October 16-22, 2017 / Vol 36, No 42 / Hawai`i Island, USA

ASE 30th Planetary Congress Meets in Toulouse

The Association of Space Explorers is organizing the 30th Planetary Congress on October 16-20, hosted by Toulouse Métropole and Cité de l’espace in Toulouse, France with the theme Space is My Future. Hosted under the High Patronage of the Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales with official partnership of ESA and Airbus, the annual event includes 100 astronauts, cosmonauts and taikonauts from around the world. The purpose is to promote the benefits of space exploration and research to the general public, fostering education and real international cooperation. A dynamic 5-day program features ceremonies, technical sessions, openings for education, the general public and the media, as well cultural and touristic programs. Special support is being provided by President of ASE – Europe Michel Tognini, ESA Astronaut and German physicist Reinhold Ewald, 1st French Astronaut and co-founder of ASE in 1985 Jean-Loup Chretien, 1st French woman Astronaut Claudie Haignere, CNES and ESA Astronaut Jean-François Clervoy, CNES Astronaut Jean-Pierre Haignere, and Romanian Cosmonaut Dumitru-Dorin Prunariu. Various developments make Toulouse an appropriate and timely venue, including: Thomas Pesquet’s Proxima mission, the ‘Astronauts’ temporary exhibition running at Cité de l’espace until the end of 2018, the City chairing the Ariane Cities Community and it being appointed 2017 European Science Capita (ESOF) until 2018. Of the 551 people to have explored in Earth-orbit, 60 have been women.(Image Credit: ASE, ESA)


Oct 16 — ISS, 330-435-km LEO: Expedition 53 preparing for second EVA in less than a week, transferring 3,000 kg of cargo and supplies from Progress 68P, tracking personal masses via space scale, station now more than 6,905 days in orbit.

Oct 16 — NewSpace: Rocket Lab ‘Still Testing’ flight 2 expected late Oct; SpaceX launches 15th rocket this year, 5 more planned for 2017; Orbital ATK to be purchased by Northrop Grumman for US$9.2B.

Oct 16 — Solar System: MSFC / LPI study shows Moon may have had atmosphere 3-4B years ago for ~70M years; Hayabusa 2 is less than 8 months from asteroid Ryugu, estimates diameter at 820–890 meters; MRO shows evidence of ancient sea-floor hydrothermal deposits in Mars Southern Hemisphere.

Oct 16 — Galaxy: JPL study indicates exoplanets within Milky Way may more easily be observed around young stars with disks of dust and debris than those without; Sun-like stars & ones with less mass seem to rapidly decline in energetic activity; VLBA data help scientists map Milky Way regions.

Oct 16 — Global: UK Space Agency grants more than £3M to researchers for studies on Lunar Poles and potential of life on Mars; ISRO planning PSLV launch in Dec with Cartosat and ~20 nanosats; CSA Astronaut Chris Hadfield to be judge on BBC show ‘Astronauts: Toughest Job In The Universe’.

Oct 16 — USA: VP Mike Pence and National Space Council declares America will Return Humans to Moon; Senate Commerce Committee has not confirmed Jim Bridenstine for NASA Admin.

Oct 16 — Hawai`i: Mauna Kea Scholars program to include 200 students for 2017-18 year; International MoonBase Alliance hoping to build prototype MoonBase for US$10M to provide international space organizations and companies area to test Lunar technologies.

Oct 16 — Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona, Tucson AZ: Colloquium: Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Galaxy; Annika Peter, 16:00.

Oct 16-18 — Space Telescope Science Institute, NASA, ESA, CSA, Baltimore MD: Meeting: Observing Protoplanetary and Debris Disks with James Webb Space Telescope.

= 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 (E), Neptune (SE); Morning Planets: Mars (E), Venus (E).

U.S. Admin Embraces Human Moon Missions in Time for Apollo @50

Reestablished U.S. National Space Council led by Vice President Mike Pence states USA will send Humans back to the Moon to lay the foundation for Solar System exploration. Meeting in another 40 days, the team will address FY19 budgetary considerations and work to outline how America will lead in Space, launch from U.S. soil and support innovative technologies. Commercial space leaders capable of and eager to boost space capabilities stress the importance of continued, unwavering political and financial support. With renewed commitment and permission for NASA to ‘touch the Moon’, strategic steps toward becoming a Multi World Civilization may finally be taken. A Human Return to the Moon and the First Woman on the Moon would impact next-gen populations which have not yet seen in real time anyone travel beyond LEO. Findings from Oct 10-13 Lunar Exploration Analysis Group meetings will be forwarded to NASA in support of a Human Lunar return with maximized science objectives. Recent initiatives supporting the transcending vision of First Women on the Moon include Stanford on the Moon Conference featuring Loretta Hidalgo Whitesides, 68th IAC 3G First Woman on the Moon Breakfast Forum, NSS Ad Astra Magazine cover story “Who Will Be The First Woman On The Moon?”, Icarus Interstellar “Are Women Allowed on the Moon?” article, Umberto Caballaro Women Spacefarers: Sixty Different Paths to Space book, SPC First Woman on the Moon advocacy during USA 2016 Presidential campaign, and ESA inclusive Moon Village concept. (Image Credit: NASA, us.gov, SPC, GLXP, NSC Creative)

Oct 16-20 — Association of Space Explorers, Toulouse, France: 30th Planetary Congress of the ASE: Space is My Future.

Oct 16-20 — Green Bank Observatory, National Science Foundation, Green Bank WV: Transformative Science for the Next Decades with the Green Bank Observatory Big Questions, Large Programs, and New Instruments.

