June 27 – July 3, 2016 / Vol 35, No 26 / Hawai`i Island, USA

STARMUS Festival in Canary Islands Combines Science and Sonic Universe in Tribute to Stephen Hawking

Calendar feature - starmus 2016

The Institute of Astrophysics of the Canary Islands (IAC), the Autonomous Community of Spain, and a number of partner organizations and enterprises including IAU and Astronomy Magazine are collaborating on the STARMUS Festival: Tribute to Stephen Hawking, Beyond the Horizon June 27 – July 2 at the Pirámide de Arona in Los Cristianos, Tenerife, Canary Islands. STARMUS 2016 brings together the brightest minds from astronomy, art and music in a symbiosis that has the core aim of making the most universal science and art accessible to the public. This year the program is dedicated in tribute to brilliant professor and scientist Stephen Hawking, who is also a shinning inspiration and ambassador for differently-abled people everywhere. There are over 40 presentations from 8 astronauts (Alexei Leonov, Chris Hadfield, Russell Schweickart, Garrett Reisman, Michael Lopez-Alegria, Sergey Volkov, Roman Romanenko, Claude Nicollier) and a diverse field of experts including Brian May, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Martin Rees, Jill Tarter, and Richard Dawkins. The Sonic Universe concert features Oscar Winning Composer Hans Zimmer, Recording Artist Sarah Brightman and British rock band Anathema. Festival organizers IAC operate the Tiede Observatory, hosting 15 international telescopes at an altitude of 2,390 meters on the flank of the volcanic Mount Teidi, Tenerife, which rises to a height of 3,718 meters above the Atlantic Ocean. (Image Credit: STARMUS, Breakthrough Starshot, IAC)



Jun 27 — ISS, LEO: Expedition 48 maintaining spacesuits for planned EVAs later this year, setting up hardware for NeuroMapping experiment, exercising ~2 hours a day, collecting & testing water and surface samples for microbes, will monitor Progress 62 undocking & redocking rendezvous system test on Friday.

Jun 27 — Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS), Sun-Synchronous Orbit: NASA observation satellite investigating the physical conditions of the chromosphere of Sun enters 4th year in space, launched 2013.

Jun 27 — Akatsuki, Highly Elliptical Venus Orbit: Only mission at Venus, JAXA craft is completing 1 orbit of planet every 9 days, imaging atmosphere which moves at 300 kph to compile 3D motion of clouds, planning to take images of surface with infrared camera.

 Jun 27 — Juno, Jupiter Trajectory: Less than 7 days from Jupiter after ~4 years and 11 months in Space, craft collecting data on environment and trajectory, mission team preparing to fire main engine for 35-minute insertion burn; will be first craft to orbit Jupiter since Galileo from 1995-2003.

 Jun 27 — Spaceflight Industries Inc., Seattle WA: NewSpace company has contracts to deploy more than 150 satellites through 2018, maiden SHERPA satellite deployer to launch 87 satellites on SpaceX Falcon 9 this summer, obtaining U.S. waivers to launch on PSLV NET Aug; Chief Executive Jason Andrews, President Curt Blake.

 Jun 27 — Astroscale PTE Ltd., Singapore: Planning to launch satellite to map space debris less than a millimeter by end of 2016, launch spacecraft to remove space debris in 2018, launch Lunar Dream Capsule Project on Astrobotic lander to Lacus Mortis region of Moon in 2017, working with newly opened R&D center in Japan.

Jun 27 — Made in Space, Moffett Field CA: Testing 3D printer at ISS with various designs to refine future technologies, manufactured 25 parts off-world, working on plastic recycler to eliminate Space waste, company has 22 employees; founded by Aaron Kemmer, Jason Dunn, Mike Chen, Michael Snyder.

Jun 27-29 — University of Reims Champagne-Ardenne, NASA, JPL, Reims, France: Titan Aeronomy and Climate Workshop.

JUNE - AUGUST 2016 = 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: Mars (S), Jupiter (WSW), Saturn (SW); Morning Planets: Mercury (ENE), Uranus (E), Neptune (SE).

