CSExtra – Top Space News for Friday, May 9, 2014
If you would prefer to receive CSExtra in e-mail format, e-mail us at [email protected] with the word SUBSCRIBE in the subject line.
Today’s CSExtra offers the latest reporting and commentary on space related activities from across the globe. House expected to consider House Appropriations Committee’s $17.9 billion spending bill for NASA in 2015 later this month. NASA’s Space Launch System heavy lift rocket, Orion crew capsule, Commercial Crew Program and possible Europa mission start among the major initiatives receiving bipartisan support. Country star touts Space Launch System heavy lift rocket. Humans lack consciousness for alien encounters, says expert. Mars One, the Dutch nonprofit, surges ahead with plans to privately colonize Mars in the mid-2020s. Look for Jupiter, Mars and Saturn in the night skies. The eyes of NASA’s Mars Odyssey and Curiosity rovers. Space Station rebounds from power channel outage. U.S. Court of Federal Claims lifts injunction against U.S. purchases of Russian rocket engine. SpaceX prompted the injunction with suit over U.S. Air Force rocket buy from United Launch Alliance. Spaceport America awaits first space passenger flights with anticipation.
NASA 2015 Budget
Spacepolicyonline.com (5/8): U.S. House Appropriation Committee approves $17.9 billion budget for NASA in 2015, $495 million more than requested and $250 million more than the current appropriation. The increase includes more funding for the Space Launch System heavy lift rocket; and Orion crew capsule; space science, including an Europa mission; Commercial crew counts an increase, though less than the White House sought.
Huntsville Times, of Alabama, (5/8): Increased spending approved by House appropriators will keep NASA’s Space Launch System heavy lift rocket headed toward a planned 2017 test flight. Action by appropriations committee on Thursday also requires NASA to consider a human Mars flyby mission as soon as 2021. The spending bill includes $1.6 billion for SLS development, $1.14 billion for Orion and $315 million on ground system upgrades. The measure is expected to go before the full House later this month.
Houston Chronicle (5/8): Spending on NASA’s Commercial Crew Program would rise to a record $785 million in 2015, under the spending measure approved by the House Appropriations Committee. NASA plans to ease its reliance on Russia’s Soyuz crew transport by late 2017 with one and possibly two U.S. commercially operated alternative. “To rely solely on Vladimir Putin and the Russian government for astronauts’ safe travel to and from the ISS is simply unacceptable,” said U.S. Rep. John Culbertson, R-Houston, a member of the House Appropriations Committee and the lawmaker in line to take over the panel with jurisdiction over NASA. “I hope to see American astronauts launching from American soil as soon as possible.”
Los Angeles Times (5/8): House appropriators send NASA’s 2015 budget on to full House and Senate with more money for planetary science.
Human Deep Space Exploration
Space.com (5/8): Singer appears in public service announcement endorsing the Space Launch System heavy lift rocket.
Discovery.com (5/8): Humans need to acquire a greater cosmic consciousness, concludes Gabriel De la Torre, Spanish psychologist and researcher. His assessment includes a survey of students from the U.S., Spain and Italy.
National Public Radio (5/8): “What will it mean for us to start over on a new planetary home? What aspects of human societies, continuously developing and changing since our species first evolved 200,000 years ago, will we replicate on Mars? Which will we alter?” writes NPR in response to news from Mars One earlier this week that it has trimmed back those seeking to work with the Dutch nonprofit to establish a colony on Mars.
Newsweek (5/8): Dutch Mars One nonprofit talks with British investment about financing first 2025 settlement mission. Preparations for flight could be part of reality based broadcasts.
Unmanned Deep Space Exploration
Sky and Telescope (5/8): Jupiter, Mars and Saturn parade through the night skies of the northern hemisphere in June.
Houston Chronicle (5/14): Really good software enables Texas A&M professor Mark Lemmon and others like him scattered across the U.S. to remotely operate the cameras aboard the 10-year-old NASA Odyssey rover on Mars and Curiosity, a 2012 arrival.
Low Earth Orbit
Associated Press (5/8): One of eight channels of solar power on the International Space Station interrupted by short early Thursday. Loss will not interfere with plans by three crew members to descend to Earth late Tuesday aboard a Russian Soyuz rocket.
Commercial to Low Earth Orbit
Spacepolitics.com (5/8): U.S. Court of Federal Claims lifts injunction banning United Launch Alliance purchase of Russian RD-180 rocket engines for the Atlas 5. Letters from State, Commerce and Treasury weighed in the decision. The letters said the purchases by United Launch Alliance did not violate sanctions against Russia for actions in Ukraine.
Space News (5/8): U.S. Court of Federal Claims rules injunction stands until U.S. State, Treasure and Commerce departments find a violation of U.S. sanctions imposed against Russia for actions in Ukraine. In letters filed with the court May 6, officials with those departments said no decision had been made to specifically label NPO Energomash manufacture of the RD-180 rocket engine as a Rogozin-controlled enterprise, a reference to Dmitry Rogozin, Russia’s deputy prime minister.
Physics Today (5/8): End of Cold War brought the U.S. / Russian and Ukrainian space launch vehicle industries together in some unforeseen ways, a steady increase in integration whose side effects were exposed with the annexation of Crimea.
Reuters (5/8): Anticipation grows in the communities around Spaceport America in New Mexico as first suborbital spaceflight of Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo nears.
Brought to you by the Coalition for Space Exploration, CSExtra is a daily compilation of space industry news selected from hundreds of online media resources. The Coalition is not the author or reporter of any of the stories appearing in CSExtra and does not control and is not responsible for the content of any of these stories. The content available through CSExtra contains links to other websites and domains which are wholly independent of the Coalition, and the Coalition makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy, completeness or authenticity of the information contained in any such site or domain and does not pre-screen or approve any content. The Coalition does not endorse or receive any type of compensation from the included media outlets and is not responsible or liable in any way for any content of CSExtra or for any loss, damage or injury incurred as a result of any content appearing in CSExtra. For information on the Coalition, visit www.spacecoalition.com or contact us via e-mail at [email protected].