Elon Musk's private rocket company SpaceX was awarded a $178 million launch services contract for NASA's first mission focusing on Jupiter's icy moon Europa and whether it may host conditions suitable for life, the space agency said on Friday. read more
The US space agency's Perseverance rover is getting ready to take its first sample of Mars rock. The core, about the size of a finger, will be packaged in a sealed tube for eventual return to Earth. Scientists say their best chance of determining whether Mars ever hosted life is to study its surface materials in sophisticated home laboratories.
Four US drugs giants have agreed to pay $26bn (19bn) to settle claims they helped fuel an opioid addiction crisis. Under the proposal unveiled by a group of state attorney generals on Wednesday, three drugs distributors are expected to pay $21bn. Drug-maker Johnson & Johnson (J&J) will pay $5bn over the next five years. The New York attorney general Letitia James said the firms fuelled "the fire of opioid addiction for more than two decades".
The Taliban's supreme leader Haibatullah Akhunzada has said he "strenuously favours" a political settlement to the conflict in Afghanistan even as the group launched a sweeping offensive across the nation. read more
One day after becoming the first hurricane of the 2021 Atlantic season, Elsa weakened back into a tropical storm Saturday as it zeroed in on Haiti and the Dominican Republic. read more