May 8-14, 2017 / Vol 36, No 19 / Hawai`i Island, USA

Humans to Mars Summit 2017 Mixes NewSpace, NASA, International for Continued 2030s Goal

Humans to Mars (H2M) Summit 2017 is being hosted at George Washington University, Washington DC on May 9-11 with a pre-conference iGiant Workshop and Film Screening and Panel – Passage to Mars featuring Pascal Lee (The Mars Institute), Leonard David (Journalist), Penny Boston (NASA) and Keith Cowing (NASAWatch, SpaceRef) on May 8. H2M will begin with opening remarks by Artemis Westenberg and Chris Carberry of Explore Mars, followed by a plenary session with NASA acting administrator Robert Lightfoot, and various talks by Steve Jurczyk, William Gerstenmaier, James Green, Ellen Stofan, Kathleen Gallagher Boggs and Molly Anderson. International speakers are Saeed Al Gergawi (Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre, UAE), Shinichiro Narita (JAXA), Carlo Cassi (Thales Alenia Space), Neal Lii (DLR), and Talal M. Al Kaissi (UAE). Attending Astronauts include Buzz Aldrin, John Grunsfeld, Tony Antonelli, and aspiring astronaut Abigail Harrison. Companies and Institutes presenting on major technical, scientific, and policy challenges of getting humans to Mars include SpaceX, Boeing Co., Lockheed Martin Corp, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Orbital ATK, Google, Space Policy Institute, TerraTrace Corp. and United Technologies. Nations / enterprises are planning Human circumlunar trips perhaps before 2020 (NASA, SpaceX), establishing sustained lunar operations, testing grounds and settlement 2018-2030s (ESA, China, Russia, USA, India, Canada, Japan, S. Korea, Blue Origin, Bigelow, Moon Express, Astrobotic, ILOA) before launching Humans to Mars, Jupiter System, Saturn System and Beyond. (Image Credit: Explore Mars, Boeing, Lockheed, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Orbital ATK, etc)


May 8 — ISS, 330-435-km LEO: Expedition 51 quintet working on bone, muscle, eye and cardio studies, Whitson & Fischer scheduled to perform 6.5-hour EVA on Friday; Station in orbit more than 6,744 days, current visiting vehicles are BEAM, Soyuz MS-03 & 04, Progress 66P, Cygnus OA-7.

May 8 — Solar System: Kepler observations of Neptune may help researchers interpret exoplanet data; Cassini diving through planet rings encounters less dust than expected so far; CNSA CE 5-T1 orbiter still collecting data from lunar orbit; JAXA Akatsuki at Venus coming up on 7 full years in space; Opportunity rover on Mars heading along Endeavor Crater toward Perseverance Valley.

May 8 — Galaxy: ESA releases video on 2 million stars’ motion in Milky Way over 5 million years based on Gaia data; study shows gamma-ray glow at MWG center could be caused by pulsars; Size of MWG compared to other known galaxies in Universe; Pilot shares time-lapse video of MWG from Europe to Brazil flight.

May 8 — Global: S Korea Lunar Orbiter to have ShadowCam built by USA – scheduled to launch Dec 2018 to map craters at Moon poles; NASA posts Lunar Surface Cargo Transportation Services Request for Information (RFI); China to launch CE-5 lunar sample return in Nov, new space station components starting 2019; Russia discussing its possible participation in ISS up to 2028.

May 8 — NewSpace: Bigelow advocating for cislunar depot ‘Mars mission is premature, Moon is not’; Virgin Galactic unsure about launch schedule, perhaps end of 2018; SpaceX launches 1st NRO payload successfully; Vector Aerospace 1st test launch of P-19H prototype for Vector-R; India Earth2Orbit working to launch airborne sensors over Bengaluru Nov 2017 – Feb 2018 for Climate City of France.

May 8 — The Space Show, Online / Tiburon CA: Dr. David Livingston talks with Mary Lynne Ditmar, Executive Director of Coalition for Deep Space Exploration.

May 8-12 — United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs, Cordoba, Argentina: UN/Argentina Workshop on the Applications of Global Navigation Satellite Systems; Postponed.

May 8 — Apollo Asteroid 2017 HX4: Near-Earth Flyby (0.010 AU).

May 8 — Aten Asteroid 2016 CU246: Near-Earth Flyby (0.052 AU).

= 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 (W), Jupiter (SE); Morning Planets: Venus (E), Saturn (S).

