Explosion at SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launch in Florida

Florida (U.S.), Sept.1 : An explosion rocked the launch site for Elon Musk's SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket at Cape Canaveral in Florida on Thursday.

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Dangerously windy again for launch of space station supplies

Cape Canaveral (Florida): High wind once again threatened to keep space station supplies stuck on Earth.

An unmanned rocket loaded with 7,400 pounds (3,356 kilograms) of cargo for the International Space Station stood ready for a late afternoon liftoff today. But forecasters put the odds of acceptable weather at only 20 percent. Bad weather already has resulted in a pair of back-to-back launch delays.

NASA is anxious to get its commercial supply chain moving again. Its two suppliers have been grounded for months by launch accidents, and the space station pantry needs restocking.

Shipper Orbital ATK is using another company rocket, the venerable Atlas V, for this effort.

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NASA test flight still on track despite accidents

NASA test flight still on track despite accidentsNASA's biggest test flight in years remains on track for next month, despite last week's space-related accidents.

Officials on Feiday said everything looks good for the December 4 launch of NASA's new Orion capsule. This one will not carry a crew. Future Orions are meant to carry astronauts on missions of deep-space exploration.

The spacecraft will blast off atop a Delta IV rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida. The brief flight will send it 5,800 kilometers into space before parachuting into the Pacific.

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US Air Force believes fighter jet crashed in Gulf

US Air Force believes fighter jet crashed in GulfTyndall Air Force Base, Florida - Air Force officials say they believe an F-16 fighter jet has crashed in the Gulf of Mexico.

A news release from Tyndall Air Force Base says the jet was on a routine training mission over the Gulf yesterday morning when the Florida Panhandle base lost contact with the pilot.

Aircraft and rescue forces were immediately sent to the missing jet's last known location.

No wreckage has been found, but officials are working under the assumption that the plane went down in the water. The US Coast Guard is leading the search.

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American pleads guilty to 1984 hijacking

Miami, May 2 - A New Jersey man who returned to the US after nearly three decades in Cuba to face trial for hijacking a plane to the Communist-ruled island nation in 1984 entered a guilty plea before a federal judge.

Prosecutors Thursday agreed to allow William Potts, 57, to plead guilty to kidnapping, as a conviction on the original charge of air piracy would have required a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years.

Potts, who arrived last November in Miami to turn himself in to the US authorities, is hoping US District Judge Robin Rosenbaum will take into account the 13 years he served in a Cuban prison when she sentences him July 11.

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12 kids injured in hit-and-run crash in Florida

12 kids injured in hit-and-run crash in FloridaWashington, April 10 - A hit-and-run car crash into a day care in the US state of Florida left 15 people, including 12 children, injured, officials said Wednesday.

The incident occurred in the afternoon when a car was struck by a silver Dodge Durango, forced off the road and crashed into the KinderCare Learning Center in the Winter Park city in the Orlando metropolitan area of Florida.

Over 50 people were inside the day care at the time of the crash. Local fire rescue officials said 13 patients were taken to local hospitals and two were treated at the scene.

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Over 500 baby sea turtles released off Florida

Over 500 baby sea turtles released off FloridaMiami, Sep 9 - The US Coast Guard and Gumbo Limbo Nature Center personnel released 505 sea turtle hatchlings in the Atlantic off Boca Raton, Florida, after keeping them in captivity to ensure their survival, officials said.

The nature centre, which works to protect sea turtles, requested assistance in doing the large release, the Coast Guard said in a statement Sunday.

The Gumbo Limbo Nature Center cared for the eggs until the hatchlings could be released in the Atlantic last week.

The 311 loggerheads and 194 green sea turtles were released on the seaweed beds off Boca Raton where they would have a higher chance of survival.

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Luxury homes fuel Miami's latest real estate boom

Luxury homes fuel Miami's latest real estate boomMiami, April 8 - Miami is entering a new real estate "boom", fed mainly by the investments of Latin Americans which have transformed the face of the city and, with its luxury homes, become one of its greatest draws.

Miami and its surroundings, according to the latest report on the luxury real estate market by Christie's, in 2012 burst into the group of the world's main markets of this type, thanks to the general recovery in demand and low prices.

