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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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Robert Zimmerman: No Liftoff for These Space Flights of Fancy. Both parties excel at feigning interest in space exploration for the purpose of justifying pork to their districts.

Robert Zimmerman: No Liftoff for These Space Flights of Fancy. Both parties excel at feigning interest in space exploration for the purpose of justifying pork to their districts. | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

The pattern has repeated itself over the past four decades. A president, whether it is Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush or Barack Obama, makes a Kennedy-like declaration about America's next major goal in space. Sometimes it is building a space station by the end of the decade. Sometimes it is going to the moon by some set date. Sometimes it is going to an asteroid.

 

Congress and the president use the announcement as a justification for sending pork to their districts, and steer a little money to the project to get it going. When the really big funding is needed to actually build it, however, these politicians chicken out. The way NASA has been designed—by these same politicians, and with numerous facilities in as many congressional districts as possible—makes building anything by NASA ungodly expensive, far more expensive than even our most spendthrift politicians can stomach.

 

So they cancel it. A new president makes a new declaration and new goal, and the cycle begins anew. The pork rolls out, a new project begins, some money gets spent, and nothing gets built.

 

 

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Virgin Galactic “gearing up” for second powered SpaceShipTwo flight | NewSpace Journal

Virgin Galactic “gearing up” for second powered SpaceShipTwo flight | NewSpace Journal | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

After a hiatus of more than three and a half months that has raised questions by some industry observers, Virgin Galactic is making preparations for a second powered test flight of its SpaceShipTwo suborbital vehicle, the company’s CEO said Friday.

 

Speaking at the DC-X First Flight 20th Anniversary and Aerospace Workshop on Friday at Spaceport America in New Mexico, Virgin Galactic CEO George Whitesides indicated that a powered test flight for SpaceShipTwo was upcoming. “We’re gearing up for our second powered flight,” he said, but offered no specifics on the date.

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NASA Selects Innovative Technology Proposals for Suborbital Flights | Parabolic Arc

NASA Selects Innovative Technology Proposals for Suborbital Flights | Parabolic Arc | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) –NASA has selected for possible flight demonstration 10 proposals from six U.S. states for reusable, suborbital technology payloads and vehicle capability enhancements with the potential to revolutionize future space missions.

 

After the concepts are developed, NASA may choose to fly the technologies to the edge of space and back on U.S. commercial suborbital vehicles and platforms. These types of flights provide opportunities for testing in microgravity before the vehicles are sent into the harsh environment of space.

 

“As we prepare to venture forth in future science and exploration missions, one of our greatest challenges in advancing cutting-edge technologies is bridging the gap between testing a component or prototype in a laboratory or ground facility and demonstrating that technology or capability in a mission-relevant operational environment,” said Michael Gazarik, NASA’s associate administrator for space technology in Washington. “Microgravity suborbital flights provide relevant environment testing at a small fraction of the costs required for orbital flights, while advancing technologies that benefit American businesses and our economy.”

 

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Stepanov Sergey Mikhailovich's curator insight, August 18, 2013 7:33 AM

Music " Reflection " for our  Planet " Earth "
http://soundcloud.com/stepanov-sergei/reflection-1
yours sincerely    Mr.Stepanov S.M.    teacher of music     the Ukraine

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SpaceX buys more land

SpaceX buys more land | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

BROWNSVILLE — The list of SpaceX’s property holdings in Cameron County continues to grow.

 

The space exploration firm based in California that is considering development of a rocket launch facility near Boca Chica Beach purchased four more lots.

 

The purchase follows a commitment of $15 million and other legislation from the state aimed at luring Space Exploration Technologies Corp., to Texas.

 

 

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20 Years Ago: Novel DC-X Reusable Rocket Launched Into History

20 Years Ago: Novel DC-X Reusable Rocket  Launched Into History | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

Nearly 20 years ago to the date, a pioneering reusable spacecraft called the Delta Clipper Experimental, or DC-X, made its first test flight — a low, 59-second hop over New Mexico's White Sands Space Harbor. This weekend, the novel rocket experiment finds itself in the spotlight once again.


Veterans of that experimental program and space industry leaders are gathering at at Spaceport America in New Mexico today (Aug. 16) for DC-X SpaceQuest, a celebration and conference to mark the 20th anniversary of the DC-X's first amazing flight and to discuss the future of reusable rockets.


