September 22, 2017

Joint Polar Satellite System-1 Preparing For Launch

The United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket stands on Space Launch Complex 2. Image credit: NASA/Randy Beaudoin

September 22, 2017 – The first satellite in NOAA’s Joint Polar Satellite System is at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California preparing for its upcoming liftoff aboard a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Delta II rocket. Launch is slated for November 10, at 2:47 a.m. MST. Read More


Lockheed Martin’s Joe Rice Selected For ASA 2017 Distinguished Aerospace Service Award

Joe Rice has been awarded the ASA 2017 Thomas R. Hobson Distinguished Aerospace Service Award.

September 22, 2017 – Yesterday afternoon the Aerospace States Association Chair, New Mexico Lt. Governor John Sanchez announced Lockheed Martin Space Systems’ Joe Rice as the selectee for the association’s 2017 Thomas R. Hobson Distinguished Aerospace Service Award. The award honors a person that has a body of achievements over many years that reflect exemplary support of state base aerospace. The award is named in memory of Thomas R. Hobson, who served as Principal Manager of Government and Public Affairs at Rockwell Collins, headquartered in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Read More


Competition Seeks Student Proposals For NASA’s In-Space Transportation Concepts

September 22, 2017 – NASA is encouraging undergraduate and graduate students and faculty to become partners in the journey to deep space through the 2018 Revolutionary Aerospace Systems Concepts – Academic Linkage (RASC-AL) competition. RASC-AL is seeking proposals from the university community in four deep space transportation areas to potentially improve NASA’s ability to travel within the solar system. Read More


A Slingshot From Earth To Asteroid Bennu

This artist’s concept shows the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft passing by Earth. Image Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center/University of Arizona

September 22, 2017 – NASA’s asteroid sample return spacecraft successfully used Earth’s gravity on Friday to slingshot itself on a path toward asteroid Bennu, for a rendezvous next August. Read More


ChemCam Instrument Aboard Mars Curiosity Rover Passes Milestone

A graph illustrating the number of laser shots by ChemCam per Martian day (or “sol”). Image Credit: Los Alamos National Laboratory

September 22, 2017 – Late Tuesday, the ChemCam instrument that sits atop NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover fired its 500,000th shot at a Martian rock. That’s big news for the ChemCam team at Los Alamos National Laboratory, which developed the instrument in conjunction with CNES (Centre National d’Études Spatiales) in France and continues to help direct operations. Read More


Catalyst Campus To Launch A National, Residential Technology Accelerator In Colorado Springs

September 22, 2017 – Aerospace and Defense incubator, accelerator, and research and development center, Catalyst Campus for Technology and Innovation, announced it would launch the Catalyst Accelerator in January 2018. The Catalyst Accelerator will be based at the Catalyst Campus for Technology and Innovation in Colorado Springs. The Catalyst Accelerator is partnering with the Air Force Research Lab Space Vehicles Directorate (AFRL/RV) to launch the inaugural accelerator cohort. Read More


Global Aerospace Corporation To Present Pluto Lander Concept To NASA

Image shows the Pluto entrycraft timeline: (1) Approach from interplanetary speed of about 31,000 mph (14 km/s); (2) decelerator deployment; (3) entry and descent through the atmosphere; (4) separation, translation and landing; and (6) propulsive hops and jumps for surface exploration. Background image credit L. Calçada of European Southern Observatory (ESO).

September 22, 2017 – Global Aerospace Corporation (GAC) announced today that it will present its Pluto lander concept at the 2017 NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Symposium in Denver, Colorado. Read More


More News:

CoorsTek Center Grand Opening Preview September 28
Source: Colorado School of Mines

Please join us on Thursday, Sept. 28, at 4 p.m. for the CoorsTek Center for Applied Science and Engineering Grand Opening Preview. Get a sneak peek tour of the building before it officially opens in January. Watch the official ribbon-cutting ceremony and listen to remarks from some of the individuals who played a key role in making this building become a reality. Long pants and close-toed shoes are required for the tour due to safety requirements in an active construction zone. Light refreshments will be provided.


Mars Society Announces “Red Eagle” International Student Engineering Contest To Design Mars Lander
Source: The Mars Society

The Mars Society is announcing an international student engineering contest to design a lander capable of delivering a ten metric ton payload safely to the surface of Mars. The competition is open to student teams from around the world. Participants are free to choose any technology to accomplish the mission and need to submit design reports of no more than 50 pages by March 31, 2018.


Exploring The 21st Century Space Economy At AeroSpace Ventures Day 2017
Source: University of Colorado Boulder

This year’s sold-out AeroSpace Ventures Day at CU Boulder’s University Memorial Center drew a crowd of thought leaders and representatives from across Colorado’s vibrant aerospace community––including senior technology officers, small business executives and engineers from leading companies. Together, attendees discussed the state of the industry, caught up on the latest research and networked with students eager to explore careers in the field.


