NASA tests new technology for Mars voyages
A saucer-shaped NASA vehicle testing new technology for Mars landings rocketed high over the Pacific on Saturday and deployed a novel inflatable braking system, but its massive parachute failed to fully unfurl as it descended to a splashdown. Control room cheers that greeted successful steps in the complex test rapidly died as the parachute appeared to emerge tangled. The vehicle, called the Low Density Supersonic Decelerator, was testing methods for slowing big, heavy spacecraft hurtling into the thin Martian atmosphere. Despite the problem, "what we just saw was a really good test," said NASA engineer Dan Coatta with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.
Pro-Russian rebels free 4 observers
Pro-Russian insurgents in eastern Ukraine on Saturday released a second team of observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, who had been held captive since the end of May, the organization said. OSCE lost contact with four monitors from its Donetsk team and four monitors from its Luhansk team in late May. The members of the Donetsk team were freed earlier last week. At a European Union summit Friday in Brussels, leaders called on the rebels to release all captives.
New York: Online-streaming service Aereo Inc. said Saturday that it is temporarily closing down its operation, three days after it was dealt an unfavorable ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Los Angeles: California Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill that recognizes the legal use of Bitcoins and other digital currencies in the state.
Taiwan: A Chinese envoy on a historic visit to Taiwan on Saturday canceled two events after protesters, who are opposed to closer ties with Beijing, threw paint on his motorcade.
Egypt: Egypt's military said Saturday that a device it claimed in February to have invented to cure AIDS and hepatitis C needs six more months of testing.
Argentina: Vice President Amado Boudou was charged in a corruption case in which he is accused of abusing his power to gain control of a company that printed the nation's currency.