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NASA astronaut launches to space station from Kazakhstan

NASA astronaut launches to space station from Kazakhstan

Science
April 9 (UPI) -- NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy launched to the International Space Station from Kazakhstan early Thursday morning with two Russian cosmonauts. The rocket lifted off on schedule at 4:05 a.m. EDT from Russia's Baikonur Cosmodrome, staring a six-hour journey of orbiting the Earth four times before catching up to the space station. The launch took place amid the coronavirus pandemic, with the passengers having undergone a two-week isolation period before departure. They had minimal human contact during that period, except for close monitoring of health conditions, according to NASA. "What's new for me is everyone around us is in quarantine for two weeks," Cassidy said in a NASA video leading up to the launch. As with most crewed Soyuz launches, very little additional equipmen...
Coronavirus complicates journeys home from Antarctica

Coronavirus complicates journeys home from Antarctica

Science
The British Antarctic Survey (BAS) says it can now bring home all of its staff that need to leave the White Continent. At the end of the Southern Hemisphere summer, everyone except a core team is extracted - but that procedure has been complicated this year by Covid-19.Some of the usual routes - such as through Chile via ship or aeroplane - have been closed because of lockdowns.BAS people are being ferried to the Falkland Islands with the intention of flying them on to the UK with the RAF.This will take some time, however, so the research agency is also now chartering a cruise ship in Port Stanley to act as temporary accommodation. The vessel, Hebridean Sky, will additionally act as somewhere to isolate the scientists and other s...
Debenhams moves to protect itself from creditors in virus crisis

Debenhams moves to protect itself from creditors in virus crisis

Business
Debenhams has filed a notice of intent to appoint administrators as it moves to shield itself from creditors amid the coronavirus crisis.Sky News reported on Friday how the company's owners remained confident in its future, despite the shutdown of its 142 stores because of social distancing restrictions, though the chain was exposed on a number of fronts including rent bills. The chief problem was the threat of suppliers of stock - inventory worth hundreds of millions of pounds that is currently not needed - chasing the company to pay its bills on time. Image: Debenhams had already closed a number of under-performing stores this year following a rescue deal with landlords The retailer said on Monday: "This move will protect Debenhams ...
What to stream this weekend: ‘Onward,’ ‘Tales from the Loop,’ new music

What to stream this weekend: ‘Onward,’ ‘Tales from the Loop,’ new music

Entertainment
April 3 (UPI) -- As people practice social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic, more entertainment options have become available to stream from the comfort of home. Here's a list of films, TV shows, music and video games that will be released this weekend. Films Onward -- Disney+ Disney and Pixar's Onward, which hit theaters before they closed March 6, is available on the Disney+ streaming service Friday. Tom Holland and Chris Pratt voice two brothers who embark on a magical quest after a mysterious staff helps bring back the legs of their late father. The duo race against the clock in order to fully bring their dad back before the spell wears off. Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Octavia Spencer also provide voices. [embedded content] Coffee and Karem -- Netflix Ed Helms and 12-year-old Ter...
David Hockney shares exclusive art from Normandy, as ‘a respite from the news’

David Hockney shares exclusive art from Normandy, as ‘a respite from the news’

Entertainment
David Hockney is in lockdown at his house in Normandy with his dog Ruby and two of his long-standing assistants, JP and Jonathan. He is in the garden most days, drawing the spring awakening on his iPad. In a BBC exclusive, he is sharing 10 of his most recent images (including one animation), nine of which have never been published before, for us all to enjoy at this difficult time, along with his thoughts on the role of art in life.The artist previously visited Normandy in the autumn of 2018 following the installation of his stained-glass window in Westminster Abbey. He thought it would be a good place to draw and paint the arrival of spring, something he'd done around a decade earlier in East Yorkshire. Those pictures, paintings...