Spaceflight Insider

News Archive / Author: Bart Leahy

Bart Leahy is a freelance technical writer living in Orlando, Florida. Leahy's diverse career has included work for The Walt Disney Company, NASA, the Department of Defense, Nissan, a number of commercial space companies, small businesses, nonprofits, as well as the Science Cheerleaders.

Articles By Bart Leahy

  • Boeing reorganizing for more agile performance

    June 22nd, 2017

    Boeing is looking to make its operations leaner and more competitive by breaking up its Defense, Space & Security (BDS) unit into smaller business units reporting directly to BDS CEO Leanne Caret.

  • Comedian Bill Dana, creator of ‘José Jiménez,’ dead at 92

    June 20th, 2017

    Comedian and comedy writer Bill Dana, who became famous through his “José Jiménez” character in the 1950s and 1960s, died June 15 at the age of 92. The Jiménez character, a stereotyped cowardly astronaut, was a favorite performer with television audiences and with the “Original Seven” Mercury astronauts.

  • Boeing/DARPA XS-1 to operate from Cape Canaveral

    June 15th, 2017

    A Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) spokesman has stated that Boeing will be launching and landing the agency’s XS-1 spaceplane from Cape Canaveral, Florida, as soon as 2020.

  • MIT students studying mission to asteroid Apophis

    June 10th, 2017

    Apophis, an asteroid the size of an aircraft carrier, will make a close approach to Earth in 2029. It will come within approximately 18,300 miles (29,500 kilometers), less than one-tenth the distance from Earth to the Moon. A group of students from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is designing a mission to study the asteroid up close as it passes by.

  • VP Mike Pence welcomes NASA’s 12 new astronaut candidates

    June 8th, 2017

    HOUSTON — With Vice President Mike Pence on hand and providing comments during the ceremony, NASA announced the 2017 class of astronauts. The agency selected 12 individuals out of more than 18,000 applicants.

  • Falcon’s flames: SpaceX launches CRS-11 Dragon

    June 3rd, 2017

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. — SpaceX has successfully launched its 11th Dragon (CRS-11) toward the International Space Station (ISS) in support of NASA's Commercial Resupply Service (CRS) program. The company's “Full Thrust” Falcon 9 rocket launched the first refurbished Dragon capsule carrying crew supplies and experiments to be used on the orbiting lab.

  • JAXA launches second ‘Michibiki’ navigation satellite

    June 1st, 2017

    TANEGASHIMA SPACE CENTER, Japan — A Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) H-IIA rocket launched the second of four navigation satellites. The satellite, Michibiki-2, is part of a system designed to provide global positioning system (GPS) services for the Japanese home islands.

  • New NASA astronaut class to be announced June 7

    May 31st, 2017

    After fielding more than 18,300 applications between December 2015 and February 2016, NASA is ready to announce its astronaut class for 2017. Out of that record-breaking number, a bare 8–14 people will be selected to be part of the agency’s next human spaceflight missions. The space agency will make the announcement at 2 p.m. EDT (18:00 GMT), June 7, 2017.

  • More science, reused Dragon capsule featured on CRS-11

    May 30th, 2017

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. — SpaceX is continuing its effort to increase its operational tempo and demonstrate spacecraft reusability. While delivering supplies and multiple experiments, the CRS-11 cargo mission to the International Space Station (ISS) will also feature the first reuse of a Dragon pressure vessel as well as the return of a Falcon 9 first stage to Landing Zone 1 at nearby Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

  • Dream Chaser spacecraft passes 3rd integration review milestone

    May 27th, 2017

    Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) announced on May 25, 2017, that the firm's Dream Chaser spacecraft had passed its third integration review under NASA’s Commercial Resupply Services 2 (CRS2) contract. This latest review evaluated whether the spacecraft's system design met NASA’s key mission requirements to send cargo to the International Space Station.

  • Psyche mission to reach metallic asteroid 4 years earlier than planned

    May 24th, 2017

    NASA announced on May 24, 2017, that it would be launching the Discovery-class Psyche mission one year earlier, which will enable it to reach the nickel-iron asteroid Psyche four years earlier than previously planned. Thanks to spacecraft and trajectory redesigns, Psyche is now scheduled to launch in 2022 and will reach its destination in 2026.

  • NASA, Aerojet Rocketdyne conduct 2nd RS-25 controller test

    May 24th, 2017

    On May 23, 2017, Aerojet Rocketdyne completed the second in a series of RS-25 engine firings, testing a new controller system. Formerly known as Space Shuttle Main Engines, the RS-25s are being upgraded to serve as the main engines for NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) super-heavy-lift launch vehicle.

  • Elysium Space extending memorial frontiers aboard SpaceX Falcon 9

    May 18th, 2017

    SpaceX has launched communications and reconnaissance satellites into Earth orbit and cargo to the International Space Station, but it'll be lofting something new on an upcoming flight. Elysium Space, a company specializing in “memorial spaceflights”, will be placing a satellite with the cremated remains of 100 people aboard a Falcon 9 rocket scheduled to lift off from Vandenberg Air Force Base.

  • Humans to Mars Summit kicks off with plans, education, Buzz Aldrin

    May 10th, 2017

    WASHINGTON — For the fifth year in a row, the space advocacy group Explore Mars, Inc., is hosting the Humans to Mars (H2M) Summit. It is a three-day gathering from May 9–11, 2017, at George Washington University discussing sending humans to the Red Planet.

  • Vector successfully launches first smallsat rocket

    May 5th, 2017

    Smallsat startup Vector Space Systems launched its first engineering test vehicle on May 3, 2017, from Friends of Amateur Rocketry site in Mojave, California. The Vector-R vehicle flew on a suborbital trajectory on only its first stage, which was powered by a 5,000-pound-force (22-kilonewton) thrust engine with a 3-D-printed injector.