New Campaign Encourages Youngsters to Reach for the Stars

Artist’s rendering of Glasgow Prestwick Spaceport (Credit: South Ayreshire Council)

SOUTH AYRSHIRE, Scotland (Prestwick Spaceport PR) — A new campaign which aims to educate thousands of young people across Ayrshire and beyond about careers in the UK’s growing space sector is to be launched by Prestwick Spaceport and affiliated aerospace businesses.

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Advancing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility in Competed Space Mission Leadership at NASA Will Require Extensive Efforts Along Entire Career Pathways, Says New Report

WASHINGTON (National Academis PR) – NASA should continue to bolster its efforts to increase diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) in leadership of competed space science missions, says a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The report outlines both near- and long-term actions that NASA should take to meet its stated diversity and inclusion goals, such as expanding mentorship and mission-related training opportunities; improving data collection, monitoring, and reporting; and investing in STEM pathways, historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs), and other minority-serving institutions (MSIs).

NASA identifies critical scientific needs for a mission by releasing a public announcement of opportunity. Members of the scientific community can apply to these competitively selected opportunities, with teams led by a principal investigator (PI). The mission PI role requires a wide array of experience in the scientific research field, including mission design and operation knowledge and team leadership and management skills.

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One Giant Leap for Dollkind: Barbie Explores New Frontier in First Trip to Space

In a collaboration with the International Space Station U.S. National Laboratory titled Mission DreamStar, Mattel sends two Barbie® dolls to space to encourage girls to pursue careers in STEM

One Giant Leap for Dollkind: Barbie Explores New Frontier in First Trip to Space (Photo: Business Wire)
One Giant Leap for Dollkind: Barbie Explores New Frontier in First Trip to Space (Credit: Business Wire)

EL SEGUNDO, Calif., April 14, 2022, (Mattel, Inc. PR) –Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAT) announced today that Barbie is embarking on her first mission to space in the doll’s 63-year history. In collaboration with the International Space Station (ISS) National Lab on Mission DreamStar, Mattel sent two Barbie dolls up to space to encourage girls to consider a career in aerospace, engineering and STEM.

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Gov. Janet Mills Signs Bill to Establish Maine Space Corporation

Gov. Janet Mills (left) signs into a law LD 1923, which was sponsored by Sen. Mattie Daughtry (right). (Credit: Maine Governor’s Office)

AUGUSTA, Maine (Mattie Daughtry PR) — On Monday, Gov. Janet Mills signed into law a bill from Sen. Mattie Daughtry, D-Brunswick. LD 1923, “An Act To Establish the Maine Space Corporation,” will help Maine’s emerging aerospace industry, create high-paying jobs and grow the state’s economy.

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NASA Administrator Statement on President’s FY 2023 Budget Request

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — The President’s fiscal year 2023 budget would allow NASA to sustain America’s global innovation leadership and keep NASA at the forefront of exploration and discovery by returning to the Moon with the Artemis program, among other efforts. This budget would enable NASA to address climate change, drive economic growth, and promote diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility.

The Biden-Harris Administration Monday submitted to Congress President Biden’s budget for fiscal year 2023. The President’s budget details his vision to expand on the historic progress our country has made over the last year and deliver the agenda he laid out in his State of the Union address – to build a better America, reduce the deficit, reduce costs for families, and grow the economy from the bottom up and middle out. 

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Education Research Announcement Connecting Students to the International Space Station Through Digital Engagement

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla., March 18, 2022 (CASIS PR) – The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space, Inc. (CASIS), manager of the International Space Station (ISS) National Laboratory, issued a new research solicitation today focused on education and digital engagement utilizing the unique assets of the orbiting laboratory.

The ISS National Lab Research Announcement (NLRA) “Leveraging the ISS National Lab to Enable Digital Engagement in K-12 and Higher Education” is open to U.S.-based entities seeking to establish or expand programs and products for students of all ages, particularly those from underserved communities. This research announcement will include up to $400,000 in total funding for multiple selected projects.

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NASA Armstrong Accomplished Numerous Milestones in 2021

Joby eVOL acoustic test (Credit: NASA)

EDWARDS, Calif. (NASA PR) — This year marks 75 years of flight research at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California and 2021 adds to those achievements. 2021 continued to be challenging while working in a mostly virtual environment, but progress was surely made.

NASA’s next supersonic X-plane, the X-59, is taking shape for upcoming flights; NASA’s first all-electric X-plane, the X-57, completed ground testing to prepare for flights; several Earth science missions were completed around the globe; and many other goals were met to prepare NASA Armstrong for a successful 2022 and beyond.

