April 17, 2017

Asteroid To Fly Safely Past Earth On April 19

April 17, 2017 – A relatively large near-Earth asteroid discovered nearly three years ago will fly safely past Earth on April 19 at a distance of about 1.1 million miles (1.8 million kilometers), or about 4.6 times the distance from Earth to the moon. Although there is no possibility for the asteroid to collide with our planet, this will be a very close approach for an asteroid of this size. Read More


Titan Flyby T-126: Final Close Encounter, And Gateway To The Grand Finale

During the flyby, Cassini will attempt to study the elevations of Titan’s smaller methane lakes — maybe even measuring their depth and composition. Image Credit: NASA/JPL

April 17, 2017 – Cassini’s 127th and final close flyby of Titan marks the end of Cassini’s Ring-Grazing Orbits and sets the stage for the mission’s Grand Finale. Read More


Weather 90 Percent ‘Go’ For Tuesday Launch

April 17, 2017 – Meteorologists with the U.S. Air Force 45th Weather Squadron are expecting very promising conditions for tomorrow’s planned launch of the Orbital ATK CRS-7 mission aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket. Read More


NASA Approves Instruments For ESA’s ‘JUICE’ Mission To Jupiter System

An artist’s impression of the JUICE mission. Image Credit: NASA

April 17, 2017 – NASA’s partnership in a future European Space Agency (ESA) mission to Jupiter and its moons has cleared a key milestone, moving from preliminary instrument design to implementation phase. Read More


More News:

United Launch Alliance To Lay Off 48 People At Vandenberg Air Force Base
Source: LA Times

United Launch Alliance will lay off 48 people at Vandenberg Air Force Base, a move that comes as rival SpaceX ups the competition in the launch services market.


Kip Thorne, Pioneer In Gravitational Waves, Creative Force Behind ‘Interstellar,’ To Give 51st Gamow lecture At CU Boulder April 27
Source: University of Colorado Boulder

Albert Einstein predicted the existence of “gravitational waves” in 1916 based on his General Theory of Relativity, but it took a century to prove him correct. On February 11, 2016, a team of physicists from the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory, or LIGO, Scientific Collaboration announced that the decades-long search had come to fruition with the detection of gravitational waves in September 2015. It’s no exaggeration to say that Kip Thorne has been an indispensible connection between those two momentous events in the history of physics.


Workshop Discusses Technical, Business, And Regulatory Aspects Of Small Satellites
Source: Secure World Foundation

SWF Project Manager Ian Christensen spoke as part of the Small Satellites Tech, Business & Regulatory Industry Workshop organized by the European Center for Space Law (ECSL) and it’s partners. Mr Christensen’s remarks discussed small satellites as a disruptive innovation, and highlighted related policy and business challenges and opportunities.


Video: Expedition 51-52 Soyuz Vehicle Is Prepared For Launch In Kazakhstan
Source: NASA

At the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, the Soyuz MS-04 spacecraft and its Soyuz booster were mated in the Integration Facility April 17 and transported to the launch pad on a railcar April 18 for final preparations before launch to the International Space Station April 20. The Soyuz MS-04 will carry Expedition 51-52 Soyuz Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin of Roscosmos and Flight Engineer Jack Fischer of NASA to the orbital complex for a four and a half month mission.


Video: Atlas V OA-7 Mission Profile
Source: United Launch Alliance (ULA)

A United Launch Alliance Atlas V 401 will launch Orbital ATK’s Cygnus™ spacecraft on the initial leg of its cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station (ISS).


Watercolor World
Source: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

When imaged at infrared wavelengths that pierce the planet’s upper haze layer, the high-speed winds of Saturn’s atmosphere produce watercolor-like patterns.


Peterson Air Force Base Picking Up The Pentagon’s Top Award For Excellence In Space Missions
Source: Colorado Springs Gazette

The 21st Space Wing at Peterson Air Force Base may need a bigger trophy case after picking up the Pentagon’s top award for excellence in space missions this month.


Cygnus Ship Sending Abundance Of Science To International Space Station
Source: Spaceflight Now

Carrying more science research gear to the International Space Station than ever launched before by U.S. commercial logistics vehicles, the next Orbital ATK Cygnus freighter takes flight Tuesday.


Mars: Bringing Together The Best And The Brightest Here On Earth
Source: Lockheed Martin

Sending humans to Mars and returning them safely back to Earth will take an unprecedented amount of ingenuity and innovative engineering. It will take some of the world’s brightest engineering minds coming together and tackling the space industry’s toughest engineering challenges.