November 2-8, 2015 / Vol 34, No 44 / Hawai`i Island, USA

West / Central Asia Increasingly Active in Civil Space Sector

calendar feature - CM 2015

The Inter Islamic Network on Space Sciences and Technology (ISNET) is working in collaboration with Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) to organize a 5-day workshop on student satellites to encourage future space entrepreneurs. The program, coordinated by Abdullah Jamil Khan of SUPARCO includes seminars, interaction with renowned experts in the field and lecture-based hands-on training with software and tools for satellite design and development. Launch of Badr 7 (aka Arabsat 6B) and GSAT 15 (for ISRO) is expected Nov 10 from ELA-3 at Kourou, French Guiana aboard Ariane 5 ECA rocket VA227. Built by Airbus and Thales Alenia for operator Arabsat out of Saudi Arabia, Badr 7 will join a constellation of 3 other Direct-To-Home satellites at the 26° East video “hot-spot”, extending in-orbit capacity for television services. The Dubai Airshow takes place Nov 8-12 at the purpose-built site within Dubai World Central. The newly formed UAE Space Agency, as well as UAE-based companies including Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC), Al Yah Satellite Communications Company (Yahsat) and Thuraya Telecommunications Company will be exhibiting. UAE investment in space technologies exceeds US$5.4B and it currently operates 6 commercial satellites. (Image Credit: ISNET, Arabsat, Astrium, Dubai Airshow, UAE Space Agency; Flags L-R:  Azerbaijan, Algeria, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Morocco, Niger, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey)



Nov 2 — International Space Station, LEO: Begins 16th year of continuous Human occupation, first component launched Nov 20, 1998; Expedition 45 preparing for next U.S. EVA, various interviews with schools and news teams, performing ongoing maintenance and science activities, observing plasma & liquid crystal growth.

Nov 2 — MAVEN, Elliptical Mars Orbit: Measuring the rate at which Mars atmosphere is escaping to space, its characteristics of gases & interactions with solar wind; may perform second set of “deep dip” activities to sample atmosphere closer to surface.

Nov 2 — New Horizons, Kuiper Belt Trajectory: Continuing to transmit data from July Pluto system flyby, scientists analyzing images of moons for reflectivity, topography and size; 2 additional maneuvers required to put craft on planned trajectory for selected KBO (2 were already successful).

Nov 2 — XCOR Aerospace, Mojave CA: NewSpace company assembling Lynx suborbital craft, planning for first drop test flights in 2016; constructing Research and Development Center in Midland TX; may also work out of KSC FL.

Nov 2 — Spaceflight Industries Inc., Tukwila WA: Providing launch opportunities for CubeSats to 2,000-kg satellites, mission management and payload integration; developing SHERPA system to deploy multiple satellites, working with SpaceX, Roscosmos, Orbital Sciences, ISC Kosmotras, NanoRacks.

 Nov 2 — Open Source Starship Alliance, Multiple Locations / Online: Branch of Global Starship Alliance, planning to create open platform to share research and technology developments for interstellar travel.

Nov 2-5 — Keck Institute for Space Studies, JPL, Caltech, Pasadena CA: Workshop: Optical Frequency Combs for Space Applications; with Kerry Vahala, Stephanie Leifer, Nan Yu, Scott Diddams.

Nov 2-5 — Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope Network, Santa Barbara CA: Kepler’s Second Mission Science Conference (K2 SCI CON).

NOV - JAN 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: Saturn (SW), Uranus (SE), Neptune (S); Morning Planets: Mercury (ESE), Venus (E), Mars (E), Jupiter (E).