India Launch Series to Boost Communications and Remote Sensing Fleet, Set Scene for Deep Space Efforts

Rockets of the India Space Research Organization (ISRO) are busy expanding space-based Earth-focused capabilities of the 6th major spacefaring country from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota. The successful launch of GSAT 9 by Geostationary Satellite Launch Vehicle GSLV Mk. 2 on May 5 will provide communications services over India and neighboring countries. Next, the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle is scheduled to place the Cartosat 2E remote sensing satellite in Sun-synchronous orbit late May, barring any further delays. Then, no earlier than June, a GSLV Mk. 3 D1 on its first developmental flight will carry the GSAT 19E to Geostationary Earth Orbit to act as a testbed for the modular I-6K satellite bus. A variety of tests will evaluate experimental technologies such as ion thrusters, thermal radiators, a miniaturized inertial reference unit, indigenously produced lithium-ion batteries and C-band traveling-wave-tube-amplifiers. ISRO is also advancing deep space exploration priorities. September 24 will mark the beginning of the 4th year of operations in Mars orbit for the Mangalyaan spacecraft. India is getting ready to launch 2 historic missions to the lunar surface: a PSLV carrying Team Indus in a bid to win the Google Lunar Xprize on December 28, possibly the first landing by India on another world, and a GSLV carrying ISRO’s Chandrayaan-2 lunar polar lander and rover in 2018, potentially the first mission ever to land on the highly strategic South Pole region. (Image Credit: ISRO, NASA)



Continued from…

Apr 13 – May 16 — NASA, Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, Deep River, Ontario, Canada: Eyes on the Universe; interactive exhibit in Deep River Town Hall.

May 5 – Jun 19 — Johnson Space Center, NASA, Houston TX: Campaign 4: Human Exploration Research Analog (HERA 2017); 45 day analog spaceflight / Moon / Mars mission.

May 7-12 — American Astronomical Society, USRA, Penn State Center for Exoplanets and Habitable Worlds, Associated Universities Inc., NASA Exoplanet Science Institute, Palm Springs CA: AAS Topical Conference Series (AASTCS) 5: Radio Exploration of Planetary Habitability.


May 9 — Cornell Universities, Ithaca NY: Lecture: Real and Counterfactual Universes; Lord Martin Rees at 700 Clark Hall, 10:00.

May 9 — Ohio Aerospace Institute, NASA Glenn Research Center, Cleveland OH: Venus Modeling Workshop.

May 9 — Jet Propulsion Laboratory, University of California Riverside, Riverside CA: JPL Educator Workshop.

May 9-10 — GovSat, Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology, Luxembourg, Luxembourg: Space Forum: From Space Application to Space Exploration; expecting 5,000 attendees from 70+ countries; at European Convention Center.

May 9-11 — Explore Mars Inc., The George Washington University, Washington DC: Humans to Mars Summit (H2M) 2017; to explore the technical, scientific, policy challenges of getting humans to Mars.

May 9-11 — Ohio Aerospace Institute, Venus Exploration and Analysis Group (VEXAG), Cleveland OH: Venus Modeling Workshop.

May 9-12 — Vatican Observatory, INFN, Rome, Italy: Workshop: Black Holes, Gravitational Waves and Space Time Singularities.

May 9 — Apollo Asteroid 2017 HZ49: Near-Earth Flyby (0.038 AU).


May 10 — Library of Congress Science, Technology and Business Division, Washington DC: Lecture: Space Ethics: Ethical Implications of Commercial Space Projects; by Christopher Ketcham, NASA.

May 10-12 — International Center for Theoretical Physics, South American Institute for Fundamental Research, São Paulo, Brazil: South American Dark Matter Workshop.

May 10 — Moon: Full (Flower Moon), 11:43.

May 10 — Apollo Asteroid 2017 HP3: Near-Earth Flyby (0.050 AU).


May 11 — Cornell University, Ithaca NY: Lecture: Characterization of Exoplanet Atmospheres; Adam Burrows, 16:00.

May 11-13 — SatNews, ConferenceSeries, Andrew John Publishing Company, University of Houston, Celestia Aerospace, University of Seville, Barcelona, Spain: 3rd International Conference and Exhibition on Satellite & Space Missions.

May 11 — Aten Asteroid 2017 HU49: Near-Earth Flyby (0.014 AU).


May 12 — ISS, U.S. EVA #42, 330-435-km LEO: Expedition 51 Peggy Whitson and Jack Fischer to perform 6.5-hour spacewalk starting 08:00 EDT; Whitson holds record for most cumulative EVA time for women and Americans.

May 12 — Sherman & Howard LLC, Secure World Foundation, Denver CO: The Outer Space Treaty & Colorado Space Business; featuring Mike Gold, Chair of U.S Commercial Space Transportation Advisory Committee (COMSTAC), Milton “Skip” Smith of Sherman & Howard.

May 12 — Royal Astronomical Society, London, United Kingdom: Meeting: UK-SEDI – The Frontiers of Deep Earth Research; Meeting: The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope.

May 12 — Apollo Asteroid 2016 LJ49: Near-Earth Flyby (0.062 AU).

May 12 — Apollo Asteroid 2016 LJ49: Near-Earth Flyby (0.072 AU).


May 13 — Space Center Houston, Houston TX: Lunch with an Astronaut, Jerry Ross, adult US$69.95.

May 13 — Moon: 3.1° N of Saturn, 13:07.


May 14 — Tucson L5 Space Society – NSS Chapter, Tucson AZ: Tucson L5 Space Society monthly meeting.

May 14 — Smithsonian Channel, Broadcast: Premier: America’s Secret Space Heroes; featuring men and women who took America to the Moon and beyond, 21:00.

May 14-20 — Michigan State University, East Lansing MI: 2nd Nuclear Science Summer School (NS3).