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DSI Appoint PR & Communications Manager

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Meagan Crawford

Meagan Crawford

Houston, TX, Nov. 18, 2014 (DSI PR) – Deep Space Industries is pleased to announce the appointment of Meagan Crawford as the company’s PR and Communications Manager.  Meagan is a corporate communications and public relations expert with significant experience in marketing and business development.

“Meagan is a rare talent in the space field. She not only ‘gets it’ but she can write about it, talk about it, package it and send it out in a press release – linked to an awesome website,” said Deep Space Chair Rick Tumlinson. “She brings us a level of understanding and professionalism that will greatly enhance our ability to share the message that Deep Space is on the move!”

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Philae Lander Returns Wealth of Comet Data

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Philae landing sequence (Credit: DLR)

Philae landing sequence (Credit: DLR)

DLR PR – Before going into hibernation at 01:36 CET on 15 November 2014, the Philae lander was able to conduct some work using power supplied by its primary battery. With its 10 instruments, the mini laboratory sniffed the atmosphere, drilled, hammered and studied Comet 67P/ Churyumov-Gerasimenko while over 500 million kilometres from Earth. After a triple landing, positioning it in a new, unplanned location, conditions were not optimal, but Philae was able to work for more than 60 hours and send the resulting data back to Earth. It was controlled and monitored from the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) Lander Control Center (LCC). Now, the complicated data analysis begins. DLR’s Scientific Director for the project, Ekkehard Kührt, is very pleased with the results so far. “We have collected a great deal of valuable data, which could only have been acquired through direct contact with the comet. Together with the measurements performed by the Rosetta orbiter, we are well on our way to achieving a greater understanding of comets. Their surface properties appear to be quite different than was previously thought.”

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Made in Space 3D Printer Installed on Space Station

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NASA astronaut Butch Wilmore installs a 3-D Printer in the Microgravity Science Glovebox on the International Space Station. (Credit: NASA-TV)

NASA astronaut Butch Wilmore installs a 3-D Printer in the Microgravity Science Glovebox on the International Space Station. (Credit: NASA-TV)

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — Today, NASA took a big step toward changing the way we plan for long-duration space voyages when astronaut Barry “Butch” Wilmore successfully installed and prepared the first 3-D printer for upcoming manufacturing operations on the International Space Station.

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ESA to Abandon Ariane 5 Upgrade, Move Directly to Ariane 6

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Artist's impression of Ariane 6. (Credit: ESA)

Artist’s impression of Ariane 6. (Credit: ESA)

Space News reports on Europe’s plans for a new launch vehicle to replace Ariane 5:

The German government has agreed to drop its demand that Europe develop a long-planned upgrade of today’s Ariane 5 rocket and instead proceed with a new-generation Ariane 6 that borrows heavily on Ariane 5 technology, Germany’s space minister said.

The decision ends an impasse that has bedeviled the European Space Agency for more than two years as it prepares for a Dec. 2 conference of its governments.

While noting that certain funding details and a clarification of industry’s risk-taking guarantee remain to be ironed out, Brigitte Zypries said Germany and France now agree to back Ariane 6 and to scrap the Ariane 5 Midlife Evolution (ME) rocket that European governments have been developing for several years.

“We have found a compromise that is OK for both countries, for the other participating states and also for industry,” Zypries said in a Nov. 15 emailed response to SpaceNews questions. “The important elements are the joint intention to develop a new launcher as part of a concept based mainly on Ariane 5 ME technology and Vega, and a new launcher governance.”

Read the full story.

ATK, Orbital Sciences Going Forward With Merger Despite Antares Accident

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ATK_LogoARLINGTON, Va. (ATK/Orbital Sciences PR) – Alliant Techsystems Inc. (“ATK”) (ATK) and Orbital Sciences Corporation (“Orbital”) (ORB) announced today that the two companies have set January 27, 2015 as the new date for their separate, special stockholder meetings in connection with the proposed transaction to spin off ATK’s Sporting Group business and immediately thereafter, merge ATK’s Aerospace and Defense Groups with Orbital. On October 28, 2014, both companies communicated they would hold separate, special stockholder meetings on December 9, 2014 for ATK stockholders to vote on the issuance of shares to stockholders of Orbital and for Orbital stockholders to vote on the proposed transaction. Following this announcement on October 28, 2014, a failure occurred during Orbital’s Antares launch.  Since the incident, the companies have conducted a thorough review and analysis of the launch failure and Orbital’s proposed recovery plan and long-term competitive position.  Following this review, ATK’s board of directors continues to support the strategic merits of the transaction and recommends that ATK stockholders vote to approve the issuance of shares to Orbital stockholders. Orbital’s board of directors also continues to recommend that Orbital stockholders vote to approve the proposed transaction.

