August 7-13, 2017 / Vol 36, No 32 / Hawai`i Island, USA

Starship Congress Highlights Lunar Buildout Toward Interstellar Realities and Capabilities

Icarus Interstellar is hosting the 2017 Starship Congress August 7-9 in Monterey CA with theme Space is for Everybody. Cofounder and President of Icarus, Andreas Tziolas (clockwise from TL) and strategic director of Starship Congress, Mike Mongo will give opening remarks each morning. The first day will concentrate on breakthrough experiments, concepts and technologies including propellant-less space drives, combination launch systems, practical space docks, and space access. Day two has a variety of talks on Interstellar biology, SETI, exoplanets, long-term human spaceflight and civilizations. The entire 3rd day concentrates on Moonwards vision. Professor at Rutgers University, Haym Benaroya will discuss the Moon as site for Humanity’s expansion into the Solar System and beyond. CEO at OffWorld, Jim Keravala will speak about OffWorld’s Solar System Robotic Workforce. Charles Radley of Pyramid Consulting will present the Scientific Return of a Lunar Elevator. Others will focus on lunar economics, self sustainability on the Moon, persevering human history in Space and Icarus Interstellar Lunar Capabilities Development Program. Some of the 9 key projects of R&D are “Biofrost” to advancing nuclear propulsion and fusion, “Icarus” to design an interstellar spacecraft, “Astrolabe” study of civilization, “Voyager” software system to enable interplanetary and interstellar trajectories plans and  “Tin Tin” to launch a set of nanosat-sized spacecraft with technical and scientifically relevant objectives to Alpha Centauri. (Image Credit: Icarus Interstellar, OffWorld, SFF, Rutgers, NASA, ESO, M. Kornmesser)


Aug 7 — ISS, 330-435-km LEO: Expedition 52 six-member crew reviewing emergency procedures, maintaining station lighting & plumbing, studying space headaches & bone loss, expecting SpaceX Dragon CRS-12 arrival, preparing for Russia EVA #43 next week with Yurchikhin and Ryazanskiy; Peggy Whitson time in space more than 639 days (holds USA record for cumulative time in space).

Aug 7 — Solar System: Cassini detects carbon chain anions which aid in production of complex organic molecules; UAE plans Mars orbiter 2021; study shows early Venus may have had ocean; data collected by 3 spacecraft, 24 portable ground-based telescopes, SOFIA airborne observatory being analyzed to better characterize New Horizon flyby target KBO 2014 MU69.

Aug 7 — Galaxy: Northwestern University astrophysicists find half of matter in MWG could come from distant galaxies via “intergalactic transfer”; University of Maryland researchers catch one of the most detailed descriptions of a Gamma-ray burst; Columbia University astronomers find indication of 1st exomoon discovery orbiting planet Kepler-1625b, 4,000 LY away.

Aug 7 — Global: UK space agency developing international partnerships in Zambia, Ethiopia, Vietnam to address economic & environmental issues using satellites; China planning sea launching as early as 2018 using Long March 11, testing to begin this year; NASA working with Lunar crater testbed at Ames; TMT case hearing ongoing as judge gives approval to project with conditions; 6 companies to create ground prototypes of Deep Space Habitats for NextSTEP-2 program.

 Aug 7 — NewSpace: China / San Francisco-based AstroReality to produce Lunar Pro 3D-printed Moon globe & education App created with LRO data; Breakthrough Starshot nanosat ‘Sprites’ establish contact with ground satellites, precursor for mission to Alpha Centauri; Vector Space Systems analyzing data from 2nd low-altitude launch at Camden GA; Interorbital to test launch CPM 2.0, working toward Neptune 1 rocket completion; Blue Origin chooses Huntsville AL for manufacturing.

Aug 7 — Utah State University, Secure World Foundation, Logan UT: Cubesat Launch and Deployment Best Practices Side Event; 09:00-11:00, in conjunction with 2017 Small Satellite Conference.

Aug 7-9 — Icarus Interstellar, Monterey CA: Starship Congress 3; at Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel.

= All times

for terrestrial events in local time unless noted.

