CSExtra – Monday, June 25, 2012
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Monday’s CSExtra offers the latest reporting and commentary on major space activities under way around the world, plus a roundup of weekend activities. Chinese astronauts achieve the country’s first manual space docking. A series of op-eds in U. S. publications find advances in space technology a credible factor in future economic growth. A glance inside NASA’s commercial crew space transportation initiative. Connecticut sixth graders assist NASA cloud observation missions. Two Californians, one aboard the International Space Station and the other in the Angels outfield, compare notes. Gazing at the Big Dipper. Checking in on the UFO question. A look at major space activities scheduled for the week ahead.
1. From The New York Times, June 24: The two man, one woman crew of China’s Shenzhou 9 mission successfully carries out the nation’s first manual space docking, an event carried out on live television. The target was China’s Tiangong 1 orbital space lab. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/25/science/space/chinese-astronauts-dock-spacecraft-with-orbiting-module.html?_r=2&ref=science
A. From Xinhuanet, of China, June 24: China’s Shenzhou 9 manual docking mission achieves success, says a space program spokeswoman. http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/sci/2012-06/24/c_131672968.htm
B. From Space.com, June 24: Sunday’s docking advances China’s plans to assemble a future space station. The Shenzhou 9 crew carried out a docking with Tiangong 1 on June 18. http://www.space.com/16282-china-manual-space-docking-shenzhou-9.html
C. From Spacepolicyonline.com: June 24: China discloses the budget for a series of Shenzhou automated and manual docking tests. http://www.spacepolicyonline.com/news/chinese-manual-docking-successful-chinese-human-spaceflight-budget-revealed
D. From Xinhuanet of China, June 24: China’s Shenzhou 9 crew is scheduled to depart the Tiangong 1 space lab and return to Earth within days, says a space agency spokeswoman. http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/sci/2012-06/24/c_131673024.htm
2. From the Pasadena Sun of California, June 23: In an op-ed, California congresswoman Judy Chu endorses the work at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory to further the robotic exploration of Mars. The investments will lead to improvements in a range of technologies, including medical care, writes Chu. http://www.pasadenasun.com/opinion/tn-pas-0624-oped-bringing-mars-exploration-from-science-fiction-to-fact,0,7789014.story
A. From the Baltimore Sun, June 24: In an editorial, the Sun says that investments in space exploration could help the U S. economy, and national security needs. http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/oped/bs-ed-space-transportation-20120624,0,2203104.story
B. From Florida Today, June 23: The U. S. can find commercial promise in the innovation that accompanies advances in space technology, writes columnist John Kelly. “The growth of space as a business relies heavily on our ability as a nation to harness what we’ve developed, primarily for military and intelligence uses first, into tools that can be applied commercially to solve problems, provide services and, yes, generate profits,” says Kelly. http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20120624/COLUMNISTS0405/306240051/John-Kelly-Innovators-fuel-hopes-space?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|Space%20News&nclick_check=1
3. From Space News, June 22: Plans for a high altitude abort test of NASA’s Orion/Multi-purpose Crew Vehicle may slip from 2015 to 2017 because of budget constraints, say agency and Lockheed Martin Corp. personnel involved in the development. The four person capsule passed a 2010 launch pad abort system test. http://www.spacenews.com/civil/120622-orion-abort-test-delay.html
4. From the Los Angeles Times, June 23: In a question-and-answer session with the Times, Ed Mango, NASA’s Commercial Crew Program manager, outlines the vision behind NASA’s efforts to nurture a commercial Earth orbit space transportation services industry. http://www.latimes.com/news/science/la-sci-nasa-commercial-future-20120623,0,645125.story
5. From The Stamford Advocate of Connecticut via the Associated Press and Houston Chronicle: Stamford 6th graders join students in more than 80 other countries to assist NASA with a cloud observing project. The student observations are providing “ground truth” for the views captured by three Earth observing spacecraft. http://www.chron.com/default/article/Sixth-graders-help-NASA-in-science-class-3657558.php
6. From the Los Angeles Times, June 22: Angels right fielder Torii Hunter speaks with NASA astronaut Joe Acaba, one of six current residents of the International Space Station. Hunter, a self described space cadet, says the two Californians talked about the challenges and rewards of spaceflight. Excerpts of the chat were broadcast during weekend games between the Angels and the Los Angeles Dodgers. http://www.latimes.com/sports/sportsnow/la-sp-sn-torii-hunter-space-cadet-20120622,0,4646156.story
7. From Discovery.com, June 24: Viewing the Big Dipper, perhaps the most recognizable constellation. http://news.discovery.com/space/big-dipper-constellation-120624.html#mkcpgn=rssnws1
8. From Space.com, June 23: The space news website checks in on a new National Geographic look into the UFO phenomenon. The mystery endures. http://www.space.com/16261-chasing-ufos-series-roswell.html
9. From Spacepolicyonline.com, June 24: A look at major space-related events scheduled for the week ahead. Lots of policy discussion. Three of the space station’s current crew descent to Earth late this week. http://www.spacepolicyonline.com/news/events-of-interest-week-of-june-25-29-2012
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