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Today’s Deep Space Extra

November 16th, 2017

In Today’s Deep Space Extra… Retired NASA astronaut Scott Kelly’s #YearInSpace, Mars2020 performs first test, Delta 2 launch delayed.

Human Space Exploration

When astronaut Scott Kelly told Bill Nye about space

Los Angeles Times (11/15): Scott Kelly, who set a U.S. record for the longest single spaceflight, 340 days aboard the International Space Station in 2015-16, had a local audience on the edge of their seats as he discussed his new book, Endurance: A Year in Space, a Lifetime of Discovery.  “It’s great to be here,” Kelly told a full house. “It’s actually great to be anywhere with gravity.” The now retired NASA astronaut spoke of how he rose from a below average high school student to astronaut eager to prepare his successors for missions to deep space.

Learn more about the ‘Twins Study’ and Scott Kelly’s #YearInSpace

NASA.gov (11/15): A page dedicated to Scott Kelly’s #YearInSpace and the ‘Twins Study’.

 

Space Science

NASA’s Mars 2020 mission performs first supersonic parachute test

NASA (11/14): NASA engineers are pleased with the outcome of an October 4 sounding rocket launch that deployed a parachute crucial to a successful landing of NASA’s Mars 2020 rover on the Red Planet. Follow-on testing is planned for February.

Delta 2 launch from California halted for second day in a row

Spaceflightnow.com (11/15): Strong upper level winds early Wednesday halted NASA’s latest attempt to launch the NOAA/NASA JPSS-1 advanced weather and environmental research satellite from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. The next attempt appears unlikely before Saturday, when high altitude winds began to tail-off.

Closest potentially habitable world found around quiet star

Universe Today (11/15): Earlier this year, the nearest star, Proxima Centauri, offered evidence of rocky planet, Proxima b, orbiting within the habitable zone. New findings from the European Southern Observatory, a telescope complex in Chile, offers evidence of another, Ross 128B, some 10.8 light years distant.

 

Other News

Companies agree FAA best agency to regulate non-traditional space activities

Coalition Members in the News (Lockheed Martin, Orbital ATK and Astrobotic)

Spacepolicyonline.com (11/15): Lockheed Martin, Sierra Nevada Corporation, Orbital ATK and Astrobotic back the FAA’s Office of Commercial Space Transportation as the federal agency best suited to regulate activities related to the Outer Space Treaty. Representatives urge a “light hand” and consistency in policy decisions.

Life, liberty and the pursuit of spaceflight? Jeff Bezos links Blue Origin to saving Earth

GeekWire.com (11/15): Amazon/Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos explained his passion for human spaceflight and exploration. They offer an option to address the Earth’s population growth and energy consumption and perhaps a more authoritarian rule, he explained before an invitation only Summit Series audience.  “So, we have two choices: We either go out into space, or we switch over to a civilization of stasis,” said Bezos. “Personally, I do not like the idea of stasis.”

NASA agreement sign of Stratolaunch engine development program

Space News (11/15): Seattle based Stratolaunch Systems, which plans a commercial air launch system for the launching of small satellites, has signed a Space Act agreement with NASA’s Stennis Space Center. The terms include the use of a rocket engine test stand for development activities.

Top secret ‘Zuma’ mission puzzles satellite trackers

Spaceflightnow.com (11/15): Favorable weather awaits plans by SpaceX to launch a secretive payload called Zuma atop a Falcon 9 rocket from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center during a two hour launch window that opens Thursday at 8 p.m., EST.

Fireball seen streaking across western U.S. sky

USA Today (11/15): Authorities in Phoenix believe a meteor streaking through the darkened sky was responsible for a bright light observed in the region Tuesday night.

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