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Branson Visits Mojave, Renames Spaceship Company | Parabolic Arc

Branson Visits Mojave, Renames Spaceship Company | Parabolic Arc | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

MOJAVE, CA – Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, today dropped into his Mojave, Calif.-based Virgin Galactic space company as part of a visit to the Los Angeles area. During his visit, Sir Richard, accompanied by his daughter, Holly, toured the extensive facilities and met informally with the Mojave-based workforce now numbering more than 175 Virgin Galactic employees. Sir Richard announced to staff that Virgin Galactic’s Mojave-based sister organization, The Spaceship Company, which will manufacture and assemble a fleet of commercial space vehicles, is to be renamed and brought under the Virgin Galactic brand.

 

 

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The NewSpace Daily
NewSpace: A New Era In Space Exploration. As one era ends a new one begins: a new golden era in spaceflight. Join us for all the latest headlines in this bold new adventure.
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Please click here to support The NewSpace Daily

Please click here to support The NewSpace Daily | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

This April marks the 3 year anniversary of The NewSpace Daily. I started this website back in April 2011 to chronicle the daily headlines of one of the most exciting adventures of the 21st Century: a new era of space exploration that will one day be open to all of us thanks to the enterprising efforts of visionary entrepreneurs, innovative new technologies and bold new ways of doing business. It has been a labor of love...

 

 

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CRS-3 Dragon set for Easter Sunday ISS arrival | NASASpaceFlight.com

CRS-3 Dragon set for Easter Sunday ISS arrival | NASASpaceFlight.com | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft is closing in on the International Space Station (ISS) for an Easter Sunday arrival. Following a slight hiccup with her quad thrusters, the spacecraft has enjoyed a smooth passage towards the orbital outpost, ahead of a complex set of requirements that should culminate in her capture by the Station’s Robotic Arm at around 7:14am Eastern.


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Amazing Footage of Dragon Space Capsule Seen from the Ground

Amazing Footage of Dragon Space Capsule Seen from the Ground | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

Thierry Legault is a gifted astrophotographer renowned for his footage of the International Space Station and (once upon a time) the Space Shuttle that he takes through his telescope. His ability to capture these rapidly moving objects is nothing short of spectacular.


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Launch of SpaceX's Dragon CRS-3 Spacecraft on Falcon 9v1.1 Rocket | YouTube

The fourth SpaceX Falcon 9v1.1 rocket to launch successfully lifted off of Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral in Florida today, April 18th 2014 at 19:25 UTC. The rocket carried the fourth ISS-bound Dragon Spacecraft with 2.4 tonns of cargo and supplies for the International Space Station, Dragon is due to arrive on on Sunday- April 20th 2014. This Falcon 9 rocket also was the first to have landing legs installed, SpaceX will test a re-entry burn and landing burn of the first stage over the Atlantic Ocean.


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Falcon 9 rocket launches | Spaceflight Now

Falcon 9 rocket launches | Spaceflight Now | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blasts off at 3:25 p.m. EDT from Cape Canaveral's Complex 40 carrying the Dragon cargo ship destined for the International Space Station.

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Falcon 9 launches Dragon; outcome of reusability experiment unclear | NewSpace Journal

Falcon 9 launches Dragon; outcome of reusability experiment unclear | NewSpace Journal | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

Despite a foreboding weather forecast, conditions were good enough at the right time Friday afternoon for SpaceX’s Falcon 9 v1.1 rocket to lift off successfully from Cape Canaveral, Florida. The rocket lifted off in its instantaneous launch window at 3:25:22 pm EDT (1925:22 GMT) and placed the Dragon spacecraft into orbit about ten minutes later. The Dragon separated, deployed its solar panels, and is on track to arrive at the International Space Station early on Easter Sunday, with grappling scheduled for 7:14 am EDT (1114 GMT).


“Everything looks great as far as the ascent phase of the mission,” SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said in a post-launch news conference late Friday afternoon. “The rocket flight was perfect, as far as we could tell.”

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German Study Finds Pros, Cons to Different Commercial Models for Station Resupply | SpaceNews.com

German Study Finds Pros, Cons to Different Commercial Models for Station Resupply | SpaceNews.com | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

PARIS — It is a story of two companies with similar contracts from NASA to carry 20,000 kilograms of payload to the international space station.


Both develop new rockets and capsules to do the work. 

Both are behind schedule but otherwise are delivering the goods. NASA is content and seems ready to buy more services from both.


