CSExtra – Friday, February 3, 2012
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Friday’s CSExtra offers the latest reporting and commentary on space-related activities from around the world. NASA, the managing International Space Station partner, says a failed Russian ground test will add several weeks of delays to upcoming crew launches. Astronomers identify another habitable zone exo-planet. A strong space program makes economic sense, according to one advocate economist. United Launch Alliance makes strides in the human rating of the Atlas 5. The lure of NASA’s astronaut corps. Signs of a link between human activity and climate change. A new “Blue Marble” image of the Earth. Circular imprints on the Baltic Sea floor cause a stir.
1. From Spaceflightnow.com: A failed ground test leads to a six week delay in the new launch of crew to the International Space Station. The next three man U. S. and Russian team is scheduled to lift off on May 15, rather than March 30. Russia blames the setback on a failed pressure test that damaged the next Soyuz crew capsule. http://bit.ly/AtT9gf
A. From spacepolicyonline.com: The space station program’s NASA led managers believe station operations can accommodate current delays and return to normal scheduling by the end of 2012. http://bit.ly/x0w11d
B. From The Washington Post: The latest difficulties represent a second round of delays caused by Russian spacecraft issues in the last six months. http://wapo.st/x4KxY9
C. From Florida Today: NASA’s space station program manager expresses confidence Russian experts will diagnose and disclose the cause of the failed pressurization test and develop a remedy. http://on.flatoday.com/wE7VhS
2. From Space.com: Astronomers zero in on a potentially habitable exo-planet — a world where water on the surface could flow as a liquid. http://bit.ly/zxqU4L
3. From the Huffington Post: In an op-ed, economist Greg Autry examines the reasons for a strong U. S. space program with ties to a healthy commercial sector. The military GPS satellite navigation system, as an example, saves the long haul trucking industry an estimated $52 billion annually. Autry is the co-author of Death by China. http://huff.to/zBAzLO
4. From the Denver Post: United Launch Alliance, supplier of the Atlas 5 rocket, moves closer to a human rating — a reliability and safety status that would permit the launching of commercial space transports. http://bit.ly/z1ryVi
5. From the Houston Chronicle: Why have applications to NASA’s astronaut office openings soared? It’s the opportunity to rocket into deep space. http://bit.ly/yrvUgB
6. From Space.com: A study by NASA researchers, published in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, points to human rather than solar activity as the source of a rise in temperature. http://bit.ly/wmAavt
7. From Florida Today: More views of the “Blue Marble” Earth from the polar orbiting Suomi satellite. http://on.flatoday.com/xtAw2a
8. From Discovery.com: Two circular imprints on the Baltic Sea floor between Sweden and Finland are causing a stir. Crashed flying saucers perhaps? http://bit.ly/AbKTh8
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