January 27 – February 2, 2020

NASA Funds Demonstration Of Assembly And Manufacturing In Space

The Space Infrastructure Dexterous Robot (SPIDER) technology demonstration is slated to take place on NASA’s Restore-L spacecraft. The payload will assemble a functional communications antenna and manufacture a spacecraft beam. Image Credit: Maxar Technologies

January 31, 2020 – NASA has awarded a $142 million contract to Maxar Technologies of Westminster, Colorado, to robotically assemble a communications antenna and manufacture a spacecraft beam in orbit. The technology demonstration is slated to take place on NASA’s Restore-L spacecraft, designed to service and refuel a satellite in low-Earth orbit. Read More


NASA Spitzer Space Telescope Ends Mission Of Astronomical Discovery

NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope has concluded after more than 16 years of exploring the universe in infrared light. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

January 31, 2020 – After more than 16 years studying the universe in infrared light, revealing new wonders in our solar system, our galaxy, and beyond, NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope’s mission has come to an end. Read More


Space Force Decommissions 26-Year-Old GPS Satellite To Make Way For GPS III Constellation

From left, Col. Laurel Walsh, 50th Operations Group commander, and Airman 1st Class Michael McCowan, 2nd Space Operations Squadron satellite systems operator and mission planner, give the final command to decommission Satellite Vehicle Number-36 at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, Jan. 27, 2020. SVN-36 was launched March 10, 1994, and exceeded its design life of approximately seven years. Image Credit: U.S. Air Force/Airman Amanda Lovelace

January 30, 2020 – The 2nd Space Operations Squadron decommissioned Satellite Vehicle Number-36, the second to last Block IIA satellite, January 27. Read More


Space Foundation Board Selects Gene Kranz To Receive The 2020 General James E. Hill Lifetime Space Achievement Award

Gene Kranz in NASA’s Apollo era Mission Control room. Image Credit: NASA

January 30, 2020 – Gene Kranz headed NASA’s Mission Control during some of the most dangerous and most-watched missions of the Apollo era, including the Apollo 11 lunar landing and the oxygen tank explosion of Apollo 13. On March 30, Kranz will be honored during the Opening Ceremony of the 36th Space Symposium as the 2020 recipient of the Space Foundation’s highest honor — the General James E. Hill Lifetime Space Achievement Award. Read More


NASA’s Interstellar Mapping And Acceleration Probe Mission Enters Design Phase

As the mission enters the design phase, SwRI is building the Compact Dual Ion Composition Experiment (CoDICE) for NASA’s Interstellar Mapping and Acceleration Probe mission. CoDICE combines the capabilities of multiple instruments into one patented sensor that weighs about 22 pounds. Image Credit: Southwest Research Institute

January 29, 2020 – A mission to study the interaction of the solar wind with the ancient cast-off winds of other stars, and the fundamental process of particle acceleration in space, has completed a critical NASA review and is now moving closer toward a scheduled launch in 2024. Southwest Research Institute is playing a major role in the Interstellar Mapping and Acceleration Probe (IMAP) spacecraft, managing the payload office and providing a scientific instrument and other technology for the mission. Read More


Ball Aerospace Leaders Named AIAA Associate Fellows

Ball Logo. Image Credit: PRNewsFoto/Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp.

January 28, 2020 – The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) has honored three Ball Aerospace employees among its 2020 class of Associate Fellows. Dr. David Kaufman, Tracy Copp and Dr. Joseph Footdale earned the designation, which is reserved for  professionals who demonstrate notable contributions and leadership in furthering the advancement of aerospace science and technology. Read More


U.S. Space Force Seeks Civilians To Join Staff

January 28, 2020 – The U.S. Space Force, the new branch of the Armed Forces established December 20, has begun advertising to fill civilian staff positions in its initial headquarters, called the Office of the Chief of Space Operations. Advertisements for the first 35 positions were posted last week, with a second wave of positions to follow soon.  Read More


NASA Selects First Commercial Destination Module For Space Station

The Axiom modules are targeted to attach to the International Space Station beginning in the latter half of 2024. Image Credit: Axiom Space

January 27, 2020 – NASA has selected Axiom Space of Houston to provide at least one habitable commercial module to be attached to the International Space Station as the agency continues to open the station for commercial use. Read More


More News

Harnessing Orbital Junk For Better Space Weather Monitoring
Source: University of Colorado Boulder


Seeing Stars In 3D: The New Horizons Parallax Program
Source: NASA/JHUAPL


In A Space Industry First, NASA Grants KBR The Right To Train Private Astronauts At NASA Facilities
Source: KBR, Inc.


Tipton’s Space Resources Institute Act Included In NASA Reauthorization
Source: The Gazette


U.S. Space & Rocket Center Conducting Nationwide Search For CEO And Executive Director
Source: U.S. Space & Rocket Center


Rocket Lab Counting Down To First Electron Launch Of 2020
Source: Spaceflight Now


Artemis 1 Orion Halfway Through Plum Brook Thermal Vacuum Test
Source: NASASpaceFlight.com


Go Inside This Denver-Based Supersonic Jet With ‘Meet XB-1’
Source: Colorado Inno


Bigelow Aerospace Sets Sights On Free-Flying Station After Passing On ISS Commercial Module
Source: SpaceNews


NASA, NOAA, And Partners Name Ocean Studying Satellite For Noted Earth Scientist
Source: NOAA NESDIS


Here’s How Robots Could Repair Or Dispose Of Broken Satellites In Orbit
Source: The Verge


Chandra Spots A Mega-Cluster Of Galaxies In The Making
Source: NASA


New Mission Will Take 1st Peek At Sun’s Poles
Source: NASA


2 Satellites Will Narrowly Avoid Colliding At 32,800 mph Over Pittsburgh On Wednesday
Source: Space.com


NASA’s Parker Solar Probe Hears Whispers Of Solar Wind
Source: Space.com


Pluto And Titan Are Surprisingly Hazy, But Scientists Are Fuzzy On Exactly Why
Source: Space.com


Japan Seeks To Finalize Agreement With The U.S. On Lunar Exploration Cooperation
Source: SpaceNews


Satellites At War: A Week Of U.S.-Iran Tensions Sum Up Military Reliance On Space
Source: SpaceNews


SpaceX Scrubs Starlink Launch Due To Winds Aloft, Will Try Again Wednesday
Source: Spaceflight Now


Bridenstine Concerned About Aspects Of House NASA Authorization Bill
Source: SpaceNews


Tarantula Nebula Spins Web Of Mystery In Spitzer Image
Source: NASA/JPL