October 12, 2017

Work Progresses On Orion Powerhouse For Crewed Mission

Image Credit: NASA/Rad Sinyak

October 12, 2017 – While engineers in Europe continue to outfit the Orion spacecraft’s service module for Exploration Mission-1 in preparation for shipment to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida next year, work is already beginning on the service module that will power, propel, cool and provide air and water for the first crewed mission in the Orion spacecraft in the early 2020s. Technicians at Thales Alenia in Turin, Italy, are working on the primary structure of the European Service Module that will carry astronauts in Orion beyond the Moon during Exploration Mission-2. Read More


NASA Pinpoints Cause Of Earth’s Recent Record Carbon Dioxide Spike

The last El Nino in 2015-16 impacted the amount of carbon dioxide that Earth’s tropical regions released into the atmosphere, leading to Earth’s recent record spike in atmospheric carbon dioxide. The effects of the El Nino were different in each region. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

October 12, 2017 – A new NASA study provides space-based evidence that Earth’s tropical regions were the cause of the largest annual increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration seen in at least 2,000 years. Read More


Devourer Of Planets? Princeton Researchers Dub Star ‘Kronos’

Sun-like star Kronos shows signs of having ingested 15 Earth masses worth of rocky planets, prompting Princeton astronomers to nickname it for the Titan who ate his young. This artist’s rendering of the diverse rocky planets in our galaxy hints at what Kronos’s planets might have looked like before the star enveloped them. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/R. Hurt (SSC-Caltech)

October 12, 2017 – In mythology, the Titan Kronos devoured his children, including Poseidon (better known as the planet Neptune), Hades (Pluto) and three daughters. So when a group of Princeton astronomers discovered twin stars, one of which showed signs of having ingested a dozen or more rocky planets, they named them after Kronos and his lesser-known brother Krios. Their official designations are HD 240430 and HD 240429, and they are both about 350 light years from Earth. Read More


Intense Storms Batter Saturn’s Largest Moon

Titan, Saturn’s largest moon, behind the planet’s rings. The much smaller moon Epimetheus is visible in the foreground. Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

October 12, 2017 – Titan, the largest of Saturn’s more than 60 moons, has surprisingly intense rainstorms, according to research by a team of UCLA planetary scientists and geologists. Although the storms are relatively rare — they occur less than once per Titan year, which is 29 and a half Earth years — they occur much more frequently than the scientists expected. Read More


EchoStar 105/SES-11 Satellite Successfully Launched

EchoStar 105/SES-11. Image Credit: Business Wire/Airbus Defence and Space

October 12, 2017 – EchoStar Corp. announced today that the EchoStar 105/SES-11 satellite was successfully launched on October 11 at 4:53 PM MDT on a SpaceX Falcon 9 vehicle from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Read More


More News:

How Sphero Created The Best R2-D2 Toy Ever Released
Source: Polygon

Star Wars toys are announced during a special event called Force Friday that takes place a few months before the release of each movie, and robot company Sphero had two big surprises for fans this year.


Report: Satellite Launches To Reach New Paradigm
Source: Leonard David’s Inside Outer Space

The respected space consulting firm, Euroconsult, reports that 300 satellites with a mass over 50 kilograms will be launched on average each year by 2026 for government agencies and commercial organizations worldwide.


Rare Soyuz Ignition Abort Scratches Express Rendezvous Plans For Progress Cargo Ship
Source: Spaceflight101

Russia’s Soyuz rocket suffered a rare ignition abort on Thursday, preventing the Progress MS-07 cargo resupply craft from launching on a new fast-track rendezvous with the International Space Station that had been planned for demonstration in preparation for faster crew flights to the orbiting laboratory on future Soyuz missions.


Rare Photos By Early NASA Astronauts Being Auctioned Off
Source: Colorado Springs Gazette

John Glenn was the first person to snap a photograph of Earth from outer space. Neil Armstrong took the first picture from the moon’s surface. The original prints of those are among 445 rare photos taken by American astronauts that are being sold by Skinner Auctioneers and Appraisers starting this week.


Photos: Atlas 5 Returns To Pad For Night Owl Launch
Source: Spaceflight Now

The United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket with the NROL-52 spacecraft aboard moved to the launch pad this morning for liftoff Saturday to serve the national interest. Liftoff is scheduled for 3:31 a.m. EDT (0731 GMT).


Popular Mechanics Selects NASA Engineer For 2017 Breakthrough Award
Source: NASA/JSC

If NASA team members happen to thumb through the November issue of Popular Mechanics, they may find a familiar face. The magazine editors named Cody Kelly, the Orion spacecraft’s post-landing survival equipment subsystem manager, as a recipient for one of their prestigious honors—the Breakthrough Awards.


Commercial Spaceflight Federation Welcomes New Board Leadership And Member Companies
Source: Commercial Spaceflight Federation

The Commercial Spaceflight Federation (CSF) has elected new Officers for the 2017-2018 year, and approved two new Associate member companies at its bi-annual Executive Board of Directors, held last month in Tucson, Arizona.


‘Seeing’ The Other Side Of Our Galaxy
Source: American Association for the Advancement of Science

Astronomers have successfully traced a spiral arm on the far side of our Galaxy, an accomplishment that provides new insights into the structure of the Milky Way. Efforts to observe the far side of our Galaxy have been hampered by the vast distance and interstellar dust that blocks optical light from those regions.