Posted by drdave on April 1, 2011
- NASA continues to work on the Space Shuttle Endeavour. Engineers expect to open the aft bay of the shuttle and begin testing of the heaters, Load Control Assembly and electrical cables by this evening. It is not certain that Endeavour will be ready for launch by the time its window opens on Monday, 2 May, at 11:33 AM Phoenix time (1833 UTC)
- The Russian Progress M-10M resupply spacecraft has completed its docking with the International Space Station.
- Next up, launch of the Endeavour STS-134 mission at 12:47 PM Phoenix time today. Scrubbed due to heater failures on the APU1 unit.
- A Soyuz rocket lifted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 6:05 AM Phoenix time (1305 GMT) and placed the Progress M-10M spacecraft into orbit. The spacecraft is carrying 2.6 tons of food, water, propellant, and other supplies for the International Space Station. Part of the spacecraft’s payload of experiments were considered time-sensitive enough by Russian officials that they declined to postpone the launch to avoid a scheduling conflict with the shuttle Endeavour, which was scheduled to launch on April 19. Instead, NASA had to delay Endeavour by ten days. The Progress is scheduled to dock with the Pirs module of the station at 10:29 am EDT (1429 GMT) Friday.
- Get up in the wee hours of the morning May 6th and head out into the country, far from the city lights. You won’t be alone. The birds will be up and singing about the coming dawn, and, of course, about the eta Aquarid meteor shower. The eta Aquarids are best viewed from the southern hemisphere, but there’s something special about them no matter where you live: “Each eta Aquarid meteoroid is a piece of Halley’s Comet doing a kamikaze death dive into the atmosphere,” explains NASA astronomer Bill Cooke.
- A team of Italian and US researchers have made lab equipment that recreates the jets that shoot out of stars and black holes. Astrophysical jets are narrow streams of charged particles spurting from the centre of young stars and supermassive black holes. They hurtle in opposite directions at near light speed.
- SETI has placed the collection of 42 radio dishes in northern California called the Allen Telescope Array into “hibernation due to lack of funding.
- Chinese authorities in charge of the manned space program unveiled plans on Monday to build a 60-ton space station, made up of three capsules, and develop a cargo spaceship to transport supplies. The 18.1-meter-long core module, with a maximum diameter of 4.2 meters and a launch weight of 20 to 22 tons, will be launched first. The two experiment modules will then blast off to dock with the core module. Each laboratory module is 14.4 meters long, with the same maximum diameter and launch weight of the core module. The 60-ton space station is rather small compared to the International Space Station (419 tons), and Russia’s Mir Space Station (137 tons).
- The multibillion-dollar U.S.-European Mars exploration program has suffered a serious — but not fatal — blow with NASA’s confirmation that it can no longer afford to launch its own rover alongside a European rover in 2018.
- The suborbital Virgin Galactic spacecraft SpaceShipTwo has completed its fifth unpowered flight. The glide test from high altitude lasted 14 minutes and 31 seconds.
- Arianespace successfully launched the Ariane 5 rocket carrying the Yahsat Y1A and Intelsat New Dawn at 2:37 PM Phoenix time (2137 UTC) on April 22, 2011.
- NASA’s Dawn spacecraft could settle the matter of whether Vesta is an asteroid or a “minor planet”. Originally spotted 200 years ago, it is officially a “minor planet”. It seems large for an asteroid at 530 km in width.
- Russia will not permit the first U.S. commercial spacecraft (SpaceX Dragon) to dock with the International Space Station (ISS) unless its safety is fully tested, a high-ranking official with Russia’s space agency Roscosmos said on Friday.
- Atlantis is tasked with the final mission as part of the Space Shuttle Program (SSP), with a launch date of June 28 resulting in a vital logistics run to the International Space Station (ISS). The current plan is for Atlantis to then retire at the Kennedy Space Center (KSC), as she becomes the centerpiece of a new exhibition.
- An Indian rocket launched a remote sensing satellite and two smaller spacecraft on Wednesday. The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) lifted off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, India, on schedule at 9:42 PM Phoenix time Tuesday (0442 UTC, 10:12 am local time Wednesday). The rocket’s primary payload was Resourcesat-2, a 1,206-kilogram remote sensing satellite.
