Year 5 Number 53

Thursday / 17 March 2005

Garry Lyles named as 1st Chief Engineer of NASA Exploration Mission Directorate; previously Dir of Constellation Systems at NASA HQ; will oversee CEV development   ISS E10 crew preps for 28 Mar EVA, Apr return to Earth; 1 of 3 working gyroscopes failed again; replacement due aboard Discovery STS-114 in mid-May
NASA releases updated ISS plan online today, followed by 14:00 CST teleconf; NASA briefing on ISS E10 crew 2nd, final EVA tomorrow at 13:00 CST at Johnson Space Center   Chief lunar scientist Ouyang Ziyuan says requirements for China lunar rover have been unveiled; competition open to all China science, research centers
NASA Universe Exploration Strategic Roadmap Committee meeting concluded yesterday in MD; studying origin, structure, evolution, and destiny of Universe   Roskosmos head Anatoly Perminov endorses human interplanetary missions; agency focusing on orbital infrastructure; prep for humans on Moon;
No job cuts are expected at NASA Johnson Space Center; 2,673 less jobs expected at Ames, Dryden, Glenn, Langley, Marshall NASA centers over next 18 months Cassini discovers atmosphere on icy Saturn moon Enceladus; NASA scientists call it "substantial;" encounters 17 Feb (1,167 km), 9 Mar (500 km);
'Gaia Selene - Saving the Earth by Colonizing the Moon' feature documentary by Chip Proser to be presented on 19 May at ISDC 2005, 19-22 May in Washington DC China's Taiyuan Sat Launch Center is located at 38.8°N, 115°E; used to launch polar sci sats on Long March rockets; close to Wuzhai Missile & Space Test Center

World's Leading Astrophysics / Astronomy Centers Could Partner With Space Agencies And Private Enterprise To Achieve Low-Cost Observation From The Moon In Near-Term; The International Lunar Observatory Is Good Example Of Such A Mission


ILC 2005 / ILEWG 7 May Act as Moon Gate To New Cooperation. The International Lunar Conference 2005 (ILC 2005) / International Lunar Exploration Working Group 7 (ILEWG 7) takes place in Toronto, Canada this year on 17-23 September. Co-chairs of the event are Robert Richards of Optech and Chris Sallaberger of MDA. The organizers are working hard to prepare for a truly international event. "We'll endeavor to cast the net far and wide," says Richards. Last November’s ILEWG event in Udaipur, India, was a great success. More India and China lunar experts attended than any of the previous five events, which are also referred to as the International Conference on Exploration and Utilization of the Moon. These events often include conference tours, like the one taken to the summit of Mauna Kea and to the Apollo mission lunar analog training grounds during ILC 2003 in Hawaii. International space agencies created the ILEWG in April 1995 during an EGS Moon Workshop in Hamburg, Germany. SMART-1 and other ongoing lunar missions, past and future missions, lunar settlement and much more are discussed at the annual event. The first ILC 2005 announcement and a call for papers are expected soon. ILC 2006 / ILEWG 8 will take place in China just before the Beijing COSPAR event 16-23 July.

What is Shuttle's Role in Moon, Mars Travel? Florida Today writer John Kelly gives 'Six Reasons Why the Shuttle's Return to Space is Vital to Human Exploration of the Moon and Mars.' Kelly says one reason is to "restore (America's) confidence in NASA," an important first step in gaining financial and public support for future Moon and Mars missions. Also, he says America "promised a research lab in space to 16 countries," and the Shuttle is critical to the completion of the International Space Station. In addition, Kelly argues that by flying the Shuttle up until the next generation craft is ready, NASA will "keep a corps of space experts," instead of laying off the Shuttle program experts now and then trying to reassemble them later. He says the Shuttle should also be kept around longer because "parts of the Shuttle (such as the external fuel tank, main engines and solid rocket boosters) could become components for a future rocket." Kelly concludes that the "Shuttle is still teaching NASA about spaceflight," and that "there are still discoveries to be made." According to him, "NASA exists to explore," and the best current way for America to continue that exploration today is via the Shuttle and the International Space Station.

Scaled Composites Begins Expansion As SpaceShipOne Takes Its Place In The Smithsonian. With preliminary designs underway for Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic fleet, Scaled Composites is moving forward with the purchase of a 65,000-square-foot hangar and increasing its work force by over 30%. Vice president of program management, Kevin Mickey, points out that the new hangar will allow Scaled Composites to consolidate operations which are now spread out over the Mojave Airport in California. While a number of projects are underway at Scaled, Mickey points out that space work will play a significant role. SpaceShipOne, which made the first private venture space flights last year, will be carried by the White Knight to a special appearance at the annual AirVenture show of the Experimental Aircraft Association, where designer Burt Rutan received early recognition for his innovative aircraft. SpaceShipOne will arrive at the show in Oshkosh WI on 25 July and be on display for the week. The White Knight will then carry SpaceShipOne to Dulles International Airport where it will be delivered by truck to the National Air and Space Museum. SpaceShipOne will hang in the 'Milestones of Flight' hall, which museum director Jack Dailey describes as "a celebration of firsts."


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