= All times for international terrestrial events in local time unless noted.

= All times for space events, and…

= All times for international space / astro events in Hawaii Standard Time unless noted. Add 10 hours to obtain UT (‘Universal Time;’ Greenwich, England).

Weekly Planet Watch – Evening Planets: Jupiter (WSW), Saturn (S); Morning Planets: Venus (E), Uranus (SE), Neptune (SE).

Canada 3rd National Research Forum on Aerospace Comes to Vancouver

Consortium for Aerospace Research and Innovation in Canada (CARIC) is holding 2017 National Research Forum on topic Super Clusters, August 8-9 at University of British Columbia, Vancouver Campus. The multidisciplinary meeting includes a Federal Senior Executive Panel presenting aerospace developments in light of the Innovation Superclusters Initiative, a new Government of Canada funding program designed to strengthen the most promising business clusters and accelerate economic growth in highly innovative sectors. This features Chris Evans, Strategic Innovation Fund (ISED); Dr. Camille Boulet, Defence Research and Development Canada; Tara Hartley, Government of Canada; Christopher Johnstone, Clean Technology and Clean Growth Branch (ISED); and Iain Christie, Aerospace Industries Association of Canada AIAC. There are 3 separate concurrent aerospace positioning roundtables on Artificial Intelligence & Digital Technology, Advanced Manufacturing, Green Tech animated by GARDN. Technical Sessions titled Understanding Today and Building Tomorrow cover different perspectives on the same 4 topics: MRO (Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul), UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle), Space and Energy. Space presentations include Jean-Francois Gagné of Element AI and William Parkinson of Urthecast. The greater Vancouver area is a growing hub for Aerospace in Pacific Canada hosting established industry leaders like MDA and Neptec, leading academic institutions like UBC, British Columbia Institute of Technology and Simon Fraser University and New Space commercial enterprises like UrtheCast, 3vGeomatics, Offsetters and ASL Environmental Sciences. (Image Credit: CARIC, UrtheCast, Maritime Launch Services, Google Earth)


Aug 7-9 — Florida Gulf Coast University, Center for Astronomy and Physics Education Research (CAPER), Fort Meyers FL: 2017 National Astronomy Teaching Summit.

Aug 7-11 — SSERVI, NASA, Caltech, Pasadena CA: 2017 Sagan Exoplanet Summer Workshop: Microlensing in the Era of WFIRST.

Aug 7-11 — National Solar Observatory, Boulder CO: National Solar Observatory Workshop #30: High-resolution Solar Physics – Past, Present, Future.

Aug 7 — Moon: Full (Sturgeon Moon), 08:11; partial eclipse of Moon visible from most parts of South and East Asia, Europe, Africa and Australia, 08:20; 1.4° SSE of comet Schwassmann-Wachmann 1, 20:00.

Aug 7 — Apollo Asteroid 1991 VG: Near-Earth Flyby (0.057 AU).

Aug 7 — Amor Asteroid 2017 OE20: Near-Earth Flyby (0.064 AU).

Aug 7 — Apollo Asteroid 2007 PS9: Near-Earth Flyby (0.077 AU).

Aug 7 — Apollo Asteroid 2017 OL7: Near-Earth Flyby (0.085 AU).

Aug 7 — Apollo Asteroid 2016 YR: Near-Earth Flyby (0.095 AU).

Continued from…

Jul 31 – Aug 13 — Space Exploration Project Group of United Nations Program on Space Applications, Mars Society, ESA, ESF, Rzepiennik Biskupi, Poland: Mars Analogue Simulation 2017; six volunteer 2-week Moon / Mars Human exploration simulation.

Aug 5-10 — Utah State University, AIAA, Logan UT: 2017 Small Satellite Conference.

Aug 5-10 — Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics, Iran Science Elites Federation, Iran National Science Foundation, Tehran, Iran: Tehran Meeting on Cosmology.

Aug 5 – Sep 18 — Johnson Space Center, NASA, Houston TX: Campaign 4: Mission 2 – Human Exploration Research Analog; 45 day analog spaceflight / Moon / Mars mission.

