New Horizons Ready for Historic Pluto / Kuiper Belt Encounters
Dec 8 — ISS, LEO: Expedition 42 six-member crew preparing for Dragon CRS-5 arrival, working on ESA Plasma Kristall-4 plasma crystals investigation, conducting in-flight interviews; 3-D printing tests to continue.
Dec 8 — Mars Orbiter Mission, Mars Orbit: Taking color & thermal images of Mars surface, analyzing neutral composition of particles in exosphere, measuring methane, deuterium & hydrogen in atmosphere.
Dec 8 — Juno, Jupiter Trajectory: Now 574 days from Jupiter insertion, spacecraft traveling at 45,962 kph in nominal health; one-way radio signal travel time is ~36 minutes.
Dec 8 — Orion, California USA: Orion crew module & data on heat shield, parachute systems, avionics, launch abort system & attitude control acquired from Exploration Flight Test-1 being analyzed.
Dec 8 — Deep Space Industries, McLean VA: NewSpace company will begin working with Solid Prototype Inc on 3D printed spacecraft prototypes to reduce fabrication costs.
Dec 8 — Moon Express Inc., KSC FL: Hot fire & flight testing of MTV-1X vehicle with MTV EGC (Earth Gravity Cancelling) Main Engine will continue through the end of Dec 2014 & into 2015.
Dec 8 — LiftPort Group, Seattle WA: Working on high-altitude balloon, multi-wheeled climber, Vectran polymer fiber to be used for Space Elevator prototype experiment.
Dec 8-10 — Arizona State University, Tempe AZ: Meeting: Early Science from Low-frequency Radio Telescopes.
Dec 8-11 — International Academy of Astronautics, University of Brasilia, Brasilia, Brazil: 1st International Academy of Astronautics (IAA) Latin America CubeSat Workshop.
= 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: Venus (SW), Mars (SW), Jupiter (ENE); Morning Planets: Saturn (ESE).
China Chang’e-3 Set to Begin 2nd Year of Operations on Lunar Surface; Anticipating Arrival of Siblings CE4, CE5
Dec 8-11 — European Southern Observatory, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, National Radio Astronomy Observatory, Tokyo, Japan: Conference: Revolution in Astronomy with ALMA – The Third Year.
Dec 8 — Mercury: At superior conjunction with Sun, 00:00; at aphelion (distance 69,817,326 km), 11:00.
Dec 8 — Jupiter: 7.4° WNW of Regulus, 09:00.
Dec 8 — Asteroid 2014 WC364: Near-Earth flyby (0.031 AU).
Dec 8 — Asteroid 2014 WJ201: Near-Earth flyby (0.053 AU).
Oct 20 – Dec 12 — American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Space Frontier Foundation, Online: Commercial Space Executive Leadership Training Course; with instructors Dan Rasky and Bruce Pittman.
Nov 24 – Dec 12 — National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand, Chiang Mai, Thailand: International School for Young Astronomers (ISYA 2014).
NET Dec 1 — ISRO, Launch GSLV Mk 3 / Atmospheric Test Flight, Satish Dhawan Space Center, Sriharikota, India: Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mk 3 to launch on suborbital test flight, will carry mock-up human crew module.
Dec 9 — SETI Institute, Mountain View CA: SETI Weekly Colloquium: Rosetta: Wild Bounce at Churyumov-Gerasimenko; presented by Claudia Alexander of JPL.
Dec 9 — The Space Show, Online / Tiburon CA: Dr. David Livingston talks with Richard Binzel, MIT Professor on NEO survey and the ARM project.
Dec 9 — Moon: 11.7° S of Pollux, 05:00.
Dec 8 — Asteroid 2014 WC366: Near-Earth flyby (0.011 AU).
Dec 10 — Cassini, Saturn Orbit: Titan flyby scheduled at 980-km altitude.
Dec 10 — RSA, Launch Soyuz / Resurs P2, Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan: Russia government Soyuz rocket to launch Resurs P2 Earth observation satellite.
Dec 10 — Arizona State University, Tucson AZ: Space Drafts Public Talk Series – The Giant Asteroid Vesta: Highlights from NASA’s Dawn Mission; presented by Dr. Dave O’Brien.
Dec 10 — Moon: 6.0° SSW of Beehive Cluster, 09:00.
Dec 10 — Asteroid 2014 WU200: Near-Earth flyby (0.003 AU).
Dec 11 — United Launch Alliance, Launch Atlas 5 / NROL-35, Vandenberg AFB CA: ULA Atlas 5 rocket to launch classified spacecraft payload for U.S. National Reconnaissance Office.
Dec 11 — Moon: 4.9° SSW of Jupiter, 15:00.
Dec 11 — Mars: At perihelion (distance 206,624,579 km) 23:00.
Dec 11 — Asteroid 2012 LA11: Near-Earth flyby (0.058 AU).
Dec 12 — International Launch Services, Launch Proton / Yamal 401, Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan: ILS Proton rocket to launch Yamal 401 communications satellite for Gazprom Space Systems of Russia.
Dec 12 — Royal Astronomical Society, London, United Kingdom: RAS Ordinary Meeting.
Dec 12 — British Interplanetary Society, London, United Kingdom: Stellar Engines Ltd One Day Reverse Engineering Workshop.
Dec 12 — Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, Arizona State University, Tucson AZ: Lecture: Curiosity on Mars – From Conglomerates to Noble Gases; presented by Dr. Susanne Schwenzer.
Dec 12 — Space Center Houston, Houston TX: Lunch with an Astronaut, Ken Cameron; US$49.95 adult.
Dec 12 — Moon: 4.2° SSW of Regulus, 06:00; at apogee (distance 404,176 km).
Dec 12 — Mars: At heliocentric conjunction with Neptune.
Dec 13 — Cassini OTM-398, Saturn Orbit: Spacecraft conducts Orbital Trim Maneuver #398 today.
Dec 13 — International Lunar Observatory Association, Space Age Publishing Co., Tokyo, Japan: Galaxy Forum Japan 2014: Galaxy 21st Century projects to advance STEM education & opportunities in Japan; at NAOJ Mitaka campus.
Dec 13-14 — Geminids Meteor Shower Peak: Appearing to radiate from constellation Gemini, shower can produce 50-130 meteors per hour; bright, medium-speed meteors, few leave persistent trains.
Dec 13 — Asteroid 2014 UV210: Near-Earth flyby (0.018 AU).
Dec 14 — Chang’e-3 Lander, Sinus Iridum / Mare Imbrium, 44.12°N 19.51°W, Moon Surface: Lander reaches one year on Moon; expected to exceed one-year planned lifetime and continue operations.
Dec 14 — Moon: At last quarter, 02:53.
Dec 14 — Asteroid 204131 (2003 YL): Near-Earth flyby (0.069 AU).