January 9, 2018

NASA’s Magnetospheric Multiscale Mission Locates Elusive Electron Act

January 9, 2018 – The space high above Earth may seem empty, but it’s a carnival packed with magnetic field lines and high-energy particles. This region is known as the magnetosphere and, every day, charged particles put on a show as they dart and dive through it. Like tiny tightrope walkers, the high-energy electrons follow the magnetic field lines. Sometimes, such as during an event called magnetic reconnection where the lines explosively collide, the particles are shot off their trajectories, as if they were fired from a cannon. Read More


ICON & GOLD Teaming Up To Explore Earth’s Interface To Space

The last time Earth’s disk was seen in far-ultraviolet light was in 1972, during the Apollo 16 lunar landing mission. Astronaut John W. Young used a UV camera to take this photo of Earth from the moon. GOLD will have a continuous view of Earth’s atmosphere in far-ultraviolet light, allowing scientists to see changes to the ionosphere and thermosphere that are otherwise invisible. Image Credit: NASA

January 9, 2018 – Like Earth, space has weather. Except instead of swirling winds and downpours of precipitation, space weather is defined by shifting electric and magnetic fields and rains of charged particles. At the very beginning of space, starting just 60 miles above Earth’s surface, there’s a layer of the atmosphere that shifts and changes in concert with both types of weather. Read More


Ready For The Next 60 Years: Ball Aerospace Continues To Invest In People, Infrastructure, Technologies

January 9, 2018 – Since its founding in Boulder, Colorado, in 1956, Ball Aerospace has significantly increased its high-tech workforce, embarked on several infrastructure expansion projects and pioneered new technologies to meet the demands of customers today. Read More


First Image From NOAA-20 CrIS

Image Credit: NASA/NOAA

January 9, 2018 – On January 5, 2018, forty-eight days after JPSS-1 (NOAA-20) was launched into Earth orbit, it sent back its first Cross-track Infrared Sounder (CrIS) science data. This data is a part of a series of instrument activation and checkout tests that occur before the satellite is declared fully operational. CrIS is one of five key instruments onboard NOAA-20 that will improve day-to-day weather forecasting while extending the record of many long-term observations of Earth’s climate. Read More


NASA Alaska-Launched Rockets To Study Space X-ray Emissions And Create Polar Mesospheric Cloud

A Super Soaker payload is tested for its ability to operate while experiencing vibrations during flight. Image Credit: NASA/Berit Bland

January 9, 2018 – NASA rockets launched during the Alaskan winter typically explore the interaction of solar winds with Earth’s atmosphere and the resulting auroras that dance across the night sky. However this winter, between January 15 – 31, 2018, NASA personnel and university researchers are traveling to the Poker Flat Research Range (PFRR) in Alaska to launch several rocket-borne investigations for other purposes. Read More


Dream Chaser Spacecraft Passes Major NASA Milestone After Free-Flight Test

SNC’s Dream Chaser® Spacecraft at NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center. Image Credit: NASA

January 9, 2018 – Sierra Nevada Corporation’s (SNC) Dream Chaser program passed a major NASA milestone for its Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCAP) contract with the completion of a successful Free-Flight test, which produced subsonic flight and landing performance data. Read More


United Launch Alliance Completes Key Milestone For Launch Of Boeing’s Starliner And Return Of U.S.-Based Human Spaceflight

An Atlas V rocket will launch the Boeing CST-100 Starliner spacecraft. Image Credit: ULA

January 9, 2018 – United Launch Alliance (ULA) successfully completed an Atlas V Launch Segment Design Certification Review (DCR) recently in preparation for the launch of astronauts to the International Space Station from U.S. soil in The Boeing Company’s CST-100 Starliner spacecraft. ULA’s Atlas V DCR supported the Boeing International Space Station (ISS) DCR that was held with NASA at Kennedy Space Center in early December. Read More


More News:

NASA Releases Logo For Upcoming 60th Anniversary
Source: NASA

In 2018, NASA will mark the 60th anniversary of its establishment as a U.S. government agency. President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed NASA’s founding legislation, the 1958 National Aeronautics and Space Act, on July 29, 1958. NASA considers its birthday to be Oct. 1, the day the agency opened for business.


Life-Saving NASA Communications System Turns 20
Source: NASA

NASA’s Tracking and Data Relay Satellites (TDRS) don’t just enable data from spacecraft to reach Earth – they provide internet and even telemedicine to researchers at the South Pole. The South Pole TDRS Relay (SPTR) system turns 20 years old on Jan. 9, 2018.


Astronomy From The Stratosphere: Results From SOFIA
Source: NASA

Astronomers from NASA’s Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, SOFIA, Northwestern University, and the University of Maryland were on hand at the 231st meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Washington, D.C., to discuss new scientific results describing how their studies of dust grain polarization and celestial magnetic fields are leading to a better understanding of star formation, theories about how gas cools in the interstellar medium, and how magnetic fields are creating stellar winds around black holes.


See-Through Metals
Source: ESA

Astronauts on the International Space Station have begun running an experiment that could shine new light on how metal alloys are formed.


Video: The Promise Of GOES-R
Source: StormCenter Communications

GOES-R is the beginning of a new era for meteorologists. See how this game-changing satellite will advance weather forecasts.


NASA Invites Media To View Orion Test Capsule, Recovery Hardware
Source: NASA

Media are invited to see a test version of NASA’s Orion spacecraft and the hardware that will be used to recover the spacecraft upon its return from space, and talk with team members involved in the recovery operations at 9 a.m. PST Thursday, Jan. 25, at U.S. Naval Base San Diego.


NASA Sees The Light For The Future Of Space Communications
Source: The Space Review

Spacecraft missions face all sorts of constraints based on financial and technological limitations, from their overall size to the quantity and quality of instruments they carry. Another has been communications, particularly for missions far from Earth, where limited transmission power and the tremendous distances involved can result in data rates reminiscent of old-fashioned modems.


GBDX For Sustainability Challenge Launched
Source: DigitalGlobe

We are opening up our geospatial big data platform, GBDX, and our 100+ petabyte image library to accelerate innovation in support of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).


Fate Of Mystery Zuma Satellite In Question
Source: Spaceflight Now

A classified satellite code-named Zuma, launched Sunday night atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, may have suffered a mission-ending failure during or shortly after the climb to space, according to news accounts Monday evening. Kicking off a busy year for SpaceX, the Falcon 9 blasted off from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 8 p.m. EST (GMT-5) Sunday, putting on a spectacular show as it streaked away on a northeasterly trajectory.