Archive for March, 2013

Slaying the Dragons of Mars

Slaying the Dragons of Mars

Source : RIA Novosti In his groundbreaking book,  The Case for Mars,  Robert Zubrin discussed the role of “dragons” in influencing perception of the various hazards of travelling to and living on the Red Planet.  It is an analogy drawn from the beginning of European mapmaking  early in the age of exploration and the tendency to assign all sorts of horrors […]

Posted in: Mars
Sea Launch Secures Order for 2015

Sea Launch Secures Order for 2015

Trouble plagued Sea Launch AG has secured it first order following a February 1st launch failure which saw the complete loss of the Zenit 3-SL booster and Intelsat-27 satellite only seconds after liftoff.  The failure, which has been blamed on a Ukrainian built pump which supplied on-board power, occured 4.5 seconds after liftoff and resulted in the automatic shut-down of […]

Sarah Brightman May Not Be Flying to ISS

Sarah Brightman May Not Be Flying to ISS

Source: RIA Novosti Vladimir Popovkin, head of the Russian space agency Roscosmos said Saturday that  British soprano Sarah Brightman may be bumped from a flight slot to ISS in 2015.  According the report,  NASA and Roscosmos may jointly decide to extend the duration of what would have been her flight from eight days to a month, effectively erasing her opportunity. Given that the purported […]

Posted in: Space Tourism
Expedition 34 Lands Safely in Kazakhstan

Expedition 34 Lands Safely in Kazakhstan

  Source:  RIA Novosti After 5 months aboard the International Space Station, Expedition 34 landed safely in Kazakhstan during late Friday night U.S. time. Carrying Russian crew members Oleg Novitsky, Yevgeny Tarelkin and American Kevin Ford, the Soyuz capsule landed at 7:06 AM Moscow time 30 miles north of Arkalyk in Kazakhstan.  The three remaining astronauts aboard ISS will have […]

Posted in: NASA, Space Stations
No Quiet Riot : SpaceX Wants Texas to Feel the Noise

No Quiet Riot : SpaceX Wants Texas to Feel the Noise

According to a report in the Valley Star,  SpaceX counsel and Director of Governmental Affairs Caryn Schenewerk testified before a Texas House Committee yesterday  that one of the issues  the Hawthorne, Ca. based company is taking into account in selecting a commercial launch site, is possible complaints over the noise generated by a rocket launch. Among the statements contained in the story: […]

CASIS Awards Two More Experiments for ISS

CASIS Awards Two More Experiments for ISS

  Source :  CASIS CASIS,  the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space, which operates the U.S. national laboratory aboard the International Space Station, awarded two grants for protein crystallization this week.  The two grants, totalling $600,000 went research to which could significantly improve the quality and pace of Earthbound medical research. They winners were: “Edward Snell, […]

Posted in: CASIS
Happy Birthday SpaceX

Happy Birthday SpaceX

SpaceX released this video today, celebrating the company’s 11th birthday. Imagine where it may take us in another 11 years. 

Posted in: SpaceX
Swiss Space Systems Introduces Partially Reusable Small Satellite Launcher

Swiss Space Systems Introduces Partially Reusable Small Satellite Launcher

Swiss Space Systems  (S3),  entered the rapidly growing field of air-launched orbital delivery systems yesterday, with the official unveiling of a three stage architecture aimed at placing up to 250 kg small satellites into space.  The first stage launch platform  is an Airbus A-300 jet aircraft certified for zero-G, parabolic flights. In a departure from other concepts currently […]

Playing Hide and Seek with Martian Life

Playing Hide and Seek with Martian Life

Conditions on Ancient Mars Could Have Supported Life The announcement yesterday was almost anticlimactic. The components identified in an analysis of Martian rock by the Curiosity rover  indicates that the planet was once capable of supporting life.  Although there has yet to be any evidence of ancient microbial life uncovered, excluding the controversial ALH4001 meteorite found here on Earth, could we […]

Posted in: Mars, NASA
Meet the New Neighbors : A Binary System 6.5 Light Years Away

Meet the New Neighbors : A Binary System 6.5 Light Years Away

We are currently living in what many consider a golden age of astronomical discovery in which ongoing analysis of  data produced by various space telescopes such as Kepler and Wise is constantly rewriting our understanding of the cosmos both distant and close. In the latter category comes yesterday’s  announcement from JPL that astronomers have discovered Earth’s third nearest star […]

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