But the similarities between Space Exploration Technologies Corp. and Orbital Sciences Corp. end there, as is highlighted by a comparative analysis performed, surprisingly, by the German Aerospace Center, DLR.

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SpaceX Launches Cargo and Tries a Rocket Recovery | NBC News

SpaceX Launches Cargo and Tries a Rocket Recovery | NBC News | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

SpaceX launched more than two tons of cargo to the International Space Station — and also conducted an experiment in rocket recovery.

The company’s Falcon 9 rocket lifted off into the cloudy skies over Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 3:25 p.m. ET, sending a robotic Dragon cargo capsule into orbit.

The Dragon held nearly 5,000 pounds (2,200 kilograms) of supplies and equipment for the station, ranging from the legs for a space robot to a lettuce-growing experiment. This is the third cargo delivery under the terms of SpaceX's 12-flight, $1.6 billion contract with NASA.

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Grasshopper's successor flies at SpaceX's McGregor site

Grasshopper's successor flies at SpaceX's McGregor site | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

Reports have been confirmed that SpaceX's Falcon 9-R development vehicle made its first free flight today (April 17th) at McGregor — taking off, hovering, moving sideways and landing.


SpaceX McGregor will be testing the rocket — the three-engine successor to the single-engine Grasshopper — at lower altitudes before sending it to Spaceport America in New Mexico for higher (and farther) flights.


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Commentary: A Path to Nowhere and the Absence of Leadership (Part 1)

Commentary: A Path to Nowhere and the Absence of Leadership (Part 1) | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

The deterioration in U.S.-Russian relationships that resulted from the annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula by Russia last month has awakened many in the U.S. to the implications of the lack of a domestic crew launch capability to low-Earth orbit, as evidenced in the various hearings that took place on Capitol Hill in recent weeks regarding NASA’s budget. Yet, despite the many rounds of finger-pointing between Congress and the White House over the issue, this state of affairs has resulted from a series of ill-fated and poorly thought-out decisions made in previous years by all interesting parties, including NASA’s leadership itself. These decisions left a lasting impact in a negative way, in almost every aspect of the space agency’s human spaceflight program, ranging from the ability to have regular access to the International Space Station, to setting realistic goals for deep space exploration beyond low-Earth orbit.


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Sierra Nevada Corporation: Forward Innovations | Commercial Crew Program

Sierra Nevada Corporation: Forward Innovations | Commercial Crew Program | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

Sierra Nevada Corporation is one of four NASA partners working with the agency’s Commercial Crew Program to develop new capabilities to transport people to low-Earth orbit. Ultimately, NASA intends to certify and use commercial systems to fly astronauts from the United States to the International Space Station and back. Click here for a printable version of this poster.

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Spaceport Body of Knowledge Library Goes Live | Parabolic Arc

As part of the FAA Center of Excellence in Commercial Space Transportation Task 220 with New Mexico State University (NMSU), a collection of spaceport-related documents, a.k.a., the “Body of Knowledge for Commercial Spaceport Operations” has gone live on the web at the following URL:

http://contentdm.nmsu.edu:2011/cdm/landingpage/collection/NMSGCBOK

The Framework for Spaceport Operations is an evolving collection of documents and information that represents available documentation of industry best practices. The collection was created and made accessible by a multi-agency, multi-partner research team led by NMSU and funded by the FAA Center of Excellence for Commercial Space Transportation.

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Discovery Vision Concept Live Reveal (Full Film) | Land Rover USA | YouTube

The Discovery Vision Concept was revealed April 14, 2014 in New York City. From 2015 onwards, the Discovery nameplate will be a distinct range of vehicles that symbolize the essence of the premium SUV: modern, versatile, practical and desirable, with the unmistakable DNA of Land Rover at its core.

Join the conversation at www.Facebook.com/LandRoverUSA or on Twitter and Instagram @LandRoverUSA with #ReadyToDiscover


Stratocumulus's insight:


More about the SUV than the SpaceShip but still some pretty amazing video.

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Dragon spaceship delivers science and supplies | Spaceflight Now

Dragon spaceship delivers science and supplies | Spaceflight Now | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

A Dragon cargo craft stuffed with science and supplies approached the International Space Station for an automated laser-guided final rendezvous Sunday, culminating with grapple by the outpost's robotic arm.

