February 3, 2010

Embry-Riddle Receives Funding for Aerospace Transportation Research (Source: SPACErePORT)
Efforts to regain U.S. market share in the commercial launch industry, enable emerging markets for personal spaceflight, and conduct research aboard Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), will be supported by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University with over $1 million in funding supported by Senator Bill Nelson and Congresswoman Suzanne Kosmas. The funding, included in the FAA and NOAA budgets for FY-2010, includes $974K for commercial space transportation research, and $300K for a UAS program that may be located at the Cape Canaveral Spaceport. Another $828K requested by Sen. Nelson was provided for NextGen research, which could include projects involving space traffic management. (2/3)

Embry-Riddle Will Attend FAA Meetings in Washington (Source: SPACErePORT)
Officials from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University will attend a Feb. 9 FAA pre-solicitation meeting in Washington for a new Center of Excellence for space transportation R&D. Embry-Riddle will lead a proposal effort for the Center. Embry-Riddle will also attend a Feb. 10-11 FAA commercial space transportation conference. (2/3)

Embry-Riddle Plans Participation in NextGen Suborbital Researchers Conference (Source: ERAU)
Researchers from Embry-Riddle's aerospace "human factors" department will attend the Next Generation Suborbital Researchers Conference (NSRC) in Colorado on Feb. 18-20. The event will focus on using the next generation of suborbital space vehicles to support research projects. Click here for information on the conference. (2/3)

Embry-Riddle AIAA Chapter Plans Spaceport Trip (Source: ERAU)
The Embry-Riddle chapter of the American Institute for Aeronautics & Astronautics (AIAA) will visit Kennedy Space Center on Feb. 13 for a special-interest tour focused on engineering. Interested students should RSVP by Feb. 11 by contacting Justin Wagner at wagnerj5@my.erau.edu. (2/3)

Homer Hickam Kicks Off Engineers Week at Embry-Riddle (Source: ERAU)
Embry-Riddle's Honors Program Distinguished Speakers Series will feature best-selling author/screenwriter and former NASA engineer Homer Hickam on Feb. 16. Hickam will encourage his listeners to “Dare to Dream” in “An Evening with Homer Hickam.” Hickam is the focal point of the semi-autobiographical film October Sky, based on his best-selling novel Rocket Boys. This presentation will also serve as the keynote address for Engineers Week. (2/1)

Embry-Riddle Sponsors Aerospace Mfg Summit with Aerospace States Assn (Source: SPACErePORT)
The summit will be held on Feb. 22-24, 2010 at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort in Orlando. The two-day event will present data and address issues on the state of aerospace manufacturing in the U.S. and around the world for both military and commercial markets, and address key trends and projections for the future. The summit is targeted toward small-to-medium manufacturers, OEMs and primes, service providers, government agencies, policy makers, economic developers, and educators who serve the aerospace industry. Click here for information. (2/3)

Space Lecture Series Continues with Feb. 12 Cassini Presentation (Source: BCC)
Dr. Josh Colwell will give a presentation on Feb. 12 at the BCC Planetarium & Observatory titled: "Running Rings Around Saturn: The Cassini Mission". The event, which begins at 7:00 p.m. is free and open to the public. Click here for details. (2/3)

Meteorite Mired in Ownership Mess (Source: Discovery)
By now you've probably read the news concerning the meteorite that crashed through the roof of a Virginia medical office last month. Like a steak dropped into a dog pit, the palm-sized space invader was instantly a source of strife. The Smithsonian Institute offered the two doctors whose office it was $5,000 for the little piece of heaven, which they quickly accepted and planned to donate to a Haiti relief fund.

Meanwhile, the actual property owners decided to make a play for the meteorite themselves. They cited as precedents U.S. court cases that ruled a meteorite becomes part of the land it crashes into. They owned the land, which meant -- in theory -- they owned the newly arrived Lorton meteorite as well. The rock could fetch up to $50,000 on the open market. (2/3)

LaRouche: Why Obama Must Be Impeached (Source: EIR)
"President Barack Obama's stated intention, to shut down and destroy the NASA program at its root, when added to the Hitler-like health-care policy, and the general, destructive features of all other leading Obama policies, is one step too far to bear. There is no longer room on this planet for a United States and a President Obama to occupy the same space.