The reusable DC-X rocket stood 39 feet (12 meters) tall and resembled a towering white traffic cone, but was never intended to reach space. It was built by McDonnell Douglas (a company that later merged with Boeing) as part of a technology demonstration program initially spurred by the Department of Defense. After the unmanned rocket made its first successful vertical takeoff and landing on Aug. 18, 1993 — which flew 150 feet (45 m) above the ground — the DC-X flew 11 more times through 1996, demonstrating that a scaled-up version of the single stage to orbit craft could potentially be used to launch routine payloads into low-Earth orbit.

 

 

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NASA Announces Additional Commercial Crew Development Milestones | SpaceRef

NASA Announces Additional Commercial Crew Development Milestones | SpaceRef | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

NASA announced Thursday it is adding some additional milestones to agreements with three U.S. commercial companies that are developing spaceflight capabilities that could eventually provide launch services to transport NASA astronauts to the International Space Station from U.S. soil.

 

NASA is supporting the development of these capabilities through its Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) initiative. As part of this initiative, NASA is exercising and funding specific additional milestones for these next generation space transportation systems. The agency has extended the Space Act Agreements (SAAs) for The Boeing Company of Houston, Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) of Hawthorne, Calif., and Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) of Louisville, Colo., to include one or two additional milestones each under CCiCap.

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3D Printing In Space: A New Dimension (Photo Gallery)

3D Printing In Space: A New Dimension (Photo Gallery) | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

 

3D printing is poised to change the nature of space fabrication forever. See photos of 3D printing projects for space missions and rocket parts.

 

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Mining Asteroids - SpacePod

Mining asteroids isn't easy and now with some new scientific data it may actually be even harder than we originally thought! What are the risks and how do we overcome them? Check out this SpacePod for your answers!

 

 

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NASA planners switch next SpaceX Dragon mission to 2014 | NASASpaceFlight.com

NASA planners switch next SpaceX Dragon mission to 2014 | NASASpaceFlight.com | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

Planners within the ISS program have manifested the next two Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) missions. Both Orbital’s CRS-1 (ORB-1) and SpaceX’s CRS-3 (SpX-3) missions were initially provided with the same orbital place-holder in December, prior to this week’s decision to allow Cygnus to fly ahead of Dragon, with the latter moving to NET January 17, 2014.

 

The Orbital/SpaceX CRS tag team are a requirement element for helping the International Space Station (ISS) cope with the loss of the Space Shuttle’s superior upmass capability.

 

Cygnus is currently preparing for its first trip to the orbital outpost, via its ORB-D mission that will complete numerous test objectives, not unlike those undertaken by Dragon during its COTS 2+ opening flight to the Station.

 

 

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SpaceX's Grasshopper test rocket flies sideways successfully | NBC News.com

SpaceX's Grasshopper test rocket flies sideways successfully | NBC News.com | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

SpaceX's Grasshopper rocket demonstrates in a new video how future launch vehicles may well lift off, do their job and then maneuver themselves for a precision landing.

 

During Tuesday's test, the modified Falcon 9 test rig blasted off from its Texas launch pad and rose to a height of 250 meters (820 feet) with a 100-meter (330-foot) lateral maneuver.

 

The rocket hovered for some moments, then swung back and made a rapid, controlled descent onto the pad.

 

 

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Grasshopper demonstrates its lateral moves | NewSpace Journal

While everyone, it seems, has been chatting about Elon Musk’s “hyperloop” concept this week, one of his companies, SpaceX, has been showing off some actual hardware. On Tuesday, SpaceX flew Grasshopper to an altitude of 250 meters, this time including a 100 meter lateral maneuver in the process, before returning the reusable launch vehicle demonstrator back to the center of the pad.

 

“The test demonstrated the vehicle’s ability to perform more aggressive steering maneuvers than have been attempted in previous flights,” the company said in an emailed statement. “Grasshopper is taller than a ten story building, which makes the control problem particularly challenging. Diverts like this are an important part of the trajectory in order to land the rocket precisely back at the launch site after reentering from space at hypersonic velocity.”

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6 Ways Entrepreneur Elon Musk Is Changing the World

6 Ways Entrepreneur Elon Musk Is Changing the World | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

The super-fast "Hyperloop" travel concept is just the latest in a series of big, bold dreams by billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk.