- Shuttle managers on Tuesday confirmed plans to launch the space shuttle Endeavour on its final mission a week from Friday. Endeavour is scheduled to launch on STS-134 at 12:47 PM Phoenix time (1947 UTC) on Friday, April 29
- NASA has awarded Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) $75 million to develop a revolutionary launch escape system that will enable the company’s Dragon spacecraft to carry astronauts. The Congressionally mandated award is part of the agency’s Commercial Crew Development (CCDev) initiative that started in 2009 to help private companies mature concepts and technologies for human spaceflight.
- NASA has awarded seed money to four companies for work on commercial crew vehicles in the second round of its Commercial Crew Development (CCDev-2). A total of $269.3 million to help mature concepts for private spacecraft to carry astronauts to the International Space Station and other low-Earth-orbit destinations. Boeing received $92.3 million on top of the $18 million it won last year. Sierra Nevada Corp., last year’s top winner, will get $80 million to go with the $20 million it received in 2010. Space Exploration Technologies Inc. (SpaceX), which already has flown its Dragon cargo capsule to orbit and back, has been granted $75 million to develop a launch abort system and other hardware so the Dragon can carry crew. Blue Origin, the secretive startup organized by Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos, was allotted $22 million to continue work on its vertical takeoff and landing craft.
- Launcher and pad preparations to boost the Ukraine-built Cyclone-4 from Brazil’s Alcantara launch center are entering their final phase, with the goal of completing the qualification liftoff next year.
- Space.com discusses the new NASA budget. The new budget at least frees NASA from a stifling provision under its 2010 budget that prevented it from cutting funding to the moon-bound Constellation program. Yet that program was canceled by President Barack Obama in early 2010, and NASA has been targeting new goals ever since.
- The March 30 launch abort of Europe’s Ariane 5 rocket after the main engine had been ignited was caused by one or more components attached to the engine nozzle that prevented the nozzle from moving freely during ignition, the head of the Arianespace launch consortium said April 15.
- In Texas, County Commissioner Calls for a Congressional Investigation why no Space Shuttle is coming to Houston.
- Two small U.S. military satellites are queued up and waiting to ride into space on Minotaur rockets in May, but managers want to make sure the boosters are immune from the glitch that doomed the launch of a NASA science mission in March.
- How many flights will the US Air Force X-37B make? Perhaps as few as two, perhaps three.
- Wayne Hale, former NASA Space Shuttle Program Manager, explains why Houston did not get a Space Shuttle: “Because we just don’t care enough to do anything about it.”
- The United Launch Alliance’s Atlas V rocket has performed its twenty-fifth launch, delivering into orbit the classified NROL-34 payload for the US National Reconnaissance Office. The launch took place from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California at 04:24 UTC Friday (9:24 PM Phoenix time Thursday).
- Spending bill will put an end to the Constellation program
- Boeing expects to select a single vehicle next month from an unspecified number of rockets in the running to launch unmanned flight tests and early crewed missions of the seven-person CST-100 space taxi it is developing with financial backing from NASA. The four real candidates are: United Launch Alliance’s Delta 4 and Atlas 5, Space Exploration Technologies’ Falcon 9, the European Ariane 5.
- The Vostok 3KA-2 space capsule was sold for nearly $2.9 million in a Sotheby’s auction to Russian businessman Evgeny Yurchenko. The spacecraft flew in space in March 1961, 20 days before the historic April 12, 1961 launch of cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin on the first human spaceflight.
- Celestial Fireworks from Dying Stars.
- NASA’s space shuttles, which have been carrying astronauts aloft for 30 years, were assigned to their final destinations on Tuesday: one will head to the nation’s capital, another to Los Angeles, and the third from its current home at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida to the center’s visitor complex next door.
- Yuri’s Night celebration in Moscow.
- The Adler Planetarium will soon be home to a space flight simulator used to train every shuttle astronaut who has traveled to space.
