CSExtra – Top Space News for Thursday, March 13, 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. New details related to NASA’s 2014 and 2015 budgets suggest Mars Opportunity and Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter missions could come to an end. Benefits of spaceflight all around, says record sharing astronaut. Astronomers turn focus to mysteries of black hole event horizon. Tensions in Ukraine raise concerns over U.S. reliance on Russian rocket engines. Weather favorable for Sunday launch of SpaceX Falcon9/Dragon re-supply mission to the International Space Station. Dragon cargo includes laser communications gear, a technology upgrade suited for future communications satellites. NASA cameras aboard the space station join search for missing Malaysian jetliner. Public rushes to Digital Globe website to comb satellite imagery for missing Malaysian airplane. Florida leaders urged not to take state space assets for granted. U.S. government enters electric spacecraft arena.
NASA 2015 Budget
Discovery.com (3/12): NASA’s Opportunity rover, which has roamed Mars since 2004, faces funding loss, according to new documents regarding the agency’s budgets. NASA’s Mars Odyssey faces funding loss in 2016 as well, according to Jim Green, the agency’s director of planetary sciences.
Spacepolicyonline.com (3/12): Operations of NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter are not assured through 2014, Jim Green, the agency’s director of planetary sciences, told an advisory panel on Wednesday. LRO was launched in 2009 to gather detailed imagery of the moon and will likely continue, according to Green. However, the agency will be challenged to cut the cost of a proposed ambitious robotic mission to Europa, the ocean covered moon of Jupiter, according to Green.
Hampton Roads Daily Press, of Virginia (3/12): NASA’s proposed $17.5 billion, 2015 budget holds good news, says Steve Jurczyk, acting director of the NASA Langley Research Center. While he was pleased with the president’s proposal, Jurczyk said now he is nervously waiting to see if the U.S. Congress approves it.
Human Deep Space Exploration
Huffington Post (3/12): Franklin Chang-Diaz, a record setting former NASA astronaut and plasma physicist, explains how ingrained our lives are with spaceflight. Hard to look around without encountering the benefits, says Chang-Diaz, who leads Ad Astra Rocket Co., developers of deep space propulsion systems. Chang-Diaz shares record for most launches into space, seven.
Unmanned Deep Space Exploration
America Space (3/11): Massive black holes and their even more mysterious event horizons in line for new scientific scrutiny.
Low Earth Orbit
U.S. News and World Report (3/11): U.S. national security imperiled by reliance on Russian engines for crucial American rocket, as Russia squares off against the West over the Crimean peninsula, the publication reports.
Florida Today (3/12): Favorable weather outlook in store as SpaceX prepares for its third contracted Falcon9/Dragon re-supply mission to the International Space Station. Launching from Cape Canaveral is scheduled for Sunday at 4:41 a.m., ET. The Dragon is loaded with about 5,000 pounds of cargo.
Space.com (3/12): International Space Station astronauts await the arrival of the SpaceX Dragon resupply mission scheduled for a lift off early Sunday. Cargo includes new laser communications equipment. Dragon will deliver the Optical Payload for Lasercomm Science (OPALS) among other supplies. OPALS will test a data streaming process by sending information via laser beam rather than radio wave.
Space News (3/12): NASA looks to greatly step up the effectiveness of Earth orbiting communications satellites with laser communications.
Space.com (3/12): NASA joins search for missing Malaysian jetliner that disappeared early Saturday with 239 on board. The agency’s efforts underway since Monday include the use of a camera aboard the International Space Station, the web sites reports.
Commercial to Low Earth Orbit
National Public Radio (3/11): U.S. satellite operator DigitalGlobe is overwhelmed by volunteers eager to comb through spacecraft imagery available over the Internet that may hold details of missing Malaysian jetliner. The company’s website struggles to keep up with the traffic.
Florida Today (3/12): Aerospace industry representatives visit state capitol in Tallahassee where they remind lawmakers not to take commercial space for granted. Other states competing hard for new business, they advise.
Spaceflightnow.com (3/12): An undisclosed U.S. government agency ordered three all electric spacecraft last year, Boeing announces. The lighter spacecraft use electric propulsion with ionized xenon for thrust, rather than chemical fuels to adjust their orbits.
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].