Commercial Space Transportation Update

Feb 15-19, 2016 Cygnus Resupply Mission Completed: Cygnus ending OA-4 mission at ISS with high praise and success Launched Dec. 6, Orbital ATK’s latest commercial resupply mission docked to the six-person International Space Station three days later, delivering more than 7,000 pounds of food, clothes and research equipment. The capsule departs the station early Friday,… [Continue Reading]

Orion and Space Launch System Update

Feb 15-19, 2016 SLS Exploration Upper Stage: NASA moves to enforce early switch to EUS for SLS Despite a reduction in spending for the Space Launch System in NASA’s proposed 2017 budget, space agency engineers are looking at an upgrade of the exploration rocket’s second stage for Exploration Mission-2, the first piloted test flight of… [Continue Reading]

International Space Station Update

Feb 15-19, 2016 Space Farming: Space farmer Scott Kelly harvests first “space zinnia” grown aboard Space Station After cultivating romaine lettuce and zinnia flowers aboard the International Space Station with the help of NASA’s marathon astronaut Scott Kelly, NASA intends to grow tomatoes in the veggie greenhouse. Fresh fruit and vegetables could be an important… [Continue Reading]

Florida Space Update

Feb 1-12, 2016 NASA’s FY2017 Budget Good for KSC: Cabana: Proposed NASA budget ‘great’ for KSC Robert Cabana, director of NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, sizes up the proposed NASA budget for 2017. The spending plan should permit the space agency to continue the development of exploration systems that will send humans on future missions of… [Continue Reading]

Space Budgets, Policy, Missions, Benefits, International Update

Feb 1-12, 2016 Marshall Center Director: NASA names inside favorite new director of Marshall Space Flight Center NASA Administrator Charles Bolden named Todd May as director of the Marshall Space Flight Center on Monday. May has been the acting director of the NASA installation that oversees development of the Space Launch System exploration rocket since… [Continue Reading]

Commercial Space Transportation Update

Feb 1-12, 2016 Commercial Cargo Contract: NASA offers more details on cargo contract decision NASA offered new details on the selection criteria it used in January to award contracts for continued commercial resupply of the International Space Station between late 2019 and 2014. The contracts were awarded to incumbents Orbital ATK and SpaceX and newcomer… [Continue Reading]

Orion and Space Launch System Update

Feb 1-12, 2016 Orion Pressure Vessel at KSC: NASA prepares Orion spacecraft for its first big mission The NASA/Lockheed Martin weight reduced Orion crew exploration capsule assigned to Exploration Mission-1 is now at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center where it will undergo testing and final assembly. The first uncrewed test launch of Orion paired with the… [Continue Reading]

International Space Station Update

Feb 1-12, 2016 Space Marathon: Into the homestretch: Kelly and Kornienko to pass 300 days in space, heading for 2 March return to Earth Closing in on the early March finale of a near yearlong stay aboard the International Space Station, NASA’s Scott Kelly and Russia’s Mikhail Kornienko passed the 300-day-mark on Thursday. New Space… [Continue Reading]

FY2017 NASA Budget Update

Feb 1-12, 2016 Exploration Concerns: President Obama proposes $19bn budget for NASA in 2017 Human exploration advocates raise concerns over reductions in development activities for the Space Launch System exploration rocket and Orion crew capsule included in the proposed 2017 budget President Obama presented Congress this week. (See also: White House proposes $19 billion NASA… [Continue Reading]

Presidential Election

Feb 1-12, 2016 Candidate Positions: Election 2016 The Planetary Society’s website is tracking what the presidential candidates are saying about space exploration as the primaries, party conventions and November elections approach. Citizens for Space Exploration – a pro-space, taxpayer, grassroots advocacy group ( – has traveled to Washington, D.C. the past 24 years to meet face-to-face… [Continue Reading]