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Welcome to HobbySpace. the site that will prove to you that everyone can participate in space exploration and development in one way or another.
October 2013
Space Hobbies & Activities in the Spotlight

Amateur astronomer building telescope with
1.8 meter mirror

Truck driver and amateur astronomer Mike Clements is building a telescope with a 1.8 meter (70 in) mirror he got as surplus from a government auction […] Read the rest of this entry…

Citizen scientists spot 14 exoplanet candidates –
including 7th in first 7-planet system

The Planet Hunters citizen science project has submitted a paper to the Astronomical Journal reporting on their discovery of 14 planet candidates in the Kepler space observatory data: [...] Read the rest of this entry...

Amateur astronomers see a comet “explode”
in brightness reports that amateur astronomers have observed a “comet explosion”: Almost 450 million km from Earth, Comet C/2012 X1 (LINEAR) has exploded. Amateur astronomers are reporting a 100-fold increase in the comet’s brightness compared to predictions, and the comet’s atmosphere or “coma” now resembles […] Read the rest of this entry…

Mars Society seeks volunteers for one year
Mars base simulation in arctic

The Mars Society seeks volunteers for a one year trip to a Mars base – simulated on an arctic island: [...] Read the rest of this entry…

AMSAT marks 30 years of amateur radio
involvement in human spaceflight

An announcement from AMSAT: AMSAT Celebrates 30th Anniversary of Amateur Radio Involvement in Human Spaceflight The 31st Annual AMSAT Space Symposium and Annual Meeting takes place 1-3 NOV 2013 at the Houston Marriott South at Hobby Airport. Deadline for reserving rooms under[...] Read the rest of this entry…

Space Art Spotlight

Sight of Your Life by Kenneth Jensen
Sight of Your Life

Heat by Kenneth Jensen

Event Horizon by Kenneth Jensen
Event Horizon

Cold by Kenneth Jensen
Spaceship by Kenneth Jensen

Kenneth Jensen
More space art...
Space News from Virtual Amanda Bush

Here is the October 2013 episode of The Virtual SpaceTV 3D show with Amanda Bush. She reports on the berthing of the Orbital Sciences Cygnus cargo module to the ISS, the successful first launch of the SpaceX Falcon 9 v.1.1 rocket, another test of the SpaceX Grasshopper reusable first stage prototype rocket, and the upcoming launches of NASA's MAVEN mission and India's Mars Orbiter mission to the Red Planet.


Other Virtual SpaceTV 3D shows are available on the HobbySpace Youtube Channel.

The Virtual SpaceTV 3D shows are created by BINARY SPACE ( with story content from These videos are intended as demonstrations of an experimental technique for generating animated presentations. The show was generated autonomously by software according to a text script. The project is described in the Virtual Producer whitepaper (pdf). For further information contact

Here are the previous two shows in the Virtual SpaceTV 3D series:

Virtual SpaceTV 3D - September 2013
Virtual SpaceTV 3D - August 2013
Space Music Video of the Month


Halfway There

It's a Whole New Outer Space Out There

Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo Rockets Above Mojave Again

Virgin Galactic and Scaled Composites have been developing the SpaceShipTwo (SS2) suborbital rocket vehicle and the WhiteKnightTwo (WK2) carrier aircraft for several years. At a price of $200,000 (recently raised to $250,000) nearly 700 people have reserved seats on the 6 passenger/2 pilot vehicle for rides to above the 100 kilometer edge of space.

Last April above Mojave, California, the SS2 finally fired its hybrid rocket motor after release from the WK2 at 14 kilometers altitude. The rocket burned for 16 seconds and the vehicle soon exceeded the speed of sound and rose to about 17 km. After the engine shut down the vehicle gilded safely back to earth.

It was widely expected that this flight would soon be followed by a series of test flights, at least one per month, in which the rocket motor will burn for longer and longer periods until the vehicle reaches 100 km. However, there were no more powered SS2 flights until September 5th. The videos below show that flight in which the rocket motor burned for 20 seconds and the vehicle reached Mach 1.43 and 21 km in altitude.


After the burn was completed the crew activated the "feathering" mechanism in which the wings bend upwards and the vehicle falls in a V orientation. This allows the vehicle to act like a badminton shuttlecock and maintain a safe orientation during its return into the dense atmosphere on its space flights.


We can hope the SS2 is now ready to begin regular test flights and will reach space by late this year or early next year. The company managers have said they hope to begin commercial operations in 2014.


Check for the latest in leading edge rocket and space travel projects on the
Space Transport News Blog
Satellite Tracking at HobbySpace
Satellite tracks
Satellite track display

3-D viewing option
Run the Satellite Tracking Tool from BINARY SPACE right here at HobbySpace in your browser. The program allows you to track a large set of satellites in both low earth and geostationary orbits. (Note: the program requires Microsoft Silverlight, Version 5 or higher, as well as the latest version of your browser. Currently the program works on the Microsoft® Windows® platform only.) The Satellite Observing section provides additional information and web resources about the hobby of satellite tracking and watching.
Real-Time Space Viewers
Sun & Space Weather Data
Sun and Space Weather
Real time images, charts and data displays

Aurora, Meteors & Fireballs Data
Aurora, Meteors & Fireballs
Real time images, charts and data displays

See the archive of previous HobbySpace homepage Spotlight items ...
September 13 - November/December 13

HobbySpace has been providing thousands of space links, news and information daily since

January 1999.

The Art of C. Sergent Lindsey


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