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#5221
Jessica

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SpaceX Starman Roadster completes its first orbit around the Sun

It won't get close to Earth until 2020.

Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
08.18.19 in Space


Starman and his Tesla Roadster are now regular denizens of space. According to data from Where is Roadster, the cosmic driver has completed his first orbit around the Sun, taking 557 days since the first Falcon Heavy launch to circle our home star. Its path has taken it over 762 million miles since then, or enough to exceed its original 36,000-mile warranty over 21,000 times.

You aren't about to see Starman drifting through the night sky, unfortunately. Earth is currently on the opposite side of the Sun, and the EV won't get vaguely close to Earth again until November 5th, 2020, when it'll be about 0.346AU (just under 32.2 million miles) away. It'll get much closer to Mars before then at 'just' 0.05AU (about 4.6 million miles) on October 7th of that year. After that, it could get quite lonely for Starman -- estimates suggest he might not get particularly close to home until 2047.

Of course, that's also assuming humanity doesn't come out to meet him sooner. SpaceX itself is edging closer to deep space flight, and the US hopes to send people to Mars in 2030 or later. There's a possibility that deep space travel will have become relatively routine by the time Starman pays a visit to his home planet.

 

Via: Electrek
Source: Where is Roadster

https://www.engadget...es-first-orbit/



#5222
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Nasa picks headquarters for Moon lander

https://www.bbc.com/...onment-49381622

By Paul Rincon
Science editor, BBC News website

17 August 2019
 


A Nasa facility in Alabama that developed the giant rocket for the Apollo programme in the 1960s will play a key role in sending astronauts down to the Moon's surface in 2024.

The Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville will lead the development of a vehicle that will land astronauts on the body for the first time since 1972.

The decision was announced by Nasa's administrator Jim Bridenstine.

But it's a disappointment for Texas, which was in the running.

The White House wants to send a man and a woman to the South Pole of the Moon in five years, under a programme called Artemis.
(snip)

Mr Bridenstine made the announcement at the Marshall facility in front of a test version of the 45m- (149ft-) tall hydrogen tank for the Space Launch System rocket, which will launch the astronauts on their journey from Earth in 2024.

"This was not a decision that was made lightly. A lot of hard work has been done here in Huntsville over well over 10 years now regarding landing systems," Mr Bridenstine said on Friday.

But not everyone will be happy about the decision. Before the formal announcement, Texas legislators including Senator Ted Cruz had written an open letter to Mr Bridenstine pushing for Nasa's Johnson Space Center, based in Houston, Texas, to lead the lander development.

 


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#5223
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India's Moon probe enters lunar orbit

 

India's Chandrayaan 2 spacecraft entered lunar orbit on Tuesday, executing one of the trickiest manoeuvres on its historic mission to the Moon.

 

After four weeks in space, the craft completed its Lunar Orbit Insertion as planned, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said in a statement.

The insertion "was completed successfully today at 0902 hrs IST (0332 GMT) as planned, using the onboard propulsion system. The duration of manoeuver was 1738 seconds," the national space agency said.

India is seeking to become just the fourth nation after Russia, the United States and China to land a spacecraft on the Moon.

If the rest of the mission goes to plan, the Indian probe will land on the lunar South Pole on September 7.

To enter the final orbit over the lunar poles, Chandrayaan 2 will undergo four more similar manoeuvres, with the next scheduled for Wednesday.

 

https://phys.org/new...unar-orbit.html


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#5224
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The New Space Command Will Officially Be Up And Running Aug. 29

Source: Newsy

By Antoinette Miller

August 20, 2019


It's the first step in establishing the U.S. Space Force — which would be an entirely new military service dedicated to defense in outer space.

"Before the year is out, the United States will once again send American astronauts into space on American rockets from American soil."

The Trump administration's new Space Command under the Defense Department will officially be up and running on Aug. 29. It's the first new combatant command since U.S. Africa Command was established in 2009.