VLBA Finds Closest Pair Of Supermassive Black Holes
Source: National Radio Astronomy Observatory

Astronomers using the National Science Foundation’s Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) radio telescope system have discovered the closest pair of supermassive black holes yet found. The black holes are at the core of a galaxy called NGC 7674, about 400 million light-years from Earth.


a.i. solutions To Support U.S. Geological Survey And NASA As Part Of New Landsat Contract
Source: a.i. solutions

a.i. solutions today announced it is part of a team of companies awarded a U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) for continuation of the Landsat 8 program and support of Landsat 9 upon launch, currently slated for December 2020.


The Hague Space Resources Governance Working Group Releases Draft Building Blocks
Source: Secure World Foundation

Following its most recent meeting in Leiden, the Netherlands from September 11-13, 2017, The Hague Space Resources Governance Working Group (WG) has released a set of 19 Draft Building Blocks for the Development of an International Framework on Space Resources Activities. The building blocks are intended to lay the groundwork for international discussions on the potential development of an international framework for the governance of space resources, without prejudice to its form and structure.


Video: Journey To Mars
Source: NASA

A journey of about six months, Mars is a difficult target to get to, but that’s exactly what we’re planning to do. In this presentation from our 2017 Evening with the Stars event, NASA Glenn researcher Dr. Aaron Weaver explains our plan to send humans to explore a foreign world for the first time since the end of Apollo.


Soaring Over Jupiter
Source: NASA

This striking image of Jupiter was captured by NASA’s Juno spacecraft as it performed its eighth flyby of the gas giant planet. The image was taken on Sept. 1, 2017 at 2:58 p.m. PDT (5:58 p.m. EDT). At the time the image was taken, the spacecraft was 4,707 miles (7,576 kilometers) from the tops of the clouds of the planet at a latitude of about -17.4 degrees. Points of interest are “Whale’s Tail” and “Dan’s Spot.”


Hubble’s Cool Galaxy With A Hot Corona
Source: NASA

Galaxy NGC 6753, imaged here by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, is a whirl of color — the bursts of blue throughout the spiral arms are regions filled with young stars glowing brightly in ultraviolet light, while redder areas are filled with older stars emitting in the cooler near-infrared.


Hawaii Board Of Land & Natural Resources Hears Final Arguments In Conservation District Use Permit Contested Case
Source: Thirty Meter Telescope News Center

The process to secure a Conservation District Use Permit (CDUP) to build TMT on Maunakea continued in Hawaii, as the state land board – also known as the Board of Land and Natural Resources (BLNR) – heard final oral arguments from all parties involved in the contested case. The hearing at the Grand Naniloa Hotel in Hilo on Hawaii Island allowed the Board to listen to both sides of the debate on whether Board members should issue a CDUP to the University of Hawaii – Hilo to allow construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope on Maunakea.


Space Commanders Address Operations, Importance At AFA
Source: U.S. Air Force

Several of the Air Force’s space commanders spoke on a panel about the significance of Air Force space operations and its undeniable importance to national defense during the Air Force Association Air, Space and Cyber Conference Sept. 19, 2017. The Air Force is the lead service for space and has the vast majority of the Defense Department’s space systems, personnel and budget with 36,000 Airmen at 134 different locations.


Positive, Negative Or Neutral, It All Matters: NASA Explains Space Radiation
Source: NASA/Johnson Space Center

Charged particles may be small, but they matter to astronauts. NASA’s Human Research Program (HRP) is investigating these particles to solve one of its biggest challenges for a human journey to Mars: space radiation and its effects on the human body.


Observatory Detects Extragalactic Cosmic Rays Hitting The Earth
Source: University of Chicago

Fifty years ago, scientists discovered that the Earth is occasionally hit by cosmic rays of enormous energies. Since then, they have argued about the source of those ultra-high energy cosmic rays — whether they came from our galaxy or outside the Milky Way.


Muddling Through Space Traffic Management
Source: SpaceNews

“Space traffic management” is the cyber security of the space world. It is a hugely important public policy issue that underpins the successful future expansion of space activities, yet there is no agreement on its definition.


Highest-Energy Cosmic Rays Have Extragalactic Origin
Source: CNRS

Cosmic rays are atomic nuclei that travel through space at speeds close to that of light. Low-energy cosmic rays come from the Sun or from our own Galaxy, but the origin of the highest-energy particles has been the subject of debate ever since they were first discovered fifty years ago: do they come from our Galaxy or from distant extragalactic objects? The question has now been settled by studying 30 000 cosmic-ray particles with energies a million times greater than those of the protons accelerated in the LHC.


China’s 1st Mars Probe To Carry 13 Types Of Payload On 2020 Mission
Source: ChinaDaily.com

China is set to launch its first Mars probe in 2020.


China’s Cargo Spacecraft Leaves Orbit
Source: Xinhua

China’s first cargo spacecraft, Tianzhou-1, left its orbit under orders from ground control around 6 p.m. Friday. The cargo ship twice put on the brakes, continuously lowering its altitude before burning-up in the atmosphere, all under precise control and close monitoring from the ground.