Owned and operated by SpaceX, the Dragon spacecraft completed a 40-hour trip from launch to the international research complex at 7:14 a.m. EDT (1114 GMT), when space station commander Koichi Wakata guided the lab's robot arm to grapple the free-flying cargo capsule.

The linkup occurred as the space station and Dragon spacecraft flew 30 feet apart about 260 miles over the Nile River basin of Egypt.

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SpaceX achieves controlled landing of Falcon 9 first stage | Spaceflight Now

SpaceX achieves controlled landing of Falcon 9 first stage | Spaceflight Now | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

SpaceX says it made two key strides toward the eventual reusability of the Falcon 9 rocket this week with the controlled splashdown of the rocket's first stage in the Atlantic Ocean on Friday and the successful first flight of a booster prototype from the company's Central Texas test facility.

 
The California-based space transportation company, founded in 2002 by Elon Musk, has tried to retrieve rocket stages after several launches, initially trying a parachute-assisted recovery before switching to a concept involving a propulsive soft touchdown on a landing pad.

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SpaceX booster flyback a success; development to continue | Michael Belfiore

A SpaceX  Falcon 9 rocket launched a cargo to the International Space Station today at 3:25pm ET, and then turned around and flew back to a soft landing in the Atlantic Ocean. The cargo, flown on a Dragon capsule, will reach the station on Sunday morning.


It’s the first time a booster rocket has made hypersonic reentry into the atmosphere intact and then splashed down gently without benefit of parachutes. Today’s flight was a major milestone in SpaceX’s quest for reusable orbital rockets. The company is already the cheapest launch provider in the world. Reusing its boosters, something no one else is able to do, would allow the company to radically change the spaceflight industry, essentially producing the iPhone of rockets, the machine everyone else will have to emulate to stay in business.

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F9R First Flight Test | 250m | YouTube

Video of Falcon 9 Reusable (F9R) taking its first test flight at our rocket development facility. F9R lifts off from a launch mount to a height of approximately 250m, hovers and then returns for landing just next to the launch stand. Early flights of F9R will take off with legs fixed in the down position. However, we will soon be transitioning to liftoff with legs stowed against the side of the rocket and then extending them just before landing.

The F9R testing program is the next step towards reusability following completion of the Grasshopper program last year (Grasshopper can be seen in the background of this video). Future testing, including that in New Mexico, will be conducted using the first stage of a F9R as shown here, which is essentially a Falcon 9 v1.1 first stage with legs. F9R test flights in New Mexico will allow us to test at higher altitudes than we are permitted for at our test site in Texas, to do more with unpowered guidance and to prove out landing cases that are more-flight like.


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SpaceX supply ship begins journey to space station | Spaceflight Now

SpaceX supply ship begins journey to space station | Spaceflight Now | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

SpaceX's commercial Dragon supply ship thundered into orbit Friday to begin a two-day pursuit of the International Space Station, setting up the delivery of 2.4 tons of fresh supplies and experimental cargo to the 450-ton research complex Sunday.

 
The Dragon spacecraft, flying on SpaceX's third operational resupply run to the space station, lifted off at 3:25:21 p.m. EDT (1925:21 GMT) from Cape Canaveral's Complex 40 launch pad, initially rising slowly as its Falcon 9 rocket powered up to more than 1 million pounds of thrust.

The launcher picked up speed, breaking the sound barrier about 70 seconds after liftoff and rocketing through the stratosphere before releasing its nine-engine first stage less than 3 minutes into the flight.

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Musk: Dragon Had Thruster Problem, But OK Now; Waiting for Data from Landing Leg Test

SpaceX Founder and Chief Designer Elon Musk said at a CRS-3 post-launch press conference today that the Dragon spacecraft had a problem with its Draco thrusters, but everything appears OK now.  Meanwhile, he is waiting for more data from the test of landing legs on the Falcon 9 first stage that took place over the ocean.  A heavy sea state dampened hopes that the stage itself would be recovered.


Speaking about two hours after the successful launch of this third SpaceX operational cargo mission to the International Space Station (ISS), Musk expressed happiness that the launch went as planned and did not seem worried about the thruster problem.  He said that an isolation valve that leads to the thruster pods did not respond so a backup valve was used instead.  Dragon has 18 Draco thrusters that are used to maneuver the spacecraft from its initial orbit to the ISS.  They are distributed across four pods: two pods hold four thrusters and two hold five thrusters.  An anomaly with the Draco thrusters caused a problem during the CRS-2 mission last year.  Musk was asked if today's problem was related to last year's and he said it was too early to tell.


