AmericaSpace Launch Countdown

Next Launch AsiaSat-6 on a Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral AFB, FL
scheduled for:
27 Aug 14 4:50:00 GMT
27 Aug 14 0:50:00 EDT

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ESA's 'Discovery Machine' Gets Ready for Science: Gaia Concludes Commissioning Phase, Begins Primary Five-Year Mission

Artist’s concept of the Gaia. Having recently completed a rigorous test and commissioning phase, the space observatory began its five-year primary science mission of mapping and cataloguing approximately 1 billion stars in the Milky Way galaxy. Image Credit: ESA–D. Ducros, 2013

Following the successful conclusion of a very demanding and extensive six-month commissioning period, [...]

Exploring Uncharted Territory: ESA's Venus Express Spacecraft Completes Aerobraking Campaign, Raises Orbit Prior to End of Mission

An artist’s concept of Venus Express during the aerobraking manoeuvre, which saw the spacecraft orbiting Venus at an altitude of approximately 130 km from 18 June to 11 July. These low passes through the atmosphere of Venus allowed the spacecraft to conduct scientific observations that weren’t possible from higher altitudes. Image Credit: ESA–C. Carreau

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ESA's IXV Spaceplane Readied for November Flight, While US Spaceplanes Pass Milestones

From the European Space Agency (ESA): “[The IXV] will be launched by ESA in 2014 on Vega, Europe’s new small launcher, into a suborbital path, from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana. After being launched into space, IXV will return to Earth as if from a low-orbit mission, testing brand-new European atmospheric reentry technologies during [...]

ESA's Rosetta Spacecraft Closes In on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, Detects Huge Amounts of Water Outgassing

ESA’s Rosetta spacecraft, which is presently en route to the comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko, has detected that the comet’s nucleus outgasses huge amounts of water vapor each second, despite its current distance of approximately 3.7 Astronomical Units from the Sun. Image Credit: ESA

Being part of a natural thermoregulation process for all mammals, perspiration is the [...]

Webb Telescope Searching for First Objects After Big Bang: Nobel Prize Winner John Mather Speaks to AmericaSpace

Artist’s concept of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). Credit: NASA/ESA

GODDARD SPACE FLIGHT CENTER, MD — The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is NASA’s top priority science mission launching in this decade and will have the capability to “look back towards the very first objects that formed after the Big Bang,” said Dr. John [...]

ESA's Venus Express Spacecraft Concludes Its Science Mission, Gets Ready to Plunge Into Venus' Infernal Atmosphere

ESA’s Venus Express spacecraft has recently completed its eight-year mission in orbit around Venus and is currently scheduled to conduct a series of aerobraking manoeuvres at the upper layers of the Venusian atmosphere, from 18 June to 11 July. Eventually, the spacecraft will plunge into the atmosphere and the mission will end. Image Credit: [...]

Months After Rosetta Reawakens, Its Target Comet 'Wakes Up'

From the European Space Agency (ESA): “Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko seen towards the constellation of Ophiuchus (note that from the vantage point of Earth, both the comet and Rosetta are presently in Sagittarius), with the globular cluster M107 also clearly visible in the field of view. The image was taken on 30 April 2014 by the [...]

'Tea, Earl Grey, Hot': Space and the Promise of Additive Manufacturing

Moon bases have been the dream of space agencies, private companies, and space advocates alike for decades. Could additive manufacturing technologies turn these dreams into a reality? Image Credit: NASA

It has been an emblematic technology of the “Star Trek” television series for decades: a device that could manipulate matter and energy in such [...]

The Future That Wasn't: The Hermes Spaceplane

Hermes, Europe’s spaceplane, is depicted coasting in orbit in an artist’s rendering. Image Credit: European Space Agency (ESA)

The prose in the 1986 Aerospatiale advertisement was breathless: “10 years old, and still 20 years ahead,” it started. The ad continued, “At Aerospatiale, addressing the exciting aerospace challenges of tomorrow means capitalizing on the daring [...]

ESA's Rosetta Lander Awake After Long Slumber, Ready for Science

From the European Space Agency: “Artist’s impression of Philae descending to the surface of comet 67P/CG.” Image Credit: ESA/ATG medialab

The European Space Agency (ESA) announced that a crucial part of its long-slumbering Rosetta spacecraft—its Philae lander—was successfully reactivated Friday, March 28. This comes over two months after the spacecraft as a whole was [...]