Oct 16-21 — Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring, State Research Center on Space Hydrometeorology (Planeta), Roscosmos, Vladivostok, Russia: 8th Asia/Oceania Meteorological Satellite Users’ Conference.

Continued from…

Oct 3-31 — National Geographic, Multiple Locations USA: NASA Astronaut Terry Virts tour from NY to CA for book signing “View from Above” featuring foreword by Buzz Aldrin and 300 photographs.

Oct 15-19 — Inter-Islamic Network on Space Sciences & Technology (ISNET), Royal Jordanian Geographic Centre (RJGC), Amman, Jordan: ISNET/RJGC Workshop on CubeSat Technologies: Its Design and Development.

Oct 15-20 — American Astronomical Society, Provo UT: Division for Planetary Sciences; at Utah Valley Convention Center.

Oct 15-20 — Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA, ESA, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany: 7th International Fermi Symposium.


Oct 17 — INTErnational Gamma-Ray Astrophysics Laboratory (INTEGRAL), LEO: Detecting some of the most energetic radiation in Space, ESA, NASA, Roscosmos spacecraft begins 16th year of operations in Space; launched 2002; expected to continue operations until early 2020s, run out of fuel and fall to Earth Feb 2029.

Oct 17 — Library of Congress Science, Technology and Business Division, Washington DC: Lecture: The Star That Ate Manhattan Could Guide Humanity Beyond the Solar System; by Zaven Arzoumanian, NASA.

Oct 17-18 — Federal Aviation Administration, Office of Commercial Space Transportation, Washington DC: FAA COMSTAC Meeting.

Oct 17-19 — Johnson Space Center, NASA, Technology Collaboration Center of Houston, Houston TX: EVA Technology Workshop.

Oct 17 — Moon: 1.7° NNE of Mars, 01:00; 1.9° NNE of Venus, 16:00.

Oct 17 — Mercury: 0.93° SSW of Jupiter, 22:00.

Oct 17 — Amor Asteroid 2011 PT: Near-Earth Flyby (0.058 AU).


Oct 18 — ISS, Expedition 53 U.S. EVA #46, 330-435-km LEO: Commander Randy Bresnik and Joe Acaba to perform third of three 6.5-hour spacewalks to maintain Canadarm2 and replace cameras at two locations on station truss; live coverage available.

Oct 18 — United States Special Operations Command, XPrize, TopCoder, Online: Submission deadline for CubeSat Competition.

Oct 18-19 — National Space Society, Santa Monica CA: Space Settlement Summit 2017; invite-only event focusing on Humans as Multi World Species.

Oct 18-19 — Georgia Tech Center for Space Technology & Research, Georgia Center of Innovation – Aerospace, Atlanta GA: Symposium on Space Innovations 2017; featuring Astronaut Shane Kimbrough, Steve Jurczyk, Jim Cantrell, Jane Kinney, more.

Oct 18 — Aten Asteroid 2006 TU7: Near-Earth Flyby (0.048 AU).


Oct 19 — New Worlds, STEAM Space Education, Austin TX: Entries due for Cities in Space Student Competition (Nov 10) at New Worlds 2017 Conference.

Oct 19-20 — World Meteorological Organization, Stockholm University, ESA, European Environmental Agency, Rome, Italy: 4th World Conference on Climate Change.

Oct 19, 20 — Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Caltech/NASA, Pasadena CA: 2017 von Kármán Lecture Series: Sink or Swim? Using Radar to Protect California’s Water Supply; Cathleen Jones, Signals Analysis Engineer from JPL.

Oct 19 — Moon: 6.5° NNE of Spica, 04:00; New Moon, 09:12; 3.7° NNE of Jupiter, 19:00.

Oct 19 — Uranus: At opposition, 07:00.

Oct 19 — Apollo Asteroid 2017 TG2: Near-Earth Flyby (0.051 AU).


Oct 20 — `Imiloa Astronomy Center, University of Hawai`i – Hilo, Hilo HI: Mauna Kea Skies Talk; this session features John Hamilton from UH Hilo’s Physics and Astronomy Department; 19:00 HST, US$8-10.

Oct 20 — Caltech, Pasadena CA: Stargazing Lecture: Cosmic Fireworks; Mansi Kasliwal, 20:00.

Oct 20 — Moon: 5.0° NNE of Mercury, 01:00.

Oct 20 — Apollo Asteroid 2017 SH14: Near-Earth Flyby (0.036 AU).

Oct 20 — Apollo Asteroid 2017 TO2: Near-Earth Flyby (0.036 AU).

Oct 20 — Amor Asteroid 2017 SY20: Near-Earth Flyby (0.048 AU).

Oct 20 — Aten Asteroid 2014 UR: Near-Earth Flyby (0.064 AU).


Oct 21 — Langley Research Center, NASA, Hampton VA: NASA Langley Research Center Open House.

Oct 21 – Dec 4 — Johnson Space Center, NASA, Houston TX: Campaign 4: Mission 3 – Human Exploration Research Analog (HERA 2017); 45 day analog spaceflight / Moon / Mars mission.

Oct 21 — Orionids Meteor Shower Peak: The 2nd of 2 showers that occur each year as a result of Earth passing through dust released by Halley’s Comet, Orionids appear to radiate from Constellation Orion, are swift (68 km/sec), can be bright & leave persistent trains; can produce between 20-70 meteors per hour.


Oct 22-25 — Geological Society of America, Seattle WA: Geological Society of America (GSA) Annual Meeting.

Oct 22 — Moon: 9.3° N of Antares, 22:00.

Oct 22 — Apollo Asteroid 171576 (1999 VP11): Near-Earth Flyby (0.015 AU).

Oct 22 — Apollo Asteroid 2010 VT11: Near-Earth Flyby (0.092 AU).