The Planetary Society's LightSail to Launch Aboard Atlas-V May 20

From The Planetary Society: “The Planetary Society’s LightSail solar sailing spacecraft is scheduled to ride a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket to orbit in 2016 with its parent satellite, Prox-1.” Image Credit: Josh Spradling /The Planetary Society (http://sail.planetary.org/gallery/lightsail.html)

The idea of solar sails carrying satellites and humans into space has been something bandied about for […]

PHOTOS: X-37B Spaceplane and Lightsail Stacked Atop Atlas-V for May 20 AFSPC-5 Launch

The Air Force’s AFSPC-5 payload, encapsulated inside a 5-meter diameter payload fairing, is mated to an Atlas V booster inside the Vertical Integration Facility or VIF at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station’s Space Launch Complex-41. Photo Credit: ULA

The rocket tasked with launching the next mission from Cape Canaveral, Fla., is well into its […]

First GPS III Satellite Fully Integrated, Being Readied for Testing

An artist’s rendering of Lockheed Martin’s GPS III satellite in operation. Image Credit: Lockheed Martin

The development of the most advanced Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite ever built reached an important milestone within the last month. Lockheed Martin announced that the system module of its first next-generation GPS III satellite (Space Vehicle One, or […]

US Warns China to Halt ASAT Threats as Defense Dept. Reorganizes for Improved Space Warfare Capability

China’s first solid propellant launcher, the Long March-11 rocket, is a likely ASAT booster. Photo Credit: CALT

Significant changes are underway in U.S. military space operations due to the growing threat from Chinese anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons and the exponential growth in lightsats and CubeSats that threaten to “darken the sky,” consuming huge bandwidth while […]

Air Force Weather Satellite Space Debris Hazard a Concern

DMSP Air Force weather satellite is depicted in polar orbit near Alaska. Photo Credit: Lockheed Martin

The U.S. Strategic Command’s Joint Space Operations Center (JSpOC) at Vandenberg AFB, Calif., is monitoring a cloud of new space debris in polar orbit to notify operational satellite controllers about potential collision hazards for critical military and civilian […]

'Third Time Lucky': SpaceX Successfully Launches DSCOVR on Three-Month, Million-Mile Trek to L1

After more than a decade of delay and disappointment, Triana has risen again as the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR), rocketing into space atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 v1.1 booster at 6:03 p.m. EST Wednesday. Photo Credit: Alan Walters/AmericaSpace

Following two scrubs in three days, caused by a combination of problematic high-level winds and […]

Farthest-Flying SpaceX Payload Set for Sunday Night Launch (Part 2)

The Falcon 9 v1.1 launches from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., on 10 January 2015. Photo Credit: John Studwell / AmericaSpace

Less than a month since it successfully delivered the fifth dedicated Dragon cargo craft into orbit, headed for the International Space Station (ISS), SpaceX—the Hawthorne, Calif.-based launch services provider, headed by entrepreneur […]

AmericaSpace Imagery Team Capture Rare Launch of Venerable Delta II

With only two more NASA missions ahead of it, in the 2017-18 timeframe, the curtain appears to be falling on the Delta II. Photo Credit: Robert C. Fisher/AmericaSpace

Last Saturday morning, AmericaSpace’s imagery team witnessed a rare pre-dawn liftoff of the highly reliable Delta II booster, carrying the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellite […]

NASA Alters Orion Heat Shield for 2018 Flight With Advanced 3-D Thermal Protection Fabric Needed for Destination Mars

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden (left) holds Orion EM-1 3-D woven heat shield hardware produced by Bally Ribbon Mills of Bally, Penn. With Bolden are Mark Harries and Ray Harries, Marketing Executive and President of Bally Ribbon Mills, and Mike Gazarik (Associate Administrator STMD) and Glenn Delgado (Head small business) of NASA at media briefing […]

45th Space Wing Detachment 3 Outlines Orion EFT-1 Recovery Training and Preparations for Return of US Human Spaceflight

The U.S. Air Force 45th Space Wing’s 45th Ops Group, Detachment-3 Support and Operations Center (SOC) at Patrick Air Force Base, Fla. Detachment 3, also known as the Dept. of Defense Human Spaceflight Division, is responsible for providing whatever DoD support NASA needs for Orion Exploration Flight Test-1 (EFT-1). 45th ops Group Det 3 is […]