Space Florida Gets $400,000 Grant for Space Coast Development Plan

September 30, 2010

On September 22, 2010, the Department of Commerce – Economic Development Administration (EDA) awarded Space Florida $400,000 for development of a strategic economic development strategy for Florida’s Space Coast Region, to include Brevard and surrounding counties. Space Florida will provide an additional $100,000 in matching funds to the project.


FAA Awards Space Transport Grants for Spaceport America, Mojave, Cecil Field and Alaska

Cecil Field in Jacksonville, recently designated a commercial spaceport.


The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced a new grant program designed to fund projects that develop and expand commercial space transportation infrastructure.  The Space Transportation Infrastructure Matching Grants will be awarded to four separate projects located in Alaska, California, Florida, and New Mexico.


Mars500 Crew Answer Questions from Public

Whole Mars500 crew in portrait, September 2010: (clockwise from top left) Sukhrob Kamolov, Romain Charles, Diego Urbina, Yue Wang, Alexandr Smoleevskiy and Alexey Sitev. Credit: ESA


The Mars500 crew is answering your questions by email and the first answers are now here (below). Questions are welcome from the members of the media and also from anyone else who his interested. As on a real trip to Mars this is not in real-time, questions will be relayed to them through ‘mission control’.

AIA, CSF Praise House Approval of NASA Funding Bill

The Aerospace Industries Association and the Commercial Spaceflight Federation have both issued statements praising the House’s approval of the Senate authorization bill for NASA.


AIA is extremely pleased that the House has passed the NASA Authorization Act of 2010, paving the way for the bill to become law with the president’s signature. Passage of this act is crucial to maintaining a robust U.S. human spaceflight program.

Lori Garver Praises Congress, Discusses NASA’s Future

Deputy NASA Administrator Lori Garver

NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver held a teleconference with the media today. She discussed the House’s approval of NASA’s appropriations bill last night and how the space agency will proceed in trying to implement its new plan. Opening comments first with a summary of the Q&A session after the break.

Opening Comments

  • We’re thrilled to have this three year authorization bill for NASA
  • Change is never easy
  • Healthy debate is a great sign of interest and the nation’s space program
  • Resounding note of confidence in NASA
  • 304-118 bipartisan, bicameral….very broad and deep support for NASA and a clear path for the agency
  • bipartisan bill is very rare in today’s climate
  • Congress has now approved over $58 billion for NASA over next three years….given the economic climate, that’s a great vote of support
  • More sustainable path for NASA – accelerates heavy lift, support station, commercial space industry for crew and cargo, and gets started on new technologies
  • Thanks Congress for their debate – provided a lot of inputs, suggestions and ideas that is a great example of democracy
  • Space program inspires passion and dedication across party lines
  • Thanked work force for their focus on their work during a difficult period
  • Not the end of road, much work ahead but we have a clear framework for the future
  • Thrilled to have sustained capability for long-duration presence in LEO via ISS
  • Funding will allow nation to have a sustained human presence in space
  • COTS and CCDEV and other actions that lay the groundwork for commercial partnerships
  • HLV operational by 2016
  • Proceeds with work on 21st Century Launch Complex at Cape Canaveral


Perminov: Mars Trips Could Take 2-4 Months With Nuclear Propulsion

Roscosmos Head Anatoly Perminov


The attempts to improve parameters of the existing rocket propulsion systems are unreasonable, Roscosmos Head Anatoly Perminov stated, questioned by news media during the International Astronautical Congress in Prague.

“No matter, how many experts in the world, and no matter how much they work, they would provide maximum improvement of any existing propulsion which is measured in a fraction of percent only. The most has been made of the available propulsions – liquid or solid-propellant. Any attempt to improve the thrust or momentum is hopeless,” the Head of the Russian Federal Space Agency said.

On the other hand, he believes, nuclear propulsion is able to improve these parameters significantly:


Bolden Praises “Vital” House Vote on NASA Authorization

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden

The following is a statement from NASA Administrator Charles Bolden regarding Wednesday’s action by the House of Representatives on the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act of 2010.

