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Thursday’s CSExtra offers the latest reporting and commentary on space related activities from around the world. Ray Bradbury, an impassioned American voice for the human exploration of space, dies in California, at 91. Time to double NASA’s budget, say two former NASA officials. Pluto’s moons offer lesson about extraterrestrial worlds. Imagery from NASA’s Dawn mission to the asteroid Vesta reveal colorful compositional secrets. The shuttle test orbiter Enterprise reaches its New York display home. Jose Hernandez, the former NASA astronaut, advances in bid to win a U. S. House seat. NASA finds a Senate ally in its initiative to foster commercial crew transportation services.
1. From Space.com: In the years after World War II and before the U. S. and the former Soviet Union engaged in an historic space race, American science fiction writer Ray Bradbury offered a compelling vision of human space travel. Bradbury died late Tuesday in California. Bradbury was 91.
A. From the New York Times: Writer Ray Bradbury captured the complex optimism and anxiety of post World War II America. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/07/books/ray-bradbury-popularizer-of-science-fiction-dies-at-91.html?_r=2&hp
B. From Discovery.com: Ray Bradbury’s vision embraced the risk and the rewards of human space exploration.
D. From the Associated Press via the Washington Post:: In digital form, Bradbury’s “The Martian Chronicles” resides near the North Pole of Mars aboard NASA’s un-piloted Phoenix mission lander The Planetary Society arranged for the famous novel to make the long journey. http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/nasa-craft-carried-digital-copy-of-bradburys-the-martian-chronicles-other-works-to-mars/2012/06/06/gJQAIODjJV_story.html
2. From Roll Call: NASA’s budget should be gradually doubled, say former NASA astronauts Fred Gregory and Tom Jones. Advisers to the Coalition for Space Exploration, the two men — one a former top agency administrator and the other a scientist — note the nation’s investment in space exploration once greatly exceeded the current investment — less than one half of one percent of the federal budget. Investments in NASA’s research and development offer future rewards for the nation, write Gregory and Jones.
3. From Science Now: Astronomers find that distant Pluto and its four known moons may have much to teach us about alien worlds.
4. From The Coalition for Space Exploration: NASA’s Dawn mission unveils the colors of the large asteroid Vesta. The colors, too subtle for the human eye to discern, will reveal much about the minerals and chemicals that comprise the distant world.
5. From Collectspace.com: NASA’s shuttle test orbiter Enterprise reaches its New York resting place, the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in Manhattan.
6. From Spacepolitics.com: In California, the former NASA astronaut Jose Hernandez advances in his bid to win a seat in the House of Representatives, representing the Sacramento area. Hernandez, the child of migrant workers, faces a touch challenge in the November general election.
7. From Spacepolicyonline.com: A House appropriations measure to enlarge the number of partners involved in NASA’s efforts to establish a commercial orbital space transportation system for astronauts wins an important Senate ally in Kay Bailey Hutchison, of Texas, on Wednesday.