Vice President Mike Pence made the announcement Tuesday at the sixth meeting of the National Space Council.

The chairman of the joint chiefs of staff said Space Command will be in charge of planning and following through with operations in space. It's the first step in establishing the U.S. Space Force — which would be an entirely new military service dedicated to defense in outer space.

 


Read more: https://www.newsy.co...running-aug-29/


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#5225
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The Philippines creates its first space agency

 

https://www.nature.c...586-019-02485-9

 

Introduction:

 

(Nature) The Philippines is the latest country to create its own space agency. President Rodrigo Duterte has authorized the creation of Philippine Space Agency, following in the footsteps of Turkey and Australia, which have set up space agencies in the past 18 months.

 

The agency, signed into law on 8 August, will coordinate all the government’s space related activities and policy, which are currently spread across multiple agencies. Its goals include national security, hazard management and climate-change mitigation, as well as research and development in technologies such as satellites, growing the country’s private space industry and international collaborations.

 

“Back in 2013, it was still a dream for most of us in the field of space science, but we are very happy to see it finally come into fruition,” says Rogel Mari Sese, president of Regulus SpaceTech, a space consulting firm in Manila. Sese was formerly at the National Space Development Program, which helped to plan the space agency.

Sese says that the agency will do research in space technology, and support academic institutions that are doing research. In April 2016, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency launched the first micro-satellite designed by scientists in the Philippines, called Diwata-1.

 

The Philippine agency will receive a starting budget of one billion pesos (US$19 million) from the Office of the President. Ongoing funding will come from the national budget and the Space Development Fund, which was also established under the new bill and will pay out yearly installments of two billion pesos for the next five years.


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#5226
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The SpaceX 'Starhopper' is about to make its biggest leap

It looks like Elon Musk's Starship prototype, dubbed "Starhopper," has the green light to make its highest hop yet as soon as Monday. 

SpaceX had planned to test the single-engine version of its eventual Mars vehicle with its second short flight last week, but the launch was abruptly canceled. Musk later tweeted that the Federal Aviation Administration required a bit more "hazard analysis" and Starhopper "should be clear to fly soon."

 

https://www.cnet.com...NiBn5qAsNQJCmG4

 
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#5227
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#5228
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Nasa confirms ocean moon mission

By Paul Rincon
Science editor, BBC News website
20 August 2019

_108378032_mediaitem108378031.jpg

NASA

Artwork: Europa Clipper will try to determine whether the moon can support biology



Scientists working on an audacious mission to the ocean world of Europa can proceed with the final design and construction of the spacecraft, Nasa says.

The Europa Clipper mission will target the ice-encrusted moon of Jupiter, which is considered a prime target in the search for life beyond Earth.

Below its icy shell, Europa is thought to hold a 170km-deep body of water.

This could have the right conditions for biology.

Due to launch in 2025, the Europa Clipper mission has now passed a stage called Key Decision Point C, a crucial marker on the road to the launch pad.

 

More:
https://www.bbc.com/...onment-49408495


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#5229
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Nasa said to be investigating first allegation of a crime in space

 

Nasa is reported to be investigating a claim that an astronaut accessed the bank account of her estranged spouse from the International Space Station, in what may be the first allegation of a crime committed in space.

Anne McClain acknowledges accessing the account from the ISS but denies any wrongdoing, the New York Times reports.

Her estranged spouse, Summer Worden, reportedly filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.

Ms McClain has since returned to Earth.

 

https://www.bbc.co.u.../world-49457912

 

 

_108484572_mediaitem108484571.jpg


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#5230
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Spacecraft carrying Russian humanoid robot docks at ISS

An unmanned spacecraft carrying Russia's first humanoid robot to be sent into orbit successfully docked at the International Space Station on Tuesday, following a failed attempt over the weekend, Moscow's space agency said.

 

The lifesize robot called Fedor copies human movements and can help astronauts carry out tasks remotely.

