- Crew of Bion M1 Found Dead upon Landing – Space Safety Magazine
- Russian mice, gerbils dead in 30-day space ordeal; lizards live – latimes.com
- Lessons from Bion M Failures – Citizens in Space
More background info about the project:
More background info about the project:
NASA’s Project Morpheus project recently began testing their new lander and here is a video of engine tests while on a tether.
This ground level hot fire test included a test at 0 feet and at 3 feet. This test also marked the first use of a flame trench with the Morpheus vehicle.
There is a House hearing today on deep space exploration policy:
The witnesses include:
Robert Zubrin offers his usual calm and considered thoughts on the proposed asteroid retrieval mission: NASA’s Asteroid Absurdity – SpaceNews.com
Here’s the Planetary Society’s view: The Planetary Society Announces Conditional Support of NASA’s Asteroid Mission – The Planetary Society
A comment from Stewart Money on the Bigelow contract from NASA to study public/commercial partnerships for deep space exploration: Exploring NASA’s Agreement with Bigelow – Innerspace.net
Mars One is having no trouble attracting applications for their plan to establish a settlement on the Red Planet. Three applicants explain why they would consider going to Mars even if there will be no chance of returning to earth: Why sign up for a one-way Mars trip? Three applicants explain the appeal – Cosmic Log.
Here are some pictures from the recent Maker Faire event in San Mateo, California:
GALAXY FORUM USA 2013
Galaxy Education, Galaxy Exploration and Galaxy Enterprise in the 21st Century
JULY 4, 2013
Thursday Morning 9:30 – 11:30
Embassy Suites Santa Clara
2885 Lakeside Drive, Santa Clara
This FREE event is open to the public. Seating is limited. Please RSVP today: firstname.lastname@example.org or 650-324-3705
Presented by ILOA and Space Age Publishing Co.
An announcement from the The Philip K. Dick Film Festival:
The Philip K. Dick European Science Fiction Film
Festival Sets Dates For First International Event
New York City’s First Official Sci-Fi Film Festival Now Accepting Submissions
And Expands To France As It Ventures Into Global Awareness
Brooklyn, N.Y. May 20, 2013 – The Philip K. Dick European Science Fiction Film Festival is taking its mission internationally as it honors one of the literary world’s most acclaimed geniuses. A three-day event will mark the first of many worldwide gatherings in the beautiful and historic Lille, France from October 25-27, 2013 at the famous L’Hybride Cinema venue. This unprecedented move will welcome an international awareness to this remarkable festival and extend its celebration of Philip K. Dick to his countless fans who continue his legacy within the genre of science fiction.
The festival is now accepting submissions in science fiction and horror features and shorts. Writers and panelists will be invited to participate in this extraordinary event which will surely be one of many overseas. As further details become available the festival anticipates a successful event in its first global outing. The first New York City festival saw record crowds of over 1,000 participants for the exclusive screening of John Alan Simon’s Radio Free Albemuth which was based on Dick’s 1985 novel posthumously published three years after his death. The weekend-long festival also held numerous film screenings and panels with Simon, esteemed professors Ronald Mallet and Enrique Ricardo Miranda, distinguished writers Angela Posada-Swafford, Walter Mosley and Dennis Paoli and science fiction experts Richard Dolan and Peter Robbins. The team behind the annual festivities will also pioneer its second annual event in December 2013 for a record five-day gathering and a spring 2014 cyberpunk festival in Tokyo.
The Philip K. Dick European Festival of Science Fiction, Science, The Fantastic, Horror and The Supernatural will delight its attendees with its entertaining and visually captivating themes which have made the event a favorable and continued success. The event will take place at L’Hybride Cinema at 18 Rue Gosselet 59000 in Lille, France. Contact the venue at www.lhybride.org. For film submissions, deadlines and contacts please visit www.philipkdickfilmfestival-europe.com and www.withoutabox.com/login/12654 and always be sure to stay informed of all ongoing announcements on the festival’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ThePhilipKDickFilmFestival and Twitter page at twitter.com/PhilipKDickFest.
