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NASA Awards Contract to Restart Development of Engines to Power Agency’s Journey to Mars

© Afrim Constantin –

NASA selected Aerojet Rocketdyne of Sacramento, California, to restart production of the RS-25 engine for the agency’s Space Launch System (SLS), the most powerful rocket in the world, and deliver a certified engine. SLS will use four RS-25 engines to carry the agency’s Orion spacecraft and launch explorers on deep space missions, including to an

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Mars rover steers toward active sand dunes

© Afrim Constantin –

The Curiosity rover’s next destination is a moving mound of wind-blown dark sand blanketing the base of Mount Sharp, the focal point of the Mars mission’s research, scientists said this week. It will take a few days to reach the dunes, and rover drivers at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory must be careful to avoid guiding

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“Planetary Nebulae” receive more meaningful physical presence

© Afrim Constantin –

Click on image to make it bigger Credit: Infographic created by Afrim Constantin COPYRIGHT 2015 © spacefan.org

NASA Announces New Public-Private Partnerships to Advance ‘Tipping Point,’ Emerging Space Capabilities

© Afrim Constantin –

NASA has secured partnerships with 22 U.S. companies through two solicitations to advance the agency’s goals for robotic and human exploration of the solar system by shepherding the development of critical space technologies. “These awards enable us to continue to foster partnerships with the commercial space sector that not only leverage capabilities to meet NASA’s

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NASA Orders SpaceX Crew Mission to International Space Station

© Afrim Constantin –

NASA took a significant step Friday toward expanding research opportunities aboard the International Space Station with its first mission order from Hawthorne, California based-company SpaceX to launch astronauts from U.S. soil. This is the second in a series of four guaranteed orders NASA will make under the Commercial Crew Transportation Capability (CCtCap) contracts. The Boeing

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NASA Awards Grants to Broaden STEM Education for Underserved Students

© Afrim Constantin –

NASA’s Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP) has selected four minority serving institutions for cooperative agreement awards totaling approximately $2 million to help strengthen science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) curricula at the schools. Four universities were selected to receive MUREP Other Opportunities grants, which provide up to a total of $500,000 to each

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NASA Astronaut Tim Kopra Available for Interviews Before Space Station Mission

© Afrim Constantin –

NASA astronaut Tim Kopra, who is making final preparations for a December launch to the International Space Station, is available for live satellite interviews from 7-8 a.m. EST Tuesday, Nov. 24. Kopra will participate in the interviews live from the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center in Star City, Russia. The interviews will be preceded at 6:30

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NASA Awards Two Robots to University Groups for R&D Upgrades

© Afrim Constantin –

Humanoid robots will be helpful to astronauts on our journey to Mars, so NASA has awarded prototypes to two universities for advanced research and development work. NASA is interested in humanoid robots because they can help or even take the place of astronauts working in extreme space environments. Robots, like NASA’s R5, could be used

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Discovery measures “heartbeats” of a distant galaxy’s stars

© Afrim Constantin –

In many ways stars are like living beings. They’re born; they live; they die. And they even have a heartbeat. Using a novel technique, astronomers have detected thousands of stellar “pulses” in the galaxy Messier 87 (M87). Their measurements offer a new way of determining a galaxy’s age. We tend to think of stars as

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