Monthly Archive for January, 2013

Another RM2 Test Firing Last Week

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RocketMotorTwo test firing file photo. (Credit: Virgin Galactic)

RocketMotorTwo test firing file photo. (Credit: Virgin Galactic)

RocketMotorTwo Hot-Fire Test Summary
(Via Scaled Composites)

Fire: 24
Date: 24 Jan 13

Objectives:

Twenty-fourth full scale flight design RM2 hot-fire. Continued evaluation of all systems and components:
– Pressurization
– Valve/Injector
– Fuel formulation and geometry
– Nozzle
– Structure
– Performance

Results:

All objectives completed.

Editor’s Note:  Once again, Scaled is not providing the length of the burn. Without knowing that, it’s difficult to determine precisely what was tested and why.

GLXP News: White Label Space Replaces Team Leader, Consolidates in Japan

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WhiteLabelSpaceTokyo, Japan, January, 30 2013 (White Label Space PR) – White Label Space, an international team competing in the $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE, announced that it will now be run out of Japan. Previously, the team was operating out of both Japan and the Netherlands.  The team’s pivot to Japan is designed to maximize its chance of being on the winner’s podium. White Label Space is the only Google Lunar X PRIZE team currently active in Japan and has a unique network in that country’s media and space industry. The team will now focus its efforts on furthering the development of its Japanese moon rover, benefiting from the advice of its academic partner, the Space Robotics Laboratory at Tohoku University.

Takeshi Hakamada replaces Steve Allen as team leader. Mr Hakamada was a co-founder of the team’s Japan branch and has been manager for all White Label Space operations in Japan.

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Astronauts4Hire and NASTAR Center Announce Partnership

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A4H_logo_white_transparentTampa, Florida (A4H PR) – Astronauts4Hire and the National AeroSpace Training and Research (NASTAR®) Center are proud to announce that they have signed a services agreement for NASTAR Center Space Training and to collaborate on developing new A4H-branded training programs for A4H’s commercial astronaut candidates.

A4H and the NASTAR Center will work together to develop A4H-specific training courses for astronaut candidates interested in aiding researchers, payload developers, and spaceflight providers with mission planning and operations support during spaceflight missions.

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NASA Solicits Ideas for International Space Station Research

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Astronaut Shannon Walker activates an experiment aboard the International Space Station. Image credit: NASA

Astronaut Shannon Walker activates an experiment aboard the International Space Station. Image credit: NASA

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — NASA wants to know how you can improve the International Space Station as a technology test bed.

NASA’s International Space Station National Laboratory and Technology Demonstration offices are asking for proposals on how the space station may be used to develop advanced or improved exploration technologies. NASA also is seeking proposals about how new approaches, technologies and capabilities could improve the unique laboratory environment of the orbiting outpost.

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My Space Show Appearance is Now Online

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spaceshowlogoHey everyone.

I had a great conversation last night with David Livingston of The Space Show. We talked a lot about developments with Spaceport America and Virgin Galactic as well as several other topics.

If you missed the show, it’s easy to get caught up.

Listen at www.thespaceshow.com. Scroll down to the archives in the lower half of the page. My show is currently at the top of that list.

Comment at thespaceshow.wordpress.com. I’ll be happy to respond to any questions you have there.

A hearty thank-you to David Livingston for having me on the show for a third time. I always enjoy being on it.

SpaceX Adds Another Comsat to Its Ever Lengthening Manifest

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Hawthorne, CA / Ramat-Gan, Israel, January 29, 2013 (SpaceX PR) –
Today, Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) and Space Communication Ltd. (Spacecom) announced an agreement to launch Spacecom’s AMOS-6 satellite on SpaceX’s Falcon 9 launch vehicle. Falcon 9 will insert the communications satellite into a geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO), further enhancing Spacecom’s existing satellite fleet.

The AMOS-6 agreement is the latest in a series of wins for SpaceX.  The company closed out 2012 having signed 14 launch contracts—maintaining the company’s position as the world’s fastest growing launch services provider.

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SNC Hires Lockheed Martin for Dream Chaser Certification, Manufacturing Work

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dream_chaser_liftoff_smSPARKS, Nev., January 30, 2013 (SNC PR) – Sierra Nevada Corporation’s (SNC) Space Systems is pleased to announce Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company of Littleton, Colo., is joining the SNC Dream Chaser® team. Lockheed Martin will be an exclusive partner to SNC on NASA’s Certification Products Contract (CPC) and has been competitively selected to build the composite structure for the Dream Chaser at NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, La. SNC was awarded $10 million for CPC Phase 1 to work with NASA towards government certification of the SNC Dream Chaser orbital crew transportation system.

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New Mexico Senate Approves Informed Consent Law

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The New Mexico Senate approved a measure that extends liability protections to spacecraft manufacturers and equipment suppliers by a 34-0 vote earlier today. The measure, which is supported by Gov. Susana Martinez, now goes to the House, where it is expected to pass.

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Lockheed Martin Joins Sierra Nevada’s Dream Chaser Program

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Sierra Nevada Corporation's Dream Chaser shuttle. (Credit: Sierra Nevada)

By Douglas Messier
Parabolic Arc Managing Editor

At a press conference this morning, Sierra Nevada Corporation announced that it has formed a partnership with Lockheed Martin to help certify and manufacture its Dream Chaser space shuttle.

“With today’s announcement we’ve added another best of the best to the team,” said SNC’s Mark Sirangelo in announcing the multi-million dollar deal, which will leverage Lockheed Martin’s expertise in building NASA’s Orion deep space vehicle, developing and manufacturing aircraft, and working with composite materials.

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Officials to Unveil Mojave Revitalization Vision Plan on Thursday

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revitalize_mojave
On Thursday night, officials will be unveiling the Mojave Community Revitalization Vision Plan, a citizen created road map for improving the town.

Mojave Visioning Unveiling
Thursday, JANUARY 31, 2013
5:30 – 8:00 P.M.
Veteran’s Building
15580 ‘O’ Street
(Next to Mojave Park)

The plan is a result of a two-day visioning session held in September during which Mojave residents, county officials and planning experts worked together to brainstorm a long-range vision for reviving the town. The results of that session have been put together in a plan that will be unveiled for public comment on Thursday evening.

After comments are received, a final plan will be produced that will provide the basis for the revitalization effort, which is being lead by the Mojave Chamber of Commerce. Once the plan is finalized, Mojave will be eligible for county funds to begin to implement it.

Kern County Supervisor Zack Scrivner, whose office has been helping guide the Revitalize Mojave effort, will be on hand for the vision plan unveiling on Thursday. Officials from the Kern County Planning and Community Development Department also will  answer questions and to hear public comments.