Spaceflight Insider

News Archive / Author: Heather Smith

Heather Smith's fascination for space exploration – started at the tender age of twelve while she was on a sixth-grade field trip in Kenner, Louisiana, walking through a mock-up of the International Space Station and seeing the “space potty” (her terminology has progressed considerably since that time) – she realized at this point that her future lay in the stars. Smith has come to realize that very few people have noticed how much spaceflight technology has improved their lives. She has since dedicated herself to correcting this problem. Inspired by such classic literature as Anne Frank’s Diary, she has honed her writing skills and has signed on as The Spaceflight Group’s coordinator for the organization’s social media efforts.

Articles By Heather Smith

  • Dynetics to build SLS universal stage adapter

    June 14th, 2017

    NASA has announced that the applied science and information technology company Dynetics, Inc. of Huntsville, Alabama, has been awarded a $221.7 million prime contract to develop and build a universal stage adapter (USA) for the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket.

  • Stratolaunch rolls out of hangar, conducts fueling test

    June 1st, 2017

    The Stratolaunch aircraft was revealed for the first time on May 31 for a fueling test after completing the key milestone of its construction phase; the company rolled the vehicle from its hangar and will now begin the aircraft's next stage of development.

  • Aerojet Rocketdyne completes AR1 preburner hot-fire test

    May 10th, 2017

    Aerojet Rocketdyne announced on May 3, 2017, that it completed a hot-fire test of its preburner for the AR1 rocket engine at NASA's Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. The company’s focus is to have an “American-designed and built” booster system that will replace the Russian-built RD-180 engines that are frequently used to launch U.S. national security, civil, and NASA payloads to orbit.

  • Robotic Refueling Mission leaves ISS

    April 8th, 2017

    After a six-year stay attached to the International Space Station (ISS), NASA’s Robotic Refueling Mission (RRM) payload made its way back to Earth on March 19, 2017, to burn up in the atmosphere inside the trunk of SpaceX's CRS-10 Dragon spacecraft.

  • Coleman Aerospace opens new facility on Space Coast

    February 26th, 2017

    CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — On Feb. 24, 2017, Coleman Aerospace unveiled its new Space Coast Integration & Test Facility at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The new site was previously used by the U.S. Air Force for rocket processing.

  • Spacesuit unveiled for Boeing’s Starliner

    January 26th, 2017

    On Jan. 25, 2017, Boeing showcased its newly designed spacesuit publicly for the first time. The suit was introduced by former astronaut Chris Ferguson, who is now the director of Crew and Mission Operations for Boeing's Commercial Crew Program.

  • NASA awards four more Commercial Crew missions

    January 6th, 2017

    NASA has awarded four rotation missions to Boeing and SpaceX, allowing the partners to ferry astronauts to and from the International Space Station. The contracts are currently under the Commercial Crew Transportation Capability contracts which bring the number of missions awarded to each provider to six.

  • Astronaut Piers Sellers dies of pancreatic cancer

    December 23rd, 2016

    Former NASA astronaut Piers Sellers, a veteran of three Space Shuttle missions, died on Friday, Dec. 23, 2016, in Houston after more than a year of battling pancreatic cancer. He was 61.

  • A tale of fire: S.S. Alan Poindexter successfully completes OA-5 mission

    November 28th, 2016

    The S.S. Alan Poindexter Cygnus spacecraft successfully completed re-entry on Nov. 27 over the Pacific Ocean east of New Zealand following a month-long stay at the International Space Station. The mission known as OA-5 marked Orbital ATK’s return to flight operations at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, Virginia.

  • SpaceX still expects to resume launches by end of year

    October 14th, 2016

    SpaceX will continue operations to resume launches despite their payload processing facility being damaged by Hurricane Matthew last week. The storm caused damage to the building's roof and siding as well as blowing out its windows. Still, this has not deterred the company's plans to continue launching its Falcon 9 rockets by the end of the year.

  • National Aviation Hall of Fame inducts class of 2016

    October 3rd, 2016

    The National Aviation Hall of Fame welcomed two new members into its ranks on Oct. 1, 2016. The event was a star-studded affair attended that SFI was fortunate enough to attend.

  • Review ‒ Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future

    February 21st, 2016

    The first biographical publication by technology writer Ashlee Vance is an investigative account of the life of Elon Musk and how the entrepreneur is working to disrupt the solar, space flight, and transportation industries. Entitled Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future, the book highlights a life of triumph and tragedy.

  • As NASA’s Orion spacecraft reaches milestone, first crewed flight could slip

    September 17th, 2015

    Engineers have completed a review of the Orion spacecraft, which will be the first mission designed to take humans into deep space. The KDP-C review included all technological advancements of the Orion Program. However, the first crewed flight of the craft might have to wait a while longer.

  • Our Spaceflight Heritage: Remembering the Christmas flight of STS-103

    December 19th, 2014

    Space Shuttle Discovery launched on a December evening in 1999 on its way to become the third servicing mission to the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). Led by six-time shuttle flier Commander Curtis Brown, Service Mission Three (SM3A) would require three spacewalks to repair Hubble’s solar panels, data transmitter, data recorder, and replace its gyroscopes.

  • Our Spaceflight Heritage: STS-97 turns on the light

    November 30th, 2014

    On Nov. 30, 2000, space shuttle Endeavour lifted-off from Launch Complex 39B at 10:06 p.m. EST (0306 GMT) from Kennedy Space Center in Florida bringing a crew of five along with her. Led by commander Brent Jett, the STS-97 crew would embark on an eleven day journey to the International Space Station, meeting with the […]