Musk unveiled his proposed Hyperloop transportation system Monday (Aug. 12), claiming that it could blast passenger-packed pods through long tubes at about 760 mph (1,220 km/h) using energy derived from the sun.

The Hyperloop is potentially revolutionary, making it a typical Musk idea. Here's a look at six ways the South African-born billionaire is changing the world — or is hoping to in the future.

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Virgin Galactic Counts 625 Customers For Suborbital Trips

Virgin Galactic Counts 625 Customers For Suborbital Trips | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

Virgin Galactic has signed up 625 individuals for its planned suborbital spaceflights, lining up revenue of at least $125 million, in what CEO George Whitesides asserts is a strong sign of the excitement and potential of commercial space ventures.

 

Virgin’s commercial human spaceflights could begin next year, he added. “That will be a fundamental shift,” Whitesides stressed. “It’s sort of like we’ve been working on this for so long in the space community that it always seems like it’s in the future. But we’re really almost there, where people will be able to buy a ticket and go down to Spaceport America, get their week of training, and … have your ‘Right Stuff’ moment.”

 

 

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SpaceX's Private Spaceship Milestone Caps Big Week for Billionaire Elon Musk

SpaceX's Private Spaceship Milestone Caps Big Week for Billionaire Elon Musk | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

The private spaceflight firm SpaceX has notched a key milestone in its quest to launch humans to orbit, adding to an already eventful week for company founder and CEO Elon Musk.

 

SpaceX has completed a preliminary design review of the systems necessary to support astronauts in orbit and return them safely to Earth aboard the company's Dragon spacecraft, NASA officials announced Thursday (Aug. 15).

 

The news came just two days after SpaceX's reusable rocket prototype, known as Grasshopper, leaped sideways in an unprecedented test flight, and three days after Musk unveiled his idea for the potentially revolutionary "Hyperloop" transportation system.

 

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Space-based 3D printing: National Research Council meeting Aug. 20 and 21 | SpaceRef

The National Research Council is launching a new study to explore the concept of additive manufacturing technologies -- more popularly known as 3D printing -- for space operations and the feasibility of space-based manufacturing of hardware or even a small, fully functioning spacecraft.  The study committee will hold its first information-gathering meeting Aug. 20 and 21 in Washington, D.C. The project's objectives include identifying the science and technology gaps between current and required capabilities for space-based additive manufacturing and assessing the implications for launch requirements and in-space operations.

 

 

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SpaceX Purchase More Land Near Brownsville as Cargo Resupply Flight Slips | Parabolic Arc

SpaceX Purchase More Land Near Brownsville as Cargo Resupply Flight Slips | Parabolic Arc | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

SpaceX has purchased more land near it’s likely spaceport site in Texas, Waco residents have been told to prepare for a louder-than-usual engine test over the weekend, and NASA has slipped the next Dragon flight to January.

 

 

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What does a $250,000 ticket to space with Virgin Galactic actually buy you?

What does a $250,000 ticket to space with Virgin Galactic actually buy you? | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

In April, Virgin Galactic -- a subsidiary of Branson's Virgin Group -- hit a milestone. The rocket motor the company had been testing on the ground was fitted into SpaceShip Two, the spacecraft that, from next year onwards, will bring space travel to the general public.

 

"We lit the rocket motor for the first time in the air and the spaceship went through the sound barrier," recalls Stephen Attenborough, Virgin Galactic's commercial director.

 

"It was a hugely significant milestone for us, and in many ways, the last big piece of the jigsaw."

 

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Dragon Spacecraft Passes Another Milestone Toward Crewed Flight

Dragon Spacecraft Passes Another Milestone Toward Crewed Flight | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

Hawthorne, California-based Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) has just passed the seventh of 15 development milestones set the company by NASA’s Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) initiative. Along with Boeing and Sierra Nevada Corporation, SpaceX is being funded by NASA to develop a commercial transport vehicle for astronauts to and from the International Space Station (ISS).

 

SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft has already made three successful unmanned flights into low Earth orbit, docking with and delivering cargo to the ISS on the last two of these. In August 2012, NASA announced that, under CCiCap, it had awarded SpaceX $440 million to continue development of a crewed variant of Dragon. Three months later, following the spacecraft’s first operational supply mission to the ISS, NASA declared that the Californian company had completed the first of its CCiCap milestones. In December, SpaceX accomplished preliminary design reviews covering the first two phases of a manned flight, focusing on the ground systems and the ascent.