About The Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival:
The Second Philip K. Dick International Film Festival of Science, Science Fiction, Fantastic Film and the Supernatural and the first of its kind to grace the screens of New York City is organized by filmmakers who understand the difficulties and challenges of telling a unique story in a corporate environment. The year 2013 marks the second year of the festival which will expand it’s genres of films, panels and venues throughout Brooklyn and Manhattan. Guest speakers and writers that best represent the goals of the festival will attend the opening ceremonies. We look for original voices and visions in works submitted. Lastly, this is a festival by filmmakers for filmmakers.
About Philip K. Dick:
“Reality is whatever refuses to go away when I stop believing in it.” – Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick (1928-1982) was one of the 20th century’s most profound novelists and writers within the science fiction community. His exploration, analysis and beliefs led to the publishings of 44 novels and 121 short stories. Dick’s enormous library of works led to several film developments including Blade Runner (1982), Total Recall (1990), Minority Report (2002), Paycheck (2003) and most recently Radio Free Albemuth (2010), The Adjustment Bureau (2011) and the successful remake of Total Recall (2012). The film industry is also awaiting the release of King of the Elves in 2014, which will surely be yet another prosperous depiction of Dick’s literary contribution to science fiction. Dick’s enormously effective views comprised of fictional universes, virtual realities and human mutation foresaw an exaggerated version of the current state of government and contemporary life. Though he is gone in the physical form his philosophies live on in the techniques applied to modern stories and films and generate large displays of appreciation and understanding.
Fractured Atlas Donation Page: https://www.fracturedatlas.org/site/contribute/donate/6853
A reader points me to a dramatization of Ursula K. Le Guin‘s famous 1969 novel The Left Hand of Darkness. The Hand2mouth Theatre and Portland Playhouse in Oregon have brought the novel to the stage : Sci-Fi Author, Ursula La Guin’s “The Left Hand of Darkness” Takes the Stage at the Portland Playhouse – OPB.
In this brief video, the author talks about her book and what it says about the meaning of gender:
Timothy Peake will become the first official UK government astronaut to go to the ISS when he launches in 2015:
Frank Stratford of Mars Drive talk on The Space Show last Friday about “commercial space and space travel business models and revenue generation”: Frank Stratford, Friday, 5-17-13 – Thespaceshow’s Blog.
Yesterday Dr. John Brandenburg spoke on the show about “Physics, cosmology, Unified Field Theory, Higgs-Boson”: Dr. John Brandenburg, Sunday, 5-19-13 – Thespaceshow’s Blog.
Jeff Foust reports on how Charles Bolden sees NASA’s commercial crew program and how it is seen by a staffer to Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA), who is chairman of the House Appropriations subcommittee that sets NASA’s funding: Differing perspectives on commercial crew – Space Politics.
Jeff writes about the struggles by the planetary science community to avoid cuts in NASA funding: NASA operating plan may reverse Congressional increase in planetary science – Space Politics.
Eric Berger asks the big question about NASA: Is NASA about jobs, or actually accomplishing something? – SciGuy/Houston Chronicle.
Eric notes that regardless of Republican complaints about the Administration’s NASA policies, they vote to reduce its budget: Washington is stinting NASA, as usual – SciGuy/Houston Chronicle blog
Res Communis posts the latest collection of space and aviation related law, regulation and policy links: Library: A Round-up of Reading
The results of this year’s Student Launch Projects competition are in:
HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — The Aerospace Club of Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn., took first prize in the 2013 annual NASA Student Launch Projects challenge, in which student teams design, build and fly small rockets with science payloads to an altitude of 1 mile and return them safely to Earth.
After two consecutive third-place finishes, Vanderbilt beat 35 other colleges and universities to win the $5,000 top prize, provided by ATK Aerospace Group of Promontory, Utah. The University of Louisville in Kentucky and Tarleton State University in Stephenville, Texas, won second and third place, respectively, in the April 21 “launch fest” at Bragg Farms in Toney, Ala., near NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville.
