NASA: Funded Study Reduces Cost of Human Missions to Moon and Mars by Factor of 10

WASHINGTON, July 20, 2015 ‐‐‐ The National Space Society (NSS) and Space Frontier Foundation (SFF) today announced their support for NASA’s funding of the newly released NexGen Space study, illustrating how to cut the cost of human space exploration by a factor of 10. The study, “Economic Assessment and Systems Analysis of an Evolvable Lunar Architecture that Leverages Commercial Space Capabilities and Public‐Private Partnerships,” finds public‐private partnerships able to return humans to the.. Read More

New SPACE Act Bill Contains Hidden Bomb

HR 2262, the new SPACE Act, the Space Act of 2015, contains a hidden bomb. It’s in a part of the section titled “Space Launch System Update”, on pages 26-28 which reads: It shall be the policy of the United States to use the Space Launch System for purposes that require a human presence directly to cis-lunar space and the regions of space beyond low-Earth orbit. Says the Space Development Steering Committee’s R.D. Boozer, the.. Read More

A Thermal Space Solar Power Concept

Here is a video proposal to build solar power plants where the Sun shines close to 99% of the time. This video of transporting parts to GEO and building a thermal power satellite was in a contest, but a team supported by the Chinese government won. The proposal grew out of one to use laser to power the last part of earth orbit injection and transfer to GEO. Lasers are good from the.. Read More

Monster Rocket Sabotages America’s Manned Mars Program

America’s enthusiasm for manned missions to Mars is on the upswing. NASA has just released a new animation of the Space Launch System, the rocket that it says will get us to the red planet. NASA head Charles Bolden told a Humans to Mars Summit in Washington on May 5th that “a clear plan to make” a manned Mars mission “happen is starting to take shape.” Four days after the Summit ended, Explore.. Read More

Space Solar Power Call for Papers

Workshop: Current Challenges for Space Solar Power IEEE WiSEE 2015, Dec. 14-15 2015, Orlando FL Call for Papers and Talks  Important Dates:  Full Paper/Talk Abstract Submission: Aug. 01 2015 Review Complete: Sept. 01 2015 Uploading Final Papers: Sept. 15 2015  This workshop provides a forum for researchers and developers working on Space Solar Power (SSP) to facilitate and highlight developing SSP technologies, to determine and advance the state of the art, to discuss.. Read More

ISDC Starts Wednesday, May 20th

The International Space Development Conference starts Wednesday, May 20th in Toronto. This annual event is sponsored by the National Space Society. It brings together leading managers, engineers, scientists, educators, and business people from civilian, military, commercial, entrepreneurial, and grassroots advocacy space sectors. This year’s conference includes Lori Garver (former NASA Deputy Administrator), Kip Thorne (physicist), George Whitesides (CEO of Virgin Galactic) and Buzz Aldrin. Breakthrough Technologies are not only paving the future, but are critical.. Read More

Air Force X-37B Flight to Carry NASA Materials Science Experiment

On May 20, an advanced NASA materials science experiment will be carried as a payload on board the U.S. Air Force X-37B winged reusable spaceplane. The X-37B is set for its fourth Atlas-V launch from Cape Canaveral. The Materials Exposure and Technology Innovation in Space (METIS) project is planned to remain in space for at least 200 days. By flying the METIS investigation on the X-37B, materials scientists will have the opportunity to expose.. Read More

A Singular Suggestion Toward a Radical Idea for Lunar Industrial Development

Dennis Wingo has a new piece on his blog entitled, “A Singular Suggestion Toward a Radical Idea for Lunar Industrial Development.” With technology advancement continuing in many fields such as robotics, telepresence, autonomous operations, swarms, and augmented and virtual reality, the cost of space exploration and economic development of the Moon, Mars and the rest of the solar system is decreasing. With this idea in mind, Dennis explains that the first two lunar.. Read More

SpaceX Upcoming Abort Test

America has had no access to space for humans on American vehicles since 2011. That space gap is about to stop, not thanks to a space-military-industrial complex goliath, but thanks to a private industry David–SpaceX. Before NASA will let SpaceX fly humans in its Dragon V2 capsule, the space agency requires that SpaceX test its “launch abort system,” the system that will carry astronauts to safety if their launch rocket blows up. That.. Read More

Space Solar Power Initiative Established by Northrop Grumman and Caltech

Northrop Grumman Corporation has signed a sponsored research agreement with the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) for the development of the Space Solar Power Initiative (SSPI).  Under the terms of the agreement, Northrop Grumman will provide up to $17.5 million to the initiative over three years. The team will develop the scientific and technological innovations necessary to enable a space-based solar power system capable of generating electric power at cost parity with grid-connected fossil fuel power plants. Read the.. Read More