AmericaSpace Launch Countdown

Next Launch ORB-3 on a Antares rocket from Wallops Island, VA
scheduled for:
21 Oct 14 2:29:00 GMT
20 Oct 14 22:29:00 EDT

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Testing and Development Pace Picks Up for NASA's Giant Space Launch System Rocket

Artist concept of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) 70-metric-ton configuration launching to space. SLS will be the most powerful rocket ever built for deep space missions, including to an asteroid and, ultimately, to Mars.Image and Caption Credit: NASA/MSFC

NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) has now reached a point in the program’s development that the [...]

Living On the Edge: The Inviting Waters of Europa (Part 2)

Jupiter’s moon Europa, as seen by NASA’s Galileo spacecraft. A long line of evidence has shown that Europa has an underground ocean of liquid water, which for many scientists constitutes the best place in the Solar System to search for alien life. Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Ted Stryk

“Since ’tis certain that Earth and Jupiter have [...]

Dream Chaser’s SUV-Like Flexibility and Runway Landing Offer Competitive Advantages: One-on-One Interview With SNC VP Mark Sirangelo (Part 5)

Astronaut crew exits commercial Dream Chaser after touchdown at Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF) or other commercial runways, on return from ISS mission in this artist’s concept. Credit: Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) Story updated

The winged Dream Chaser’s “SUV-like” flexibility to act as both a crew transporter and “specialized research laboratory,” combined with a global [...]

For Jack Swigert, On His 83rd Birthday

John L. “Jack” Swigert, pictured in a 1971 NASA photo. Photo Credit: NASA

In 2011, waiting for STS-133 to launch on a sunny February afternoon in Titusville, Fla., an out-of-town visitor inquired about Apollo astronauts while talking to a former Cape worker in the proximity of the U.S. Space Walk of Fame Museum, formerly [...]

Passing the Torch: Twenty-Five Years After Voyager 2, New Horizons Crosses Neptune's Orbit On Its Way to Pluto

Artist’s concept of the New Horizons spacecraft during its planned encounter with Pluto and its moon Charon in 14 July 2015. New Horizons has just completed a major milestone in its mission by crossing the orbit of Neptune on Aug. 25, exactly a quarter-of-a-century after Voyager 2 flew by the ice giant planet in [...]

Men of Similarity: Jerry Ross Fondly Remembers His Friend, Steve Nagel

Steve Nagel (1946-2014). Photo Credit: Joachim Becker/SpaceFacts.de

Veteran shuttle flyer Jerry Ross—the first human being to chalk up as many as seven discrete space missions—spoke touchingly and with humor yesterday (Tuesday, 26 August) at the funeral of his friend, astronaut Steve Nagel, who died from cancer last week, aged 67. Since their first meeting [...]

The Next Giant Leap for ESA: Rosetta Team Determining Possible Landing Sites for Philae

From the European Space Agency (ESA): “Artist’s impression of Rosetta’s lander Philae (front view) on the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Philae will be deployed to the comet in November 2014 where it will make in situ observations of the comet surface, including drilling 23cm into the subsurface to extract material for analysis in its [...]

Boeing's CST-100 Completes CCiCap On Time and On Budget, Awaits NASA's Commercial Crew Award Decision

Boeing recently completed the final two milestones under the company’s CCiCap agreement with NASA, making Boeing the first, and only, company to have completed their CCiCap program on time and on budget. Image Credit: Mike Killian / AmericaSpace / Boeing

One of three commercial spacecraft currently being developed under a NASA-funded competition to replace [...]

Orion's Protective Shell of 970 Space Shuttle Thermal Tiles Installed for EFT-1 Mission

Inside the Operations and Checkout Building high bay at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, technicians dressed in clean-room suits install a back shell tile panel onto the Orion crew module. Photo Credit: NASA/Dimitri Gerondidakis

Things are moving forward nicely at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center Operations and Checkout Building in Florida, where technicians with [...]

MAVEN's Half-Billion-Mile Journey to Mars Now 30 Days Out From Red Planet

An artist’s rendition of MAVEN at Mars. Image Credit: NASA / GSFC

The spacecraft tasked with carrying out NASA’s first mission devoted to understanding the Martian upper atmosphere is now just 30 days out from the Red Planet, having so far covered 405 million miles over the last nine months, as it quietly cruises the [...]