Since 2012, NASA”s International Space Apps Challenge is a yearly hackathon that engages people across the globe to find solutions to challenges using NASA’s large array of open data. This is the second challenge NASA has set up this year alone. The first was during the end of May during the middle of the nationwide lockdowns that were happening across the world. About 15,000 hackers joined that event, and you can see who won here. This year, it will take place remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic over a 48-hour spring starting Friday, October 2.
Since 2009, SpaceX has been developing their next generation rocket engine called the Raptor. The Raptor engine is a full flow stage combustion engine using liquid methane as it’s fuel, which will be used on SpaceX’s Starship Superheavy rocket. A full flow stage engine is basically an engine that uses a combination of two pre-burners so not to dump any fuel off the side of the rocket and be super efficient.
This is the start of a new series of articles by myself, Seth Kurkowski, discussing different space-related books. The goal is to grow the historical knowledge of myself and all of you who enjoy Space Explored. With the hope that understanding how we got to where we are now, we can better grasp how quickly we are moving into the new era of space exploration.
Update September 3, 2020: SpaceX has accomplished a second 150-meter hop test. The latest successful Starship test used SN6, or Serial Number 6, a prototype version of the upcoming SpaceX rocket.
After several attempts and scrubs, including one due to a wayward boat violating the exclusion zone. SpaceX did a 150 meter test hop of their prototype Starship rocket. Named ‘SN5’ or Serial Number 5. It took off from it’s launch mount at SpaceX’s Spaceport in Brownsville, Texas. The launch was to test the company’s next generation rocket engine, Raptor, in flight. As well as testing avionic software and launch operations.
Update September 9, 2020: ULA CEO Tory Bruno tweeted out that they have found the source of the fault in the ground service equipment that caused the abort. They will be checking more equipment that is related to it to make sure it won’t happen again. Also, according to temporary flight restrictions filed with the FAA and along side notices to mariners given by the Coast Guard. It looks like the primary launch date will be September 18th at 12:00 AM with a backup date for September 19th.
After being on the launch pad since last November. The United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy finally had its chance to shine last week. The first launch attempt was set for August 26th at 2:16 AM EST but was pushed 24 hours upon customer request and no other explanation.
After only 27 days since the failure of a Rocket Lab Electron rocket to reach orbit. The California based smallsat launch company announced today that the FAA has approved them to resume launch operations. With the company saying they are preparing to launch their 14th mission come no earlier than August from Launch Complex 1 Pad A on New Zealand’s Māhia Peninsula.
Today NASA announced the crew who will ride on SpaceX’s Crew-2 mission slated to take off spring 2021. This will be SpaceX’s second operational crewed mission.
The third SpaceX launch with astronauts onboard in the company’s history will follow the pending completion of DM-2 and the upcoming Crew-1 mission. The latter mission is set to launch in mid-September.
The team for Crew-2 include these four experienced astronauts:
Update July 24: Starlink 9 mission liftoff now targeted for Friday, July 31, at 3:45 a.m. EDT, less than 24 hours after the scheduled Mars 2020 mission launch.
According to a NOTAM issued for falling debris from the second stage of a Falcon 9. SpaceX plans to launch its next batch of Starlink satellites on July 29th, mission named Starlink 9. This will be their 10th batch of roughly 60 Starlink satellites to support their growing global internet service. The Falcon 9 booster for this mission has been flown four other times. Its past missions were NASA DM-1, RADARSAT, Starlink 3, and Starlink 6. The booster will land on one of SpaceX’s drone ships out in the Atlantic ocean.
On the heels of the return to human space flight from American soil, NASA is launching another historic mission this year. Perseverance, the newest of NASA’s Mars rovers, plans to launch as soon as July 30, and the mission is packed full of new science experiments to learn more about the Red Planet. The new Mars rover will be launching on top of a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket from Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
What makes Perseverance special? For starters, it’s the result of previous Mars missions dating back to the mid ’90s, and the state-of-the-art rover will be accompanied by the first-ever space helicopter…