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October 2011 Top Stories


»» 100 Year Starship Public Symposium Focuses Attention on Future Scientific Challenges

100 Year Starship Public Symposium Focuses Attention on Future Scientific Challenges [Sunday, October 2, 2011] The 100 Year Starship Public Symposium wrapped up today in Orlando, Florida. The event promoted a compelling dialog among academia, business, the public and government about issues related to long term, long distance exploration.



»» Video: NASA Tests Deep Space J-2X Rocket Engine

Video: NASA Tests Deep Space J-2X Rocket Engine [Monday, October 3, 2011] NASA conducted a 40-second test of the J-2X rocket engine Sept. 28, the most recent in a series of tests of the next-generation engine selected as part of the Space Launch System architecture that will once again carry humans into deep space.



»» NASA Puts United Launch Alliance's Delta II on Contract

NASA Puts United Launch Alliance's Delta II on Contract [Monday, October 3, 2011] NASA announced the addition of United Launch Alliance's (ULA) Delta II rocket to the NASA Launch Services (NLS) II contract.



»» NASA And EDC Renew Economic Development Cooperation

NASA And EDC Renew Economic Development Cooperation [Monday, October 3, 2011] NASA's Kennedy Space Center and the Economic Development Commission (EDC) of Florida's Space Coast are formally renewing their economic development partnership.



»» NASA Awards Historic Green Aviation Prize

NASA Awards Historic Green Aviation Prize [Tuesday, October 4, 2011] NASA has awarded the largest prize in aviation history, created to inspire the development of more fuel-efficient aircraft and spark the start of a new electric airplane industry.



»» Galileo IOV Satellites Fuelled for Launch

Galileo IOV Satellites Fuelled for Launch [Tuesday, October 4, 2011] The two Galileo In-Orbit Validation satellites reached Europe's Spaceport last month. Galileo's second flight model, FM2, touched down on 7 September on an Antonov-124 and the Galileo Protoflight Model followed it seven days later on an Ilyushin 76.



»» NASA Selects Technology Payloads For Reduced-Gravity Flights

NASA Selects Technology Payloads For Reduced-Gravity Flights [Wednesday, October 5, 2011] NASA has selected nine proposals to demonstrate new technologies for the second set of payloads to fly on commercial suborbital reusable launch vehicles and the Zero-G commercial parabolic aircraft.



»» AIP FYI: NRC Report on NASA's Meteoroid and Orbital Debris Programs

AIP FYI: NRC Report on NASA's Meteoroid and Orbital Debris Programs [Wednesday, October 5, 2011] The recent reentry of the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite into the Pacific Ocean has focused new attention on the problems created by orbital debris.



»» European experts gather at space hazards seminar

European experts gather at space hazards seminar [Wednesday, October 5, 2011] Strong agreement was voiced on the need for Space Situational Awareness by delegates representing a wide range of stakeholders at an SSA seminar in Warsaw while exchanging views and ideas on the future direction of Europe's capabilities.



»» Be like Steve Jobs. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

Be like Steve Jobs. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. [Thursday, October 6, 2011] Steve Jobs was a 6 months older than me. I am certainly not done with life. Given his tectonic impact, he was clearly not ready either - even if he had faced his fate.



»» NASA Performs Student Experiments For Whole World To See

NASA Performs Student Experiments For Whole World To See [Friday, October 7, 2011] NASA announced it will provide support to Space Adventures, Ltd. of Vienna, Va., to conduct a global competition for students to design experiments that will be performed in space and broadcast around the world.



»» Lockheed Martin Powers On the GPS III Pathfinder

Lockheed Martin Powers On the GPS III Pathfinder [Monday, October 10, 2011] GPS III will improve position, navigation and timing services and provide advanced anti-jam capabilities yielding superior system security, accuracy and reliability.



»» YouTube SpaceLab Lifts Off With Lenovo Aboard

YouTube SpaceLab Lifts Off With Lenovo Aboard [Monday, October 10, 2011] Six regional finalists will gather in Washington, D.C., in March 2012 to experience a ZERO-G flight and receive other prizes.



»» Video: Galileo: how does it work?

