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These news clips on global space news are provided by the Coalition for Space Exploration for distribution by the Space Foundation to our constituents. You can also subscribe to receive a daily email version.

CSExtra – Monday, July 15, 2013

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Monday’s CSExtra offers the latest reporting and commentary on space related activities from across the globe, plus a roundup from the weekend. The Huffington Post addresses misconceptions about NASA following the shuttle program’s retirement. NASA’s future grows vulnerable to politics. Challenges posed by NASA’s Asteroid Retrieval Mission. SpaceX eyes former space shuttle launch Pad 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center. Orbital Sciences Corp. looks to September for its first cargo delivery to the International Space Station. Cassini poised for Earth photo this week. Experts question the need to sterilize Mars bound spacecraft. Current solar cycle sputters. Producers of Europa Report look to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory for realism. New research activities on the International Space Station will include ocean studies and  laser communications demonstration. What’s up in space this week? Activities include a space station science conference.


1.  From the Huffington Post: Despite NASA’s award-winning social media and web outreach efforts, there are still massive gaps between the public’s perception of the agency, and reality. Five popular misconceptions about the space agency that are creating noise in NASA’s PR signal are brought to light.

A. From Florida Today, July 14: In an op-ed, columnist John Kelly finds NASA suffering over the lack of a consensus from Washington policymakers. Political partisanship has crept into the decision making. Local rather than national interests are restricting the funding but adding on responsibilities and costs, notes Kelly.

2. From,  July 13: A Ball Aerospace workshop presented the challenges and objectives associated with NASA’s Asteroid Retrieval Mission. Identifying an object within the distance, mass and handling limits are significant. The goal of the proposed mission is to robotically maneuver a small asteroid into a lunar orbit that U. S. astronauts could reach as soon as 2021.

3. From Space News, July 12: SpaceX appears to be the sole bidder for use of NASA Kennedy Space Center’s Pad 39A, a facility once used to start space shuttle and Apollo missions.

A. From Florida Today, July 14: This week, discussions will unfold over who controls operations at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla.  Responsibility for launch operations could shift from the Department of Defense and the U. S. Air Force to an FAA approved contractor.

4. From, July 13: Orbital Sciences Corp. aims for Sept. 14 for the lit off of the Antares/Cygnus combination on the Virginia company’s first commercial cargo mission to the International Space Station. If successful, Orbital Sciences will complete its NASA sponsored Commercial Orbital Transportation Services development, becoming eligible to begin regular cargo deliveries to the space station.

5. From The Coalition for Space Exploration: Cameras aboard the multinational Cassini mission are ready to snap the Earth’s picture on Friday. Cassini, launched in 1997, is circling Saturn.

6. From The New Yorker, July 10: Efforts to sterilize Earth probes to prevent a biological cross contamination of Mars are unnecessary, some experts assert. They find current conditions on the red planet too inhospitable for terrestrial life.

7. From, July 12: Even at its peak, the current 11-year cycle of solar activity is considered the weakest in a century.

A. From The Washington Post, July 13: Experts weigh anew the risks to power, communications and global navigation systems posed by solar storms — even those that are not record breakers

8. From, July 12: The new Sci-Fi feature film Europa Report draws much of its realism from production ties to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The film follows a human mission to the Jovian moon.

9. From, July 12: New near term investigations on the International Space Station will study the ocean waters and test a new laser communications technology.

10. From, July 14: A look at major space policy activities scheduled for the week ahead. In Colorado, the American Astronautical Society hosts a conference on International Space Station science. Tuesday brings a NASA organized spacewalk outside the International Space Station.

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 or contact us via e-mail at [email protected].


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