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Airbus to Build Orion Service Module

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BERLIN, Germany — Airbus Defence and Space, the world’s second space company, has signed a contract with the European Space Agency (ESA) for the development and construction of the service module for Orion, the future American human space capsule. The contract is worth around 390 million euros. The service module will provide propulsion, power supply, thermal control and the central elements of the life support system of the American capsule.

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UK to Invest Up to £32 Million in Global Space Partnerships

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UK_space_agencySWINDON, England (UKSA) – The UK Space Agency is investing up to £32 million [$50 million] to open opportunities for the UK space sector to share expertise in real-world satellite technology and services overseas.

Grants will be awarded to British companies to work with international partners developing satellite technology to tackle issues like flooding, deforestation and humanitarian crises in emerging economies. These grants will be match funded by industry.

The UK space sector continues to thrive, growing at over 7% per year and is currently worth £11.3 billion to the UK economy. With over 5,000 jobs created in the last two years, it employs over 34,000 people and supports a further 72,000 jobs in other sectors.

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Reports: Russia Planning Alternative to ISS

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From left, Expedition 38 Flight Engineer Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Soyuz Commander Mikhail Tyurin of Roscosmos, and Flight Engineer Rick Mastracchio of NASA, smile and wave as they hold an Olympic torch that will be flown with them to the International Space Station. (Credit: NASA/Bill Ingals)

From left, Expedition 38 Flight Engineer Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Soyuz Commander Mikhail Tyurin of Roscosmos, and Flight Engineer Rick Mastracchio of NASA, smile and wave as they hold an Olympic torch that will be flown with them to the International Space Station. (Credit: NASA/Bill Ingals)

Russian media are reporting on plans for the country to pull out of the International Space Station by 2020:

The Russian space agency is reportedly considering construction of a high-altitude orbital station starting from 2017. This means that Moscow may walk away from the ISS after 2020, when its obligations under the current project are fulfilled.

Kommersant newspaper reported that the manned space exploration program for the period until 2050 implies step-by-step assembly of a new scientific space station, citing its sources in Central Research Institute for Engineering Technology, Roscosmos space agency’s leading space scientific and research enterprise.

The principal difference from the currently operating International Space Station will be the new Russian station’s high-altitude orbit with a 64.8-degree inclination, which would make up to 90 percent of the Russian territory visible from on board, including Arctic shelf seas.

From the ISS, which has an orbit inclination of 51.6 degrees, no more than 5 percent of the Russian territory is currently visible.

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Pioneering Philae Lander Completes Primary Comet Mission

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Philae's first touchdown seen by Rosetta's NavCam. (Credit: ESA/Rosetta/NavCam – CC BY-SA IGO 3.0)

Philae’s first touchdown seen by Rosetta’s NavCam. (Credit: ESA/Rosetta/NavCam – CC BY-SA IGO 3.0)

PARIS (ESA PR) — Rosetta’s lander has completed its primary science mission after nearly 57 hours on Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko.

After being out of communication visibility with the lander since 09:58 GMT / 10:58 CET on Friday, Rosetta regained contact with Philae at 22:19 GMT /23:19 CET last night. The signal was initially intermittent, but quickly stabilised and remained very good until 00:36 GMT / 01:36 CET this morning.

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This Week on The Space Show

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This week on The Space Show with Dr. David Livingston:

1. Special Time: Monday, Nov. 17, 2014: 2:30-4PM PST (5:30-& PM EST, 4:30-6 PM CST): We welcome back JIM MUNCY for space policy review and the impact of recent space events on policy & commercial space.

2. Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014:,7-8:30 PM PST (10-11:30 PM EST, 9-10:30 PM CST): No show today as I am out on personal business..

3. Friday, Nov. 21, 2014, 9:30 -11 AM PST (12:30-2 PM EST; 11:30-1 PM CST): We welcome back MARCIA SMITH to discuss space politics in light of the midterm election, upcoming space policy and budget issues. .

4. Sunday, Nov. 23 2014, 12-1:30 PM PST (3-4:30 PM EST, 2-3:30 PM CST): We welcome Dr. Dorit Donoviel and Dr. Eugene de Juan to discuss the NSBRI research project “Vision for Mars Challenge: A Unique Opportunity for Opthhalmology.”