Ares I-X roared off its launch pad at 11:30 EST at Cape Canaveral. This marks success for NASA's second launch attempt to get the Ares I-X rocket off the ground after weather delayed the launch on Tuesday.
A final report issued by a blue-ribbon commission on NASA's future enthusiastically embraces in-space refueling and commercial spaceflight to low-Earth orbit, but curiously leaves out NASA's Ares-I rocket in future scenarios.
NASA should extend space station operations beyond the planned 2016 retirement, according to a subcommittee of the presidential panel reviewing the human space program's future. But some members also warned that such a step could delay the return of astronauts to the moon.
This comes shortly after NASA had announced plans to de-orbit the International Space Station in 2016. Russia, Europe, Japan and Canada all support extending the $100-billion collaborative venture beyond 2015.
Former NASA administrator Mike Griffin once likened himself to Spock in his rational, emotionally-detached approach. Now Griffin's replacement, Charles Bolden, seems ready to inject new passion into a space agency that is struggling to reevaluate both long term goals and its vision for space exploration.
NASA successfully tested a launch abort system that can eject astronauts away from a launch pad disaster. It's the alternate escape system for the Ares rockets that are slated to launch astronauts to the space station and the moon, assuming that the Constellation program manages to survive the political turmoil surrounding budget overruns and engineering problems.
Next year, 33 years after its maiden flight, the space shuttle will retire. What happens after that has become subject to fierce debate within the space agency. The designated successor program, named Constellation, was the darling of previous NASA administrator Michael Griffin, but a new review now has the space agency looking elsewhere for a ride back into the firmament.
If you've ever worked on bikes or cars, you know how annoying it can be to work with both English/imperial and metric units at the same time; well, the same goes doubly with spacecraft, but NASA's theoretically modular and standards-adhering Constellation system is shaping up to be the odd one out in space, where the metric system rules.
NASA Administrator Michael Griffin is not playing nice with the Obama transition team, according to a post by Robert Block of the Orlando Sentinel. He reports that Griffin is resisting efforts by former NASA associate administrator Lori Garver, who heads Obama's space transition team, to "look under the hood" of the space program.
NASA releases preliminary estimates of potential job cuts due to the end of the shuttle program
By Gregory Mone
Posted 04.02.2008 at 10:45 am 4 Comments
When the shuttle retires in 2010, as many as 8,000 NASA contractors could lose their jobs. After a request from lawmakers, NASA released these numbers yesterday, but added that this could be a worst case scenario. The Kennedy Space Center would suffer the biggest losses, with 80 percent of its contract workers losing their jobs by 2011.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.