Spaceflight Insider

  • Capsule for first Orion spacecraft designed to carry crew built and delivered to KSC

    Jason RhianAugust 31st KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. -- NASA and Lockheed Martin are preparing for the first crewed flight of the agency's "exploration-class" spacecraft, Orion, on a mission that should see astronauts return to a trajectory their colleagues have not ventured to in more than 45 years. This latest milestone saw components that will comprise the spacecraft assembled and shipped to Kennedy Space Center.

  • Leak detected on International Space Station, crew in no danger

    Derek RichardsonAugust 30th The six-person Expedition 56 crew aboard the International Space Station is troubleshooting a "minute pressure leak" that was detected in the orbiting complex by ground controllers in Houston and Moscow, NASA said.

  • NASA Administrator Bridenstine: ‘We’re not going to do flags and footprints again’

    Derek RichardsonAugust 30th In the first-ever televised NASA Advisory Council meeting, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine described the United States' latest effort to return to the Moon as one about sustainability.

  • Astronaut candidate Robb Kulin resigns from NASA

    Derek RichardsonAugust 29th First reported by the Houston Chronicle, NASA confirmed that 2017 astronaut candidate Robb Kulin is resigning Friday for “personal reasons” after a year of training, the first to do so in some 50 years.

  • Aerojet Rocketdyne demonstrates electric propulsion capabilities for future deep space missions

    Derek RichardsonAugust 29th An early systems integration test was performed by Aerojet Rocketdyne for NASA’s Advanced Electric Propulsion System (AEPS) program, which includes technology that could be used on NASA’s proposed lunar orbiting outpost in the early 2020s, the company said.

  • GPS III Satellite shipped to the Cape in preparation for flight

    Jason RhianAugust 28th CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — Lockheed Martin has shipped the first GPS III satellite, touted as being harder-to-jam, to Cape Canaveral Air Force Station located in Florida in preparation for flight. 

  • JPL unveils efforts to explore Mars to NASA Administrator

    Jason RhianAugust 27th PASADENA, Calif. -- NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine paid a visit to the space agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory today, Monday Aug. 27, 2018 and was provided a review of NASA's efforts to explore the Red Planet.

  • One step closer: SpaceX installs crew access arm in lead up to first crewed flights

    Lloyd CampbellAugust 25th KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. -- Workers at Kennedy Space Center's historic Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) installed a crew access arm that will allow astronauts to board SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft. The arm was installed on Aug. 20, 2018.

  • Progress MS-08 departs International Space Station

    Derek RichardsonAugust 24th The Progress MS-08 spacecraft has left the International Space Station after just over six months attached to the orbiting outpost’s Zvezda service module. Rather than an immediate deorbit, however, the cargo freighter will continue circling Earth for a week.

  • Acoustic testing begins on AA-2 Orion capsule at NASA Plum Brook Station

    Michael ColeAugust 23rd SANDUSKY, OH -- The Orion crew capsule test article for the upcoming Abort Ascent-2 (AA-2) test has arrived at NASA's Plum Brook Station testing facility in Sandusky, Ohio. The test article is being readied - to be blasted with sound.

  • Russian space industry suffers from another scandal

    Tomasz NowakowskiAugust 23rd On Aug. 19, 2018, the Investigative Committee of Russia (ICR) informed that three top executives of the state-run rocket manufacturer RKK Energia have been detained for fraud. This is yet another scandal in the Russian space industry in recent years.

  • Vega soars into the sky with ESA’s Aeolus wind-monitoring satellite

    Tomasz NowakowskiAugust 22nd Arianespace successfully sent Europe’s wind-monitoring satellite named Aeolus to orbit on Wednesday, Aug. 22. The France-based firm used the smallest launch vehicle in its catalog, Vega, to carry out the first part of Aeolus's mission underway.

  • Astrobotic awarded NASA contracts to develop lunar lander technologies

    Michael ColeAugust 22nd NASA recently awarded Astrobotic two contracts that could help move the Pittsburgh-based company closer to making its first lunar landing. The contracts are for developing technologies for the company's Peregrine lander, but could possibly make lunar landings easier and more accessible to others in the future.

  • InSight lander passes halfway mark on journey to Mars

    Derek RichardsonAugust 21st NASA’s InSight spacecraft passed the halfway mark Aug. 6, 2018, on its journey to Mars. In that time, the lander has performed two trajectory correction maneuvers and verified all of its instruments are working properly.

  • India aims to send its first crewed mission to space by 2022

    Tomasz NowakowskiAugust 20th India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled on Wednesday, August 15, an ambitious plan to send the first Indian to space by 2022. The announcement was made when he was addressing the nation during Independence Day celebrations at the historic Red Fort in Delhi.

