Chinese astronauts have completed desert survival training – part of exercises devoted to building China’s space station in the 2020’s. Fifteen Chinese astronauts took part in desert training within Badain Jaran Desert near Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China. Wilderness training The readiness effort was organized by the Astronaut Center of China (ACC), […]

    Two microsatellites DSLWP-A1 and DSLWP-A2 carrying amateur radio payloads were launched with China’s Chang’e-4 relay satellite. The pair of hitchhiking microsatellites are unofficially called DSLWP-A1 and DSLWP-A2 (DSLWP = Discovering the Sky at Longest Wavelengths Pathfinder). The twosome are also known as Longjiang-1 and Longjiang-2. However, help has been requested to monitor for […]

NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover is now carrying out Sol 2063 duties. Reports Ken Herkenhoff, a planetary geologist at the USGS in Flagstaff, Arizona, some of the Duluth drill sample was dropped into the robot’s Chemistry & Mineralogy X-Ray Diffraction/X-Ray Fluorescence Instrument (CheMin), but not enough for a proper mineralogical analysis. So the top priority in […]

NASA is orchestrating a robotic lunar campaign, one that will rely upon commercial partners to deliver instruments and technology to the Moon’s surface. Among the instruments to be flown are those once to be onboard the now scuttled NASA Resource Prospector. That rover project once aimed to be the first mining expedition on another world. […]

    Total immersion – Moondive style. One of the deepest neutral buoyancy facilities in Europe is in use to simulate lunar gravity – one-sixth that of Earth. The European Space Agency’s Neutral Buoyancy Facility (NBF) at the European Astronaut Center (EAC) near Cologne in Germany has been the site of a three year “Moondive” […]

“This time, we will not only plant our flag and leave our footprint. We will establish a foundation for an eventual mission to Mars.” – President Donald J. Trump The White House has issued the following fact sheet regarding President Donald J. Trump’s Reforming and Modernizing American Commercial Space Policy: Directive-2 President Trump’s Space Policy […]

  A deployable atmospheric drag deorbit device called ROC™ FALL has entered into the marketplace, facilitating the reliable and predictable passive deorbit of spacecraft at end-of-life. Roccor, based in Longmont, Colorado, has developed a simple roll-out drag sail design to meet the Inter-Agency Space Debris Coordination Committee (IADC) 25-year deorbit lifetime guideline. Recently, a large […]

A new research paper is flagging the psychological underpinnings of long duration treks to Mars. Bottom line: If humanity hopes to make it to Mars anytime soon, we need to understand not just technology, but the psychological dynamic of a small group of astronauts trapped in a confined space for months with no escape. One […]

    NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover is performing Sol 2061 science duties. “After successfully drilling the ‘Duluth’ target on Sol 2057, the science team is eager to find out what it’s made of,” reports Lauren Edgar, planetary geologist at the USGS in Flagstaff, Arizona. Edgar says the plan calls for drop-off of material to the […]

  Now in Sol 2060, NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover is back in gear in its drilling functions. Reports Mark Salvatore, a planetary geologist at the University of Michigan in Dearborn: “This past weekend, Curiosity successfully drilled into the ‘Duluth’ rock target, generating a beautiful pile of drill tailings! This is a very exciting time for […]

Griffith Observatory Event