In addition to Amazon, Jeff Bezos also owns a rocket company developing spaceships. It is called Blue Origin. They are developing New Glenn rocket as a lift vehicle. Article says first flight for New Glenn is not expected until fourth quarter of 2022 with likely slippage to 2023.
Big announcement covered in this article is Amazon announcing they will use the Atlas V rocket from United Launch Alliance for the first nine launches of their satellites.
China is building their own space station. On 4/28/21 they successfully launched the first of three main components.
4/28/21 – Space.com – China launches core module of new space station to orbit – The central component of the space station is called Tianhe, for Harmony of the Heavens. This module is 54 feet long. Two more sections, each of them 47 feet long, will be launched. The basic station will be assembled by the end of 2022.
A Long March 5B heavy-lift rocket launched the space station.
A cargo launch will go to the station next month with three astronauts arriving in June.
This is not the first space station China has put in orbit. The first one, Tiangong-1, back in 2011 had visits from two crews of three astronauts each before it reentered the atmosphere and was burned up.
The U.S. Air Force is working to develop drone fighters. Most recent test flight had the drone launch another drone.
All the original manufacturers for every component of the Minuteman ICBM system are either gone or the assembly lines have long since been shut down. That means USAF is using its own production facility to create the myriad of necessary spare parts.
4/6/21 – New Atlas – Valkyrie combat drone launches another drone during test flight– Imagine a drone fighter that accompanies a cutting-edge manned fighter such as an F-35. The escorting drone could carry a heavy load of bombs to multiply the strike power of a fighter. It could carry an assortment of air-to-air missiles to defend against other planes or air-to-ground missiles to strike radar or other defense assets.
Launch by SpaceX put another 60 satellites into orbit, bringing the constellation of Starlink communication satellites to over 1,300. Launch by OneWeb put another 36 of their satellites in orbit for total of 146.
SpaceX and OneWeb are both making progress on developing a constellation of satellites which will provide Internet connectivity across the planet. Discussion of OneWeb’s progress follows description of SpaceX’s launch.
Oh, by the way, after reading this post I am confident you will agree that the future is so bright we ought to wear sunglasses all the time.
As shown in the following graph, crude oil production increased again in August 2020. It is up 122,351 barrels of oil per day (bopd) over revised July amount, which follows a 148,343 bopd increase over June.
With a 45 day lag in reporting to allow data submission and collation, the production data for crude oil during May is now available for North Dakota.
The combined shocks of reduced demand for the pandemic and flooding the market by Saudi Arabia collapsed prices which then collapsed production. A glut of oil jammed the storage capacity for a while which further drove down the prices available to producers in North Dakota.
The impact on volume and value of production is staggering.
The graphs of production in this post demonstrate how rapidly a massive industry, like oil production across an entire state, can respond to price signals in a capitalist economy. That part is amazing to see.
May production data
Crude oil production in the state dropped to 858,395 bopd (preliminary) in May. This is down 362,624 bopd from the revised April level of 1,221,019 bopd. The April production was down 209,353 bopd from March.
A useful adjective to describe the devastation we are seeing in the job market escapes me.
New unemployment claims for week ending 5/16/20 were 2.12 million, seasonally adjusted. Nearly as many, 1.19 million who are not otherwise eligible unemployment filed for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) in the week.
That’s somewhere around 3.3 million people who lost their job in week 10 of the shutdown.
My tally of data:
40.73M – seasonally adjusted new claims since the economy was put in an induced coma
6.82M – new claims for unemployment by people who otherwise aren’t eligible for unemployment – self-employed and independent contractors
47.55M – total of seasonally adjusted plus independent contractors and self-employed people out of work since shutdown began
Number of new unemployment claims is a tally equal to about one fourth (24.8%) of the civilian labor force in February. Independent contractors and self-employed people who are out of work is now equal to about 4% of the February civilian labor market.
That means about three out of ten people who were in the civilian labor force in February are now out of a job (28.9%).
As of this morning, places of worship in California will be allowed to resume full operations in Phase 4, which will be at some distant point in the future, likely the end of the year or sometime in 2021. Vague comments by state authorities hint the opening date may be after a vaccine is in use.
In Illinois, full worship services will not be allowed until after a vaccine is in use, with the governor acknowledging that will be 12 or 18 months from now.
Another state, I lost track of which one, put worship in the last category to reopen, along with concerts and stadium-filled athletic events.
Other states and counties, too numerous to bother gather articles for specific citation, have placed worship services low on the list of places to open.
It now looks like the First Amendment may be put back in the Constitution after having been removed by a wide variety of governors.
Several recent events for you to consider:
Catholic and some Lutheran churches in Minnesota will resume worship on May 24.
Around 500 California churches (primarily Protestant) are reopening May 31, with or without permission.
Roman Catholics in Orange County will resume Mass on June 14.
CDC issued guidance for worship services.
California governor is thinking about maybe allowing worship again. Will let us know Monday, May 25.
This discussion will be posted on several of my blogs.
Why fuss over something like gathering to worship?
If you think I’m being too harsh on the long list of governors and bumbling public health officials who won’t allow in-person worship, be advised that too many of my relatives and ancestors fought for our freedom to let American freedoms be trampled upon.
Three of my relatives I personally knew came home from war with life-long physical or emotional injuries. Each suffered until he died.
One of my ancestors died in the effort to crush slavery and rebellion. His blood is in the ground at Champion Hills, east of Vicksburg.
The price paid for our freedom is measured in blood.
I don’t have any word that can describe this disaster:
New unemployment claims for week ending 5/16/20 are just under 2.5 million, seasonally adjusted. An additional 2.2 million people who wouldn’t usually be qualified for unemployment filed during the week for Panemic Unemployment Assistance. The new PUA tally is shocking.
The tally of seasonally adjusted new claims is 38.6 million since the economy was put in an induced coma.