Video: Galileo: how does it work? [Tuesday, October 11, 2011] The launch of the first pair of Galileo satellites, set for October 20, will open the road for Europe's satellite navigation programme.



»» Virgin Galactic Appoints Former NASA Executive as Vice President of Operations

Virgin Galactic Appoints Former NASA Executive as Vice President of Operations [Tuesday, October 11, 2011] Virgin Galactic is pleased to announce the appointment of former NASA executive Michael P. Moses as the Vice President of Operations.



»» Space Florida Signs MOU With UK-Based A|D|S

Space Florida Signs MOU With UK-Based A|D|S [Tuesday, October 11, 2011] Today, Space Florida President Frank DiBello and Rees Ward, A|D|S Group, Ltd., CEO signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to further enhance business development opportunities between Florida and the UK in the aerospace sector.



»» NASA Announces Two National Student Science Competitions

NASA Announces Two National Student Science Competitions [Wednesday, October 12, 2011] NASA is offering students the opportunity to compete in two microgravity challenges: "Dropping In a Microgravity Environment," or DIME, and "What If No Gravity?" or WING.



»» Internal NASA Studies Show Cheaper and Faster Alternatives to The Space Launch System

Internal NASA Studies Show Cheaper and Faster Alternatives to The Space Launch System [Wednesday, October 12, 2011] Guess what: the conclusions that NASA arrived at during these studies are in direct contrast to what the agency had been telling Congress, the media, and anyone else who would listen.



»» Boeing space capsule begins wind-tunnel tests

Boeing space capsule begins wind-tunnel tests [Wednesday, October 12, 2011] Engineers have been testing the spacecraft, called the Crew Space Transportation (CST)-100, since Sept. 17 at NASA's Ames Research Center in California.



»» Virgin Galactic signs deal with NASA for Research Missions on SpaceShipTwo

Virgin Galactic signs deal with NASA for Research Missions on SpaceShipTwo [Thursday, October 13, 2011] Virgin Galactic has confirmed an order from NASA for up to three charter flights on its privately-built spacecraft to provide opportunities for engineers, technologists, and scientific researchers to conduct cutting-edge experiments in suborbital space.



»» Space Florida and Instituto Nacional de Tecnica Aeroespacial Sign Memorandum of Understanding

Space Florida and Instituto Nacional de Tecnica Aeroespacial Sign Memorandum of Understanding [Friday, October 14, 2011] Today, Space Florida President Frank DiBello and Mr. Jaime Denis, Director General of the INTA, signed a MOU to further enhance business development opportunities between Florida and Spain in the aerospace sector.



»» NASA ARC Internal Memo: ARCTek 2012: Keeping Ames at the Cutting Edge of Technology

NASA ARC Internal Memo: ARCTek 2012: Keeping Ames at the Cutting Edge of Technology [Friday, October 14, 2011] How do we keep ARC innovative? How do we maintain our reputation as NASA's "go-to" Center for innovation? How do we stay at the nation's technology cutting edge?



»» Annual NASA-Sponsored Business Expo Set For Oct. 18

Annual NASA-Sponsored Business Expo Set For Oct. 18 [Friday, October 14, 2011] The annual trade show is sponsored by NASA Kennedy Space Center's Prime Contractor Board and the 45th Space Wing and Canaveral Port Authority. It will feature about 175 business and government exhibitors from across the nation and Brevard County.



»» NASA, NRO, USAF Establish Strategy for Certifying New Expendable Launch Vehicles

NASA, NRO, USAF Establish Strategy for Certifying New Expendable Launch Vehicles [Friday, October 14, 2011] NASA, the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) and the U.S. Air Force signed an agreement this week to establish clear criteria for certification of commercial providers of launch vehicles used for national security space and civil space missions.



»» Image: Galileo Constellation in 3D

Image: Galileo Constellation in 3D [Friday, October 14, 2011] The first Galileo launch is less than a week away, but how will Europe's own satellite navigation system operate? Find out in a new ESA video, on YouTube in 3D.



»» Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) Ready to Compete for Upcoming DoD Launches

Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) Ready to Compete for Upcoming DoD Launches [Friday, October 14, 2011] Today the U.S. Air Force issued a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the NRO and NASA that serves as a joint agreement on the process they will use to allow new companies to compete to provide launch services.



»» First Soyuz ready for liftoff from French Guiana

First Soyuz ready for liftoff from French Guiana [Saturday, October 15, 2011] The first Soyuz to take off from Europe's Spaceport in French Guiana was moved to the launch pad yesterday. The rocket that will carry the first two Galileo navigation satellites into orbit is on track for liftoff on 20 October.



»» STRaND-1 Space App Winners Announced

STRaND-1 Space App Winners Announced [Sunday, October 16, 2011] Space technology experts from SSTL and the SSC have announced the four lucky winners of the 'Space App Competition' who will see their Android Applications run on smartphone-powered satellite STRaND-1, due for launch into space next year.



»» NASA Solicitation: International Space Station Common Communications for Visiting Vehicles

NASA Solicitation: International Space Station Common Communications for Visiting Vehicles [Monday, October 17, 2011] The C2V2 is a two-way communications system for use between the ISS and Visiting Vehicles (VVs) during rendezvous, proximity, departure, and docked operations.



»» NASA OIG Annual Report: Federal Information Security Management Act: Fiscal Year 2011 Evaluation

NASA OIG Annual Report: Federal Information Security Management Act: Fiscal Year 2011 Evaluation [Monday, October 17, 2011] This annual report, submitted as a memorandum from the Inspector General to the NASA Administrator, provides the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) with our independent assessment of NASA's information technology (IT) security posture.



»» Keys to a New Dawn - Virgin Galactic Gateway to Space Dedication, Spaceport America, New Mexico

Keys to a New Dawn - Virgin Galactic Gateway to Space Dedication, Spaceport America, New Mexico [Tuesday, October 18, 2011] Looking skyward, more than 800 guests marveled at Virgin Galactic's commercial space vehicles as they soared through the skies of southern New Mexico during the dedication ceremonies of Virgin Galactic's new home at Spaceport America.



»» Virginia Governor McDonnell Visits NASA Wallops Flight Facility (With Photos)

Virginia Governor McDonnell Visits NASA Wallops Flight Facility (With Photos) [Tuesday, October 18, 2011] Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell paid a visit to NASA's Wallops Flight Facility on October 17 for a first-hand look at the development of Orbital Sciences Corporation's Taurus II rocket that will start carrying supplies to the Space Station in 2012.



»» GAO Report Raises Serious Concerns over ULA Block Buy

GAO Report Raises Serious Concerns over ULA Block Buy [Tuesday, October 18, 2011] The report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the nonpartisan, investigative arm of the U.S. Congress, found serious flaws with a proposal that would guarantee ULA's monopoly over Department of Defense (DoD) launches.



»» SpaceX Completes Key Milestone to Fly Astronauts to International Space Station

SpaceX Completes Key Milestone to Fly Astronauts to International Space Station [Thursday, October 20, 2011] Today, SpaceX announced it has successfully completed the preliminary design review of its revolutionary launch abort system, a system designed for manned missions using its Dragon spacecraft.



»» ILS Proton Successfully Launches ViaSat-1 for ViaSat

ILS Proton Successfully Launches ViaSat-1 for ViaSat [Thursday, October 20, 2011] International Launch Services (ILS), a leading launch services provider for the global commercial satellite industry, successfully carried the ViaSat-1 satellite into orbit today on an ILS Proton for ViaSat, Inc. of Carlsbad, California.



»» Soyuz - Galileo IOV launch delayed

Soyuz - Galileo IOV launch delayed [Thursday, October 20, 2011] Today's launch of Soyuz with Galileo IOV is delayed. The launch countdown has been stopped and a new launch date will be announced later today.



»» Soyuz - Galileo IOV-1 launch set for Friday, 21 October, 2011

Soyuz - Galileo IOV-1 launch set for Friday, 21 October, 2011 [Thursday, October 20, 2011] Following the work performed on the Soyuz launch facility and the associated additional checks, Arianespace has decided to restart the countdown operations for the launch of VS01, Soyuz ST-B - Galileo IOV-1.



