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Sunita Williams leads successful testing of new spacecraft

International Space Station (ISS) crew member U.S. astronaut Sunita Williams waves as she boards the Soyuz TMA-05M spacecraft at Baikonur cosmodrome July 15, 2012. REUTERS/Vyacheslav Oseledko/Pool  (KAZAKHSTAN - Tags: SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY)

International Space Station (ISS) crew member U.S. astronaut Sunita Williams waves as she boards the Soyuz TMA-05M spacecraft at Baikonur cosmodrome July 15, 2012. REUTERS/Vyacheslav Oseledko/Pool (KAZAKHSTAN – Tags: SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY)

SAN FRANCISCO (Diya TV) — Indian-American astronaut Sunita Williams, and her crew of colleagues, have successfully tested a new generation of NASA simulators that will help prepare future star dwellers for launch, flight and return aboard Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner spacecraft.

The Starliner is a joint-collaboration between Boeing and Bigelow Aerospace, and will be submitted as the two’s entry into NASA’s Commercial Crew Development program.

The craft’s primary use will be for transporting crew to and from the International Space Station, as well as other private space stations, such as Bigelow’s own commercial space station.

“These simulators have touchscreen displays, which means they are more versatile than previous spacecraft trainers,” Williams said in a statement.

“We can run multiple simulations by just changing software and then put that same software into a bigger crew simulator, which we will use to train the whole crew for a spaceflight,” she added.

The official simulators are still in development, but once completed, they will be wired into Boeing and NASA’s networks. From there, mission simulations will include contact with launch and mission controllers, running critical rehearsals to prepare crew for successful flight.

NASA selected four astronauts — Williams, Eric Boe, Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley — to train for test flights and simulations aboard the Starliner and SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecrafts. The four will ship out to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston later this year to begin daily training in large simulators.

For a sense of how extensive the training is, astronauts typically spend hours in simulators for each minute they are in space in an effort to familiarize themselves with planned and unplanned events which can occur during flight.

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Biden to nominate Ravi Chaudry to Air Force post

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Biden to nominate Ravi Chaudry to Air Force post | Diya TV News

WASHINGTON DC (Diya TV) — President Joe Biden plans to nominate Indian American Ravi Chaudry as the Air Force’s next assistant secretary for installations, environment, and energy. Chaudry is a former Federal Aviation Administration official who served in the Air Force for more than 20 years. If confirmed he would take over a massive portfolio spanning Air Force and Space Force installations worldwide. 

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group Foundation announced the appointment of its new Chairwoman, Sonu Ratra, the co-founder and President of IT consulting and talent solutions provider, Akraya as well as the founder of Women Back to Work. Ratra is the first woman and person of color to lead the SVLG Foundation.

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Calgary and Edmonton elect mayors of Indian descent | Diya TV News

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Calgary & Edmonton elect mayors of Indian descent | Diya TV News

NEW YORK (Diya TV) — In a historic first, the new Mayors of Calgary and Edmonton, Canada are of Indian descent. Jyoti Gondak and Amarajeet Sohi will be leading their respective cities. Gondek is also Calgary’s first ever female Mayor. In both elections, voters expressed a desire for change, and largely rejected candidates opposed to public health measures to deal with COVID-19.

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren wants Amazon to break up after a Reuters report found that the e-commerce giant ran a systematic campaign of creating knockoffs and manipulating search results to boost its own private brands in India, one of the company’s largest growth markets.

In tech news MindBody is acquiring fitness company ClassPass, which allows users to pay for a monthly subscription, allowing them to access a number of classes across a spectrum of fitness genres. The company was founded by Indian American Payal Kadakia.

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Hindus targeted, homes set ablaze in Bangladesh over social post

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NEW YORK (Diya TV) — 66 houses were vandalized and at least 20 homes of Hindus set on fire in Bangladesh over an alleged social media post considered blasphemous. This comes amid protests by the minority community against incidents of temple vandalism during the Durga Puja last week.

Colin Powell, the first Black US Secretary of State whose leadership in several Republican administrations helped shape American foreign policy has died from complications related to  COVID-19, He was 84.

Diwali celebrations have resumed in Fremont and Cupertino, California after a one year hiatus due to the pandemic. Actor and comedian Omi Vaidya was the Grand Marshall at the Festival of Globe event in Fremont. And Congressman Ro Khanna was one of several elected officials to attend the Bay Area Diwali event organized by the Cupertino Chamber of Commerce.

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