Spaceflight Insider

  • Boeing completes test of hyper-critical pad abort system

    Jim SiegelNovember 4th With SpaceX steamrolling ahead toward achieving the goal of sending U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station, Boeing took a step of its own today toward accomplishing the same feat.

  • NASA funds study of possible Pluto orbiter

    Laurel KornfeldNovember 4th There's no doubt that NASA's New Horizons mission crushed it. This has emboldened the space agency to take their exploration of the far reaches of our solar system to the next level.

  • OPINION: SpaceX’s upcoming Starlink mission means more than ending Florida’s launch drought

    Curt GodwinNovember 3rd The Space Coast has not seen a liftoff since Aug. 22. SpaceX is set to launch the second group of its Starlink satellites on Nov. 11, ending a two-month "drought" of ground launches from Florida. This upcoming mission has a lot more riding on it other than just alleviating that.

  • GALLERY: Alan Bean makes art – one more time

    Jason RhianNovember 2nd WALLOPS ISLAND, Va. -- Northrop Grumman's Antares rocket successfully launched the "Alan Bean" Cygnus spacecraft at 9:59 a.m. EST (13:59 GMT) on Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019. The NG-12 Cygnus spacecraft and the 8,200 pounds (3,719 kg) worth of crew supplies, cargo, experiments and hardware was launched from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport's Pad-0A in Virginia.

  • Critical tests for Boeing and SpaceX’s crewed efforts slated for next week

    Jason RhianNovember 1st If things go according to plan next week, NASA, Boeing and SpaceX will check key systems that are required to keep astronauts safe on their way to orbit. If these last checks can be completed, the agency could finally regain a capability it lost almost a decade ago.

  • Northrop Grumman NG-12 launch could be visible four states away

    Jason RhianNovember 1st WALLOPS ISLAND, Va. -- Whenever a rocket lifts off it's a pretty dramatic event. The scheduled launch of a Northrop Grumman Antares rocket should be no exception. A NASA map suggests that the NG-12 flight could be visible from up to four states away.

  • New Horizons team releases images of Pluto’s far side

    Laurel KornfeldOctober 30th More than four years after New Horizons' historic July 2015 Pluto flyby, mission scientists have released detailed images of Pluto's far side, which the spacecraft was able to image only in low resolution on approach and following departure.

  • U.S. Air Force’s secretive X-37B shuttle returns under cover of night

    Cullen DesforgesOctober 28th MERRITT ISLAND, FL – After a record-breaking 780 days on orbit the United States Air Force’s secretive space plane, the X-37B, touched down on Runway 33 at the Shuttle Landing Facility at Kennedy Space Center on Oct. 27, 2019.

  • NASA to send VIPER to prowl Moon’s South Pole

    Jason RhianOctober 28th If humanity is going to establish a long-term presence on the Moon, it's going to need water. This precious substance can be found on the lunar surface and a newly-announced robotic explorer is being readied to seek out significant concentrations of ice. If all goes according to plan, this mission marka critical first step for planned crewed missions.

  • Passengers on upcoming VG flights will get pins for spiffy new uniforms

    Jason RhianOctober 27th When Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo takes to the skies with paying customers, those flying onboard the will be awarded pins by the Association of Space Explorers (ASE) upon their return. This, however, will not be the apparel that will mark their voyage. Recent events suggest that Virgin Galactic is about to open its operational doors.

  • ‘I’ve got a bad feeling about this…’ Space Wars might be just around the corner

    Jim SiegelOctober 26th Excitement is building as Star Wars aficionados are already rushing the virtual box office to buy tickets for the Dec. 20 release of the long-anticipated final episode of the Star Wars saga, The Rise of Skywalker. But how close are those not in a galaxy "far, far away" away from experiencing actual wars in space?

  • Blue Origin leads consortium of space stalwarts to develop Human Landing System

    Curt GodwinOctober 25th Although the company has yet to launch a single human into suborbital space, much less into orbit, Blue Origin plans to be a key player in NASA's return to the Moon. At present, it's unclear if a recent announcement will join others in the lunar regolith or ignite a new era of human lunar exploration.

  • Boeing completes test of hyper-critical pad abort system

    Jim SiegelNovember 4th With SpaceX steamrolling ahead toward achieving the goal of sending U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station, Boeing took a step of its own today toward accomplishing the same feat.

