November 14, 2016

Trump Wants NASA to Visit Europa and Outer Solar System (Source: Inquisitr)
Neither candidate spoke much about space during the 2016 election, but just before Trump was elected president, he outlined a plan for NASA to move from an Earth-monitoring agency to one devoted to exploration. When Obama took office, he told NASA to ditch the plan to revisit the moon and concentrate on sending humans to Mars in the 2030s, but Trump has set the space agency only one goal.

The president-elect wants NASA to explore the furthest reaches of the solar system by the end of the century, according to Space Policy Online. “I will free NASA from the restriction of serving primarily as a logistics agency for low Earth orbit activity… Instead we will refocus its mission on space exploration.” Click here. (11/12)

Defense Committees Stay Largely Intact With Election (Source: Law360)
The election will bring little change to the makeup of the congressional defense committees, meaning lawmakers are likely to continue to push existing policy priorities such as a larger military and increased defense spending, areas where they should find common ground with President-elect Donald Trump. (11/14)

Next Steps for Space Policy (Source: Space Review)
To the surprise of many, Donald Trump won the presidential election last week, and is now ramping up his transition effort. Jeff Foust reports on what that means for space policy, including who could be the next NASA administrator. Click here. (11/14)
Anthropological Reflections on Space Colonization (Source: Space Review)
Discussions of space settlement often focus on the technical issues to sustain a human presence beyond Earth. Babak Shakouri Hassanabadi notes that anthropological issues can’t be ignored if human settlements are to thrive. Click here. (11/14)
A World Tour of reusable Launch Vehicle Efforts (Source: Space Review)
While the efforts of Blue Origin and SpaceX to develop reusable launch vehicles are well known, they’re not the only RLV programs in the world. Antoine Meunier discusses projects in Europe and Asia to develop reusable launchers. Click here. (11/14)
Negotiating a Launch Contract for a Mishap (Source: Space Review)
The recent Falcon 9 pad accident is a reminder that launch failures are still a part of the space business, and will remain so for the foreseeable future. Anirudh Rastogi and Kshetragya Nath Singh examine the contractual issues that take such failures into account. Click here. (11/14)

JAXA-Oriented Home-Stay Program Brightens Future of Tanegashima Town (Source: Japan Times)
An aerospace-focused home-stay program for elementary school students has revitalized the small town in Kagoshima Prefecture that hosts Japan’s space program, drawing children from across the nation to an area where depopulation has skewed demographics heavily toward the elderly. With a population of around 6,000, Minamitane on Tanegashima Island began the program in 1996 to boost the economy and increase the population of school-age children. (11/14)

NASA Announces 2017 Test for Flight Deck Interval Management (Source: Aviation Today)
NASA, the Federal Aviation Administration and the aviation industry are working together to develop and test new technologies that will assist with more precise aircraft scheduling and airport arrivals. The NASA-developed Flight Deck Interval Management will be tested as part of the agency's Air Traffic Management Technology Demonstration in 2017. (11/8)

Trump Space Policy To Aim For Mars And Beyond (Source: Forbes)
Will a brash, plain-spoken billionaire finally push Congress off the dime and get NASA astronauts back to the Moon and on to the surface of Mars? Or will soon-to-be President Donald J. Trump relegate American space policy to yet another decade of largely empty sloganeering?

Past administrations tended to use space exploration catchphrases to give them a vision statement, but then failed to follow through on their promises. Thus, what can we expect from a Trump Administration — in terms of colonizing the Moon; sending humans to Mars; and developing commercial interests in space? Click here. (11/14)

What’s the Worst Thing That Could Happen to NASA Under Trump’s Presidency? (Source: SpaceFlight Insider)
A Trump presidency, often joked about and derided, is now a reality. With Donald Trump often described as the “ultimate outsider”, what should, or rather, what shouldn’t the president-elect do regarding space policy? While many analysts have laid out what the agency should expect from Trump, what the newly minted leader of the free world should avoid has not been discussed.

Oddly enough, the greatest concern for NASA is that Trump might behave just as President Barack Obama did when he was elected into office eight years ago. Candidate Obama promised to support NASA’s efforts, claiming he was one of the agency’s biggest fans and even co-opted the space agency’s crewed program-of-record at that time (Constellation) when he used the phrase, “Moon, Mars and beyond.” Click here. (11/13)

Firefly Gains Letters of Intent From Potential Customers (Source: Firefly)
Firefly Space Systems, the Texas-based developer of dedicated launch vehicles for the small satellite market, announced today it has received letters of intent (LOI) in excess of projected launch capacity through 2021. "The support from established and newspace satellite manufacturers following our recent announcement of financial difficulties has been tremendous. These LOI’s demonstrate the market demand for the small satellite launch product that Firefly is developing,” said Firefly co-Founder and CEO Dr. Thomas Markusic.

Firefly received LOI’s for 42 launches through the end of 2021, valued at over $300M. An additional 35 launches valued at over $280M have been requested through 2025. A total of 9 customers have submitted LOI’s to Firefly for future launches. “Our customers’ needs reflect the increasing market demand for small satellite launch capacity. They have unanimously encouraged Firefly to continue development of the Firefly Alpha vehicle as a critical component in the overall success of the emerging newspace industry,” added Markusic. (11/14)

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