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Today’s Deep Space Extra

January 31st, 2018

In Today’s Deep Space Extra… The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS), the nonprofit organization that manages use of the International Space Station’s U.S. National Laboratory volume for a range of commercial and non NASA research and technology development, outlined its strategy to help foster a low Earth orbit space economy while policy makers assess the Space Station’s future.  Wednesday begins with a lunar eclipse. Newly assembled Space Launch System (SLS) hardware awaits transport to the Kennedy Space Center.

Human Space Exploration

NASA unveiled new hardware to help launch most powerful rocket

WAAY TV of Huntsville, Alabama (1/30): The first Orion Stage Adapter, new hardware assembled at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center for the first test launch of the Space Launch System (SLS) with an uncrewed Orion capsule, awaits transport to the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The adapter connects the capsule to the SLS and more. Once launched atop the first SLS on Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1), Orion is to loop around the moon and return to Earth for an ocean splashdown and recovery. The adapter will carry up to 13 small satellites for a range of science missions that will be deployed after Orion separates from the launch vehicle.

CASIS focuses on near-term ISS utilization despite long-term uncertainty

Space News (1/30): The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space, CASIS, the nonprofit that manages the U.S. National Laboratory facilities inside and outside the International Space Station, waved off speculation over the future of the six person orbiting science lab during a Houston board meeting on Tuesday and pledged to nurture a low Earth orbit space economy until policy makers reach agreement on a future direction for the Space Station.

NASA astronaut’s rocker past helped shape his future in space (video)

Space.com (1/30): NASA astronaut Scott Tingle joined those aboard the International Space Station in mid-December. It turns out this mechanical engineer and U.S. Navy test pilot also plays the guitar.

 

Space Science

You can see the super blue blood moon from anywhere on Earth thanks to NASA

Mashable (1/30): Early Wednesday is offering a rare opportunity to view an enhanced lunar eclipse. The Earth’s shadow is casting a red pallor on the lunar terrain. The moon and Earth will be at their closest. Western North America offers the best viewing. Also, NASA TV began a live broadcast of the event, which got underway at 5:30 a.m., EST. The totality phase begins at 7:51 a.m., EST, and ends at 9:07 a.m., EST.

NASA’s Curiosity rover takes a licking, keeps on ticking

Forbes.com (1/30): At 2,000 days on the Martian surface, NASA’s Curiosity rover has long surpassed expectations. The rover is in the midst of scaling Mount Sharp a major rise at the base of its landing site, the nearly 100 miles wide Gale Crater. Findings from the rover so far suggest Mars once hosted some habitable environments.

China’s first X-ray space telescope put into service after in-orbit tests

Xinhuanet of China (1/30): Launched in June, China’s new X-ray space telescope was placed into service on Tuesday, following a on orbit checkout. The InSight observatory has already contributed to studies of gravity waves.

Search for extraterrestrial intelligence needs a new name, SETI pioneer says

Space.com (1/25): Astrophysicist Jill Tarter is recognized as a pioneer in the field of seeking evidence for the existence of extraterrestrial life. Earlier this month, Tarter called for a change in the way the field is characterized. Instead of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, or SETI, it should be re characterized as a search for techno signatures, she told the National Academy of Sciences’ Committee on Astrobiology Science Strategy for the Search for Life in the Universe, held at the University of California, Irvine.

 

Other News

Chinese space company Linkspace takes step towards reusable rocket with landing test

GB Times of Finland (1/31): In China, the private company Linkspace is developing a rocket, NewLine-1, with a reusable first stage and designed to launch small satellites as prime payloads. The 4-year-old company intends to initiate orbital launches in 2020.

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