- Arianespace announced that “With the additional checkout and verification now in progress on the Ariane 5 ECA launcher, Arianespace has decided to resume the operations for Ariane Flight VA201 with the Yahsat Y1A and Intelsat New Dawn satellite payloads.”
- Engineers and scientists eagerly unpacked the Juno spacecraft from its shipping crate Saturday, kicking off nearly four months of launch preparations before the $1 billion mission is shot toward Jupiter this summer.
- Following a meeting between NASA and Russian Space Agency (Roscosmos) managers on Friday, a decision was made to call off the planned Soyuz documentary flyabout of the International Space Station (ISS) and Endeavour during the STS-134/ULF-6 mission, due to concerns with crew impacts in the event that the Soyuz should fail to re-dock with the ISS. Flyabout planning efforts are now shifting to the STS-135/ULF-7 mission.
- Plans to launch an Atlas 5 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base next week have been delayed two days by a need to replace a questionable part on the space booster. The team now is shooting for a blastoff from Space Launch Complex-3 East on South Base at 9:24 PM Thursday, 14 April, carrying a National Reconnaissance Office spacecraft to orbit for a clandestine mission.
- NASA’s Juno spacecraft has arrived in Florida to begin final preparations for a launch this summer. The spacecraft was shipped from Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver, to the Astrotech payload processing facility in Titusville, Florida. The solar-powered Juno spacecraft will orbit Jupiter’s poles 33 times to find out more about the gas giant’s origins, structure, atmosphere and magnetosphere.
- NASA’s Swift satellite, Hubble Space Telescope and Chandra X-ray Observatory have teamed up to study one of the most puzzling cosmic blasts ever observed. More than a week later, high-energy radiation continues to brighten and fade from the gamma-ray burst.
- Space.com presents a compilation of “Firsts” in the Space Age on the eve of the 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin’s manned spaceflight.
- April is proving to be the cruelest month for the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA), a major space mission to look for gravitational waves that was slated for launch around 2015. But news broke this week that NASA is abandoning funding for the project, which means the U.S. will cede its role in developing this critical instrument in order to redirect funds to the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST).
- The Russian Soyuz TMA-21 piloted spacecraft docked with the International Space Station (ISS). The new ISS crew consists of Russians Alexander Samokutyayev and Andrei Borisenko, and U.S. astronaut Ronald Garan.
- NATURE reports that NASA is disbanding two major US science teams following a bilateral meeting with the European Space Agency, Nature has learned. In a public presentation April 4, Jon Morse of NASA Astrophysics Division said that the International X-ray Observatory Science team and the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA)’s International Science Team will formally no longer exist and the project offices are closing.
- Virgin Galactic dropped the White Knight Two and Space Ship Two on the San Francisco Airport Thursday. Watch the video from Wired.
- Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) head Elon Musk revealed their latest launch vehicle on Tuesday, the Falcon Heavy. Effectively three Falcon 9 core stages strapped together, the new vehicle – set to debut as soon as 2013 – will be the most powerful US rocket to have launched since the Saturn V was built for the Apollo Program, eventually sharing a 20 missions per year manifest with the Falcon 9.
- Chinese Space Junk Won’t Hit Space Station
- Russia’s Soyuz TMA-21 spacecraft, which also goes by its American designation of 26S, has blasted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Monday (4th April) at 10:18:20 PM GMT, carrying three crew-members for the International Space Station’s (ISS’) Expedition 27 and Expedition 28 crews.
- The scheduled April 19 launch of the space shuttle Endeavour is expected to be postponed for at least 10 days, sources close to the project said Sunday. The glitch evidently has to do with a scheduling conflict involving a Russian resupply craft, the Progress, which was to launch a few days after the Endeavour. That craft cannot dock with the International Space Station while the shuttle is there, and NASA had hoped to persuade the Russians to agree to put the Progress into a “parking” orbit until the Endeavour had completed its mission.
- NASA has announced the winners of the 18th annual NASA Great Moonbuggy Race — and it’s Puerto Rico’s year. Teams representing Teodoro Aguilar Mora Vocational High School of Yabucoa, Puerto Rico, snared the top two berths in the high school division; and, for the second straight year, the University of Puerto Rico in Humacao held off all comers to win the college division.
