May 11, 2017

CU Boulder, Harris Join Forces To Boost Research In Space Antennas, Radar, Universal Exploration

The RALPHEE thermal vacuum chamber, which Harris and CU Boulder plan to utilize in an upcoming collaborative project. Image Credit: University of Colorado Boulder

May 11, 2017 – The University of Colorado Boulder and Harris Corporation have announced a new master research agreement. The agreement solidifies the relationship between Harris and CU Boulder to further mutual interests in analytical instrumentation, space antennas, space payloads and electronics, radar, universe exploration and other capabilities. Read More

NASA Study Finds Unexpectedly Primitive Atmosphere Around ‘Warm Neptune’

The atmosphere of the distant “warm Neptune” HAT-P-26b, illustrated here, is unexpectedly primitive, composed primarily of hydrogen and helium. By combining observations from NASA’s Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes, researchers determined that, unlike Neptune and Uranus, the exoplanet has relatively low metallicity, an indication of the how rich the planet is in all elements heavier than hydrogen and helium. Image Credit: NASA/GSFC

May 11, 2017 – A study combining observations from NASA’s Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes reveals that the distant planet HAT-P-26b has a primitive atmosphere composed almost entirely of hydrogen and helium. Located about 437 light years away, HAT-P-26b orbits a star roughly twice as old as the sun. Read More

Astronomers Pursue Renegade Supermassive Black Hole

Image Credit: Illustration: CXC/M. Weiss; X-ray: NASA/CXC/NRAO/D.-C. Kim; Optical: NASA/STScI

May 11, 2017 – Supermassive black holes are generally stationary objects, sitting at the centers of most galaxies. However, using data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and other telescopes, astronomers recently hunted down what could be a supermassive black hole that may be on the move. Read More

Bleriot Propeller Close-Up

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

May 11, 2017 – This view from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft shows Cassini’s best image of the propeller feature known informally as Bleriot. The propeller is named after Louis Bleriot, the French engineer and aviator who in 1909 was the first person to fly across the English Channel. Read More

GOES-16 Post-Launch Assessment Review Completed

Image Credit: NOAA

May 11, 2016 – The GOES-16 Post-Launch Assessment Review (PLAR) was successfully completed on May 9. The PLAR is an evaluation of the readiness of the spacecraft systems to proceed with routine operations. An independent review team evaluated the flight and data operations readiness, satellite performance and the readiness to transfer responsibility from the development organization to the operations organization. Read More

Colorado Astronaut Jack Fischer Prepares For Friday Spacewalk

Image Credit: ESA/NASA

May 11, 2017 – Expedition 51 Flight Engineer Jack Fischer of NASA is preparing for his first spacewalk on Friday, May 12, 2017. Here he is seen inside the International Space Station (ISS) in his spacesuit during a fit check. Read More

Metro Denver EDC Makes New Leadership Appointment To The Colorado Space Coalition

Image Credit: Colorado Space Coalition

May 11, 2017 – The Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation (Metro Denver EDC) has named a new co-chair to its industry affiliate, the Colorado Space Coalition (CSC). Read More

More News:

United Launch Alliance Joint-Venture Agreement Expires
Source: Jane’s 360

The 2005 joint-venture master agreement between Boeing and Lockheed Martin that created the United Launch Alliance (ULA) expired this month, according to a key US Air Force (USAF) official.

Hubble Space Telescope’s Replacement Arrives At NASA’s Johnson Space Center
Source: Houston Chronicle

NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope recently arrived in Houston to undergo tests at the Johnson Space Center.

Final Brick Installed In Launch Complex 39B Flame Trench For NASA’s Space Launch System
Source: NASA/Kennedy Space Center

Intense heat and fire will fill the north side of the flame trench beneath the pad when NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket and Orion spacecraft lift off from Launch Complex 39B at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. A project to upgrade the walls of the flame trench to withstand these conditions recently was completed.

From ‘Dorm To Swarm’: Academy Cadets Compete In UAS Competition
Source: U.S. Air Force Academy

The Air Force Academy took second place to the Naval Academy at the DARPA-sponsored unmanned aerial systems Swarm Competition, April 23-25 at Camp Roberts, California.

SMC Awards Four Study Contracts For Weather Mission
Source: U.S. Air Force/Los Angeles Air Force Base

Air Force Space Command’s Space and Missile Systems Center recently awarded four study contracts worth approximately $500,000 each to Electro Optical Vista, Millennium Space Systems, Orbital ATK, and Raytheon Company – Space and Airborne Systems. These companies will provide concept reports to address space-based cloud characterization and theater weather imagery solutions by the end of fiscal year 2019.

2nd Space Warning Squadron Receives New Commander
Source: U.S. Air Force/Buckley Air Force Base

Lt. Col. Shannon DaSilva assumes command of the 2nd Space Warning Squadron from Lt. Col. April Wimmer May 11, on Buckley Air Force Base, Colorado.

Electromagnets Offer Tantalizing Options For Satellites
Source: NASA

A group of NASA physicists at Kennedy Space Center may have uncovered an intriguing option for controlling a fleet of satellites or stopping an older satellite from tumbling out of control.

Sounding Rocket Mission May 16 Providing Real-World Test For New Technologies
Source: NASA

New rocket and spacecraft technology can be tested on the ground, such as in labs. However, in some cases a new technology needs to be flight tested to see how it performs in the “real-world” environment. A NASA sounding rocket launch from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia on May 16 will provide the flight testing needed for 24 experiments and new technologies.

New Study Shows How Even Small Asteroids Can Make A Big Impact

Impacts from asteroids between the size of a house and a city block are much more common and could pose a greater threat, according to a new study published this month in Icarus. An asteroid with a diameter of just 65 meters could do a lot of damage, from driving tsunamis to decimating a highly populated region.

Winning Plans For CubeSats To The Moon
Source: ESA

If you could fly a CubeSat to the Moon, what could such a tiny satellite do there? ESA posed this question – and now four proposals will be studied in more detail for possible flight over the coming decade.

NASA Hosts Successful Satellite Servicing Technology Transfer Industry Day
Source: NASA

Satellites are crucial to everyday life and cost hundreds of millions of dollars to manufacture and launch. Currently, they become space junk when they run out of fuel. There is a better way, and it centers on satellite servicing, which can make spaceflight more sustainable, affordable, and resilient.

Flooding In Southern Colorado Viewed By GOES-16
Source: Satellite Liaison Blog

On May 10, 2017, widespread and slow-moving convection brought heavy rainfall and flooding to parts of southern Colorado. GOES-16 imagery was utilized to monitor the development and evolution of convection during the period.