“We thank the members of Congress for their thoughtful deliberations about NASA’s future over the past months. Both the House and the Senate provided insight, ideas and direction that were truly exemplary of the democratic process. It is clear that our space program inspires passion and dedication across party lines, and for that we are truly thankful.

“This important vote today in the House of Representatives on a comprehensive NASA authorization charts a vital new future for the course of human space exploration. We are grateful that the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act of 2010 received strong support in the House after its clearance in the Senate, and can now be sent on to the President for his signature.


House Passes Senate’s Authorization Bill for NASA

Space Access Society Update

Wednesday 9/29/10 – S.3729 has just passed the House under Suspension of the Rules.  Our heartfelt thanks to everyone who has worked so hard in recent months to support this ongoing effort to reform NASA.  We’ll have more to say about the next round of this struggle as we learn more, but listening to the speeches on the House floor this evening made one thing unmistakably clear: These large differences over the future of NASA will continue to be contested in the Congress, with the FY 2011 NASA Appropriation bill the next battleground.  Things will likely be heating up again as mid-November and the start of this Congress’s post-election final session approach.

thanks for your time and efforts

Henry Vanderbilt
for Space Access Society

House Votes on Senate’s Version of NASA’s Authorization Bill

The House of Representatives passed the Senate version of NASA’s authorization bill on Wednesday night by a voice vote. Members will have a recorded vote on the bill later this evening at the request of Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who is strongly opposed to the Senate measure. The measure will need to be approved by two-thirds of the House.

The Senate authorization bill is more supportive of President Barack Obama’s plans to commercialize human spaceflight. Although it does not provide everything the President requested, the funding measure is supported by the Administration and most of the commercial space community.


Conference to Mark 25th Anniversary of First Arab Astronaut’s Flight

Sultan Salman Abdulaziz Al-Saud

KACST celebrating silver jubilee of Prince Sultan’s space trip

An elaborate program to mark the silver jubilee celebrations of the Kingdom’s participation in the international space program led by Prince Sultan bin Salman has been drawn up by the King Abdulaziz City for Science & Technology (KACST) together with NASA. The two-day celebrations are to start on Saturday.

“The celebrations will include a major space and aeronautics technology conference in which Saudi and NASA experts will make presentations and share their views,” said Dr. Mohammed Al-Suwaiyel, KACST president.


Researchers Find Potentially Habitable Exoplanet


A team of planet hunters from the University of California (UC) Santa Cruz, and the Carnegie Institution of Washington has announced the discovery of a planet with three times the mass of Earth orbiting a nearby star at a distance that places it squarely in the middle of the star’s “habitable zone.”


Perminov: Chinese May Prefer to Go It Alone on Space Station


China would not be in position to become one of the partners in the International Space Station program, Roscosmos Head Anatoly Perminov stated, questioned by news media during the International Astronautical Congress in Prague.

“I’m not against China’s involvement in the ISS program a partner,” Roscosmos Head stated. “However in the view of their economical evolution, and their ambitions in the human space exploration, I don’t think that China would do it.”


British Entreprenuer Julian Ranger Backs Astrobotic in Google Lunar X Prize

Sept. 28, 2010

Julian Ranger, a British entrepreneur, has given his backing to Astrobotic Technology, one of 22 teams competing to put a robot on the moon and win the Google Lunar X PRIZE. All 22 teams meet on 4 & 5 October on the Isle of Man to reveal their progress.

The Google Lunar X PRIZE is a $30 million international competition to land a robot on the surface of the Moon safely, travel 500 meters over the lunar surface, and send images and data back to the Earth.


Russians to Launch Commercial Space Station

Sept. 29, 2010

Orbital Technologies and Rocket and Space Corporation Energia (RSC Energia) announced today their intentions to build, launch, and operate the world’s first Commercial Space Station (CSS). The station will be utilized by private citizens, professional crews as well as corporate researchers interested in conducting their scientific programs onboard the world’s first commercially available human spaceflight platform.