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NASA’s 2021 Achievements Included Mars Landing, First Flight, Artemis, More

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — In 2021, NASA completed its busiest year of development yet in low-Earth orbit, made history on Mars, continued to make progress on its Artemis plans for the Moon, tested new technologies for a supersonic aircraft, finalized launch preparations for the next-generation space telescope, and much more – all while safely operating during a pandemic and welcoming new leadership under the Biden-Harris Administration.

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Israel, UAE Agree to Collaborate on Lunar, Earth Observation & Satellite Missions

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) will collaborate on a mission to the moon, analyze data from an Israeli-French Earth observation satellite, and launch a joint education satellite under a landmark agreement signed last week to cooperate on a range of space projects, the Israel Space Agency (ISA) announced.

The two nations will collaborate on Genesis 2, an $100 million Israeli mission to launch an orbiter to the moon and deploy landers at two different locations on the lunar surface. The mission, which is to be half funded with foreign contributions, is scheduled to launch in 2024.

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New ESA Advisory Report Recommends Urgent Steps to Accelerate Europe’s Use of Space

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

With warnings about an imminent climate crisis and decreasing competitiveness, an independent advisory group has recommended the European Space Agency (ESA) urgently transform the way it uses space by establishing accelerators in three key areas leveraging commercialization, user-driven approaches and science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education.

“While space has the potential to enable effective and resilient solutions to tackle major societal challenges, it remains underutilised,” the advisory panel wrote. “The ESA Director General should investigate options for increasing the societal and economic impact of space, prioritising user-driven solutions and leveraging commercialisation, through a new concept of action, Accelerators, building on ESA’s programmatic capacities and acquired excellence.”

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Cargo Dragon Docks with International Space Station

Credit: NASA

HOUSTON (NASA PR) — While the International Space Station was traveling about 260 miles over the Western Australia, a SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft autonomously docked to the forward-facing port of the orbiting laboratory’s Harmony module at 10:30 a.m. EDT, Monday, Aug. 30. Flight Engineers Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur of NASA monitored operations.

Among the science experiments Dragon is delivering to the space station are:

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Bidding for Blue Origin Seat Reaches $4.8 Million; Live Auction Set for Saturday

New Shepard (NS-14) lifts off from Blue Origin’s Launch Site One in West Texas. (Credits: Blue Origin)

Bidding for a seat on Blue Origin’s New Shepard suborbital vehicle with Jeff Bezos ended on Thursday with the top bid at $4.8 million.

The auction, which began on May 5, will conclude on Saturday, June 12 with a live bidding session that will be streamed at www.blueorigin.com. The session will start at 1 p.m. EDT/17:00 UTC.

The winner will join Bezos and his brother Mark on New Shepard’s first crewed suborbital on July 20. They will fly on the 52nd anniversary of the first human landing on the moon by NASA astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on July 20, 1969.

The auction winner will undergo three days of training prior to the launch on the fourth day. The flight will take place at Blue Origin’s facility in west Texas.

Proceeds from the auction will go to Blue Origin’s education foundation, Club for the Future. The non-profit organization encourages students to pursue STEM careers and help plan for humanity’s future in space.

NASA Invests More than $45 Million in Small Business Projects

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — Small businesses are vital to NASA’s mission, helping expand humanity’s presence in space and improve life on Earth. NASA has selected 365 U.S. small business proposals for initial funding from the agency’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program, a total investment of more than $45 million.

“At NASA, we recognize that small businesses are facing unprecedented challenges due to the pandemic,” said Jim Reuter, associate administrator for the agency’s Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD). “This year, to get funds into the hands of small businesses sooner, we accelerated the release of the 2021 SBIR/STTR Phase I solicitation by two months. We hope the expedited funding helps provide a near-term boost for future success.”

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Tech Designed by University Students Could Shine Light on Extreme Lunar Environments

Michigan Technological University’s Tethered-permanently shadowed Region Explorer would extract and use the water ice located in and around the lunar polar regions through the use of super conducting cables to deliver large quantities of power to these extremely hard to access regions. (Credits: Michigan Technological University)

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — “The dark side of the Moon” is sometimes used to describe mysterious things. Though the far side of the Moon isn’t actually dark, there are some areas on the Moon that haven’t seen the Sun in billions of years. Those are the unexplored areas university students aimed to help NASA reach.

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