  • OPINION: SpaceX’s upcoming Starlink mission means more than ending Florida’s launch drought

    Curt GodwinNovember 3rd The Space Coast has not seen a liftoff since Aug. 22. SpaceX is set to launch the second group of its Starlink satellites on Nov. 11, ending a two-month "drought" of ground launches from Florida. This upcoming mission has a lot more riding on it other than just alleviating that.

  • Critical tests for Boeing and SpaceX’s crewed efforts slated for next week

    Jason RhianNovember 1st If things go according to plan next week, NASA, Boeing and SpaceX will check key systems that are required to keep astronauts safe on their way to orbit. If these last checks can be completed, the agency could finally regain a capability it lost almost a decade ago.

  • U.S. Air Force’s secretive X-37B shuttle returns under cover of night

    Cullen DesforgesOctober 28th MERRITT ISLAND, FL – After a record-breaking 780 days on orbit the United States Air Force’s secretive space plane, the X-37B, touched down on Runway 33 at the Shuttle Landing Facility at Kennedy Space Center on Oct. 27, 2019.

  • Passengers on upcoming VG flights will get pins for spiffy new uniforms

    Jason RhianOctober 27th When Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo takes to the skies with paying customers, those flying onboard the will be awarded pins by the Association of Space Explorers (ASE) upon their return. This, however, will not be the apparel that will mark their voyage. Recent events suggest that Virgin Galactic is about to open its operational doors.

  • ‘I’ve got a bad feeling about this…’ Space Wars might be just around the corner

    Jim SiegelOctober 26th Excitement is building as Star Wars aficionados are already rushing the virtual box office to buy tickets for the Dec. 20 release of the long-anticipated final episode of the Star Wars saga, The Rise of Skywalker. But how close are those not in a galaxy "far, far away" away from experiencing actual wars in space?

  • Blue Origin leads consortium of space stalwarts to develop Human Landing System

    Curt GodwinOctober 25th Although the company has yet to launch a single human into suborbital space, much less into orbit, Blue Origin plans to be a key player in NASA's return to the Moon. At present, it's unclear if a recent announcement will join others in the lunar regolith or ignite a new era of human lunar exploration.

  • Motel Rooms and Gas Stations: How to Leave Mars

    Jay GallentineOctober 24th One day in the future, humans might actually land on the surface of Mars. After collecting rock samples, taking photos and performing all the other tasks demanded by this mission, the intrepid explorers will then face a daunting challenge, one often overlooked by most - leaving.

  • Delta IV Medium ends 17-Year run with 100% success

    Jim SiegelAugust 25th ULA's Delta IV Medium rocket, which made its debut flight in 2002, finished its 17-year career by propelling a GPS III satellite into medium Earth orbit.

  • AEHF 5 lights up the sky atop ULA Atlas V 551

    Patrick AttwellAugust 8th CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- United Launch Alliance completed its third flight of the year on Thursday, Aug. 8. The flight got off the pad and soared into the early morning sky a little later than planned.

  • Cameras on Mars 2020 rover confirmed to have perfect vision

    Laurel KornfeldAugust 7th Tests conducted on several of the cameras that have been installed on the Mars 2020 rover have confirmed that they have perfect, 20/20 This is one of the more critical aspects of the mission as it will help guide the vision.

  • SpaceX breaks AMOS jinx with flight of AMOS-17

    Patrick AttwellAugust 6th CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — It can be said that SpaceX hasn’t had the best of luck when it comes to AMOS payloads. That unlucky streak was broken today with the launch of a Falcon 9 rocket and its passenger, the AMOS-17 spacecraft.

  • NG-11 Cygnus released to begin multi-month post-ISS mission

    Derek RichardsonAugust 6th Northrop Grumman’s NG-11 Cygnus departed the ISS after a 109-day stay aboard the outpost to begin a multi-month free-flying secondary mission.

  • NASA teaming up with commercial companies for return to the Moon

    Laurel KornfeldAugust 5th To achieve the goal of returning humans to the Moon by 2024, NASA announced it is teaming up with commercial companies to develop new technologies for landing on and taking off from the lunar surface.

  • NASA releases report on weather satellite failure

    Laurel KornfeldAugust 2nd A NASA board assigned to investigate the April 2018 failure of an infrared-detecting instrument on board a next-generation weather satellite has released its report. The malfunction has been attributed to a pipe blockage that prevented the flow of needed coolant.

  • Bridenstine selects new director of Goddard Space Flight Center

    Joe LatrellAugust 1st Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) has been assigned a new acting director by NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine as the previous head of the Center has opted to move on.