AmericaSpace Countdown

Next Launch TMA-16M on a Soyuz-FG rocket from Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan
scheduled for:
27 Mar 15 19:42:59 GMT
28 Mar 15 1:42:59 ALMT
27 Mar 15 15:42:59 Eastern

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Veteran Shuttle Pilot and Adventurer Bill Oefelein Turns 50 Today

Bill Oefelein was one of the first members of his astronaut class to venture into space and the first Alaskan to reach orbit. He turns 50 today. Photo Credit: NASA

Although he forged an unfortunate place in popular culture and gained intense media attention in early 2007 as part of a bizarre “love triangle,” […]

Traversing the New Frontier: The First 50 Years of Spacewalking (Part 6)

Terry Virts is pictured working on cable-routing activities in support of the future International Docking Adapters (IDAs) during EVA-29 on 21 February 2015. This was the first spacewalk in the 50th anniversary year since Alexei Leonov’s pioneering EVA. Photo Credit: NASA

Less than a month ago, on 1 March 2015, U.S. astronauts Barry “Butch” […]

Ready for Space Station Building: The First 50 Years of Spacewalking (Part 5)

Story Musgrave works at the end of Endeavour’s mechanical arm during activities to service the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) in December 1993. Photo Credit: NASA

Almost a quarter-century ago, in April 1991, the effort to build today’s International Space Station (ISS) got underway with a pair of spacewalks—one unplanned—outside the shuttle Atlantis. During STS-37, […]

One-Year Mission Underway With Rousing Soyuz TMA-16M Launch

Soyuz TMA-16M roars away from Site 1/5 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome at 1:42 a.m. local time Saturday, 28 March (3:42 p.m. EDT Friday, 27 March), carrying Russian cosmonauts Gennadi Padalka and Mikhail Kornienko and U.S. astronaut Scott Kelly to the International Space Station (ISS). Photo Credit: NASA

The first year-long expedition of the International […]

NASA Goes With 'Option B' for Future Asteroid Redirect Mission

The Asteroid Redirect Vehicle, part of NASA's Asteroid Initiative concept, is shown traveling to lunar orbit using its solar electric propulsion system in this artist's concept. Image credit: NASA

The Asteroid Redirect Vehicle, part of NASA’s Asteroid Initiative concept, is shown traveling to lunar orbit using its solar electric propulsion system in this artist’s concept. Image credit: NASA

Asteroids are getting a lot of attention, today in particular, because asteroid 2014 YB35 will be coming within 0.03 Astronomical Units (AU) of Earth. There […]

Ambitious One-Year Mission Counting Down to Friday Launch (Part 2)

Scott Kelly participates in a Soyuz spacecraft training session, ahead of his scheduled 27/28 March launch with Gennadi Padalka and Mikhail Kornienko. Photo Credit: NASA

Twenty-four hours now remain before Soyuz TMA-16M is scheduled to rocket toward the International Space Station (ISS), carrying Russian cosmonauts Gennadi Padalka and Mikhail Kornienko and U.S. astronaut Scott […]

Fourth ULA Launch in Three Months Boosts Latest GPS Block IIF to Medium Earth Orbit

Rising into a gloomy ball of low-lying fog, the first Delta-IV of 2015 took flight at 2:36 p.m. EDT Wednesday, 25 March, delivering the ninth Global Positioning System (GPS) Block IIF satellite into orbit. Photo Credit: Mike Killian / AmericaSpace

United Launch Alliance (ULA)—the Centennial, Colo.-based launch services operator of Atlas V, Delta IV […]

Identical Twin, Former Paratrooper, and Ecologist to Launch Friday Aboard Soyuz TMA-16M (Part 1)

Soyuz TMA-16M will launch on 27 March 2015, carrying (from left) Scott Kelly, Gennadi Padalka, and Mikhail Kornienko. Photo Credit: NASA

Two sons of Earth are presently enjoying their final hours in terrestrial gravity, before embarking on almost an entire orbit of the Sun, as they prepare to journey to the International Space Station […]

First Delta IV of 2015 to Deliver GPS IIF-9 Satellite to Orbit on Wednesday

A Delta IV Medium+ (4,2) booster launches the GPS IIF-6 mission in May 2014. A similar vehicle will deliver GPS IIF-9, later this week. Photo Credit: Alan Walters/AmericaSpace

After three successful flights in as many months—the Mobile User Objective System (MUOS)-3 and Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellites, both in January, and most recently […]

Repair and Salvage: The First 50 Years of Spacewalking (Part 4)

During his historic untethered EVA with the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU) on 7 February 1984, Bruce McCandless ventured as far as 300 feet (90 meters) from Challenger. Photo Credit: NASA

Ironically, the spacecraft from which the most Extravehicular Activities (EVAs) were performed—the space shuttle—was not originally intended to carry the capability for spacewalking at […]