CSExtra – Thursday, July 18, 2013
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Thursday’s CSExtra offers the latest reporting and commentary on space related activities from across the globe. In Washington, the Senate and House go different ways on NASA’s 2014 budget. NASA objects to the direction of U. S. House on budget deliberations. NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spots evidence for an ancient ocean on Mars. NASA pushes its pursuit of an explanation for the water leak that cut short a spacewalk outside the International Space Station on Tuesday. Once the province of science fiction, space communications using light as a medium nears flight. Massive star collisions may be source of gold. West Texas holds fast to its vision for a commercial space port.
1. From Spacepolitics.com: U. S. Sen. Bill Nelson, of Florida, chairman of the Senate Science Subcommittee, prepares to introduce a bill authorizing $18.1 billion in NASA spending in 2014. Friendly to human space travel, the measure supports funding for NASA’s commercial crew initiative as well as development of the new Orion crew capsule and Space Launch System for future human deep space exploration. A Senate appropriations measure introduced earlier this week would set aside $18 billion for the space agency in 2014.
2. From Space News: In an unusual move, NASA uses the blogosphere to criticize U. S. House appropriators for the proposed $16.6 billion space agency budget for 2014. The appropriation would dial NASA spending back to 2007 levels. The White House asked for $17.7 billion. The message comes from chief NASA spokesman David Weaver.
A. From Florida Today: House NASA appropriations measure would jeopardize U. S. global standing in technology and science. The proposed $16.6 billion spending bill heads to the full House for approval.
3. From Space.com: Scientists working with NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spot evidence that Mars hosted a global ocean billions of years ago. The ocean was fed by an impressive river delta, the vestiges of which are also evident in the MRO imagery.
4. From The Associated Press: The investigation into the source of a water leak in European Space Agency astronaut Luca Parmitano’s space suit continued on Wednesday. The seepage prompted NASA to cut short the space walk by Parmitano and NASA’s Chris Cassidy.
5. From Nature News: Visionary Arthur C. Clark was correct when he wrote of light as a promising communications medium. NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) and the European Space Agency’s Alphasat will test the concept. Both missions are to launch soon.
6. From USA Today: Gold, the exotic valuable metal, is forged in the merging of neutron stars, according to Harvard University scientists.
7. From the Midland Reporter Telegram, of Texas, The West Texas community of Midland remains dogged in its pursuit of a commercial space port license from the Federal Aviation Administration. California based XCOR is a prospective tenant.
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