Category Archives: Living in Space

FISO: Environmental Control & Life Support Systems, Status & Future Development

The latest presentation to the Future In-Space Operations (FISO) study group is now posted in the FISO Working Group Presentations Archive. Both slides (pdf) and audio (mp3) are available for the talk, Environmental Control and Life Support Systems: Current Status and Future Development, Robert Bagdigian & Robyn Carrasquillo – NASA MSFC – May.22.2013.


Bion M1 returns safely but many test animals did not survive the flight

The Russian Bion M1, launched on April 19, 2013 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, and returned on May 19th. The  biology mission appears to have been a mixed success:

More background info about the project:

Why a one-way ticket to Mars would be prized by some

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.

NSS to present a roadmap to space settlement

The NSS will rollout its Roadmap to Space Settlement this month in association with the International Space Development Conference (ISDC 2013) in San Diego, California, May 23-27:

National Space Society Presents
Milestones to Space Settlement:  An NSS Roadmap  

May 24, 2013, 10:00 am   (Programming follows 11:00 am to 4:50 pm)

International Space Development Conference
San Diego, California, at the Hyatt Regency La Jolla at Aventine

A Press Conference featuring the National Space Society’s (NSS) Roadmap to Space Settlement will be presented to the world.  A panel of space experts and NSS members will discuss the path towards humankind’s future in space.  The press conference will also highlight previews of some of the afternoon’s talks, a visually stunning Luncheon Presentation, and a programming track that covers some of the exciting topics in (and evolved from) the Roadmap. Previously, only NSS members and Ad Astra magazine subscribers have been told about the Roadmap. Now, the world will know!

A space logistics base with a docking truss is assembled in Low Mars Orbit.   Art: Anna Nesterova
A space logistics base with a docking truss is assembled in Low Mars Orbit. Art: Anna Nesterova
With the impending breakthroughs in launch costs, attention is once more shifting to actual operations in space. We can now begin to dream big dreams again. The Roadmap Track will cover the future diverse paths to space development and the common and practical foundations for our impending economic breakout into space. The NSS Roadmap, approved by the NSS Board of Directors, attempts to lay out many of the space goals and identify Milestones and Barriers to those goals.

Track presentations will cover some legal issues surrounding space development, how space development can improve life on Earth, how you actually can build a two kilometer space colony with essentially current level technology, progress in the development of reusable launch systems, why a cis-lunar space transportation and logistics system is vital to reaching all of our space goals and destinations, how to achieve the ability to build space colonies, and how space settlement design competitions can augment and assist planning for future space colonies.

Roadmap text and images can be found here.

In addition to the presentations directly in the Roadmap track itself, many of the other tracks at the ISDC cover material directly related to the Roadmap, such as the Lunar, Mars and the Space Based Solar Power Tracks.

Featured Speakers:

  • Derek Weber:      Director: SpacePort Associates
  • Howard Bloom:   Author & Member: NSS Board of Directors
  • Stan Rosen:        Vice Chairman, NSS Board of Directors
  • Bruce Pittman:     NSS Senior Vice President/Senior Operating Officer
  • Anita Gale:          Member: NSS Board of Directors
  • Mark Hopkins:     Chairman NSS Executive Committee
  • Jeff Liss:             Member: NSS Board of Directors
  • John Strickland:  Member: NSS Board of Directors, Track Chair
  • Al Globus:           Member: NSS Board of Directors

Roadmap Track Sessions schedule:

  • 10:00 am  – Roadmap Rollout  – MEDIA PRESS CONFERENCE with panel
  • 11:00 am  – Jeff Liss               – Legal Issues of and Barriers to Roadmap Milestones
  • 11:20 am  – Stan Rosen          – Applications of Space Technology on and for Earth
  • 12:00 am  – Howard Bloom     – Space Visual Manifesto (LUNCH talk) invited speaker
  •   2:00 pm  – John Strickland     – How Does a Jig Factory Build a Space Colony?
  •   3:00 pm  – Bruce Pittman       – Economic & Technical Realities of Reusable Launch Systems
  •   3:15 pm  – Al Globus             – Paths to Space Settlement
  •   4:00 pm  – Derek Webber      – An Architecture for Survival
  •   4:25 pm  – Anita Gale            – Design Competition Scenarios: Ambitious Future Space Roadmap

NASA Lunabotics Mining Competition on May 20-24 at KSC

NASA posts an update on the Lunabotics Mining Competition for students:

NASA Invites Media to Annual Lunabotics Mining Competition

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — Fifty teams of undergraduate and graduate students from around the world will demonstrate their lunar excavator robots May 20 – 24 at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Practice sessions for the fourth annual Lunabotics Mining Competition will take place May 20 – 21, followed by the official competition. Media representatives are invited to cover the event on Wednesday, May 22 from 12 – 4 p.m. EDT, at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. For access to the facility, journalists should contact Catherine Segar at 321-449-4273 or Requests for interviews with NASA representatives must be submitted to Tracy Young at 321-867-2468 or

The teams have designed and built remote controlled or autonomous robots that can excavate simulated lunar dirt. During the competition, the teams’ designs — known as lunabots — will go head-to-head to determine which machine can collect and move the most simulated lunar dirt within a specific amount of time.

The competition is a NASA Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate project designed to engage and retain students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields by expanding opportunities for student research and design. The project provides a competitive environment to foster innovative ideas and solutions that could potentially be applied to future NASA missions.

Although the competition is for college students, the event offers many opportunities for students of all ages. NASA is hosting a college recruitment fair for high school sophomores, juniors and seniors showcasing STEM education opportunities available at top colleges and universities across the nation.

For more information on Lunabotics 2013, associated activities and social media links to participate virtually, visit:

Video highlights of the practice and competition will air on the NASA Television Video File. For downlink information, schedules and links to streaming video, visit:

For information about the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, visit: