Senior committee aides speaking to reporters on Thursday were short on details, but the move marks the first time a Senate panel has voted to support a separate service for space. In the same measure, senators also called for an overhaul of how the military buys satellites and launch services.
A key House panel has rejected the Trump administration’s plan to create Space Force, a sixth branch of the U.S. military focused on orbital operations. The proposal “leaves many unanswered questions and lacks important details and supporting analysis to justify the proposed size, scope, cost, roles, and authorities for the new military service,” members of the Democrat-led House Appropriations Committee’s defense subcommittee said in their report on the 2020 budget proposal.
It’s almost as if Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos knew what was coming: His Blue Origin space venture is among 11 companies selected by NASA to conduct studies and produce prototypes of spacecraft that could carry astronauts down to the moon’s south polar region and back up by 2024.
Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos today laid out the architecture for missions to the moon aimed at supporting NASA’s goal of landing astronauts on the lunar surface by 2024. The game plan for Bezos’ space venture, Blue Origin, calls for continuing work on the company’s Blue Moon lunar lander and a new breed of hydrogen-fueled rocket engine known as the BE-7.
The main mission was to check out the launch system in preparation for flying people later this year, but Blue Origin said it flew 38 commercial payloads in the crew capsule -- including a 3-D printer and a scientific centrifuge designed for use in zero-gravity.
The asteroid belt is composed of three types of asteroid: C-type (carbonaceous, ~75 percent of all asteroids), S-type (silicate-rich, ~17 percent of asteroids) and M-type (metal-rich), which are roughly 10 percent of the total population. The numbers, in this case, don’t add up to 100 percent because we aren’t sure of the exact ratios. 16 Psyche is an M-type asteroid made of iron-nickel. What makes it unusual is that it’s believed to be the now-exposed core of a protoplanet. It’s also estimated to be worth $10,000 quadrillion dollars, if anybody has a towing hitch handy.
Today the U.S. has more than 400 military, government and commercial satellites circling the globe in geosynchronous Earth orbit, or GEO, a celestial path about 22,000 miles above the ground. These high-altitude satellites are ideal for telecommunications, meteorology and certain military applications, but when they break down, it’s nearly impossible to fix something far out in the cosmos.
There is no age that is too early to integrate STEM and space into the curriculum. There is a need for a younger generation to be able to imagine a future where space increasingly factors into daily lives. From an education standpoint, rather than being an afterthought, space needs to be a deliberate part of the conversation.
Despite Florida lawmakers’ push to land the military’s newest command, the Pentagon is not considering any locations in the state, according to Air Force documents. Four bases in Colorado, one in California, and one in Alabama are among the locations under consideration, according to an Air Force briefing slide being circulated around the Pentagon.
More than a year after SpaceX sent its Falcon Heavy rocket on a majestic test launch, the second Falcon Heavy put a satellite in orbit today for its first customer. Then, for the first time, all three of the rocket’s reusable booster cores landed safely and successfully. SpaceX also recovered both halves of the rocket’s nose cone and intends to reuse those components as well.