- The New Scientist discusses stars that orbit the wrong way in their galaxy’s heart are probably the remnants of another galaxy that was eaten. Astronomers have noted for years that the stars at the heart of some galaxies orbit in the opposite direction to that of their neighbours further out.
- NASA managers have been presented with a working plan and completed assessments on the potential for a Soyuz fly-around of the Shuttle/Station stack during Endeavour’s docked mission. With many of the hurdles from the canceled STS-133 fly-about plan removed, the unique event has a high potential of being approved by the International Space Station (ISS) partners.
- Russia’s soyuz TMA-21 rocket has been moved into position at the Baikonur launch pad in Kazakhstan before the scheduled blast off date on Tuesday. The craft will have an international crew of US astronaut Ron Garan, and Russian cosmonauts Aleksander Samokutyaev and Andrei Borisenko.
- The Endeavour astronauts followed a realistic countdown sequence Friday, getting suited up and strapping inside the space shuttle for a thorough dress rehearsal that culminated with a pretend ignition and shutdown of the three main engines at T-minus 4 seconds.
- More than 70 million observations during the past two 2 years in orbit from ESA’s GOCE satellite has given scientists their most detailed map yet of Earth’s gravitational field. The lumpiness of that geoid—the theoretical surface that a planet-wide ocean would take if there were no tides or currents—betrays the irregularity of the planet’s mass distribution, including concentrations of mass such as mountain ranges and ice sheets.
- The Soyuz site at Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana is now ready for its first launch. ESA yesterday handed over the complex to Arianespace, marking a major step towards this year’s inaugural flight.
Posted in Commercial Space, Earth, European Space Agency, International Space Station, Jupiter, Moon, NASA, Roscosmos, Russian Space Agency, Space Shuttle | Tagged: Adler Planetarium, Allen Telescope Array, Ariane 5, Arianespace, Astrophysical Jet, Atlantis, Atlas 5, Baikonur, Blue Origin, Boeing, Cat's Eye Nebula, CCDev-2, Chandra X-ray Observatory, Constellation, CST-100, Endeavour, ESA, Falcon 9, Falcon Heavy, French Guiana, Galactic Cannibalism, Gamma Ray Burst, GOCE, Hubble Space Telescope, Intelsat New Dawn, International Space Station, International X-ray Observatory, ISS, James Webb Space Telescope, Juno, Jupiter, JWST, Kennedy Space Center, Laser Interferometer Space Antenna, LISA, NASA Great Moonbuggy Race, National Reconnaissance Office, NRO, NROL-34, Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, Progress, Puerto Rico, Resourcesat-2, Roscosmos, Russian Space Agency, SETI, Sierra Nevada Corp, Smithsonian Institute, Soyuz, Space Exploration Technologies, Space Ship Two, Space Shuttle, SpaceX, STS-133, STS-134, STS-135, Swift, TMA-21, ULF-6, ULF-7, Vandenberg Air Force Base, Vostok 3KA-2, White Knight Two, Yahsat Y1A, Yuri Gagarin | Leave a Comment »
Posted by drdave on August 6, 2010
31 July 2010
- If you want to see Venice while keeping your feet dry, don’t go when the sun has lots of spots. Peaks in solar activity cause the city to flood more often, apparently by changing the paths of storms over Europe.
30 July 2010
- Ground control teams began sending out a beacon for Spirit on July 26, but the rover has not yet responded. In a press release on Friday, NASA put out the word that it may never wake. “It will be the miracle from Mars if our beloved rover phones home,” Doug McCuistion, director of NASA’s Mars Exploration Program.
- The shuttle Endeavour’s three main engines were installed this week as workers prepare the ship’s two solid rocket boosters.
30 July 2010
- Orbital Sciences Corp. will continue its work with NASA’s small rockets program as prime contractor on a $125 million, five year contract.
- The Planetary Society has this to say about the NASA authorization bill in the House of Representatives: “the proposed bill abandons any significant investment in exploration technology, effectively eliminates the Administration’s approach for engaging the commercial sector, establishes a program of loan guarantees that the Administration did not request, and seeks to reinstate programs that have been determined to be unsustainable.”
