CSExtra – Wednesday, April 17, 2013
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Wednesday’s CSExtra offers the latest reporting and commentary on space related activities from across the globe. Orbital Sciences Corp looks to a key test launch under NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services program. The chair of the U. S. Senate Appropriations Committee endorses a NASA asteroid retrieval mission. NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver outlines a role for the private sector in NASA’s proposed asteroid retrieval mission. Mars One, a European non-profit, looks to summer for the selection of astronauts for a colonization mission. NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter maps the radiation environment close to the moon. Boeing offers buyouts as federal spending for satellite missions declines. Space Center Houston prepares an International Space Station exhibit. This weekend brings the Lyrid meteor shower.
1. From CBS News: Orbital Sciences Corp., receives clearance to lift off Wednesday on a key test flight. Lift off of the Antares rocket from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport on Wallops Island Va., is set for 5 p.m., EDT. A successful orbital test flight would advance Orbital Sciences’ bid to join SpaceX as a commercial re-supply service for the International Space Station.
A. From Discovery.com: Wednesday’s launch is critical for Orbital Sciences and NASA’s plans to establish a second commercial re-supply service for the International Space Station.
B. From Spacepolicyonline.com: Weather could be a factor in launch plans. Showers are possible. Thursday, though, offers a backup launch opportunity.
C. From Spaceflightnow.com: The website offers updates on the Antares countdown and lift off.
D. From Aviation Week & Space Technology: A successful launch will open Wallops Island to military as well as civil space missions. One future flight will aim for the moon.
E. Florida Today: Dulles, Va., based Orbital Sciences Corp. is not SpaceX. Older than its space station re-supply rival, Orbital develops satellites and spacecraft instruments as well as rockets.
2. From Spacepolicyonline.com: U. S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski, chair of Senate Appropriations Committee, expresses support for President Obama’s proposed mission to find and maneuver an asteroid close to the moon, in remarks before the Maryland Space Business Roundtable. The mission, part of the $17.7 billion budget the President delivered to Congress last week. The Maryland Democrat expresses concerns for sustained cuts to planetary science.
3. From Spacepolitics.com: NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver predicts a role for the U. S. private sector in NASA’s plans for a robotic mission to corral an asteroid close to the moon, where it could be explored by astronauts as soon as 2021.
A. From Space News: The B-612 Foundation looks to 2017-18 for the launch of its Sentinel mission to chart and track asteroids that pose is a collision threat to the Earth. The price tag for a mission that will combine technologies from NASA’s Kepler and Spitzer space telescope missions is $450 million. Details emerge at the 29th National Space Symposium in Colorado Springs last week.
4. From Space.com: Netherlands-based Mars One, a non-profit, looks to July to identify four people for a colony opening mission to Mars that is slated for a 2023 lift off. A million video applications are anticipated.
5. From Space.com: NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, which has been circling the moon since 2009, is charting the radiation hazards to human tissue and sensitive electronic components.
6. From The Los Angeles Times: Boeing offers voluntary buyouts to more than 250 members of a workforce that builds satellites. The reductions, in part, are due to cutbacks in federal spending, according to the company.
7. From Collectspace.com: Space Center Houston prepares to debut a new exhibit featuring the International Space Station.
8. From The Huffington Post via Space.com: The annual Lyrid meteor shower peaks this weekend, though 2013 will likely not be the shower’s best showing. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/16/lyrids-2013-meteor-shower-moon_n_3091175.html?utm_hp_ref=nasa
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