AmericaSpace Launch Countdown

Next Launch CRS-3 on a Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral AFB, FL scheduled for 18 Apr 14 19:25:00 GMT

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SpaceX Secures 20-Year Lease Agreement With NASA for Use of Historic Launch Complex 39A

SpaceX has finalized a lease agreement with NASA for use of launch pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the launch site for many historic missions such as the Apollo Saturn-V Moon missions and over 80 space shuttle launches. The company’s first launch off 39A will be atop their Falcon-Heavy rocket as soon [...]

SpaceX Dragon 'Go' for Monday Launch; Contingency EVA Scheduled for 22 April

SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft will fly for the first time atop the upgraded Falcon 9 v1.1 on Monday, 14 April. Photo Credit: SpaceX

A second launch in just four days is scheduled to take place from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., when SpaceX launches its third dedicated Dragon cargo delivery mission to the International [...]

'Poyekhali!' Remembering Our First Space Voyager (Part 2)

Yuri Gagarin (left) was proudly displayed to the world by a joyful Nikita Khrushchev (right), who recognized the political and ideological advantage which his flight had acquired over the United States. Photo Credit: Roscosmos/The Telegraph

The location at which the feet of Yuri Alexeyevich Gagarin—the first human ever to break the bonds of Earth [...]

'Poyekhali!' Remembering Our First Space Voyager (Part 1)

Clad in his orange space suit, Yuri Gagain appears pensive in this image recorded during his journey to the launch pad on 12 April 1961. Photo Credit: Roscomos

In the early hours of 11 April 1961—more than five decades ago—an enormous booster trundled humanity’s first manned spacecraft to its launch site in a barren [...]

'Express Delivery' Progress M-23M Arrives Safely at Space Station - UPDATE

Turning night into day across the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Progress M-23M roars toward orbit after a spectacular liftoff at 9:26 p.m. local time (11:26 a.m. EDT) Wednesday, 9 April. Photo Credit: Roscosmos, with thanks to Mike Barrett

Russia’s Progress M-23M spacecraft has turned night into day across the Baikonur Cosmodrome, rocketing away from the central [...]

Progress M-23M Ready for Wednesday Launch to Space Station

The Progress M-23M cargo craft is readied for launch at Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Photo Credit: Roscosmos

Following a comparatively brief two months docked at the International Space Station (ISS), Russia’s Progress M-22M cargo craft—also known as “Progress 54P” in ISS Program-speak—successfully separated from the orbital outpost at 9:58 a.m. EDT yesterday (Monday). It [...]

Fixing Solar Max: 30 Years Since Mission 41C (Part 2)

Backdropped by the glorious Earth, Challenger drifts serenely with Solar Max secured in her payload bay. Photo Credit: SpaceFacts.de

Thirty years ago today (6 April 1984), the shuttle launched on arguably its most ambitious mission to date: a mission which would demonstrate the reusable orbiter’s capabilities of rendezvous, retrieval, satellite repair, and spacewalking with [...]

Fixing Solar Max: 30 Years Since Mission 41C (Part 1)

Thirty years ago this week, Mission 41C put the shuttle’s capabilities to the test. In a single flight, the reusable vehicle demonstrated its capacity to support satellite deployment and retrieval, rendezvous and proximity operations, untethered spacewalking and robotics … and served as a highlight of the ingenuity of the human spirit. Photo Credit: SpaceFacts.de

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'I Wouldn’t Call it Fear': The Shuttle Launch Pad Aborts (Part 2)

The closest the shuttle ever came to a launch at the time of abort was T-1.9 seconds, on 18 August 1994. So close was the shuttle to launch, the on-board General Purpose Computers had already moded to their 102 ascent software configuration at the time of the abort. Photo Credit: NASA

In the pre-dawn [...]

'Quiet as a Crypt': The Shuttle Launch Pad Aborts (Part 1)

Close-up view of Discovery’s three main engines—still exhibiting evidence of scorching from their momentary ignition on 26 June 1984—in the wake of the shuttle program’s first RSLS abort. Photo Credit: NASA

Throughout its 30-year career—consciously or unconsciously—the space shuttle was acknowledged to be one of the most dangerous piloted space vehicles ever brought to [...]