May 23, 2013

FSDC Plans June 1 Public Discussion on the Shiloh Launch Site Initiative (Source: FSDC)
On June 1 at 2:00 p.m. at the Courtyard Marriott in Cocoa Beach, FSDC will host Space Florida's Dale Ketcham for a discussion on the state's efforts to establish a new launch site on the "Shiloh" property currently owned by NASA at the northern end of the Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge. This event is free and open to the public. Click here. (5/22)

Unlit Olympic Torch to Visit International Space Station (Source: Florida Today)
A multi-national crew launching Tuesday to the International Space Station is expected to return with a special payload: the Olympic torch. Plans are in the works for the torch relay leading up to the February 2014 start of the Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, to make an orbital detour in November, NASA confirmed Wednesday. A three-person crew would carry the torch up to the station in a Russian Soyuz spacecraft. (5/22)

ITT Exelis Gets $435 Million Deep Space Network Contract (Source: Space News)
NASA awarded incumbent ITT Exelis, Herndon, Va., a contract potentially worth $435 million over 10 years to support and sustain the Deep Space Network (DSN), which the agency uses to communicate with spacecraft far away from Earth. The contract, which has a five-year base period, calls for Exelis to provide maintenance, operations, and engineering services for the global DSN radio network, which has arrays in Barstow, Calif., Madrid, and Canberra, Australia. Editor's Note: ITT Exelis also supports operation of the Eastern Range at the Cape Canaveral Spaceport. (5/22)

Europa Mission Featured in New Sci-Fi Thriller (Source:
The first trailer for the new science fiction film "Europa Report" has launched onto the Internet and just might be the most realistic — and harrowing — depiction of space travel on the big screen in years. In "Europa Report," an intrepid crew of astronauts leaves Earth behind for Europa, an icy moon of Jupiter, on a private space mission to seek out alien life. As the first two-minute trailer shows, the mission does not go anywhere near as planned.  Not by a long shot. You can watch the "Europa Report" trailer here. (5/21)

CASIS Seeks Stem Cell Research Proposals (Source: CASIS)
CASIS has issued a solicitation for proposals in non-embryonic stem cell research. The solicitation seeks to identify projects studying the effects of microgravity on non‑embryonic mammalian stem cells for one of two research emphasis areas: (1) rapid turn-around spaceflight experiments to be performed on the National Lab or (2) ground-based research that will pave the way for improved spaceflight experiments in the future. CASIS will support selected projects through grant funding, facilitation of service provider partnerships and flight coordination to and from the ISS. (5/22)

Proposed Defense Legislation Would Enable Long-term Satellite Leases (Source: Space News)
The House Armed Services strategic forces subcommittee stressed greater competition in space contracts in marking up its portion of the 2014 defense authorization bill, calling for multiyear deals for commercial satellite services and the “fair evaluation” of companies seeking to win U.S. Air Force satellite launch contracts.

Lawmakers said the Pentagon needs to set up a strategy to enable the multiyear procurement of commercial satellite services. Companies have said for years that the Defense Department’s typical practice of issuing one-year contracts hamstrings their ability to plan for the future or invest in long-term infrastructure. (5/22)

Globalstar Reaches Financing Deal (Source: The Advocate)
Globalstar has reached an agreement with creditors and lined up $85 million in financing to bolster its long-term liquidity. The agreement, announced Monday evening, clears up an issue Globalstar had with noteholders, who had the right to surrender their securities and claim nearly $70.7 million last month. The company didn’t have the cash on hand to repay the noteholders.

Under the new agreement Globalstar exchanged the 5.75 percent notes for 8 percent notes due in 2028. The deal will reduce debt amoritization requirements through 2019 and provide the capital needed to facilitate a long-term business plan. The new deal allows the company to pursue opportunities stemming from the upcoming completion of its second-generation satellite network, which will provide customers with clear service. (5/22)

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