Aug 6-11 — Asia Oceania Geosciences Society, Singapore: 14th Annual Meeting of the Asia Oceania Geosciences Society (AOGS).


Aug 8-9 — Consortium for Aerospace Research and Innovation in Canada (CARIC), Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada: 2017 CARIC National Research Forum.

Aug 8-10 — The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, Woods Hole MA: Meeting: Review of Planetary Protection Policy Development Processes; at J. Erik Jonsson Woods Hole Center.

Aug 8-10 — American Astronomical Society, Harvard University, Cambridge MA: Conference: From Chandra to Lynx – High-definition Vision Deeper into the Invisible Universe.

Aug 8-10 — European Astrobiology Campus, Erasmus, University of Tartu, University of Stockholm, Tartu, Estonia: The Early History of Planetary Systems and Habitable Planets.

Aug 8-11 — Keck Institute for Space Studies, Caltech, Pasadena CA: Workshop: Unlocking the Climate Record Stored within Mars’ Polar Layered Deposits.

Aug 8 — Apollo Asteroid 2003 OT13: Near-Earth Flyby (0.093 AU).

Aug 8 — Aten Asteroid 153415 (2001 QP153): Near-Earth Flyby (0.095 AU).


Aug 9 — NASA HQ, Washington DC: International Space Station Stakeholder Workshop; at Marriott Marquis.

Aug 9-11 — US Geological Survey, Flagstaff AZ: 8th Planetary Crater Consortium Meeting.

Aug 9-13 — World Science Fiction Society, Helsinki, Finland: 75th World Science Fiction Convention – Worldcon 75.

Aug 9 — Moon: 0.82° SSE of Neptune, 13:00.


Aug 10 — Rob and Terry Ryan Foundation, W. M. Keck Observatory, Waimea HI: Cosmic Events Astronomy Talk: Black Holes’ Last Tango in Space: LIGO and the Dawn of Gravitational-wave Astronomy; featuring David Reitze from Caltech. 19:00.

Aug 10 — Amor Asteroid 2017 OF7: Near-Earth Flyby (0.049 AU).

Aug 10 — Apollo Asteroid 2015 XO128: Near-Earth Flyby (0.095 AU).


Aug 11 — JAXA, Launch H-2A / Michibiki 3, Tanegashima Space Center, Japan: JAXA H-2A rocket, designated H-2A F35, to launch Michibiki 3 navigation spacecraft, the 3rd craft in Quasi-Zenith Satellite System.

Aug 11 — Caltech, Pasadena CA: Stargazing Lecture: The Origin of the Universe and the Arrow of Time; Sean Carroll, 20:00.


Aug 12 — Wallops Flight Facility Visitor Center, NASA, Assateague Island National Seashore, Delmarva Space Sciences Foundation, Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, Wallops Island VA: Astronomy & Night Sky Summer Series; in celebration of Perseid Meteor Shower.

Aug 12 — Space Center Houston, Houston TX: Lunch with an Astronaut, Brian Duffy, adult US$69.95.

Aug 12 — Perseid Meteor Shower Peak: Appearing to radiate from constellation Perseus, shower can produce up to 100 meteors per hour, which are fast, bright and frequently leave persistent trains, 09:00.

Aug 12 — Moon: 4.2° SSE of Uranus, 22:00.


Aug 13 — SpaceX, Launch Falcon 9 / CRS 12, Cape Canaveral AFS FL: SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket set to launch 14th Dragon spacecraft on 12th operational cargo delivery mission to ISS; will carry Cold Atom Laboratory for study of ultra-cold quantum gases in microgravity; launch 12:57 EDT.

Aug 13-15 — Singularity University, San Francisco CA: SU 2017 Global Summit; meet fellow changemakers while discovering the world’s breakthrough innovations in technology and business.

Aug 13-16 — Hong Kong Polytechnic University, International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS), Hong Kong: 2017 International Symposium on Planetary Remote Sensing and Mapping.

Aug 13 — Apollo Asteroid 495858 (2003 MJ4): Near-Earth Flyby (0.098 AU).