After months of preparation, each team had an opportunity to launch its rocket and payload. NASA judges evaluated the rocket designs based on a series of technical design reviews, the results from the rocket’s flight including altitude, and the operation of the payload. The judges also evaluated each team’s written report and its outreach activities including a website documenting the experience and local educational engagement campaigns to share their enthusiasm for rocketry. The challenge seeks to inspire younger students to pursue technical learning fields, including science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
“This program is a valuable tool for students and their teachers because they use all the knowledge gained in a classroom setting to tackle a real-world challenge,” said Tammy Rowan, manager of Marshall’s Academic Affairs Office, which manages the rocketry challenge. “They stretch those STEM skills to create a complex machine, which could lead them to a future in the aerospace industry. Plus, their enthusiasm when they finally see their creations fly is inspirational to those who already work in the many different aspects of space exploration.”
In addition to the top prize, the Vanderbilt University team also took home the Best Payload Design for the most creative and innovative payload experiment.
Third-place Tarleton State also won three additional recognitions: the Rookie Award; the Science Mission Directorate Payload Award for most creative and innovative payload design while maximizing safety and science value; and the Best Team Spirit prize, a peer award voted on by all the rocket teams.
Alabama A&M University in Huntsville won the Altitude Award for coming closest to the 1-mile mark without going over — only 11 feet shy of 5,280 feet above ground.
The University of Louisville team won three awards: Best Vehicle Design for the most creative, innovative and safety-conscious rocket; Best Web Design; and the Education Engagement Award. The team from Mississippi State University in Starkville won the Project Review Award for their reviews and formal presentations and also finished in fifth place overall. The student teams voted the University of Nebraska in Lincoln as winner of this year’s Best-Looking Rocket.
NASA’s Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate, Science Mission Directorate and Office of Education, all in Washington, sponsor the Student Launch Projects challenge. ATK provides corporate sponsorship. The National Association of Rocketry provides technical review and launch support.
Hundreds of flight enthusiasts cheered the student rocketeers at the launch site. More than 8,000 individual viewers also watched the event live on Marshall’s UStream channel. Archived launch-day coverage is available at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/nasa-msfc
For complete lists of participating students, visit: http://education.msfc.nasa.gov/slp
For more information about NASA education projects, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/education
NASA’s Lunar Impact Monitoring program spotted a bright impact on the Moon last week:
This NASA ScienceCast video shows the resulting explosion:
Newly Illustrated Versions of the NSS Roadmap to Space Settlement Now Available
A newly illustrated version of the NSS Roadmap to Space Settlement is now available in three new formats: (1) A free downloadable PDF edition, (2) a free online full-screen flip-book edition, and (3) a quality full-color magazine-style printed edition for $9.95 (think Father’s Day?). Some new and striking art work appears for the first time in these new editions of the NSS Roadmap. Let these artists show you some of the possible paths to space development and settlement. These new editions provide you with additional ways to read and distribute this material to help promote the NSS Vision.
Just go to nss.org/roadmap where the entire Roadmap is online in web page format with links to (1) the new downloadable PDF version, (2) the online flip-book version (use the “Read Now” link on the right), and (3) the full-color print version available for purchase.
As originally announced in Ad Astra, this Roadmap was adopted by the NSS Board of Directors in 2012, updating the original NSS Roadmap published in 2000. We hope you will be able to attend the Roadmap track at the ISDC.
Way-station at L1 with re-usable ferries docked and ready to leave for Mars.
Art: Anna Nesterova
ABOUT THE ROADMAP (from Ad Astra Fall 2012)
The Roadmap has two major goals: First, to inspire and having the entire sweep of future space history in an easily readable form in one’s hands is inspiring. Second, by delineating and discussing specific Milestones, to make it easier for you to formulate and advocate policies that are most likely to advance the day when the NSS Vision becomes a reality.
There are many possible paths to achieving each Milestone, and steps toward one are likely also to be steps to others. The NSS Roadmap does not predict which exact paths will be selected or in what order.
What the Roadmap does do, as you read the full text, is enable you to see (a) that there are discrete and individual steps that need to be taken, (b) that for most of the Milestones the first steps can be taken now, and (c) that those steps are reasonably achievable. To paraphrase the old maxim, journeys of millions of miles begin with simple steps.
So what do we want people to DO with this Roadmap?
Delve into the Roadmap, and then do what you can to push us further along the road to space!