»» Soyuz flight VS01 Lifts Off From French Guiana - Video

Soyuz flight VS01 Lifts Off From French Guiana - Video [Friday, October 21, 2011] Soyuz lifts off for the first time from Europe's Spaceport in French Guiana, carrying the first two Galileo In-Orbit Validation satellites.



»» Senators Recognize Contributions of Stennis Space Center to Gulf Coast

Senators Recognize Contributions of Stennis Space Center to Gulf Coast [Friday, October 21, 2011] U.S. Senators Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), Mary Landrieu (D-La.), and David Vitter (R-La.) on Wednesday introduced a resolution honoring the 50th anniversary of the John C. Stennis Space Center.



»» Innovators Sought for DARPA Satellite Servicing Program

Innovators Sought for DARPA Satellite Servicing Program [Sunday, October 23, 2011] DARPA's Phoenix program seeks to develop technologies to cooperatively harvest and re-use valuable components from retired, nonworking satellites in GEO and demonstrate the ability to create new space systems at greatly reduced cost.



»» MSU's twin satellite to launch Oct. 28 on NASA rocket

MSU's twin satellite to launch Oct. 28 on NASA rocket [Sunday, October 23, 2011] The twin of a Montana State University student-built satellite that was launched in the spring but failed to reach orbit as a result of an anomaly with the TAURUS-XL rocket is scheduled to be launched Friday, Oct. 28, on another NASA rocket.



»» GeoEye to Offer Premium Satellite Imagery as a Service via Google Earth Builder

GeoEye to Offer Premium Satellite Imagery as a Service via Google Earth Builder [Monday, October 24, 2011] GeoEye will be using Google Earth Builder to deliver a new set of imagery services that will make it easy for any Google Earth(TM) or Google Maps(TM) user to access imagery across GeoEye's vast archive.



»» iPads in Space?

iPads in Space? [Monday, October 24, 2011] NEEMO-15 crew member Astronaut Shannon Walker says that there will be several tablet computers aboard the next Progress cargo flight to the International Space Station.



»» Comments by NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver at the International Symposium for Personal and Commercial Spaceflight

Comments by NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver at the International Symposium for Personal and Commercial Spaceflight [Tuesday, October 25, 2011] We are all here to learn from each other how we can even more effectively advance personal and commercial spaceflight - to create high-paying jobs and open up endless possibilities for our economy.



»» NASA Says That Two iPads Are Heading For the International Space Station

NASA Says That Two iPads Are Heading For the International Space Station [Tuesday, October 25, 2011] According to NASA Public Affairs, the Russians plan to fly two iPads on the December 2011 Progress cargo mission as a replacement for the iPod they currently have on the ISS



»» Media Invited to Orion Spacecraft Water Landing Test At Langley

Media Invited to Orion Spacecraft Water Landing Test At Langley [Tuesday, October 25, 2011] Reporters are invited to attend a water impact test of an 18,000-pound Orion test article at NASA's Langley Research Center's Hydro Impact Basin in Hampton, Va., on Thursday, Oct. 27.



»» NASA Releases Third Status Report On Commercial Partner Progress

NASA Releases Third Status Report On Commercial Partner Progress [Wednesday, October 26, 2011] NASA has posted the third status report on its Commercial Crew Development 2 (CCDev2) program to the agency's Commercial Space Transportation website.



»» Virgin Galactic Selects First Commercial Astronaut Pilot From Competition

Virgin Galactic Selects First Commercial Astronaut Pilot From Competition [Wednesday, October 26, 2011] Today, from an intense selection process with more than 500 applicants including some of the best pilots in the world, Virgin Galactic has selected former USAF test pilot Keith Colmer as the first astronaut pilot to join the commercial spaceline's flight



»» JP Aerospace Airship Flies to the Edge of Space, Smashing the Existing World Altitude Record

JP Aerospace Airship Flies to the Edge of Space, Smashing the Existing World Altitude Record [Wednesday, October 26, 2011] On Saturday morning, October 22, 2011, The Tandem airship was launched from Nevada's Black Rock desert. The airship flew to 95,085 feet, higher than any airship in history.