29 July 2010
- Popular Mechanics thinks NASA is being set up for failure: “NASA is being asked to do too much with too little by Congress, and, once again, America’s space agency is set up for failure. If this plan goes forward, it will preserve jobs in Utah, Alabama, Texas and Florida, but contribute little to actually accomplishing things in space. And we can expect to have to assemble another panel of experts a couple of years from now to tell us once again what we already know, and what Congress will continue to ignore, because pork will always reign over progress.”
28 July 2010
- Astronomers expect to find a number of planets with cozy, Earth-like properties. Which is why the TED lecture by Dimitar Sasselov, a member of the planet-hunting Kepler space telescope’s science team, created such a furor. The latest to weigh in on the TED event on 16 July is The New Scientist article. Whether its 38 or 140, the withholding of data until February 2011 is causing a ruckus.
- A rare specimen of massive stars that live fast and die young has been photographed by a European observatory in Chile.
The blazing hot star is called WR 22 and is shedding its atmosphere many millions of times faster than our own sun in outward blasts that unleash powerful radiation emissions.
27 July 2010
- Yuri Artsutanov and Jerome Pearson will appear at this year’s Space Elevator Conference, to be held in Redmond, Washington (August 12-15). Yuri is traveling all the way from St. Petersburg, Russia.
- Russian astronauts have completed a space walk at the International Space Station using their new “smart suits”. They replaced a badly performing camera and hooked up the automated rendezvous equipment for autopilot dockings using the Russian KURS system on the new Rassvet module, delivered in May.
- The August 2010 issue of Scientific America has Kepler Co-Investigator Dimitar Sasselov’s article Planets We Could Call Home. This is the gentleman who Spilled the Beans at TED.
26 July 2010
- Kepler Co-Investigator Spills The Beans: Lots of Earth-like Planets. Harvard’s Dimitar Sasselov gave an address at TEDGlobal at Oxford this month, announcing the discovery by the Kepler observatory of “hundreds” of earth like planets. The video is at TED.
- The first of three Glonass satellites has arrived at Baikonur in preparation for launch on 2 September 2010. The remaining two satellites will arrive in August, and mated to the DM upper stage and Proton rocket.
- Prelaunch processing of the Progress M-07M cargo vehicle is underway by RSC-Energia. The Progress is scheduled to fly from Baikonur aboard a Soyuz-U rocket on 8 September 2010 on a resupply mission to the International space station.
- Dextre, the special-purpose dexterous manipulator sometimes described as the hand for Canadarm2 on the International Space Station (ISS), is almost ready to begin serving as a backup for spacewalking astronauts and cosmonauts.
25 July 2010
- Researchers poring over Google Earth images have discovered one of Earth’s freshest impact craters — a 45-meter-wide (148-foot-wide) pock in southwestern Egypt that probably was excavated by a fast-moving iron meteorite no more than a few thousand years ago.
24 July 2010
23 July 2010
- Curiosity, the next Mars rover grows by leaps and bounds.
- The best Mars map ever made is now available online for planetary scientists and armchair astronauts alike. And citizen scientists are invited to help make it even better.
- More Curiosity news: the rover took its first steps Friday inside a clean room at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, kicking off a test campaign to prove the $2.3 billion robot can operate on the surface of Mars.
22 July 2010
21 July 2010
- NASA reports that the spacecraft Cassini has observed the formation of giant snowballs in Saturn’s F ring. The gravitational pull of the moon Prometheus creates wake channels, which trigger the formation of the snowballs. Some are as large as 20 km in diameter.
- Scientists have completed installation of the Mars Descent Imager, or MARDI, on the new Mars Rover Curiosity. MARDI will return images of the descent and landing of Curiosity in 2012.
- Workers started assembling twin solid rocket boosters this week to help power Endeavour toward orbit in February on the final scheduled launch of the space shuttle program.
20 July 2010
- Preliminary data from the European Space Agency’s CryoSat-2 spacecraft has been released. A better understanding of how Earth’s ice fields are changing has come another step closer.