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33 Russian kids' adoption still in limbo after US ban

33 Russian kids' adoption still in limbo after US banSt. Petersburg, March 7 - The adoption of at least 33 children from orphanages in Russia's St. Petersburg city are still in limbo two months after American families were barred from adopting Russian children, a top official said.

The 33 children, including 12 with special needs, had already met their American parents-to-be before the law came into force, city ombudswoman Svetlana Agapitova said.

It remains unclear whether all of those adoptions will now have to be cancelled, she said.

"We are waiting for the education and science ministry's decision. They should explain how the Dima Yakovlev bill will work," Agapitova said.

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US authorities seek man photographed riding whale

US authorities seek man photographed riding whaleMiami, Dec 19 - US authorities are looking for a man who was photographed off the Florida coast riding on the back of a female sperm whale, an endangered species.

The marine mammal, which is distinguished from other types of whale by its enormous head, was found dead Tuesday on a beach north of Miami. Federal authorities are investigating the causes of its death.

The sperm whale, 9 meters long and weighing 30 tonnes, was still alive when the man, as yet unidentified, was photographed last Sunday sitting on its back. The pictures also show another swimmer trying to climb up on it.

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Paul Ryan accepts Republican vice presidential nomination

Paul Ryan accepts Republican vice presidential nominationTampa, Florida, Aug 30 - Mitt Romney's running mate Paul Ryan has accepted the Republican vice-presidential nomination, saying time is running out to solve America's fiscal problems, but they can do it if elected in November.

"We will not duck the tough issues -- we will lead," Ryan, 42, said in his prime-time acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida Wednesday night.

"... The work ahead will be hard. These times demand the best of us -- all of us, but we can do this. Together, we can do this."

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My dad wants to strengthen American dream: Craig Romney

My dad wants to strengthen American dream: Craig RomneyTampa (Florida), Aug 29 - Craig Romney, the youngest son of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, said here Tuesday that his father is not the out-of-touch figure painted by his opponents, but a "man of faith, a family man" who seeks to strengthen the American dream.

"It's obviously hard to listen to someone criticize your father but I know what kind of person my father is... he's a man of integrity, of character, he's a man of faith, a family man, and the reason why he's in this campaign is because he wants to help," 31-year-old Craig Romney told EFE.

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Puerto Rican to prepare menu for manned mission to Mars

Puerto Rican to prepare menu for manned mission to MarsOrlando (Florida), Aug 9 - A Puerto Rican scientist will be in charge of creating the menu for the first manned mission to Mars.

Yajaira Sierra Sastre, a 35-year-old native of Arroyo, Puerto Rico, was selected from among a group of 700 scientists to be part of the six-member crew of the HI-SEAS, or Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation, mission, which NASA will undertake in 2013.

Her task will be to find the best way to keep the astronauts well fed and prevent them from getting bored with the menu during the Mars mission scheduled for 2030 and calculated to last some 2 1/2 years.

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Painting stolen by Nazis recovered, up for sale

Miami, April 20 - A Jewish family who this week recovered a 16th century painting stolen by the Nazis during World War II announced Thursday that they are putting the piece up for sale.

After months of litigation, the heirs of Federico Gentili di Giuseppe Wednesday recovered the painting entitled "Christ Carrying the Cross Dragged By A Rascal", which they had lost track of when part of the family fled Paris to escape the Nazis and the rest died in concentration camps.

To recover the painting, they had to meet US authorities, who confiscated the work taking advantage of the fact that the painting was among more than 50 pieces on loan from the Pinacoteca di Brera museum in Milan, Italy, to the Mary Brogan Museum of Art and Science in Tallahassee, Florida.

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Firm asks US court to block handover of treasure to Spain

Firm asks US court to block handover of treasure to SpainMiami, Feb 7 - The firm that salvaged $500 million in gold and silver coins from the bottom of the Atlantic in May 2007 asked the US Supreme Court Monday to issue an emergency stay against an order compelling the company to hand over the treasure to Spain.

Madrid's interests will not suffer if the handover is delayed for "a few more months" to give the Supreme Court time to consider the case, Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc. said in a brief seen by EFE.

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