»» Excalibur Almaz Incorporated partners with NASA

Excalibur Almaz Incorporated partners with NASA [Thursday, October 27, 2011] Excalibur Almaz, Incorporated (EAI), an independently owned U.S. company based in Houston, and NASA have signed an unfunded Space Act Agreement (SAA) for the second development round of NASA's Commercial Crew Program.



»» Letter From Space Adventures to Congress Regarding Commercial Crew Issues

Letter From Space Adventures to Congress Regarding Commercial Crew Issues [Thursday, October 27, 2011] I am writing to you on behalf of our partner to provide you and your colleagues some additional insight into the existing and potential commercial market for orbital human spaceflight.



»» NASA Request for Information (RFI) - Future Space Validation of Earth Science Technologies

NASA Request for Information (RFI) - Future Space Validation of Earth Science Technologies [Thursday, October 27, 2011] ESTO is funding several CubeSat-based technology validations as part of a pathfinder process. ESTO is now interested in defining the parameters of a possible future competitive program to space validate selected Earth science technologies.



»» NASA Inspector General Paul Martin Is Not Going to Comment About An Abused Elderly Woman

NASA Inspector General Paul Martin Is Not Going to Comment About An Abused Elderly Woman [Friday, October 28, 2011] There is extreme concern at senior levels of the agency (as expressed to me) that this sad episode has resulted in a black eye for NASA when in fact it was the NASA OIG who was responsible for this mess.



»» NASA to Announce New Agreement for Kennedy Facilities Monday

NASA to Announce New Agreement for Kennedy Facilities Monday [Friday, October 28, 2011] Journalists are invited to attend a major announcement of a new partnership between NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida and an outside organization that open NASA's facilities to U.S. commercial space launch service providers.



»» Ball Aerospace-Built NPP Satellite Launched Successfully

Ball Aerospace-Built NPP Satellite Launched Successfully [Friday, October 28, 2011] NASA's NPP satellite built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. was successfully launched into a sun-synchronous polar orbit this morning at 2:48 PDT (5:48 EDT).



»» Vega Launch Vehicle Getting Ready for Launch

Vega  Launch Vehicle Getting Ready for Launch [Friday, October 28, 2011] The Flight Readiness Review (FFR) for the Vega launcher was held in Frascati, Italy on October 13 and 14. Based on this review, the Director-General of the European Space Agency (ESA) decided to start the Vega qualification launch campaign.



»» Elon Musk Named Innovator of the Year Award in Technology by WSJ. Magazine

Elon Musk Named Innovator of the Year Award in Technology by WSJ. Magazine [Friday, October 28, 2011] Elon Musk, CEO and Co-founder of Tesla and CEO and CTO of SpaceX, last night was recognized for Innovator of the Year in Technology by WSJ. Magazine.



»» NASA Solicitation: Notification of On-Ramp 1 for RAPID III

NASA Solicitation: Notification of On-Ramp 1 for RAPID III [Sunday, October 30, 2011] The Rapid Spacecraft Development Office (RSDO) Rapid Spacecraft Acquisition (RAPID III) is a multiple award, IDIQ, Fixed Price type contract, for satellite bus core systems with any necessary modifications to meet specific Mission needs.



»» NASA Signs Agreement with Space Florida to Reuse Kennedy Facilities For Boeing CST-100 Development

NASA Signs Agreement with Space Florida to Reuse Kennedy Facilities For Boeing CST-100 Development [Monday, October 31, 2011] Space Florida, the aerospace economic development agency of the state of Florida, is leasing the Orbiter Processing Facility-3 to the Boeing Company to manufacture and test the company's Crew Space Transportation (CST-100) spacecraft.



»» NRC Evaluates NASA's Orbital Debris Programs

NRC Evaluates NASA's Orbital Debris Programs [Monday, October 31, 2011] In order to enhance the benefits of its meteoroid and orbital debris (MMOD) programs, NASA should re-prioritize, re-focus, and expand the programs' efforts, according to a recent report from the National Research Council.




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