- Politicians on the House Science and Technology committee continue to cling to “the sunk cost fallacy” as they endorse efforts to keep the Constellation program on track, despite the legislation worked out last week between the Senate and the White House. Citing the $9 Billion already wasted on the Constellation program, committee leaders claimed that it was “imperative that … [NASA] builds on the investments made to date”.
- This will warm the cockles of the hearts over at ATK: “It (the US solid rocket motor industry) is over capacity right now,” Brett Lambert said at the Farnborough Airshow on Monday, adding a consolidation was long overdue.
19 July 2010
- Scientists at CalTech have obtained data from the Cassini spacecraft documenting the drop in the level of two lakes on Saturn’s moon Titan. The decline is about one meter per year for the past four years.
- The DragonEye (DE) relative navigation sensor – set to ride with Discovery on STS-133 – will be installed two weeks later than planned, following a laser rod failure during testing. Discovery – currently enjoying a smooth processing flow – will be conducting the second test for the sensor during her arrival at the International Space Station (ISS) in November.
18 July 2010
- Following on the recent fly-by of Lutetia by the Rosetta spacecraft, Emily Lakdawalla has a discussion over at The Planetary Society blog about how Lutetia compare to the other asteroids and comets visited by spacecraft.
17 July 2010
- NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) observatory has just completed its first full sky survey. The first release of WISE data, covering about 80 percent of the sky, will be delivered to the astronomical community in May of next year.
- WISE has also discovered 95 new Near Earth Asteroids.
16 July 2010
- Astronomers using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have confirmed the existence of a baked object that could be called a “cometary planet.” The gas giant planet, named HD 209458b, is orbiting so close to its star that its heated atmosphere is escaping into space.
- The Senate Commerce Committee approved bipartisan legislation July 15 that authorizes NASA funding levels through 2013.
15 July 2010
- Three research articles have been published from the third and final flyby of Mercury in September 2009 by Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry and Ranging spacecraft (MESSENGER). Data from the final flyby has revealed the first observations of ion emissions in Mercury’s exosphere; new information about the planet’s magnetic substorms; and evidence of younger volcanic activity than previously recorded.
14 July 2010
- Scientists at Penn State released information on a blast of the brightest X-rays ever detected from beyond our Milky Way. The X-Ray burst temporarily blinded the eye on NASA’s Swift space observatory earlier this summer. The burst was 168 times brighter than the typical burst and five times brighter than anything previously seen.
- The South Pole-Aitken (SPA) basin is the largest and oldest recognized impact basin on the moon. It’s diameter is roughly 2,500 km or 1,550 miles. The moon’s circumference is just under 11,000 km, meaning the basin stretches across nearly a quarter of the moon.
13 July 2010
- The wheels on Curiosity that will touch down on Mars in 2012 are several rotations closer to spinning on the rocky trails of Mars. This video clip shows engineers in the JPL clean room where the rover is being assembled as they put all six wheels into motion for the first time.
- Japan’s Kaguya spacecraft first photographed the enormous caverns last year. Now the powerful Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC, the same camera that photographed Apollo landers and astronauts’ tracks in the moondust) is giving us enticing high-resolution images of the caverns’ entrances and their surroundings.
12 July 2010
- India’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C15) successfully launches CARTOSAT – 2B Satellite
- A total solar eclipse arced across the southern Pacific Ocean Sunday, blotting out the sun and offering stunning views to skywatchers.
11 July 2010
- “Movie” of the encounter between Rosetta and the asteroid Lutetia.
10 July 2010
- Rosetta has completed her fly-by of Lutetia. Close up images should arrive about 21:00 UTC.
- International Launch Services (ILS) have launched the EchoStar XV telecommunications satellite via their veteran Proton-M launch vehicle and Breeze-M upper stage.
9 July 2010
- The place to be for the upcoming Sunday solar eclipse is French Polynesia (between 7:00 am and 10:30 am local time – 1700 and 2030 GMT). Come to think of it, the place to be has always been French Polynesia.
8 July 2010
- The International Space Station (ISS) may live on until 2028, following confirmation by the Space Station Program Control Board (SSPCB) that partner agencies have been asked to produce an extension blueprint for continued operation until 2025, with the potential to push as far as 2028.
