Monthly Archive for December, 2009

Video Trailers: Starwalker Jonathan Nolan’s Bush Documentary

Comments

The above clip is a trailer for director Jonathan Nolan’s 9-11 documentary, “Fortunate Sons.” Nolan is the executive producer of the Starwalker reality show, which is a competition to send two contestants into space aboard Soyuz rockets. The film was produced by Greg Smith, who is heading up Starwalker’s Southern Hemisphere operations.

The clip seems to hint at conspiracies involving the attacks, but it lacks any real specifics. The second excerpt – show after the break – is more substantial but not much clearer.

Continue reading ‘Video Trailers: Starwalker Jonathan Nolan’s Bush Documentary’

Chandrayaan-1 Project Director Receives Science Award for Moon Mission

Comments
ISRO's Chandrayaan-1 lunar orbiter

ISRO's Chandrayaan-1 lunar orbiter

Chandrayaan-1 Project Director M Annadurai has been honored with the H.K. Firodia award for his contribution to India’s first lunar mission. Scientist Yash Pal also was honored for his work in promoting science communication and education.

The awards, which recognize Indian scientific achievements,  are named after the late H.K. Firodia, a leader of the country’s auto industry. Yash Pal was given a cash award of Rs two lakh ($4,298) while Annadurai received Rs one lakh ($2,149).

Lindbergh Prize Website Unveiled

Comments

Charles Lindbergh’s grandson Erik has launched a website for the Lindbergh Prize, which will be unveiled in March during an event on the U.S. West Coast. There are not a lot of specifics available, except that the prize “will provide a tremendous stimulus to leverage creative solutions for a resilient future.”

Continue reading ‘Lindbergh Prize Website Unveiled’

Space Florida in Good Hands; Florida’s Space Effort…Not As Well Off

Comments
Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center

Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center

Florida Trend Executive Editor Mark Howard has some very nice things to say about Space Florida President Frank DiBello, who was brought in to take over the floundering agency earlier this year:

DiBello, a gracious, well-considered man, has a comprehensive understanding of how the space industry ties into a host of endeavors, from agriculture and environmental monitoring to research in fields ranging from life sciences to communications, robotics and emergency management. In just a few months on the job, he’s produced a master plan for the agency — a legally required task that his predecessor never completed — with the outlines of a long-term strategy.

Continue reading ‘Space Florida in Good Hands; Florida’s Space Effort…Not As Well Off’

NASA Considers Venus Lander, Asteroid and Lunar Sample Return Missions

Comments
From top to bottom, pictured (not to scale) are the moon, Venus, and an asteroid. These three celestial bodies from our solar system are possible candidates for NASA's next space venture.

From top to bottom, pictured (not to scale) are the moon, Venus, and an asteroid. These three celestial bodies from our solar system are possible candidates for NASA's next space venture.

NASA PRESS RELEASE

NASA has selected three proposals as candidates for the agency’s next space venture to another celestial body in our solar system. The final project selected in mid-2011 may provide a better understanding of Earth’s formation or perhaps the origin of life on our planet.

The proposed missions would probe the atmosphere and crust of Venus; return a piece of a near-Earth asteroid for analysis; or drop a robotic lander into a basin at the moon’s south pole to return lunar rocks back to Earth for study.

NASA will select one proposal for full development after detailed mission concept studies are completed and reviewed. The studies begin during 2010, and the selected mission must be ready for launch no later than Dec. 30, 2018. Mission cost, excluding the launch vehicle, is limited to $650 million.

“These are projects that inspire and excite young scientists, engineers and the public,” said Ed Weiler, associate administrator for the Science Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “These three proposals provide the best science value among eight submitted to NASA this year.”
Continue reading ‘NASA Considers Venus Lander, Asteroid and Lunar Sample Return Missions’

Perminov: Apophis, You’re Going Down!

Comments

In comments that baffled many experts worldwide, Roskosmos head Anatoly Perminov said his agency is considering a project to deflect the asteroid Apophis, which has a 1-in-233,000 chance of hitting the Earth in 2036. RIA Novosti reports:

“A scientist recently told me an interesting thing about the path [of an asteroid] constantly nearing Earth… He has calculated that it will surely collide with Earth in the 2030s,” Anatoly Perminov said during an interview with the Voice of Russia radio.

Continue reading ‘Perminov: Apophis, You’re Going Down!’

China Looks to Launch Tiangong-1 Space Station By End of 2010

Comment
China's Tiangong-1 space laboratory with a Shenzhou spacecraft approaching it. (Credit: CNSA)

China's Tiangong-1 space laboratory with a Shenzhou spacecraft approaching it. (Credit: CNSA)

Chinese officials have said that they plan to launch their Tiangong-1 space station by the end of next year or in 2011, according to a report on CCTV.

Qi Faren, Shenzhou-5 designer, said, “Quality is the key to technology. We must guarantee a successful launch. We will launch it whenever we are ready. It will be the end of 2010, or the beginning of 2011.”

Continue reading ‘China Looks to Launch Tiangong-1 Space Station By End of 2010′

Russia Finds International Cooperation Increasingly Profitable

Comments
Angara rocket engine test. The first stage of Angara was funded through a joint venture with South Korea.

Angara rocket engine test. The first stage of Angara was funded through a joint venture with South Korea.

The Roskosmos website has the transcript of an interview that deputy director Sergei Saveliev gave to RK magazine. The session covered a range of topics, including Russia’s increasingly profitable international cooperation and the possibility of Russian involvement in the next generation of Indian rockets. Some highlights:

“Today, in the field of space activity 75 intergovernmental agreements were concluded by Russia, including a set of 26 Russian-Kazakhstan agreements on cosmodrome ‘Baikonur’, and also 42 interdepartmental agreements. Preparation of 20 intergovernmental agreements with 18 countries is in the process. The number of joint projects increased. All this is due to the fact of improvement of industry financing. Russian government assured prompt support for leading enterprises of space-rocket industry in crisis, and it inspired them with confidence in the future.”

Continue reading ‘Russia Finds International Cooperation Increasingly Profitable’

Spectacular Space Shuttle Video With On-board SRB Ocean Landings

Comment

A spectacular video sequence showing space shuttle Atlantis roaring into orbit using on-board cameras – including the landings of the solid rocket boosters in the ocean. Very cool.

Perminov: Roscosmos Budget Looks Good for 2010

Comments
Anatoly Perminov

Anatoly Perminov

ROSCOSMOS PRESS RELEASE

Roscosmos Head Anatoly Perminov held a short briefing today after the session with the ISS crew at MCC.

Answering the questions of the journalists, Perminov said that the 2009 was positive for the Russian rocket and space industry in all its branches: the number of launches, the number of spacecraft orbited, and – the main thing – in maintaining safety of space operations.

Continue reading ‘Perminov: Roscosmos Budget Looks Good for 2010′