International Space Station

New ISS Airlock:  The International Space Station will get a new, private airlock in 2019  Houston-based Nanoracks has reached an agreement with NASA for the installation of a cargo airlock on the U.S. segment of the International Space Station, possibly at the Tranquility module. Boeing will assemble and install a compatible berthing mechanism. The new […]

Orion and Space Launch System

Orion Update:  Insider exclusive: Orion designed to keep crew in the ‘loop’  Lockheed Martin, NASA’s prime contractor for development of the Orion crew module, is paying close attention to the requirements and limitations of future crew members as it proceeds, according to the company’s crew module director. Work is underway at NASA’s Johnson Space Center […]

Commercial Space Transportation

Commercial Crew:  Commercial crew providers remain confident in schedules Prepare for the inaugural launches of astronauts by Boeing and SpaceX in 2018, representatives of the two companies are declaring in response to a recent U.S. Government Accountability Office audit that cautions the flights could be delayed until 2019. Boeing’s Starliner 100 and SpaceX’s crewed Dragon are […]

Space Budgets, Policy, Missions, Benefits, International Updates

Crewed EM-1 Mission:  Panel urges caution as NASA studies flying crew on first SLS; ESA deal hinges on what Trump does with NASA’s human spaceflight plans;NASA just got real about returning to the moon; Expert panel supports study to accelerate first crewed SLS mission; Trump makes NASA add astronauts to moon mission, could save $10 […]

Space Budgets, Policy, Missions, Benefits, International Updates

Human Missions to Mars:  Why Mars is the best planet  The passage of time, four billion years, has separated Mars and the Earth. The two planets may once have exhibited similar conditions, including temperate environments. However, while life thrived on the Earth, Mars turned cold and desert-like. The red planet may hold answers to why […]

Commercial Space Transportation

Contracts for Boeing and SpaceX:  Boeing and SpaceX win four more NASA orders for space taxis, with one big ‘if’  NASA has agreed to purchase four more crew launches to the International Space Station from Boeing and SpaceX — if their spacecraft achieve agency certification. Each company had contracts for two flights previously. The two companies […]

Orion and Space Launch System

Orion in 2017:  https://www.nasa.gov/feature/nasa-readies-for-major-orion-milestones-in-2017 SLS Rocket Test Stand:  Huge NASA rocket test stand constructed in 2.5 years | Time-lapse video  Video offers the latest on the lengthy construction of a NASA Marshall Space Center test stand to help prepare the Space Launch System rocket for its first test flight in late 2018. SLS is a […]

International Space Station

Scott Kelly:  PBS to document Scott Kelly after historic Space Station stay in ‘Beyond a Year in Space’  PBS plans a follow-on documentary detailing NASA astronaut Scott Kelly’s return to Earth, following a 340-day mission to the International Space Station in 2015-16. Beyond a Year in Space promises to look into the health challenges of […]

President-elect Trump – Transition

NASA Transition Leadership:  Lightfoot to be acting NASA administrator, CFO Radzanowski to stay on  President Obama and his administration, including NASA Administrator Charles Bolden and Deputy Administrator Dava Newman, leave office on January 20. President-elect Trump has not designated successors, who will face U.S. Senate confirmation. During the interim, long-time NASA civil servant Robert Lightfoot, now the […]

Space Heroes

Gene Cernan:  Eugene Cernan, last human to walk on moon, dies at 82  Gene Cernan, who commanded Apollo 17, NASA’s final human moon landing mission in December 1972, died Monday afternoon, in a Houston hospital following ongoing health issues. Cernan made the lunar journey twice, serving first as lunar module pilot aboard the May 1969 […]