- Rocketplane Global has filed for bankruptcy. It had been working on a suborbital rocket-jet hybrid plane that would have lofted paying passengers above the 62-mile (100-kilometer) altitude mark.
- JAXA had the following announcement on the HAYABUSA main web page: “This summer, we are exhibiting a part of the capsule of the Asteroid Explorer “HAYABUSA,” which returned to the Earth on June 13, and other interesting things at the Sagamihara City Museum, JAXA Tsukuba Space Center, and at the OO square on the first floor of Marunouchi Oazo Building. Why don’t you come and witness the real capsule that came back to the Earth after seven years in space!”
7 July 2010
- Puff the Magic Dragon?
- The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency said Wednesday it has found several dozen additional particles in a container inside a tiny capsule that the Hayabusa unmanned space probe released in June after a seven-year round-trip to the asteroid Itokawa. Results of analyses will probably not come until September.
6 July 2010
- From the JAXA Hayabusa website: “Minute particles were confirmed in the sample container of the HAYABUSA, whose unpacking operation was started on June 24 (JST) at the Curation Center at the Sagamihara Campus. We are still unsure if those particles are something from the ITOKAWA or from the Earth, thus we will further examine them”.
5 July 2010
- SpaceDaily.com is reporting that Japanese scientists have found “minute particles” inside the Hayabusa return capsule. The JAXA web site for Hayabusa has not yet posted the press release concerning this announcement.
4 July 2010
- Following an aborted docking maneuver on Friday, the Progress M-06M resupply spacecraft completed its docking program this morning at 16:17 UTC.
3 July 2010
- NASA and Shuttle managers have devised a forward plan to complete the mandatory Wing Leading Edge (WLE) Spar inspections on Atlantis – one of only a few mandatory safety inspections required for Atlantis before she can be cleared for flight next year.
2 July 2010
- The Russian Progress resupply mission to the ISS experienced technical difficulties and failed to dock. A second attempt is tentatively scheduled for Sunday at 9:17 AM Phoenix time (1617 GMT).
- New Horizons successfully executed a June 30 thruster-firing, which lasted 35.6 seconds just about one mile per hour. This will make sure that New Horizons makes its planned closest approach 7,767 miles (12,500 kilometers) above Pluto at 7:49 a.m. EDT on July 14, 2015.
- NASA astronaut Douglas Wheelock snapped this picture of auroral lights as seen from the International Space Station.
1 July 2010
- As has been expected for many weeks, NASA managers have approved the Change Requests (CR) for the launch dates of the next two shuttle missions. With STS-133 moving to November 1, STS-134 is targeting February 26 – although the threat of the program running out of funding may force Endeavour’s launch up by a week or so. A decision on adding STS-135 also appears to be no closer.
- The Russian space freighter Progress M-06M will dock with ISS as scheduled
Posted in Earth, JAXA, Mars, Mercury, NASA, Pluto, Russian Space Agency, Space Shuttle, The Planetary Society | Tagged: Astronauts 4 Hire, Atlantis, Baikonur, CalTech, Carina Nebula, Cassini, CryoSat-2, Curiosity, Dextre, Dimitar Sasselov, Discovery, EchoStar XV, Endeavour, Farnborough Airshow, French Polynesia, Glonass, Hayabusa, Hubble Space Telescope, ILS, India, International Launch Services, International Space Station, ISS, Itokawa, JAXA, Jerome Pearson, Kaguya, Kepler, KURS, Lutetia, MARDI, Mars Descent Imager, Massive Star, Mercury, MESSENGER, Moon, Near Earth Asteroids, New Horizons, Orbital Sciences Corp, Pluto, Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, Popular Mechanics, Progress M-06M, Progress M-07M, Proton, PSLV-C15, Rosetta, Russia, Saturn, Scaled Composites, Solar Eclipse, South Pole-Aitken, Space Elevator Conference, SpaceShipTwo, Spirit, Swift, TED, TED lecture, The Planetary Society, Titan, Venice, Virgin Galactic, Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, WISE, X-Ray Burst, Yuri Artsutanov | Leave a Comment »