2nd Annual Asteroid Day: 14,149 Near-Earth Asteroids and Counting

Asteroid Day 2016

Asteroid Day June 30 is a worldwide movement to study, detect, track and increase awareness of Near Earth Asteroids. Hundreds of events are planned on Earth and in Space with Astronauts, space experts, lectures, films and hands-on activities. Observing the Tunguska, Siberia impact equivalent to 100 tons of TNT, leveling nearly 2,000 square kilometers of forest, the main emphasis of Asteroid Day is protection. “Asteroids are a natural disaster we know how to prevent,” states Asteroid Day Co-founder and Astrophysicist Dr. Brian May (L). Co-founded by filmmaker Grigorij Richters (R) Asteroid Day partners include ESA, JAXA, UK Space Agency, Space Foundation, Association of Space Explorers, B612, Astronomers without Borders, California Academy of Sciences, the Planetary Society and Starmus. Space Agencies ESA, NASA, CNSA, and JAXA have missions to study objects in Near Earth orbit, the Main Asteroid Belt and Kuiper Belt, broadening the science and understanding of the Solar System and its origins. Planetary Resources and Deep Space Industries see a profit in asteroid mining, while Moon Express, Astrobotic, Bigelow and others plan to focus on Lunar resources and using the Moon as a platform for detecting asteroids. Under the auspices of the International Astronomical Union, the Minor Planet Center is in charge of compiling observational data for asteroids and comets, calculating their orbits and publishing information. NASA operates the Near Earth Object Program, ESA runs the Space Situational Awareness Program and Russia has plans to establish a national center for asteroid and comet detection. (Image Credit: Asteroid Day, NASA, JPL, DSI, Planetary Resources, University of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy / Rob Ratkowski, Planetary Society)

Jun 27-30 — UNOOSA, Government of the Republic of Kenya, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Nairobi, Kenya: United Nations/Kenya Conference on Space Technology and Applications for Wildlife Management and Protecting Biodiversity.

Jun 27 – Jul 1 — Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA, Greenbelt MD: 2016 Lunar Workshop for Educators.

Jun 27 – Jul 1 — Royal Astronomical Society, Science & Technology Facilities Council, Nottingham Precision Astro Engineering, Nottingham, United Kingdom: National Astronomy Meeting 2016, at Nottingham University.

Jun 27 – Jul 1 — The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), URSI, International Committee on Global Navigation Systems, Trieste, Italy: Beacon Satellite Symposium 2016.

Jun 27 – Jul 2 — Institute of Astrophysics of the Canary Islands, IAU, Astronomy Magazine, et al, Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain: STARMUS Festival: Tribute to Stephen Hawking – Beyond the Horizon; featuring Stephen Hawking, Brian May, Alexei Leonov, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Martin Rees, Chris Hadfield, Brian Schmidt, Rusty Schweickart, Jill Tarter, many more.

Jun 27 – Aug 5 — Mavericks Lab, NASA, SETI, Moffett Field CA: Mavericks Lab Applied Research Accelerator: Asteroid Grand Challenge.

Jun 27 — Moon: At last quarter, 08:19; 0.59° SSE of asteroid 18 Melpomene, 17:00.

Continued from…

May 23 – Jul 29 — The Lunar and Planetary Institute, Johnson Space Center, NASA, Houston TX: Exploration Science Summer Intern Program.

Jun 17 – Aug 15 — Canadian Space Agency, Longueuil, Quebec, Canada: 4th Astronaut recruitment campaign for CSA; expects to announce announce selected candidates in Summer 2017.

Jun 19 – Jul 10 — Aspen Center for Physics, Aspen CO: Workshop: Emergence, Evolution and Effects of Black Holes in the Universe – The Next 50 Years of Black Hole Physics.

Jun 26 – Jul 1 — Geochemical Society, European Association of Geochemistry, The Geochemical Society of Japan, Yokohama, Japan: 26th Goldschmidt Conference; covering all aspects of planetary / space geochemistry and related fields.

Jun 26 – Jul 1 — Max Planck Institute for Astronomy, Tegernsee, Germany: Conference: The Early Phase of Star Formation (EPoS 2016) – Progress after 10 years of EPoS; at Ringberg Castle.


Jun 28 — Orbital ATK, Promontory UT: SLS Booster Qualification Motor Test (QM-2), 07:30 local time, live coverage available.

Jun 28 — SETI Institute, Mountain View CA: Lecture: The Evolution and Explosion of Massive Stars; Tuguldur Sukhbold from UC Santa Cruz.

Jun 28 — The Space Show, Online / Tiburon CA: Dr. David Livingston talks with Bob Zimmerman, space historian.

