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NASA blasts off Mars-bound spaceship to study quakes

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VANDERBERG AIR FORCE BASE — NASA has launched its latest Mars lander, InSight, on Saturday designed to perch on the surface and listen for ‘Marsquakes’ ahead of eventual human missions to explore the Red Planet.

The spacecraft, launched atop an Atlas V rocket at 4:05am Pacific time (11:05 GMT) on Saturday from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, marks NASA’s first interplanetary mission from the US west coast.

The $993 million project aims to expand human knowledge of interior conditions on Mars, inform efforts to send explorers there, and reveal how rocky planets like the Earth formed billions of years ago.

“This is a big day. We are going back to Mars,” said NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine after the launch.

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“It is important for our country. It is also important for the world and it really establishes American leadership in a lot of ways.”

About an hour and 40 minutes into the flight, the spaceship separated from the upper stage of the rocket, as planned.

“I’m on my own now,” said the US space agency Twitter account, @NASAInSight.

“This marks the beginning of my six-month journey to #Mars.”

If all goes well during the 301 million mile (485 million kilometer) trip, the lander should settle on the Red Planet on November 26.

InSight is short for Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport.

NASA chief scientist Jim Green said experts already know that Mars has quakes, avalanches and meteor strikes.

“But how quake-prone is Mars? That is fundamental information that we need to know as humans that explore Mars,” Green said.

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Balmiki Education Foundation School students develop robot

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BHADRAPUR— Students from Balmiki Education Foundation based in Birtamodh, Jhapa have developed several instruments including robot, drone and censor car.

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Eighth grader Roshan Kumar Saha and his colleagues made a robot at the cost of Rs 180,000.
The robot developed by the students was kept at Science Exhibition of the school on Monday.

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