AmericaSpace Launch Countdown

Next Launch SMAP on a Delta II 7320 rocket from Vandenberg AFB, CA
scheduled for:
31 Jan 15 14:20:42 GMT
31 Jan 15 6:20:42 PST
31 Jan 15 9:20:42 Eastern

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SpaceX Autonomous Spaceport Drone Ship Sets Sail for Tuesday's CRS-5 Rocket Landing Attempt

“X” marks the spot? The Autonomous Spaceport Drone Ship (ASDS) is a repurposed Marmac 300 Freight Barge, tasked with the recovery of the first stage of CRS-5’s Falcon 9 v1.1. Photo Credit: SpaceX

Less than two days now remain before the long-awaited flight of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 v1.1, carrying the fifth dedicated Dragon cargo […]

SpaceX to Launch United States' First Mission of 2015 With Tuesday Morning Dragon Flight

The CRS-5 mission is the fifth dedicated Dragon cargo flight under the language of SpaceX’s $1.6 billion Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) contract with NASA. Credit: NASA

Almost three weeks later than originally planned, SpaceX—the Hawthorne, Calif.-based launch services company, headed by entrepreneur Elon Musk—is primed to launch its fifth dedicated Dragon cargo mission (CRS-5) […]

SpaceX to Launch Next Dragon Mission to Space Station on Friday

Spectacular view of the CRS-4 Dragon cargo ship, pictured berthed at the Earth-facing (or “nadir”) port of the Harmony node in September 2014. Photo Credit: NASA

Almost three months since its last flight and since winning a $2.6 billion slice of NASA’s Commercial Crew transportation Capability (CCtCap) “pie,” SpaceX—the Hawthorne, Calif.-based launch services company, headed […]

EFT-1's Orion Capsule Returned to San Diego by US Navy (PHOTOS)

The USS Anchorage (LPD-23) arrives at Naval Base San Diego on Monday, Dec. 8. Onboard it carried EFT-1’s Orion capsule, recovered shortly after splashdown on Dec. 5. Photo Credit: NASA

Just three days after its historic mission, NASA’s Orion capsule—which made a successful test flight after being launched aboard a United Launch Alliance (ULA) […]

'This Is a New Era of Spaceflight': Shuttle Astronauts Usher In the Orion Program

NASA’s Associate Administrator for Human Exploration and Operations William Gerstenmaier, Orion Program Manager Mark Geyer, Lockheed Martin’s Orion Program Leader Mike Hawes, and NASA’s astronaut representative to the Orion program Rex Walheim pose after yesterday’s successful Exploration Flight Test 1 (EFT-1) mission. Walheim discussed lessons learned from the shuttle era that can be applied […]

Through a Glass, Darkly: Reflections on EFT-1 and Shadows of Apollo (Part 2)

Impressive view of the Kennedy Space Center’s (KSC) new countdown clock. At some point in the next decade, this device will begin counting down to America’s next human adventure in space. Photo Credit: Dave Parrish Photography/AmericaSpace, with additional thanks to Leonidas Papadopoulos

Two days ago, NASA’s Orion spacecraft triumphantly sailed through its maiden shakedown […]

Through a Glass, Darkly: Reflections on EFT-1 and Shadows of Apollo (Part 1)

Stunning panorama of Earth from Orion’s high-apogee mission on Friday, 5 December. No human-capable vehicle has “seen” the Home Planet from this altitude for more than four decades. Photo Credit: NASA

Yesterday, a machine designed to carry humans beyond low-Earth orbit for the first time in more than four decades came screaming back through […]

Delta IV Heavy Successfully Delivers EFT-1 Orion on High-Apogee Maiden Voyage

Haunting view of the trio of RS-68 plumes punctuating the dawn sky of Cape Canaveral, heralding the dawn of a new era. Photo Credit: Mike Killian/AmericaSpace

After an agonizing 24-hour delay, the ground shook at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station today, with the rousing liftoff, just minutes after sunrise, of United Launch Alliance’s (ULA) […]

The Future Starts Now? At T-1 Day and Counting, Orion Stands Ready for Thursday Launch

The EFT-1 Orion spacecraft, encapsulated within its payload shroud and topped by the Launch Abort System (LAS), is lowered into position atop the Delta IV Heavy. Photo Credit: NASA

Despite the increasingly gloomy prospect of mostly cloudy skies over Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, with only a 60 percent probability of acceptable weather conditions, […]

Ready for the High Jump: NASA's Orion Spacecraft Primed for Maiden Voyage (Part 2)

Under EFT-1, Orion will conduct two orbits of the Earth and then return to Earth at a blistering 20,000 mph (32,000 km/h). This test will prove out Orion’s heat shield, parachute, and other crucial systems. Image Credit: NASA

After more than a decade of planning and preparation, excitement, and frustration, NASA is ready to […]