Jun 28-29 — Hughes, Intelsat, O3b Networks, Arlington VA: MilSatCom USA; senior decision makers collaborate on modernizing, adapting and procuring new space systems and satellites.

Jun 28-30 — NASA Small Bodies Assessment Group, JHU/APL, Laurel MD: 15th Meeting of the NASA Small Bodies Assessment Group (SBAG).

Jun 28 – Jul 1 — Keck Institute for Space Studies, Pasadena CA: Workshop: Addressing the Mars ISRU Challenge – Production of Oxygen and Fuel from CO2 using Sunlight – Part 1.

Jun 28 — Moon: 2.6° SSE of Uranus, 14:00.


Jun 29-30 — NASA Space Technology Mission Directorate, Arlington VA: Game Changing Technology Industry Day; Speakers & Exhibits open to the public on Wednesday, at the Lockheed Martin Global Vision Center.

Jun 29 – Jul 3 — NASA, New Orleans LA: NASA Week and 2016 ESSENCE Festival; featuring NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, Astronaut Victor Glover, hands-on activities and lectures; at Morial Convention Center.


Jun 30 — Cassini, Saturn Orbit: NASA / ESA / ASI spacecraft begins 13th year of operations in Saturn orbit today; launched Oct 15, 1997, reached Saturn 2004.

Jun 30 — Asteroid Day Ltd., Global: Asteroid Day 2016; education, events, films and entertainment hosted by organizations and individuals to increase awareness about asteroids.

Jun 30 — British Interplanetary Society, London, United Kingdom: Lecture: Near Earth Asteroids – We’re All Going To Die! – Or Are We? Jerry Stone & Stuart Eves.

Jun 30 — Moon: At perigee (distance 365,567 km), 20:41.

Jun 30 — Mercury: 0.36° S of M35, 15:00.


NET Q3 — Interorbital Systems Corp., Launch Neptune 3 (3 CPM) vehicle / Nanosat, Mojave CA: Planning to launch nanosat on Lunar direct trajectory via Neptune 3 Common Propulsion Module (CPM).

Jul 1 — ISS, Progress 62 Rendezvous System Test, LEO: Progress craft to undock and redock for rendezvous system testing at ISS, starts 05:36 UT with redocking at 7:10 UT, live coverage available.

Jul 1 — Deep Space, Interstellar Space & Heliosheath: The farthest human-made objects in space, Voyager spacecraft continue their journey away from Solar System at 62,136 kph (V-1) and 57,888 kph (V-2) transmitting signals to Earth from a distance of 134.5 AU (V-1) and 110.7 AU (V-2).

Jul 1-7 — ESA, Sardinia, Italy: 2016 CAVES (Cooperative Adventure for Valuing and Exercising); astronaut training 800 meters underground in rocky caves, six member crew consists of Astronauts Pedro Duque (ESA), Jessica Meir & Richard Arnold (NASA), Aki Hoshide (JAXA), Ye Guangfu (CNSA), Sergei Korsakov (Roscosmos).

Jul 1 — Mercury: 8.9° S of Pleiades, 02:00; 0.43° NNW of Aldebaran, 18:00.

Jul 1 — Amor Asteroid 2016 LZ8: Near-Earth flyby (0.059 AU).


Jul 2 — ARTEMIS P1, Moon Orbit: Craft enters 6th year in Moon orbit today; originally launched with constellation of 5 satellites in 2007 to study Earth magnetosphere, NASA craft collecting data on Moon interaction with Sun; launched 2011.

Jul 2 — International Lunar Observatory Association, Space Age Publishing Company, Santa Clara CA: Galaxy Forum USA 2016 – Silicon Valley: Apollo at 50 and the 2017 USA Space Program; featuring Bruce Pittman from NASA Ames, Imke de Pater from University of California – Berkeley, Steve Durst of SPC / ILOA; Embassy Suites Hotel 09:30-11:30, free.

Jul 2 — Mercury: At perihelion (0.3075 AU from Sun), 06:00.

Jul 2 — Comet P/2005 W4 (SOHO) Perihelion: Near-Earth flyby (0.053 AU).


Jul 3-8 — Astronomical Society of Australia, Sydney, Australia: 2016 Astronomical Society of Australia’s Annual Scientific Meeting.

Jul 3-8 — European Community’s Horizon 2020 Programme, Attica, Greece: Space Awareness Summer School.

Jul 3 — Moon: 5.7° S of M35, 07:00; 5.6° S of Mercury, 19:00.