 

 

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SpaceX Completes Orbit and Entry Review Milestone | Parabolic Arc

SpaceX Completes Orbit and Entry Review Milestone | Parabolic Arc | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) – NASA Commercial Crew Program (CCP) partner Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) recently reviewed the systems critical to sustaining crews in orbit and returning them safely to Earth aboard the company’s Dragon spacecraft.

 

During the preliminary design review at SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, Calif., company engineers presented NASA representatives and aerospace industry experts detailed analyses of Dragon systems critical to keeping crews safe in orbit and during re-entry operations. From basic life support functions, including pressurizing Dragon with breathable air, to stocking the capsule with enough food and water for as many as seven crew members, the spacecraft must be designed to protect humans in the harsh conditions of space. Company designers and NASA engineers dissected the plans carefully to make sure no details were overlooked.

 

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100 Year Starship’s 2013 Public Symposium Returns to Houston Sept. 19-22 | SpaceRef

100 Year Starship (100YSS), the preeminent organization on interstellar space exploration, will host its annual Public Symposium on September 19-22, 2013 at the Hyatt Regency in Houston, Texas. Chaired by Dr. Mae Jemison, the 100YSS 2013 Public Symposium is a four-day event where influential leaders, experts, individuals and organizations gather to network, present papers, share and debate the technologies, science, social, economic and political structures and strategies needed achieve the capacity for human travel beyond our solar system to another star.

The 100YSS 2013 Public Symposium—“Pathway to the Stars, Footprints on Earth”—seeks to highlight the small incremental steps as well as radical leaps required to make significant progress to interstellar space, and how those steps will yield important benefits to life on earth.

 

 

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Grasshopper Divert | Single Cam

On August 13th, the Falcon 9 test rig (code name Grasshopper) completed a divert test, flying to a 250m altitude with a 100m lateral maneuver before returning to the center of the pad. The test demonstrated the vehicle's ability to perform more aggressive steering maneuvers than have been attempted in previous flights.

Grasshopper is taller than a ten story building, which makes the control problem particularly challenging. Diverts like this are an important part of the trajectory in order to land the rocket precisely back at the launch site after reentering from space at hypersonic velocity.

 

 

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Space companies make progress in testing landers

Space companies make progress in testing landers | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

 

Two commercial rocket companies have demonstrated how they can control reusable landing craft by diverting them in flight.

 

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SpaceX’s Grasshopper Ascends, Conducts Lateral Manuevers

SpaceX’s Grasshopper Ascends, Conducts Lateral Manuevers | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

Space Exploration Technologies, more commonly known as “SpaceX,” successfully completed another test flight of the company’s Vertical Takeoff Vertical Landing (VTVL) “Grasshopper” vehicle today, Aug. 13. The Grasshopper—described as, essentially, a Falcon 9 test rig—flew to an altitude of 250 meters and conducted a 100 meter lateral (horizontal) move. Upon completion of these maneuvers, Grasshopper safely returned to the launch pad from which it took off about a minute earlier.

 

The purpose of this test was simple: to validate the design and to show off the test vehicle’s capabilities. With each successive test, Grasshopper is given progressively more complex tasks.

 

The test article stands some 10 stories tall. This means that, essentially, a structure some 106 feet tall is balanced, moved side-to-side, on the thrust produced by its engine.

 

 

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SpaceX Flies Most Complicated Grasshopper Test Yet | SpaceNews.com

SpaceX Flies Most Complicated Grasshopper Test Yet | SpaceNews.com | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

WASHINGTON — Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX) on Aug. 13 successfully staged the most complicated flight yet of its Grasshopper test vehicle, sending the vertical-takeoff-and-landing rocket 250 meters into the air and steering it 100 meters laterally before bringing it in for a landing. 

 

The test took place at SpaceX’s rocket test facility near McGregor, Texas, where the company has conducted all Grasshopper flights to date. The Hawthrone, Calif., rocket maker is also making preparations to fly Grasshopper at Spaceport America in New Mexico, where it would be possible to send the vehicle to higher altitudes.

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Companies to get off ground in private space race

Companies to get off ground in private space race | The NewSpace Daily | Scoop.it

 

International corporations vie to build the next generation of capsules that will ferry people and material to space. One of them could hold up to seven people - and not all of them will necessarily be astronauts.

 

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