Nanoracks Selected for NASA Grant to Advance Outpost Work

A rendering showing greenhouses inside a StarLab Outpost. (Credit: Nanoracks/Mack Crawford)

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

NASA has selected Nanoracks for a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to outfit its upper stage Outposts to provide data services for other space vehicles.

Nanoracks is developing a modular hardware bus known as a Mission Extension Kit (MEK) that will convert upper stage boosters into Outposts after they have deployed their payloads. The MEK will provide power, pointing, data down/uplink, and maneuvering capabilities to the stage.

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NASA Jacks Up ISS Commercial Prices, Neglects to Tell Users

A month ago, it cost $3,000 per kilogram to send a payload to the International Space Station (ISS). Today, it will cost you $20,000 per kilogram for exactly the same payload.

NASA jacked up the price by 666 percent on Feb. 25, apparently without any prior notice to its user community. The change was quietly announced on the space agency’s website.

SpaceNews reports the decision has caused some consternation over at Nanoracks and other companies that regularly send payloads to the orbiting laboratory.

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Nanoracks Launches Two CubeSats on NG-15 Cygnus

WALLOPS ISLAND, Va., February 22, 2021 (Nanoracks PR) – Earlier today, the NG-15 Cygnus spacecraft berthed with the International Space Station (ISS), carrying two CubeSats in the Nanoracks External Cygnus Deployer (E-NRCSD). The Cygnus arrived at the ISS after launching from Wallops Flight Facility Pad 0A on February 22, 2021 at 17:36 UTC. In celebration of Black History Month, the NG-15 Cygnus has been named in honor of Katherine Johnson, a NASA mathematician who had a vital role in early human space flight missions.

This launch is Nanoracks’ ninth mission providing opportunities for CubeSat deployment from the Cygnus. The CubeSats onboard today’s launch, IT-SPINS and MySat-2 (DhabiSat), were built by students and researchers at Montana State University and Khalifa University in Abu Dhabi.

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Northrop Grumman Set to Launch 15th Cargo Delivery Mission to ISS on Saturday

The NG-15 mission’s Cygnus spacecraft will launch aboard the company’s Antares rocket with nearly 8,000 pounds of scientific research, supplies and hardware for the crew aboard the station. (Credit: Northrop Grumman)

“S.S. Katherine Johnson” ready for liftoff aboard Antares rocket carrying vital supplies and equipment for the crew aboard the station

WALLOPS, Va., February 19, 2021 (Northrop Grumman PR) – Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) is set to launch the company’s 15th resupply mission (NG-15) to the International Space Station under NASA’s Commercial Resupply Service-2 contract. The NG-15 mission’s Cygnus spacecraft will launch aboard the company’s Antares rocket with nearly 8,000 pounds of scientific research, supplies and hardware for the crew aboard the station.

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An Overview of NASA’s Technology Educational Satellites

NASA’s Technology Educational Satellite 8, or TechEdSat-8, deploying from the International Space Station Jan. 31, 2019. (Credits: NASA)

NASA’s TechEdSat series of technology demonstrations aims to bring small payloads back to Earth or to the surface of Mars – while pushing the state of the art in a variety of CubeSat technologies and experiments.

MOFFETT FIELD, Calif. (NASA PR) — TechEdSat is a series of collaborative projects and missions that pairs college and university students with NASA researchers to evaluate new technologies for use in small satellites, or CubeSats. Students do the hands-on work – designing, building, and testing CubeSat spacecraft systems and analyzing the results – for each flight mission, under mentorship of engineers at NASA’s Ames Research Center in California’s Silicon Valley.

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GHGSat ‘’Hugo’’ Spacecraft Launched on SpaceX Transporter-1 Mission

SpaceX Transporter-1 mission payload. (Credit: SpaceX)
  • GHGSat-C2 (“Hugo”) successfully separated from SpaceX rocket
  • Follows launch of GHGSat’s second satellite, “Iris” on September 2nd, 2020
  • Hugo is the result of GHGSat’s first collaboration with international leader in technology, ABB Measurement & Analytics Canada

MONTREAL, January 24, 2021 (GHGSat PR) – GHGSat, the global leader in high-resolution greenhouse gas monitoring from space, has successfully completed the launch of its third satellite, GHGSat-C2 (“Hugo”), which launched aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station at 10:00 ET / 15:00 UTC on January 24th, 2021.

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Nanoracks Completes First SpaceX Rideshare Mission

CAPE CANAVERAL SPACE FORCE STATION, January 24, 2021 (Nanoracks PR) – Nanoracks is pleased to share the successful completion of the Company’s first mission on a SpaceX rideshare launch. Nanoracks brokered the launch and deployment of eight Spire LEMUR-2 CubeSats and of an emissions monitoring microsatellite, GHGSAT-C2 (“Hugo”).

