CSExtra – Monday, July 23, 2012
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Monday’s CSExtra offers the latest reporting and commentary on space related activities from around the world, including a roundup of weekend events. Japan boosts its third re-supply mission to the International Space Station. Russia initiates an overnight test of an upgraded rendezvous system for Progress and Soyuz spacecraft bound for the International Space Station. Central Florida shows signs of economic revival a year after NASA’s final shuttle mission brings thousands of job losses and wider economic uncertainty. The FAA engages the emerging U. S. commercial space sector on safety. A look at the subtle signs of climate change. As NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory/Curiosity rover nears a landing at Gale Crater, scientists look back at a bold attempt to address the Martian life question. Russia launches five satellites. A fresh look at Pluto.
1. From Spaceflightnow.com and CBS News, July 20: Japan’s third un-piloted International Space Station’s re-supply mission lifts off successfully. Astronauts aboard the station will be standing buy to berth the spacecraft and its cargo to the station on July 27. http://www.spaceflightnow.com/h2b/htv3/launch.html.
A. From Space.com, July 20: Japan’s HTV-3 space station cargo mission lofts the winners of a global YouTube middle school/high school space science experiment contest. http://www.space.com/16682-youtube-student-experiments-japan-rocket.html
2. From Spaceflightnow.com, July 22: The website offers updates on Russia’s Progress 47 re-docking with the International Space Station scheduled for Monday at 9:57 p.m., EDT. The Russian re-supply craft departed the station on Sunday for a one day test of a new KURS automated rendezvous system that features updated electronics and fewer antennas. The test could pave the way for use of the new hardware on future Soyuz crew transport and Progress cargo capsules. http://www.spaceflightnow.com/station/exp32/status.html
3. From Florida Today, July 21: The Central Florida newspaper finds an economic revival under way in the region close to the Kennedy Space Center a year after NASA’s 30-year shuttle program came to an end with thousands of job losses. Though many former shuttle workers left the region, others remained to start new businesses. “Businesses are re-inhabiting real estate near the space center. Former shuttle workers are starting the businesses they’ve dreamed of, putting their skills to work in new ways. And entrepreneurs with no connection to the space program are moving forward, undeterred by what has come before and optimistic about the future” Florida Today reports. http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20120722/BUSINESS/307220044/Enterprises-sprout-economic-effects-shuttle-wane?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|Space%20News
A. From USA Today, July 20: NASA’s Kennedy Space Center’s public tour expands to include the launch pads that launched 135 shuttle missions and those of NASA’s Apollo program. http://travel.usatoday.com/destinations/dispatches/post/2012/07/now–tourists-can-tour-the-kennedy-center-launch-pad/807268/1
4. From Space News, July 20: The FAA looks to its future role in the oversight of the safety of commercial passenger space travel. Pam Melroy, a former NASA shuttle commander, is among those at the FAA pioneering the safety environment. http://www.spacenews.com/civil/120720-faa-commercial-space-safety.html
5. From The New York Times, July 22: Columnist Paul Krugman voices new concerns for climate change and a warming trend based on probabilities outlined by NASA scientist James Hansen. Though the changes are subtle, nine of the 10 hottest years have been recorded since 2000. Krugman notes. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/23/opinion/krugman-loading-the-climate-dice.html?_r=1
6. From Discovery.com, July 20: As NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory rushes toward an Aug. 6 landing on Mars, Discovery looks back at NASA’s Viking 1 mission 36 years ago. The forward looking mission included a biology discovery experiment, whose results have confounded the experts for decades. Perhaps, MSL can clear up the mystery, Discovery suggests. http://news.discovery.com/space/did-we-encounter-martians-36-years-ago-120720.html
7. From Ria Novosti, July 22: Five Russian, Belarusian, Canadian and German satellites take flight aboard a single Russian Soyuz-FG booster. http://en.rian.ru/russia/20120722/174723455.html
8. From New Scientist, July 20: Pluto’s growing line up of moons suggests a fresh look at the dwarf planet is in order. The options include new respect for Pluto’s role in the assembly of the solar system. http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg21528742.500-plutos-not-a-planet–its-much-odder-than-that.html
9. From Spacepolicyonline.com, July 23: A look at space-policy related activities scheduled for the week ahead. http://www.spacepolicyonline.com/news/events-of-interest-week-of-july-23-27-2012
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