* AMSAT Fox-1 Launch Date Announced
* AMSAT At The Dayton Hamvention
* DARC and UBA Support Amateur Radio in Tunisia
* Frequencies announced for HamTV from the International Space Station
* AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium News
* Merritt Island High School StangSat Progress and Launch Date
1. Monday, May 20, 2013, 2-3:30 PM PST (5-6:30 PM EST, 4-5:30 PM CST): We welcome KIMBERLY ARCAND & MEGAN WATZKE regarding their book, “Your Ticket To The Universe: A Guide to Exploring The Cosmos.” Find out more about this exceptional book and our authors at www.amazon.com/Your-Ticket-Universe-Exploring-Cosmos/dp/1588343758/ref=onegiantlea20.
2. Tuesday, May 21, 2013 2013, 7-8:30 PM PST (10-11:30 PM EST, 9-10:30 PM CST): OPEN LINES discussion. All space, science, STEM calls welcome. First time callers are welcome and encouraged to call in.
3. Friday, May 24: , 2013, 9:30-11 AM PST (11:30- 1 PM CST, 12:30PM-2:00 PM EST): We welcome DR. JEROME KLINGAMAN to discuss and focus on astrophotography.
4. Sunday, May 26, 2013, 12-1:30 PM PST (3-4:30 PM EST, 2-3:30 PM CST). We honor the 20th anniversary of the DC-X with guests BILL GAUBATZ, CATHY HARPER, CHRIS ORWOLL, AND NINO POLIZZI.
The Space Show is a project of the One Giant Leap Foundation.
An independent team of well respected [scientists, including physicists and chemists] from Italy and Sweden have released the results of extensive tests they made of the LENR (Low Energy Nuclear Reaction) systems developed by Andrea Rossi in partnership with Prof. Sergio Focardi at the University of Bologna. The team found that the excess energy produced by the systems to be at least an “order of magnitude greater than conventional energy sources”.
Rossi previously did demonstrations and some tests with outside scientists but his direct involvement was held by some to bias the results. These new tests were done without Rossi’s presence and the team had access to the “E-Cat” systems for long periods and could set up the tests as they saw fit.
Here is the abstract of their report:
An experimental investigation of possible anomalous heat production in a special type of reactor tube named E-Cat HT is carried out. The reactor tube is charged with a small amount of hydrogen loaded nickel powder plus some additives. The reaction is primarily initiated by heat from resistor coils inside the reactor tube. Measurement of the produced heat was performed with high-resolution thermal imaging cameras, recording data every second from the hot reactor tube. The measurements of electrical power input were performed with a large bandwidth three-phase power analyzer. Data were collected in two experimental runs lasting 96 and 116 hours, respectively. An anomalous heat production was indicated in both experiments. The 116-hour experiment also included a calibration of the experimental set-up without the active charge present in the E-Cat HT. In this case, no extra heat was generated beyond the expected heat from the electric input. Computed volumetric and gravimetric energy densities were found to be far above those of any known chemical source. Even by the most conservative assumptions as to the errors in the measurements, the result is still one order of magnitude greater than conventional energy sources.
Update: Here are a couple of items from Mats Lewan of the Swedish tech magazine NyTeknik. He has been reporting on the Rossi system for the past couple of years:
Update 2: More response and info about the tests:
Bob Zimmerman reports on the latest space news during regular weekly slots (usually Tuesday and Thursdays) on the John Batchelor radio program. See the iTunes free Podcast for links to the latest shows.
Wednesday 05/15/13 Batchelor Hour 3
- A discussion of the failure of Kepler’s second reaction wheel and the end of its primary mission.
CBS space reporter William Harwood joined Dr. David Livingston on the weekly Hotel Mars segment to discuss the “ISS ammonia repair, Kepler Space Telescope problems, GPS, Atlas 5, Falcon 9, NASA mood”: John Batchelor Hotel Mars, Wednesday, 5-15-13 – Thespaceshow’s Blog.
And the latest on cosmic rays setting off lightning bolts: Russian researchers find more evidence to support notion that lightning is caused by cosmic rays – Susquehanna Astronomical Society.