Piece Of SpaceX Rocket Debris Lands At Washington State Farm

A piece of burning rocket debris seen streaking across the Pacific Northwest sky last week crashed on a farm in eastern Washington state, authorities said.

After the March 25 event, a farmer discovered a nearly intact piece of rocket in a private field, The Tri-City Herald reported.

The approximately 5-foot (1.5-meter) composite-overwrapped pressure vessel used for storing helium left a nearly 4-inch (10.16-centimeter) dent in the ground, Grant County sheriff’s spokesman Kyle Foreman said. No one was hurt, he said.

Read more at: ABC news

More Potential Air Leak Locations Found at International Space Station, Source Says

Russian cosmonauts on board the International Space Station (ISS) have identified another three possible air leak locations in the Russian Zvezda module, a space industry source told Sputnik.

“This week, the cosmonauts found another three possible air leak locations in the intermediate chamber of the Zvezda module,” the source said, adding that on Friday and Saturday, the Russian crew patched up the spots with several layers of sealant.

Read more at: Sputniknews

Following Troubled Childhood, Orion Trio Preparing For Flight

Once the troublesome element of the Constellation (now Artemis) Program, three Orion spacecraft are in various stages of preparation for flight, two of which now already reside at their Kennedy Space Center launch site.

With the Artemis 3 Orion – set to depart Earth with the crew that will step foot on the surface of the Moon – now being constructed at the Michoud Assembly Facility (MAF), Orion’s multi-billion dollar journey to transporting humans into deep space is back on track.

Read more at: NASA spaceflight


It’s Finally Time to Take Out the Space Trash

Could the solution to eliminating dangerous space junk be a mini-fridge-sized spacecraft equipped with a big magnet, or maybe an orbiting tug that sends out a swarm of tentacles to trap a spent rocket?

If all goes well, schemes like these may be the first steps in removing the growing constellation of metallic refuse orbiting Earth. There are at least 23,000 pieces of discarded payloads, rocket bodies, and other debris greater than 10 centimeters long circling the planet, according to NASA estimates, with another 500,000 smaller objects that range between 1 and 10 centimeters.

Read more at: Wired

Why We Need To Get Better At Predicting Space Weather

The Sun is the most important source of energy for sustaining life on Earth, but it gives us a lot more than just light and heat. It also gives us solar storms.

Disturbances on the Sun, such as coronal mass ejections produced by solar flares that emanate from active sunspot regions, can cause solar storms. Solar flares and coronal mass ejections emit vast quantities of radiation and charged particles into space.

Read more at: Conversation

New Technique Fusing Gps And Camera Data Could Help Satellites Navigate Autonomously Above Low Earth Orbit

Researchers are seeking a patent for a technique that would estimate the relative locations of satellites beyond low earth orbits with unprecendented accuracy, which could spacecraft to navigate autonomously at high altitudes.

The new method combines signals from GPS satellites with observations from cameras or other sensors to determine where one spacecraft is in relation to another.

Read more at: Academic times


Florida Rocket Company Rebrands, Plans Bigger Rocket

A Florida rocket company, Rocket Crafters, has rebranded as Vaya Space and plans a new, larger rocket than it had been pursuing, now named Dauntless, according to company president Rob Fabian.

Rocket Crafters – now called Vaya – is one of many new companies pursuing new rockets considered small or medium, and far less powerful than SpaceX’s Falcon 9.

The plan for Dauntless is to lift about 2,200 pounds to low-Earth orbit, Fabian said. That’s more than twice as powerful as the Intrepid rocket the company no longer pursues.

Read more at: Spacedaily

SpaceX Is Adding A Glass Dome On Crew Dragon For 360 Views Of Space

The Crew Dragon capsule poised to fly four civilian astronauts to space this year is getting an upgrade: a glass dome will be added at the top to give space tourists a 360-degree view of the cosmos. Plans for the window were announced on Tuesday as SpaceX and the team managing the tourist mission, Inspiration4, revealed the full crew for the upcoming expedition.

The glass dome-shaped window replaces Crew Dragon’s docking adapter at its nose since the spacecraft won’t be docking to the International Space Station.

Read more at: Verge

Nevada Company Plans Space Station With Inflatable Pods

Nevada-based Sierra Nevada Corp. plans to launch a commercial space station with inflatable human habitats within seven years, the company announced in a press conference Wednesday.

Sierra Nevada already has seven NASA contracts to launch its Dream Chaser spaceplane, which is being developed to fly cargo to the International Space Station starting in 2022.

Now, the firm said it aims to have its own orbiting habitat in space before NASA retires the space station around 2028.

Read more at: Spacedaily

Virgin Galactic Unveils Newest Space Vehicle

Virgin Galactic unveiled its newest spaceship on Tuesday, the latest generation of its growing fleet.

The space tourism firm showcased the company’s innovation in design and astronaut experience through VSS Imagine, the first of Virgin Galactic’s Space­Ship III.

Company Founder Richard Branson said Virgin Galactic’s spaceships are built specifically to deliver a new, transforming perspective for future astronaughts.

“As a SpaceShip III class of vehicle, Imagine is not just beautiful to look at, but represents Virgin Galactic’s growing fleet of spaceships,” he said. “All great achievements, creations and changes start with an idea. Our hope is for all those who travel to space to return with fresh perspectives and new ideas that will bring positive change to our planet.”

Read more at: avpress

SpaceX Launches Starship SN11 Rocket Prototype, But Misses Landing

SpaceX’s latest Starship prototype, SN11, took to the skies over Texas on Tuesday morning (March 30), following a 24-hour delay.

That wasn’t the first delay for the test. On Friday (March 25), SpaceX hoped to conduct the test flight after changing out one of the craft’s three Raptor engines. Ultimately the test was moved to Monday and then finally happened early Tuesday morning, when the Starship SN11 rocket blasted off from SpaceX’s Starbase test site near Boca Chica Village in South Texas at 8 a.m. local time (9 a.m. EDT, 1300 GMT).

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