Frustrated Bolden Urges Congress to Fund Commercial Crew, Announces $490 Million Contract Modification With Russia

Under Wednesday’s contract extension with Roscosmos, the Soyuz TMA-M and Soyuz MS spacecraft will continue to deliver U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS), potentially through 2019. Photo Credit: Samantha Cristoforetti/NASA/Twitter

It was difficult to miss the frustration in NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden’s words, as he submitted a letter to the leadership of the […]

Partners in Space: 40 Years Since the Remarkable Voyage of Apollo-Soyuz (Part 4)

America’s Apollo, with its docking module (left), approaches Russia’s Soyuz for the first joint manned space exercise between the two superpowers in July 1975. This would mark the high-watermark of their relations, but the late 1970s would signal a harsh decline in friendship and bring them to the brink of war once again. Image […]

Partners in Space: 40 Years Since the Remarkable Voyage of Apollo-Soyuz (Part 3)

Tom Stafford (right) shakes hands with his counterpart Alexei Leonov in the docking module tunnel on 17 July 1975. This grainy image represents the first serious effort at co-operation between the United States and Russia in human space exploration. Photo Credit: NASA

For almost two decades, the United States and Russia have collaborated in […]

Ding-Dong Merrily On-Orbit: Celebrating Yuletide in Space (Part 1)

Truly the voyage of Apollo 8 over the Christmas period in 1968 carried with it the most profound message of the Greatest Story Ever Told: a message of peace, goodwill and harmony to the inhabitants of Planet Earth. Photo Credit: NASA

For the first time in history, two women will celebrate Christmas on Thursday, […]

NASA Hedges On Critical Suit Battery Resupply

EMU PLSS (top) with SAFER (bottom). Photo: NASA

NASA has confirmed to AmericaSpace that the Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) Long Life Batteries (LLBs) will not be launching solely on SpX–4, as originally planned. Instead, according to NASA, two of the four LLBs have already been sent to Russia for launch aboard a Soyuz scheduled […]

Arianespace Soyuz-Fregat Delivers European Radar-Imaging Satellite Into Orbit

The Soyuz-Fregat vehicle launches the Sentinel-1A radar-imaging satellite at 6:02 p.m. GFT (5:02 p.m. EDT) Thursday, 3 April. Photo Credit: Arianespace

Arianespace—the Paris, France-headquartered launch services organization, which operates Ariane, Vega, and Soyuz vehicles from the Guiana Space Centre in Kourou, French Guiana—has successfully lofted Europe’s Sentinel-1A radar-imaging satellite into orbit. Liftoff of Arianespace’s […]

Gaia En-Route to L2 for Five-Year Mission of Astronomical Discovery

Characterized by the bulbous payload fairing, which encapsulates Gaia, Europe’s space observatory takes flight on Thursday, 19 December, from the Guiana Space Centre in Kourou, French Guiana. Photo Credit: Arianespace/Mike Barrett

Yesterday’s successful launch of the ambitious Gaia mission for the European Space Agency (ESA) has set another spacecraft en-route for the Earth-Sun L2 […]

Europe's Gaia Billion-Object Astronomy Mission Primed for Thursday Launch

Artist’s concept of the Gaia mission. Image Credit: ESA

After many delays, the European Space Agency (ESA) is ready to launch its ambitious Gaia mission to observe and catalog around 1 billion astronomical objects—or approximately 1 percent of the entire population of our Milky Way Galaxy—on Thursday, 19 December. Liftoff of the $1.2 billion mission […]

Multi-National Soyuz TMA-11M Crew Rockets Toward Space Station

In the first daytime launch of a Soyuz crew since October 2012, the TMA-11M vehicle carried Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Tyurin, NASA astronaut Rick Mastracchio, and Japan’s Koichi Wakata to the International Space Station. Photo Credit: NASA

A second sun has risen above the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, with the spectacular launch of Soyuz TMA-11M and […]

A Watery Yarn: The Unlucky Voyage of Soyuz 23 (Part 2)

Soyuz 23’s descent module and deflated parachute are hoisted from the icy waters of Lake Tengiz. Photo Credit: Joachim Becker /

Almost four decades ago, in the “deep cold” of the Cold War, a number of space missions launched by the Soviet Union to dock with early Salyut space stations failed to accomplish […]