"Contact confirmed, capture confirmed," a NASA commentator announced, while a statement on the website of Russian space agency Roscosmos also said the Soyuz MS-14 craft had managed to dock.

 

https://phys.org/new...obot-docks.html



#5231
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150 Meter Starhopper Test

 

The test was done in Boca Chica, TX.

The rocket body was built by a company that builds water towers.

The rocket engine was built by SpaceX and is the most advanced in the world.

SpaceX is building two Starship orbital prototypes, one in Boca Chica, and the other in Cocoa, FL. They should fly by the end of the year.

 

 

/watch?v=bYb3bfA6_sQ&feature=youtu.be&t=1858


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#5232
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SpaceX Had a Successful 150-200 Meter Hop of the Starhopper at About 5 PM CT
Alvin | August 27, 2019
Screen-Shot-2019-08-27-at-3.30.56-PM-730

4

SpaceX just had a successful 150-200 Meter hop of the Starhopper.

Screen-Shot-2019-08-27-at-3.33.03-PM-102

Screen-Shot-2019-08-27-at-3.33.23-PM-102

Screen-Shot-2019-08-27-at-3.33.30-PM-102

Screen-Shot-2019-08-27-at-3.33.55-PM-102


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#5233
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Secretive U.S. Air Force Spaceplane Breaks Record With 719 Straight Days in Orbit
 

The U.S. Air Force’s Boeing X-37B spaceplane broke a record yesterday for the most amount of time in orbit around the Earth. But we still don’t know when the uncrewed plane is going to land or even what it’s doing up there. All of the details about the X-37B mission are classified.

As of 6:43am ET today, the X-37B spaceplane’s fifth mission, dubbed the Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV-5), will have spent 719 days in orbit—just 11 days shy of a full two years circling the globe. The previous record was 717 days, 20 hours and 42 minutes, achieved just a few years earlier with OTV-4.

All we know about the 29-foot long spaceplane’s mission comes from the Air Force description, which is light on details, to say the least:

The X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle, or OTV, is an experimental test program to demonstrate technologies for a reliable, reusable, unmanned space test platform for the U.S. Air Force. The primary objectives of the X-37B are twofold; reusable spacecraft technologies for America’s future in space and operating experiments which can be returned to, and examined, on Earth.

 


https://gizmodo.com/...-719-1837605822



#5234
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Mars 2020 Rover Gets its Helicopter Sidekick

POSTED ON AUGUST 30, 2019 BY EVAN GOUGH


Work on the Mars 2020 Rover is heating up as the July/August 2020 launch date approaches. Mission engineers just attached the Mars Helicopter to the belly of the rover, where it will make the journey to Mars. Both the solar-powered helicopter and the Mars Helicopter Delivery System are now attached to the rover.

NASA’s Mars Helicopter will be the first aircraft to fly on another planet. The small rotor-craft only weighs 1.8 kg (4 lbs.) and is made of lightweight materials like carbon fiber and aluminum. It’s largely a technology demonstration mission, and is important to NASA. The overall mission for the Mars 2020 rover won’t depend on the helicopter, but NASA hopes to learn a lot about how to proceed with aircraft on future missions by putting the Mars helicopter through its paces on Mars.

NASA is no hurry to deploy the helicopter once the rover lands on Mars in February 2021. The helicopter and the delivery system will ride with the rover after it lands at Jezero Crater. Once they find a suitable place for test flights, the helicopter will be deployed.

NASA says that the Mars Helicopter is a high risk technology mission. If it works, and is able to fly as planned, then it will also be a high reward mission. The results will tell NASA a lot about using helicopters, and the generation of helicopters after this one will hopefully add an aerial component to future rover missions. This would open up a lot of scientific and exploration options in the future.

 



More:
https://www.universe...opter-sidekick/

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#5235
Jessica

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Astronomers spot evidence of volcanically active exomoon
Aug. 29 (UPI) -- Scientists may have found a volcanically active moon outside our solar system.

