov SSV-175, is seen docked at a Havana port. REUTERS

Feb. 27, 2014: A Russian spy ship Viktor Leonov SSV-175, is seen docked at a Havana port.  REUTERS

“We are aware that the Russian ships Viktor Leonov and Nikolay Chiker are currently operating in waters that are beyond U.S. territorial seas but near Cuba…”

— Lt. Col. Tom Crosson, a Pentagon spokesman

For The Washington Free BeaconBill Gertz reports:  A Russian intelligence-gathering ship has been operating off the U.S. East Coast and near the Gulf of Mexico for the past month, the Pentagon said Thursday.

“We are aware that the Russian ships Viktor Leonov and Nikolay Chiker are currently operating in waters that are beyond U.S. territorial seas but near Cuba,” said Lt. Col. Tom Crosson, a Pentagon spokesman. “We respect the freedom of all nations, as reflected in international law, to operate military vessels beyond the territorial seas of other nations.”

The Leonov is an intelligence gathering ship outfitted with high-tech electronic spying gear. The Chiker is an ocean-going naval tug that has been accompanying the spy ship on its mission. Pentagon officials suspect the ships were part of a spying operation since March against the U.S. nuclear missile submarine base at Kings Bay, Ga. and other U.S. military facilities. Read the rest of this entry »


Watch Live: Orbital Sciences Launches First Resupply Mission to the ISS

Image: NASA

Image: NASA

Watch live as Orbital Sciences’ Cygnus spacecraft attempts to make its first cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station today. Coverage begins via NASA TV at 9:15 a.m. PT/12:15 p.m. ET with the launch scheduled for just under an hour later.

Cygnus will carry supplies and scientific experiments to the station including tests of antibiotic effectiveness in space and an ant farm. It is only the third flight of the new Antares rocket, following a test flight in April and a successful launch carrying no supplies to the ISS in September.

Read the rest of this entry »


NASA Moon Probe Launches Friday Night: How to Watch Live

This is an artist's depiction of NASA's Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) observatory in space with the moon in the distance. Image released July 23, 2013. Credit: NASA Ames/Dana Berry

This is an artist’s depiction of NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) observatory in space with the moon in the distance. Image released July 23, 2013.
Credit: NASA Ames/Dana Berry

LAUNCH NIGHT UPDATE: NASA’s launch webcasts for the LADEE moon mission are underway. See live views of the LADEE launch at 11:27 p.m. EDT here. To see where LADEE’s launch may appear in your East Coast sky, check out our gallery of rocket launch visibility maps here. Read the rest of this entry »


Hundreds of NY National Guardsmen Unavailable for Hurricane Duty: Assigned Elsewhere–Mock Disaster Relief?

Hundreds of soldiers from New York’s Army National Guard are unavailable to help in the Hurricane Sandy recovery effort — because they’ve been assigned to fight a fake disaster.

The troops are all due to leave tomorrow for a week-long exercise in Missouri known as “Vigilant Guard,” which tests the response of the soldiers to a mock earthquake in the Midwest. And that previously scheduled drill took precedence over the real-world catastrophe that struck the East Coast on Monday night, a source familiar with the hurricane response tells Danger Room.

Bureaucratically, it’s nearly impossible to redeploy hundreds of guardsmen at a moment’s notice, even at a moment when so many are in need. Troops from the New York Army National Guard’s 104th Military Police Battalion, the 1156th Engineer Company, and the 42nd Infantry Division’s headquarters — between 400 and 600 soldiers in all — are now poised to head to the middle of the country.

“At this point in time, we’re still sending our soldiers to Vigilant Guard,” confirms Eric Durr, a spokesman for the New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs…

More…

via  Danger Room | Wired.com


Storm News: WSJ and NYT Drop Paywalls…

“…Ahead of Hurricane Sandy’s landfall in the tri-state area, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Newsday temporarily dropped their paywalls. While this makes sense as a public service to readers—and has been helpful information when so many people are stuck at home, wondering when their windows will start to shake—it makes little sense from an economic one…”

via TCJR