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By Usama Jawad96
Elon Musk denies demanding the CEO position from Apple's Tim Cook
by Usama Jawad
Recently, a story regarding Elon Musk demanding the position of Apple's CEO from Tim Cook has been making the rounds on the internet. The anecdote comes from The Wall Street Journal writer Tim Higgins' new book Power Play: Tesla, Elon Musk, and the Bet of the Century.
Higgins describes a telephonic conversation between the two executives where Cook suggested the buyout of Tesla by Apple. In exchange, Musk asked to be CEO, to which Cook reportedly agreed, thinking that the Tesla executive wanted to remain the CEO of his company. However, Musk then disclosed that he actually wanted to be made the CEO of Apple, to which Cook replied "F*ck you" and hung up the phone. Higgins says that the story was told by a former aide who heard Musk retelling it.
When asked about the exchange on Twitter, the Tesla executive denied that it ever took place, saying that:
When The Verge asked Apple to comment on the matter, the company also referred to an old interview where Cook had stated that he has never spoken to Musk. Meanwhile, Higgins has defended his writing, saying that Apple and Elon Musk were given opportunities to comment on the book prior to its publication, but both declined.
And while it may be unrelated, in a rather odd piece of timing, Elon Musk has declared his support for Epic Games in the company's ongoing legal battle against Apple, saying that the latter's App Store fees are a "de facto global tax on the Internet".
Tesla's "Big Battery" explodes causing big flames and smoke, warning out for locals
by Sayan Sen
via 7NEWS Melbourne (Twitter) A 13 tonne Lithium battery inside a container unit - that's part of one of Tesla's largest batteries ever deployed, dubbed the "Victorian Big Battery" - caught fire earlier today. The plant is located at Moorabool in the state of Victoria, Australia.
Fire Rescue Victoria (FRV), the fire-fighting organization of the state, was quick to respond in order to contain the breakout. Drones were also deployed to help with the monitoring. A Specialist Officer was sent to the scene to observe the condition of the air in and around the surroundings as well.
In fact, a warning has since been issued by VicEmergency in relation to the toxic smoke that's being emitted. VicEmergency is responsible for broadcasting emergency information and warnings.
The Victorian Big Battery was commissioned back in November 2020 by the Australian government in order to achieve the Victorian Renewable Energy Target (VRET) by 2030. This Megapack system at Geelong, Victoria, was planned for launch in summer 2021-22 which would then be able to deliver a promised 300MW / 450MWh of renewable power.
SpaceX to fly NASA's reconnaissance mission to Jovian moon Europa
by Chandrakant Isi
Elon Musk's SpaceX has bagged another contract from NASA. The private space exploration company has been awarded approximately $178 million to fly the upcoming Europa Clipper mission on its Falcon Heavy rocket. That's significantly cost effective compared to NASA's in-house Space Launch System (SLS) that burns around $2 billion per launch. The Europa Clipper mission is expected to take off in 2024 from Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Europa is one of the most fascinating heavenly bodies in our solar system. The Jovian moon has been on the radar of astronomers due to the vast ocean underneath its icy shell. It is one of the most likely places in our solar system to harbor life as we know it. Hence, NASA has been planning the Europa Clipper mission to closely study this Jovian moon and scout for possible landing sites for future lander missions.
The Europa Clipper spacecraft will be equipped with several instruments to study if this icy moon harbors conditions suitable for life. The reconnaissance mission will focus on capturing high-resolution images of Europa's surface and detect signs of geological activity. The onboard spectrography sensors will try to determine the moon's composition. NASA also hopes to measure the thickness of Europa's icy shell and the depth and salinity of the sub-surface ocean.
Based on current data, Europa's ice shell probably has a depth of 10 to 15 miles. Below that lies an ocean with depths of whopping 40 to 100 miles. To put things in perspective, although Europa's diameter is only one-fourth to that of Earth, it may hold twice as much water compared to our home planet.
In addition to this latest contract, SpaceX recently won a $2.9 billion contract from NASA to build a lunar lander. However, it has been put on hold after Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin filed a complaint with the Government Accountability Office (GOA) over NASA's favorable treatment to SpaceX among other things.
SpaceX's Starlink is helping people connect in flood-hit Germany
by Sayan Sen
Image via The New York Times Europe is amidst one of the worst floods it has seen in recent times and Germany among other places is affected badly by it. To help, the Supervision and Services Directorate of Rhineland-Palatinate has announced today that it has deployed a dozen SpaceX's Starlink satellite dishes in the state's Ahrweiler district. It is hoped that the availability of internet service will help the affected people there connect and communicate with others as well as with those in authority. The Directorate has also assured that 23 more such dishes, for a total of 35, would also be set up over the course of time.
The following 11 places in Ahrweiler already have the dishes planted:
Liers Ahrbrück Brück Pützfeld Kreuzberg Rech Nord Rech Süd Dernau Marienthal Heimersheim Heppingen As stated above, the state of Rhineland-Palatinate is one of the worst-affected regions and parts of it have been hit with 148 liters of rain /sq meter, which is nearly double that of what it is generally used to. You can find the original announcement of the Supervision and Services Directorate of Rhineland-Palatinate here.
The German government may have had the foresight of the events to come as earlier this year it had decided to subsidize households that would help them to purchase the necessary equipment like those from Starlink's which would enable satellite internet options. The scheme was announced by the government so as to improve rural wireless internet connectivity throughout the country.
TWIRL 19: SpaceX set to launch Transporter-2 satellite mission
by Paul Hill
In the upcoming week, SpaceX is expected to launch its Transporter-2 mission carrying several satellites as part of a rideshare. Roscosmos plans to launch the Progress MS-17 mission which will deliver cargo to the International Space Station, and a Starsem Soyuz rocket will try to orbit 36 OneWeb internet satellites
Tuesday, June 29
The first mission of the week will come from SpaceX with its Transporter-2 rideshare mission. A Falcon 9 Block 5 rocket will launch several payloads to Sun-synchronous orbit. Aboard will be the Kleos Polar Vigilance Mission consisting of four satellites, at least four NuSats for Satellogic, YAM 3, Mars Demo 1, and a Vigoride CubeSate carrier with Skycraft, TROPICS Pathfinder, Sen EarthTV, and IRIS-A. This mission was also mentioned in last week’s TWIRL installment with the launch date set at June 25 but it looks like that slipped.
Wednesday, June 30
Roscosmos will be launching its trusty Soyuz 2.1a rocket in the early hours (local time) on Wednesday carrying the Progress MS-17 mission. This is the 78th Progress cargo delivery ship heading for the International Space Station. It will remain connected to the space station acting as an expansion of the Russian Orbital Segment for around 179 days before being undocked. Following the launch, Progress MS-17 will spend 3 hours and 20 minutes getting to the space station before it automatically docks.
Thursday, July 1
On Thursday, the private company, Starsem, will launch a Soyuz 2.1b rocket carrying 36 OneWeb internet satellites. Similarly to SpaceX’s Starlink satellites, the OneWeb constellation can beam internet connectivity back down to the planet. One instance where OneWeb’s satellites will be used will be on airplanes following a deal the firm made with SatixFy. The Canadian military will also benefit from the satellites following a deal OneWeb made with ROCK Networks which serves the Canadian military.
It’s was a bit quiet last week in terms of actual rocket launches but the Pion-NKS 1 satellite managed to launch successfully.