Spaceflight Insider

News Archive / Author: Joe Latrell

Joe Latrell is a life-long avid space enthusiast having created his own rocket company in Roswell, NM in addition to other consumer space endeavors. He continues to design, build and launch his own rockets and has a passion to see the next generation excited about the opportunities of space exploration. Joe lends his experiences from the corporate and small business arenas to organizations such as Teachers In Space, Inc. He is also actively engaged in his church investing his many skills to assist this and other non-profit endeavors.

Articles By Joe Latrell

  • Boeing ships Starliner test article to California, simulator to Texas

    January 24th, 2017

    Boeing's CST-100 Starliner program continues to make progress with two major advancements. In California, the Structural Test Article (STA) arrived at the Huntington Beach facilities. Meanwhile, in Houston, the Starliner flight simulator was delivered for installation.

  • OSIRIS-REx begins hunt for elusive ‘Trojan’ asteroids

    January 7th, 2017

    After successfully launching in September of last year (2016), OSIRIS-REx (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith Explorer) has been given a new task – to hunt for "Trojan" asteroids that may pose a danger to Earth.

  • Space Systems Loral wins contract for satellite refueling mission

    December 8th, 2016

    Space Systems Loral (SSL) of Palo Alto, California, was awarded a NASA contract for Restore-L, a robotic spacecraft designed to grasp, refuel and relocate satellites in orbit, even if they were not originally designed for on-orbit servicing.

  • December shaping up to be a busy month for rocket flights

    December 2nd, 2016

    December is shaping up to be a very busy launch month for the U.S. On the East Coast, three different satellites are expected to take to the skies, providing improved services and weather monitoring. Additionally, on the West Coast, SpaceX hopes to fly their Falcon 9 after being grounded for over three months.

  • NASA microthrusters succesfully used on ESA’s LISA Pathfinder

    November 20th, 2016

    Q: What's harder than moving a spacecraft around in space? A: Holding it perfectly still. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, has been testing the ST7-DRS on board the European Space Agency's LISA Pathfinder spacecraft.

  • Orbital ATK completes QM-2 installation ahead of critical test

    May 11th, 2016

    NASA's SLS took another step forward as a new five-segment booster motor was installed onto its custom test stand in Promontory, Utah. Orbital ATK, in partnership with NASA, completed the installation of the QM-2 and is now working toward the countdown to a June 28, 2016, static-fire test of the new motor.

  • US celebrates first National Astronaut Day

    May 5th, 2016

    The day was May 5, 1961. Alan Shepard, aided by Gunter Wendt and the rest of the launch pad crew, was strapped into the seat of the most daring vehicle America had constructed—the one-man Mercury space capsule. Moments later, he rocketed to the heavens becoming America's first astronaut crossing into the new frontier of space. The entire sub-orbital trip lasted just 15 minutes.

  • OneWeb submits application for space-based Internet

    May 2nd, 2016

    OneWeb recently submitted its application for satellite-based Internet operations to the Federal Communications Commission. The application seeks access to the U.S. market for the company's planned low-Earth orbit satellite constellation.

  • Aerojet Rocketdyne tests first flight-ready RS-25

    March 12th, 2016

    Work on NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) reached another milestone on March 10, 2016, when Aerojet Rocketdyne test fired the RS-25 engine at the Stennis Space Center in Mississippi.

  • Our SpaceFlight Heritage: Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter marks ten years of discovery

    March 10th, 2016

    Since its arrival on March 10, 2006, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) has collected more data than any other orbiter to study Mars. According to the NASA facts files for Mars, there are currently seven active missions on the fourth planet from the Sun. Of those seven, the MRO returns more data in one week than the other six probes combined.

  • SES-9 communications satellite launched atop SpaceX Falcon 9

    March 4th, 2016

    The fifth time was the charm for SpaceX. The company launched the SES-9 communications satellite into orbit at 6:35 p.m. EST (23:35 GMT) on Friday, March 4. This launch was the 22nd flight of a Falcon 9 and the first from Florida since the Orbcomm OG2 mission on Dec. 22, 2015.

  • The race to replace the RD-180 goes full throttle

    March 3rd, 2016

    The USAF awarded two public-private partnerships to develop a replacement for the Russian RD-180 engine. The first team is a joint effort of ULA/Blue Origin. The second is Aerojet Rocketdyne, a company that endeavored for years to persuade the Air Force to back development of the AR1.

  • Philae, we hardly knew ye

    February 14th, 2016

    The European Space Agency (ESA) has suspended further attempts to contact Philae, the small comet lander currently sitting on Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko (67P). The lander has not been heard from since July of 2015, and that signal was intermittent at best.

  • Cage match for next Orion capsule at Kennedy Space Center

    February 8th, 2016

    After a quick trip from Louisiana to Florida via the Super Guppy transport, the latest Orion crew module was mated with the "birdcage" – a structural assembly system. This is just the latest step in the lead up to the fully integrated flight of Orion and NASA's Space Launch System booster – slated for late 2018.

  • ‘S’ in SLS could stand for ‘science’ for Exploration Mission 1

    February 4th, 2016

    One of the criticisms of NASA's SLS has been the lack of science missions planned for the heavy-lift launch vehicle. On Tuesday, NASA worked to address those concerns with the announcement of the Science and Technology missions that have been chosen for the first SLS flight – EM 1.