Nanoracks’ first rideshare mission, dubbed “Eyries-1,” marks the Company’s entrance into the rideshare brokering market and the broadening of services for Nanoracks’ global customer base. This launch allowed Nanoracks to continue longstanding customer relationships and to foster new partnerships.

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Voyager Space Holdings and X.O. Markets, Parent of Nanoracks, Announce Strategic Agreement

DENVER, DECEMBER 23, 2020 (Nanoracks PR) – Voyager Space Holdings, Inc. (Voyager), a global leader in space exploration, today announced its intent to acquire a majority stake in XO Markets and its largest subsidiary  Nanoracks

Nanoracks is the world’s leading provider of commercial space services, offering low-cost, high-quality solutions to the most pressing needs for satellite deployment and basic and educational research in more than 30 nations worldwide. As part of the transaction, Voyager will be infusing significant growth capital into the business to support the continued growth of Nanoracks utilization of the International Space Station, on behalf of itself and its customers, and the Nanoracks  Space Outpost Program for private space platforms.

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SpaceX CRS-21 Delivers Student-Led Experiments to International Space Station

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla., December 7, 2020 (CASIS PR) – SpaceX successfully launched and docked its 21st commercial resupply services (CRS) mission to the International Space Station (ISS) earlier this afternoon. This mission, which launched from Launch Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida, carried thousands of pounds of supplies and research to our nation’s orbiting laboratory.

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Nanoracks’ Bishop Airlock on Way to Space Station

Technicians work on the Nanoracks Bishop Airlock inside the Space Station Processing Facility at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Sept. 29, 2020, preparing the facility for its flight to the International Space Station. The first commercially funded airlock for the space station provides payload hosting, robotics testing, satellite deployment, and more. (Credits: NASA/KSC)

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla., December 6, 2020 (Nanoracks PR)  – The privately-owned Nanoracks Bishop Airlock, nested inside the SpaceX Dragon trunk, has reached a stable orbit after a successful launch onboard the CRS-21 mission. Today’s mission was launched from the Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39A at 11:17 AM ET.

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Research Investigations on CRS-21 Sponsored by the ISS U.S. National Laboratory

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (CASIS PR) — SpaceX’s 21st commercial resupply mission (CRS-21) to the International Space Station (ISS) is slated for launch on December 5 at 11:39 a.m. EST from Launch Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

The ISS U.S. National Laboratory is sponsoring more than 15 payloads on this mission that will bring value to our nation and further enable a sustainable market in low Earth orbit.

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NASA, SpaceX “Go” for Dec. 5 Cargo Resupply Launch

HOUSTON (NASA PR) — NASA and SpaceX managers conducted a Flight Readiness Review (FRR) Monday, Nov. 23, for SpaceX’s 21st Commercial Resupply Services (CRS-21) mission to the International Space Station.

To enable additional time to evaluate flight data from Crew-1 and close out certification work ahead of this first flight of the cargo version of Dragon 2, teams are now proceeding toward a planned liftoff at 11:39 a.m. EST on Saturday, Dec. 5, from Launch Complex 39A at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, with the Dragon spacecraft arriving to autonomously dock at the orbiting laboratory on Sunday, Dec. 6, at approximately 11:30 a.m.

The science to be delivered on this mission includes a study aimed at better understanding the effects of microgravity on cardiac function in human heart tissue, research into how microbes could be used for biomining on asteroids, and a tool being tested for quick and accurate blood analysis in microgravity. The first commercially owned and operated airlock on the space station, the Nanoracks Bishop Airlock, will arrive in the unpressurized trunk of the Dragon spacecraft. Bishop will provide a variety of capabilities to the orbiting laboratory, including CubeSat deployment and support of external payloads.

Hearts, Airlocks and Asteroids: New Research Flies on 21st SpaceX Cargo Mission

HOUSTON (NASA PR) — The 21st  SpaceX cargo resupply mission that launches from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida carries a variety of critical research and technology demonstrations to the International Space Station. The mission represents the first on an upgraded version of the company’s Dragon cargo spacecraft designed to carry more science payloads to and from the space station.

Highlights of the payloads on this mission include:

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Nanoracks to Provide ISS with New Doorway to Space

Illustration of Bishop commercial airlock on International Space Station. (Credit: NanoRacks)

by Margo Pierce
NASA’s Spinoff Publication

Anyone who has gotten a sofa stuck in a doorway on moving day knows how frustrating it is when there’s no other way in or out. The doorways on the International Space Station, or airlocks, have worked just fine for 20 years. But as more researchers and companies wish to expand the scope and size of the projects they send into low-Earth orbit, a larger doorway could help.

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