Celestis 14th Spaceflight to Launch from Spaceport America


The 7th Earth Rise Mission “The Tribute Flight” is set to launch November 6 from Spaceport America at Las Cruces NM via Up Aerospace SpaceLoft XL suborbital launch vehicle. Spaceport America has 18,000 acres and a 3.6-km spaceway. It hosts various suborbital launches, is home to Virgin Galactic and is intended to be the site for SpaceX to test its Falcon 9R Reusable Development Vehicle (F9R Dev2). This will be the 14th spaceflight for Celestis Inc. which provides memorial spaceflight services for cremated remains. The SpaceLoft rocket payload can reach up to 150-km altitude, experience 5 minutes of microgravity and be returned to customers in ~3 hours. Celestis is also offering Luna 02 mission starting at $12,500 for 1 gram, to deliver remains to the surface of the Moon per agreements with Moon Express and Astrobotic Technology, contenders for the Google Lunar X Prize. Luna 01 memorial flight occurred January 1998 with a portion of Dr. Eugene Shoemaker’s remains impacting near the Moon South Pole aboard NASA Lunar Prospector in July 1999. Also on the launch manifest for Celestis are flights to Earth Orbit (remains burn up in Earth atmosphere after possible orbit for 10-240 years) and to deep space, a permanent celestial voyage beyond the Earth-Moon system. (Pictured: Jerry Larson (T) Up Aerospace & Charles Chafer (B) Celestis); Image Credit: Celestis, Up Aerospace, Spaceport America, NASA, Robin Zielinski, Sun-News)

Nov 2-6 — Inter-Islamic Network on Space Sciences & Technology, Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO), Lahore, Pakistan: ISNET/SUPARCO Workshop on Student Satellites.

Nov 2-13 — International Union of Radio Science (URSI), Bangkok, Thailand: International Reference Ionosphere Workshop 2015; at King Mongkut’s Institute of Technology Ladkrabang (KMITL).

Nov 2-27 — International Telecommunication Union, Geneva, Switzerland: World Radiocommunication Conference 2015 (WRC-15).

Nov 2 — Moon: 5.4° SSW of Beehive Cluster, 21:00.

Nov 2 — Venus: 0.68° SSW of Mars, 22:00.

Continued from…

Aug 11 – Oct 31 — International Astronomical Union Office for Astronomy Outreach, Online: NameExoWorlds Contest; public voting for 15 stars and 32 exoplanets.

Aug 28 – Aug 28, 2016 — NASA, University of Hawai`i at Mānoa, Mauna Loa HI: Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation (HI-SEAS) Mission 4; at 2,440-meter altitude.

Sep 14 – Dec 7 — SSERVI, NASA, Online: SSERVI teams at University of Central FL (CLASS) and Brown University/MIT (SEEED) give 13 lectures on Planetary Evolution: Phobos and Deimos, every Monday; live coverage available.

Sep 28 – Nov 27 — Charles Miller, SpaceNews, Online / Alexandria VA: Commercial Space Executive Training course.

Oct 26 – Nov 6 — Committee for Space Research, São Paulo State University (UNESP), JAXA, ESA, IAU, Guaratingueta, Brazil: COSPAR Capacity Building Workshop: Planetary Data Mission Analysis.

Oct 27 – Nov 4 — Institute for Medical & Biological Problems, Moscow, Russia: Six women scientists to participate in Moon mission mock-up to aid planning for future long-duration Moon missions & permanent settlements.

Nov 1-4 — Geological Society of America, Baltimore MD: Geological Society of America (GSA) Annual Meeting; featuring numerous sessions devoted to planetary sciences including “Oceans, fire, and ice in the outer solar system” and “Exploring the sedimentary rock record of Mars.”


Nov 3 — SETI Institute, Mountain View CA: Lecture: Shape Dynamics – A Relational View of the Universe; presented by Henrique Gomes from Perimeter Institute.

Nov 3 — The Space Show, Online / Tiburon CA: Dr. David Livingston talks with aerospace consultant Don Nelson.

Nov 3-4 — Pierre and Marie Curie University, Paris, France: Conference: European Space Launchers – From Diamant to Ariane 6 – Europe’s Competitive Answer to Independent Space Access.

Nov 3-4 — ESA, Noordwijk, The Netherlands: 29th Annual European Space Thermal Analysis Workshop; at ESTEC.