  • Angara rocket family to replace Proton launchers NET 2024

    Tomasz NowakowskiAugust 17th Angara rockets could fully replace Russia’s long-serving Soviet-era Proton launch vehicles as early as 2024. This is according to an industry official, who made the remark at an aerospace conference in the city of Kazan.

    The Range
  • Coalition for Deep Space Exploration remembers Paul Spudis

    September 4th
    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Coalition for Deep Space Exploration (Coalition) and its member companies were deeply saddened to learn last week of the passing of Dr. Paul Spudis – scientist, visionary, and tireless advocate for lunar science, exploration and development.

  • InSight 3 months from checking Mars’ temperature

    September 4th
    While former NASA astronaut Scott Parazynski might have scaled Mount Everest, there are mountains on Mars that far outstrip even Everest's staggering 29,029-foot (8,848-meter) height. NASA has a spacecraft on its way to the Red Planet to try and find out why these peaks reach such heights.

  • Construction of 2nd launch pad at Vostochny Cosmodrome underway

    September 3rd
    Russian media outlets have reported that construction of a second launch pad at Vostochny Cosmodrome in the country’s Far East is underway. The new pad, designated Site 1A and dedicated for Angara rocket launches, is expected to be completed by the end of 2022.

  • Inside Opportunity: Oppy still silent as dust storm begins to settle

    September 1st
    It has been a long 80 days. We last heard from our rover on the slopes of Perseverance Valley back on June 10. However, we are continuing to listen diligently every day during our programmed fault communication windows, as well as through the Deep Space Network Radio Science Receiver. So far however - nothing.

  • New Horizons takes first images of Ultima Thule

    August 30th
    From a distance of more than 100 million miles (160 million kilometers) and against a background filled with stars, New Horizons' Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) took the first images of its second target, Kuiper Belt Object (KBO) Ultima Thule.

  • Ice confirmed at the Moon’s poles

    August 28th
    A team of researchers using data collected by NASA's Moon Mineralogy Mapper instrument have directly observed definitive evidence of water ice at the Moon's poles. While most of the ice at the southern pole is concentrated in lunar craters, the substance is more widely, but sparsely distributed, at the northern pole.

  • Our SpaceFlight Heritage: Spitzer telescope’s top 15 discoveries

    August 27th
    To celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Spitzer Space Telescope's operations in space, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), which manages the mission, issued a statement highlighting the infrared observatory's top 15 discoveries.

  • Two new BeiDou-3 navigation satellites launched atop Long March 3B

    August 26th
    On Saturday, August 25, China successfully launched its Long March 3B booster carrying two new BeiDou-3 spacecraft to replenish China's homegrown satellite navigation network.

  • OSIRIS-REx – marks the spot

    August 25th
    NASA provided an update on Friday, Aug. 24, about the Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft. By all accounts of the experts working on the expedition to the asteroid Bennu - things are going very well.

  • Nominee for NASA deputy administrator testifies before senate committee

    August 24th
    James Morhard, President Donald Trump’s nomination for NASA deputy administrator, testified before the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation Aug. 23, 2018, at his confirmation hearing.

  • NASA broadcast commemorates Great American Eclipse anniversary

    August 22nd
    To commemorate the one-year anniversary of the total solar eclipse that swept across the U.S. Aug. 21, 2017, NASA hosted an online Live Science Chat focusing on new data from the event and the impact it had on millions of people.

  • U.S. Air Force’s X-37B space plane nears one year on orbit

    August 20th
    CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- The fifth, and latest, mission for the U.S. Air Force's (USAF) X-37B uncrewed space plane nears a milestone that all but one of its predecessors met (and exceeded): one year on orbit.

  • Lockheed Martin, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex launch new Astronaut Training Experience

    August 17th
    CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- Lockheed Martin and the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex "launched" the new Astronaut Training Experience (ATX) on Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018. The event was conducted with pomp, leading members of the space community and those who stand to benefit from this new attraction.

  • UK’s first spaceport could launch 2,000 satellites by 2030

    August 16th
    The British government has revealed an ambitious plan to launch around 2,000 satellites by 2030 from its future spaceport in Sutherland, Scotland. The new agenda envisions about four satellite launches a week from the new site.

  • New Horizons may have detected hydrogen wall at solar system’s edge

    August 16th
    NASA's New Horizons spacecraft, now on its way to its second target, may have detected evidence of a wall of hydrogen that scientists theorize exists at the boundary between the heliosphere, a bubble-like region influenced by the solar wind, and interstellar space.