Japanese supply ship delivers 5 tons of goodies to International Space Station

A Japanese supply craft successfully docked with the International Space Station this week to deliver around 5 tons of supplies.

The Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency’s (JAXA) “Kounotori” H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV-5) arrived at the International Space Station Aug. 24 to deliver almost five tons of supplies and scientific experiments to the Expedition 44 crew. The cargo vehicle was launched atop a Japanese H-IIB rocket Aug. 19 from the Tanegashima Space Center in southern Japan.

That will be a welcome arrival since the last supply craft, launched from Russia in April, spun out of control before it reached the ISS and ultimately burned up in Earth’s atmosphere .

I love how NASA does live coverage of these kinds of events. Here’s the docking process video:

If you have a ham radio and fancy talking to someone in space, well, pretty much anyone on Earth with a radio can call the International Space Station and chat with astronauts, according to Quartz.

If you don’t have a ham radio but want to see what the crew have to say, you can always follow NASA on YouTube. Regular updates from the ISS crew are posted there, along with special features including a weekly catch-up called Space to Ground.


Bookmarks for August 19, 2015


How about this beautiful Google Earth image of Carauari, Brazil?

More than 3 million people visited NZ in past year

South Island Scenery

More than 3 million people came to check out New Zealand’s attractions in the past year, says Statistics NZ.

Visitor arrivals to New Zealand surpassed 3 million for the first time in the July 2015 year, Statistics New Zealand said in a media release.

The record-breaking 3,002,982 visitors this year was 7 per cent higher than the July 2014 year.

“The expanding market of Chinese holiday visitors, and steady growth of visitors from Australia, helped push the annual number of visitors to 3 million,” population statistics senior manager Vina Cullum said. “New Zealand first reached 2 million visitors in 2002.”

Visitor arrivals in July 2015 numbered 208,000, up 6 percent from July 2014, and the highest for a July month. The biggest increases were from Australia, the United States, and China.

Record number of overseas trips by New Zealand residents

New Zealand-resident travellers departed on a record 251,200 overseas trips in July 2015, up 8 percent from July 2014. The annual total was 2.35 million, up 5 percent, and also a record. Residents took more trips to Australia, the United States, Fiji, and Indonesia compared with the July 2014 year.

Highest-ever net gain of migrants in July

New Zealand had a seasonally adjusted net gain (more arrivals than departures) of 5,700 migrants in July 2015, surpassing the previous record of 5,400 in January 2015. More student arrivals, mainly from India, contributed to the spike in net migration in July 2015. Net migration has been fluctuating around 5,000 since October 2014.

The seasonally adjusted net gain of 200 migrants from Australia in July 2015 was the highest in over 20 years (since 300 in March 1991).

Annual permanent and long-term migration showed a record net gain of 59,600 migrants in the July 2015 year. This resulted from 117,100 migrant arrivals, and 57,500 migrant departures.

Of the migrant arrivals in the July 2015 year:

  • 24,300 were from Australia, with two-thirds being New Zealand citizens
  • 13,800 were from India, with three-quarters having student visas
  • 13,500 were from the United Kingdom, with most having work visas or New Zealand citizenship
  • 10,400 were from China, with about half having student visas.

See the International Travel and Migration: July 2015 commentary and tables for more information.

For more information about these statistics:

Bookmarks for August 17, 2015