The need for Obama's ouster, either by resignation or impeachment is now an existential issue for both our republic and the welfare of the planet generally....[T]he very means, of science and technology, by which the existence of our republic had formerly prospered, has been destroyed, step, by step. Our industries have gone, the security of our food supplies has been undermined, and now the last bastion of the means of technological progress, the space program, is scheduled for obliteration." (2/3)

Progress Cargo Craft Launched to ISS (Source: SpaceToday.net)
A Soyuz rocket launched a Progress cargo spacecraft to the ISS early Wednesday. The Soyuz rocket lifted off at 10:45 pm EST Tuesday (0345 GMT Wednesday) and placed the Progress M-04M spacecraft into orbit. The spacecraft is carrying over 2.5 tons of food, water, propellant, and other supplies to the station. (2/3)

Lockheed Martin Unhappy With Orion Cancellation (Source: Space Policy Online)
Lockheed Martin, prime contractor for the Orion spacecraft that is part of Project Constellation, issued a press release today expressing its disappointment with the decision to kill the Constellation program. Earlier rumors had been that one or both of the Ares launch vehicles would be canceled, but not the Orion crew capsule. However, the FY2011 budget request would terminate the entire Constellation program. Lockheed Martin noted that "nearly 4,000 people at more than 500 commercial companies and hundreds of small business suppliers" work on Orion. (2/3)

Arizona Space Experts Respond (Source: Arizona Daily Star)
Arizona's planetary scientists aren't at all surprised that the Obama administration has canceled the rocketry program designed to carry humans back to the moon by 2020. The whole package was underfunded, they say. The rocketry program was over budget, behind schedule and not very inspired. Still, they wish we had a more definite goal for human exploration of space in the space program.

Kip Hodges, director of the School of Earth and Space Exploration at Arizona State University, said that while the NASA rocket program has been canceled, space exploration has not. "I am of the opinion that this does not necessarily mean we won't go to an asteroid, the moon or Mars in a 15- to 20-year time frame," Hodges said. He thinks an asteroid would be a good target for a hybrid mission that employed both robots and astronauts. (2/3)

SpaceX Completes Dragon Capsule Milestone (Source: SpaceX)
SpaceX recently conducted a three-day long demonstration of cargo loading and unloading procedures for its Dragon spacecraft, which NASA has contracted to provide delivery services to the International Space Station (ISS) starting in 2010. The tests covered a range of procedures using actual NASA cargo modules, in a variety of standard sizes, including powered cargo modules that provide temperature control for sensitive items such as medical and biological samples during their journey to the ISS, and return to Earth. Dragon is currently one of the only spacecraft in the world capable of transmitting status on environment-sensitive cargo back to Earth during transit to the ISS. (2/3)

Iran Says it Launched Animals into Orbit (Source: Space.com)
The Iranian government announced Feb. 3 that it had successfully launched live animals into space. The feat was recorded by a camera mounted on the vehicle that provided a live video stream of the rocket's ascent. The Feb. 2 launch of the Kavoshgan 3 rocket came a year after Iran's launch of its 27-kilogram Omid store-and-forward telecommunications satellite and was accompanied by a Feb. 3 unveiling of three new Iranian-built satellite designs and a new rocket engine.

Iran's government-controlled Press TV on Feb. 3 broadcast videos of the launch as seen from the ground and from the rocket-mounted camera. Iranian officials said the rocket carried a rat, called Helmiz 1, as well as two turtles and a worm. The expected duration of the capsule experiment was not disclosed. (2/3)

Overhaul of America’s Space Agency is Long Overdue (Source: The Economist)
In canceling NASA's Constellation program, the Office of Management and Budget described it as lacking in innovation due to a failure to invest, over budget and behind schedule. The office also said Constellation had sucked money from other programs, such as robotic space exploration, science and Earth observation. What Mr Obama proposed is actually a radical overhaul of the agency.
Success is an option

The rethink looks at four areas: new ways of getting into space; extending the life and use of the space station; the agency’s relationship with the private sector; and its scientific mission. It all adds up to a radical shift, but a sensible one. As Lori Garver, Mr Bolden’s deputy, put it, “the old plans lost us the moon. This gives us back the solar system”. (2/3)

Editorial: Obama's Right Stuff (Source: Panama City News Herald)
Now the good news: President Obama killed the Bush-era plan to return to the moon. Granted, it’s a lonely note sounding in the midst of a cacophony of fiscal foolishness. Nevertheless, it makes you weep not only for its simplicity and soundness, but also for its greater policy implications. Bush’s Constellation program proposed putting Americans back on the moon by 2020. NASA already has spent some $9 billion developing a new rocket for the trip — a vehicle that is still years from its first scheduled crew flight. It already is over budget and behind schedule.

Constellation from the beginning was controversial even among space enthusiasts, many of whom questioned the scientific value of going somewhere humans already have been. They preferred a fresh, bolder approach, such as a manned mission to Mars. Returning to the moon looked too much like Apollo nostalgia, without the concurrent “gee whiz” factor and with an unaffordable price tag that produced little bang for the buck. But what is most appealing about the end of Constellation was the direction the president turned: away from government-directed space exploration and toward commercialization. (2/3)

Iran Unveils New Satellite Capabilities (Source Wall Street Journal)
Iran test-fired a new satellite rocket and unveiled a series of what it said were home-grown advances in a space program that has worried Western officials because of possible cross-over applications in the country's weapons program. In addition to the test-firing, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad unveiled on Wednesday three new telecommunications satellites and a new satellite-carrier engine, according to state media. Last year, Iran launched its first domestically made and propelled satellite. (2/3)

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