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SpaceX: Forward Innovations | Commercial Crew Program

SpaceX: Forward Innovations | Commercial Crew Program | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

Space Exploration Technologies, better known as SpaceX, is one of four NASA partners working with the agency’s Commercial Crew Program to develop new capabilities to transport people to low-Earth orbit. Ultimately, NASA intends to certify and use commercial systems to fly astronauts from the United States to the International Space Station and back. Click here for a printable version of this poster.

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SpaceX Aims to Blaze New Trail for Rocket Technology | NBC News

SpaceX Aims to Blaze New Trail for Rocket Technology | NBC News | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

SpaceX's cargo delivery mission to the International Space Station is due to send a host of innovations into orbit on Friday — ranging from a laser communicator to cracker-sized satellites to a pair of claw-footed legs for the station's android robot. But the biggest innovation may be what happens to the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket after it's done its main job.



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Commentary: A Path to Nowhere and the Absence of Leadership (Part 2)

Commentary: A Path to Nowhere and the Absence of Leadership (Part 2) | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

The purpose and meaning of human spaceflight has been a subject of debate even before the first human had ever left the Earth to gaze at the infinite blackness of space. Even today, with more than 50 years of history under its belt, human spaceflight is an endeavor that is still in search of a rationale and long-term vision to justify its existence. The advent of the Space Age saw the use of human spaceflight as a mere tool for nationalistic boasting in the international geopolitical arena, or as a source of national pride at best. In this context, NASA’s magnificent and historic accomplishments in space, like the Apollo Moon landings of the 1960s and ’70s, were seen by the U.S. government as just the means for showcasing its technological and political superiority over the former Soviet Union. When it fulfilled this role, the Apollo program was ultimately discontinued and NASA’s plans that called for an aggressive pursuit of human exploration beyond low-Earth orbit and a permanent human presence in deep space were put on hold indefinitely. Despite a number of several failed initiatives that aimed to take up where Apollo left off, the space agency has been more or less left to cast adrift ever since, with no overriding theme about where to go next in space and why.


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Editorial: A Feckless Blame Game on ISS Crew Access | SpaceNews.com

Those who bemoan NASA’s reliance on Russia, yet shortchange the very program designed to fix that problem, are at the same time adamant that the agency spend nearly $3 billion per year on SLS and Orion, vehicles that for all their advertised capability still have no place to go. Their size and cost make them poorly suited for space station missions, even as a backup to commercial crew taxis, and in any case the first SLS-Orion crewed test flight won’t happen before 2021.


NASA currently lacks an independent crew launching capability because of decisions made a decade ago, the consequences of which were fully understood and accepted at the time. The longer this situation lasts, however, the more culpable the current group of decision-makers will become.

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The Boeing Company: Forward Innovations | Commercial Crew Program

The Boeing Company: Forward Innovations | Commercial Crew Program | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

The Boeing Company is one of four NASA partners working with the agency’s Commercial Crew Program to develop new capabilities to transport people to low-Earth orbit. Ultimately, NASA intends to certify and use commercial systems to fly astronauts from the United States to the International Space Station and back. Click here for a printable version of this poster.

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SpaceX resets for Friday, but further delays could mean losing its place in line | NewSpace Journal

... If the launch slips past Saturday, though, it’s possible this particular mission could face an even longer delay. Speaking at a meeting of the NASA Advisory Council (NAC) in Washington on Wednesday, Bill Gersetenmaier, NASA associate administrator for human exploration and operations, indicated that further delays might see NASA instead press ahead with a May 6 launch of an Orbital Sciences Corporation Cygnus cargo spacecraft on an Antares rocket from Virginia.


“We have a flight we’re trying to get off this Friday,” Gerstenmaier said of the upcoming Dragon launch. “If that doesn’t occur, we’re going to use the Cygnus vehicle on May 6. So I’m kind of double booking two launches at once for a little while until we see what actually occurs, because we’re getting low enough on supplies on board station that we’ve got to get something to station in the next couple of months.”

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Land Rover and Virgin Galactic Partnership: The Designers | Land Rover USA | YouTube

Adam Wells, Head of Design at Virgin Galactic, and Gerry McGovern, Land Rover's Design Director, elaborate on the importance of interior design and function.

Join the conversation at www.Facebook.com/LandRoverUSA or on Twitter and Instagram @LandRoverUSA with #ReadyToDiscover


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