Nov 3-5 — SMi Group, O3b Networks Ltd, et al, London, United Kingdom: Conference: Global MilSatCom 2015.


Nov 4— Cassini, Saturn Orbit: Spacecraft conducts Orbital Trim Maneuver #429 today

Nov 4-5 — ESA, Noordwijk, The Netherlands: Technical Interchange Meeting (TIM) on Fracture Control of Spacecraft, Launchers and their Payloads and Experiments.

Nov 4-5 — ESA, Frascati, Italy: Conference: Mapping Urban Areas from Space; at Centre for Earth Observation (European Space Research Institute – ESRIN).

Nov 4-6 — Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia: 2nd Off-Earth Mining Forum & 3rd International Future Mining Conference.

Nov 4 — Moon: 3.1° SSW of Regulus, 17:00.

Nov 4 — Jupiter: At heliocentric opposition with Neptune, 22:00.

Nov 4 — Apollo Asteroid 2015 TD179: Near-Earth flyby (0.027 AU).


Nov 5 — Lunar and Planetary Institute, Houston TX: Lecture: InSight Mission to Mars; presented by Dr. Bruce Banerdt of JPL / Caltech.

Nov 5 — Cornell University, Ithaca NY: Lecture: Dusty, Magnetized Disks During the Birth of Planets; presented by Chris Thompson.

Nov 5, 6 — Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Caltech/NASA, Pasadena CA: von Kármán Lecture Series: The Juno Mission to Jupiter; presented by Dr. Steven Levin, Project Scientist of Juno.

Nov 5-7 — Kennedy Space Center, NASA, KSC FL: Space Rendezvous 2015 (Formerly Astronaut Autograph & Memorabilia Show); featuring Astronauts and panel discussions.

Nov 5-7 — The Museum of Flight, Seattle WA: SpaceFest: Oh the Humanity!; featuring Astronauts, artists, astronomers, and space experts.


Nov 6 — ISS, U.S. EVA 33, LEO: Kelly & Lindgren to perform 6.5-hour spacewalk to prepare the U.S. Orbital Segment for Commercial Crew spacecraft, install International Docking Adapter, relocate Pressurized Mating Adapter-3, restore port truss ammonia cooling system to its original configuration; live coverage available, begins 12:15 UT.

Nov 6 — Up Aerospace, Launch SpaceLoft XL / 7th Earth Rise Mission, Las Cruces NM: Up Aerospace to launch 7th Earth Rise mission (The Tribute Flight) for Celestis Inc.

Nov 6 — Heritage Auction, Online / Dallas TX: Space Exploration Signature Auction; featuring Apollo memorabilia.

Nov 6 — Moon: 2.1° SSW of Jupiter, 05:00; 1.9° SSW of Mars, 21:00.

Nov 6 — Aten Asteroid 2002 XY38: Near-Earth flyby (0.083 AU).


Nov 7-8 — SpaceUp, Polytechnic School, Palaiseau, France: SpaceUp X 2015 Unconference.

Nov 7-21 — British Interplanetary Society, Somerset, United Kingdom: Exhibition: Visions of Space; at Wells and Mendip Museum.

Nov 7 — Moon: 1.2° SSW of Venus, 03:00; at apogee (distance 405,259 km), 12:00.

Nov 7 — Amor Asteroid 2015 TL143: Near-Earth flyby (0.066 AU).

Nov 7 — Apollo Asteroid 2015 TM143: Near-Earth flyby (0.069 AU).

Nov 7 — Apollo Asteroid 2008 VA15: Near-Earth flyby (0.075 AU).


Nov 8-12 — Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Dubai Engineering Aviation Projects (DEAP), et al, Dubai, United Arab Emirates: Dubai Air Show.

Nov 8-13 — American Astronomical Society, National Harbor MD: 47th Annual Meeting of the Division for Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society; at Gaylord National Harbor Hotel.