Carnival of Space 606

1. The Venus Transit – Beresheet, first Israeli spaceship to the moon made a successful Lunar capture maneuver.

Above is a picture taken by Beresheet of the far side of the moon during the maneuver at 470 km height.

2. The Hill – Can America return to the moon by 2024?

NASA should have a commercial alternative in play in case developing the Space Launch System proves to be impossible to achieve in a timely, less costly manner. Fortunately, SpaceX is currently developing and testing just such a rocket in south Texas. The rocket is planned for its own flight around the moon no earlier than 2023. No doubt Musk would be pleased to take a crew, including NASA astronauts, to the lunar surface for an agreeable fee. Bridenstine mentioned the use of an enhanced Falcon Heavy during the townhall.

3. Universe Today – The Starhops Have Begun!

On April 4, 2019, SpaceX’s Starship Hopper completed its inaugural hop test at the company’s South Texas Launch Site.

The Starhopper will lead to an orbital test vehicle and then to the Super Heavy Starship.

4. Universe Today – Mars Express Saw the Same Methane Spike that Curiosity Detected from the Surface of Mars

Mars Express has detected 15 parts per billion of Methane on Mars.

“Although parts per billion in general means a relatively small amount, it is quite remarkable for Mars – our measurement corresponds to an average of about 46 tonnes of methane that was present in the area of 49 000 square kilometers observed from our orbit,” said Giuranna in a press release.

5.Universe Today – Now We Know That Dark Matter Isn’t Primordial Black Holes

6. Nextbigfuture – SpaceX is Ramping Up to Production of Starlink Satellites

SpaceX has announced a launch target of May 2019 for the first group of operational Starlink satellites. SpaceX needs to launch about 2200 Starlink satellites by April 2024 to be in compliance with the FCC license. SpaceX filed with the FCC to modify its Ku/Ka-band NGSO license to relocate satellites previously authorized to operate at a lower altitude of 550 km and to make other changes.

7. Nextbigfuture- SpaceX Starhopper Liftoff to Tether Limits on April 6, 2019.

The SpaceX Starhopper lifted off to the limits of the tether. The SpaceX hop tests seem to be progressing quite well but the main question is when there will be two more raptor engines placed into the Starhopper for real height on the tests.