The Carnival of Space 157 is up at Out of the Cradle. This is the biggest Carnival of Space ever with over 100 links and 6 embedded videos. From Space Toilets to singing Reaching to the Moon.
* Virgin Galactic has deposits from 340 people totaling over $46Million.
* Richard Branson will be on Virgin Galactic’s 1st commercial SS2 flight, with Rutan and family members
* innovation in cost is an important for the space frontier as innovation in any other metric
James Dewar on NERVA style nuclear thermal launch propulsion:
* nuclear rockets could reduce cost to $100/pound or lower to LEO.
Hobbyspace covered the latest on XCOR from ISDC2010
* XCOR has had 11 generations of engines. XCOR not self-funded. Investors include Richard Garriott, Esther Dyson, Pete Ricketts, BHA
* XCOR has plans to develop an orbital vehicle
At Spaceprizes, Peter Diamandis reviews the active major prizes for achievements in space.
Besides the well known power beaming for a space elevator, there are
Asteroid Deflection Prize: The goal of this $20M prize is to pick a 50 meter or larger asteroid whose orbit doesn’t come close to Earth’s orbit and to deflect it
Orbital Debris Removal The winner of this $20M X PRIZE would remove 5 objects.
Lunar Lander Challenge level 3 This $1M X CHALLENGE would be like the familiar Level 2 prize, but no refueling would be allowed. Staging would be allowed. Like the original prize, it would be for vertical takeoff/vertical landing flights. The total flight time would be 6 minutes.
Suborbital Science X CHALLENGE This $1M prize would be for a suborbital reusable launch vehicle that goes over 200,000 feet 3 times in 3 days.
Martian Life X CHALLENGE This X CHALLENGE is also for $1M. It is for development of life that can grow under Mars conditions, including radiation, pressure, and atmosphere. Growth levels of four doublings in 30 days would be required.
Electric Aircraft X CHALLENGE This would be an annual $1M prize
* Dyson personally favors development of laser propulsion using water as fuel, although he recognizes that other systems might also perform efficiently.
* Dyson said a cheap launch system should be the primary strategic goal of pro-space activist groups like the National Space Society, the organizer of ISDC 2010.
* it makes more sense to customize humans to their particular planetary environment rather than to attempt large-scale terraforming
Nextbigfuture provided the articles covering –
1. Spacex had a successful launch of the Falcon 9 and Dragon capsule
Something is eating acetylene and hydrogen on Titan! Ok, so it might be chemistry, bare and unadorned by the complexity that is Life, but the two missing gases are exactly what would be used by an exotic metabolism suited to the -180 oC temperatures.