Hints of the moon's presence were discovered hiding in the WASP-49 solar system. Astronomers likened the moon to Io, the most volcanically active body in our solar system.

They also likened the moon to a satellite from Star Wars, the planet Mustafar, where Darth Vader's castle is located.

"It would be a dangerous volcanic world with a molten surface of lava, a lunar version of close-in Super Earths like 55 Cancri-e, a place where Jedis go to die, perilously familiar to Anakin Skywalker," Apurva Oza, postdoctoral fellow at the Physics Insitute of the University of Bern in Switzerland, said in a news release.

 



Read more: https://www.upi.com/.../3071567100872/


#5236
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Fatter Starship 2.0 Will Go Anywhere on Earth With More Safety

https://www.nextbigf...d-be-safer.html

 

Screen-Shot-2019-08-31-at-10.18.15-PM-73

 

This is why I love Elon Musk! the guy keeps pushing ever better and upwards.


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#5237
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SpaceX Orbital Starship Aiming for 20 Kilometer Flight in October and Orbital Attempt After
Brian Wang | August 31, 2019
starshipsoon-730x430.jpg

15

Elon Musk tweeted that the orbital versions of the Starship (one in Texas and one in Florida) are aiming for 20km flight in Oct and an orbit attempt shortly thereafter. Elon Musk will give the starship update on Sept 28th. This is the anniversary of SpaceX reaching orbit. Starship Mk 1 will be fully assembled by September 28, 2019.

 

https://www.nextbigf...empt-after.html



#5238
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Fatter Starship 2.0 Will Go Anywhere

 

 

Screen-Shot-2019-08-31-at-10.18.15-PM-73

 

This is why I love Elon Musk! the guy keeps pushing ever better and upwards.

 

 

Too... many things... to make fun of


Only take advice from people who have what you want.
You don't decide your future. You decide your habits, and your habits decide your future.
Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power. - Abraham Lincoln.

#5239
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India's polar moon mission puts Chandrayaan-2 in the history books

By Manveena Suri and Swati Gupta, CNN
Updated 0651 GMT (1451 HKT) September 5, 2019


(CNN) — India is one step closer to achieving its space superpower ambitions. If the Chandrayaan-2 lunar mission successfully touches down on Friday, the country will join the United States, China and the former Soviet Union in an elite club of nations that have made a soft landing on the moon.

And if all goes to plan, India will become the second country after China to explore the far side of the moon. The mission, operated by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) was launched last month. After more than 45 days it is scheduled to land a rover on the lunar surface on September 7.

"This mission has proved beyond doubt, once again, that when it comes to attempting an endeavour in new age, cutting edge areas, with innovative zeal, our scientists are second to none. They are the best ... they are world class," said Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a radio address in July.

The Chandrayaan-2, which means "moon vehicle" in Sanskrit, took off from the Satish Dhawan Space Center at Sriharikota in southern Andhra Pradesh on July 22. Weighing 3.8 tons and carrying 13 payloads, it has three elements: lunar orbiter, lander and rover.

-snip-

 


Read more: https://edition.cnn....-scn/index.html



#5240
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India locates lander lost on final approach to moon

Source: Associated Press


September 8, 2019



NEW DELHI (AP) — The lander module from India’s moon mission was located on the lunar surface on Sunday, one day after it lost contact with the space station, and efforts are underway to try to establish contact with it, the head of the nation’s space agency said.

The Press Trust of India news agency cited Indian Space and Research Organization chairman K. Sivan as saying cameras from the moon mission’s orbiter had located the lander. “It must have been a hard landing,” PTI quoted Sivan as saying.

ISRO officials could not be reached for comment.

The space agency said it lost touch with the Vikram lunar lander on Saturday as it made its final approach to the moon’s south pole to deploy a rover to search for signs of water.

 

-snip-

Read more: https://apnews.com/8...19057968182c6f4







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: space exploration, aerospace engineering, astronomy, NASA, SpaceX, interstellar, telescopes, satellites, Mars, space

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