SpaceX sucessfully tests Crew Dragon emergency abort system Jan 20, 2020 0 333 12345 AFPWashingtonSpaceX successfully tested its emergency abort system on an unmanned spacecraft moments after launch on Sunday, according to a live broadcast of the event, the last major test before it plans to send NASA astronauts to the International Space Station.The test launch began at 1030 am (1530 GMT) at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida with the launch of a Falcon 9 rocket topped by SpaceX’s new Crew Dragon spacecraft. The rocket was programmed to perform as if it were launching the capsule into orbit.One minute and 24 seconds after launch, at an altitude of 19 kms (12 miles) over the Atlantic and as the rocket was traveling at a speed of more than 1,500 kilometers per hour, an emergency escape sequence was set in motion.The spacecraft ignited its powerful SuperDraco thrusters, propelling it away from the rocket.Shortly after the separation, the rocket disintegrated in a ball of fire, as planned.On a manned mission, the maneuver is designed to rescue the astronauts in the event the rocket has a problem on ascent or veers off course.Crew Dragon continued its upward trajectory alone reaching an altitude of about 40 kilometers before beginning its natural descent toward the Atlantic.Four large parachutes opened to brake its descent and splashdown in the Atlantic, where recovery teams were pre-positioned. Nine minutes after launch, Crew Dragon was in the water, apparently without suffering damage.Analysis of the spacecraft and flight data will confirm whether the test came off without a hitch, and whether the spacecraft is ready for manned missions.But NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine and SpaceX founder Elon Musk said that the test appeared to be a complete success. RELATED ARTICLES Harry and Meghan begin life as ‘ordinary people’ Jan 20, 2020 0 118 Venezuela’s Maduro says still in control, open to talks with US Jan 20, 2020 0 1022 CLIMATE ACTIVISTS MARCH ON DAVOS Jan 20, 2020 0 133 Trump backers, critics clash as impeachment trial nears AFP Washington Donald Trump’s defenders and supporters skirmished over the airwaves on Sunday a day after the US president’s legal team dismissed his impeachment trial as unconstitutional and dangerous. Coming two .. New anti-far right rally before Italy’s regional elections Bologna, Italy: Thousands of people rallied on Sunday in Bologna to try to prevent a leftist bastion falling to the far right in elections this month in northeastern Italy and avert the government’s collapse in Rome. They .. Britain’s Johnson warns Russia’s Putin over Skripal poisoning London: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Sunday used his first official meeting with Vladimir Putin to warn the Russian leader not repeat the 2018 chemical attack that almost killed former spy Sergei Skripal. .. At least six dead in severe weather in eastern Brazil Buenos Aires: At least six people have been killed in a severe storm in south-eastern Brazil. Heavy rain caused the Iconha river in the state of Espirito Santo north of Rio de Janeiro to rise by around 4 metres, the TV station .. Foreign journalist attacked at Greek far-right protest Athens: A foreign press correspondent was attacked on Sunday during a far-right protest in central Athens against the presence of migrants in Greece, according to Greek news agency ANA. According to an AFP reporter and a ..