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World’s Oldest serving Aircraft Carrier ‘INS Viraat’ set to retire from Indian Navy

Viraat was completed and commissioned in Britain's Royal Navy as HMS Hermes

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Warship INS Viraat, Wikimedia

India, March 6, 2017: The world’s oldest aircraft carrier in service, the INS Viraat,is set to retire on Monday from the Indian Navy.

On Monday evening, the Naval flag atop the ship, also known as the “grand old lady”, will be lowered and wrapped at sunset, marking an end to its long journey of 55 years, including 30 years in the Indian Navy.

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Viraat was completed and commissioned in Britain’s Royal Navy as HMS Hermes.

In 1984, it was decommissioned from the Royal Navy and subsequently was commissioned by the Indian Navy on May 12, 1987.

The ship has seen a series of aircraft operate from its decks, including the the Sea Harrier, White Tigers, Seaking 42B, Seaking 42C and Chetaks.

Under the Indian Flag, various aircraft have flown more than 22,034 hours from the decks of the INS Viraat which implies that the carrier has been at sea for over six years covering the entire globe about 27 times.

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The ship played a major role in the Operation Jupiter in 1989 as part of the Indian Peace Keeping Force operations in Sri Lanka and Operation Vijay in 1999 during the Kargil War.

The last operational deployment of the ship was at the International Fleet Review (IFR-2016) in Visakhapatnam. (IANS)

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NASA: Skywatchers will be Able to See Jupiter’s Largest Moons Using Just Binoculars

Keep an eye on the sky this month as the mighty Jupiter puts on a show.

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FILE - The planet Jupiter is shown with one of its moons, Ganymede (bottom), in this NASA handout photo, April 9, 2007. VOA

Keep an eye on the sky this month as the mighty Jupiter puts on a show. NASA says Jupiter will make its closest approach to Earth in June — so close that skywatchers will be able to see it with the naked eye, and even some of its largest moons using simple equipment.

“The solar system’s largest planet is a brilliant jewel to the naked eye, but looks fantastic through binoculars or a small telescope, which will allow you to spot the four largest moons,” the U.S. space agency posted on its website. Some might also “glimpse a hint of the banded clouds” that surround the planet, NASA said.

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NASA says Jupiter will make its closest approach to Earth in June. Pixabay

The best opportunity will be Monday when Jupiter, Earth and Saturn all fall into a straight line, an annual event called “opposition.” From June 14 to 19, amateur astronomers can see a “beautiful lineup” of the moon, Jupiter and Saturn, which will change each night as the moon orbits Earth.

ALSO READ: Trump Increases NASA Spending by $1.6 Billion With Goal of Returning to Moon

“While you’re out marveling at this trio, there’s a really neat astronomy observation you can attempt yourself, just by paying attention to the moon’s movement from night to night,” the agency added on its website.

For those who would like an even closer look at the largest planet in our solar system, NASA suggests visiting its website for images sent back by Juno, the spacecraft currently orbiting Jupiter. (VOA)