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Student Rocket Launch August 16

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2016/rocsatx.jpg"University and community college students will put their scientific and technological skills to test by flying experiments they developed on a NASA two-stage Terrier Improved-Malemute suborbital sounding rocket Aug. 16 from the Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. The launch is planned for 6 a.m. EDT from pad two on Wallops Island. This will be the first mission from a new suborbital rocket launcher at the pad. The window is from 6 to 10 a.m. EDT. Backup launch dates are August 17 through 19. The NASA Visitor Visitor Center at Wallops will open at 5 a.m. on launch day for viewing the flight. The rocket launch is expected to be only seen from the Eastern Shore of Virginia and Maryland."

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Fly Your Satellite!

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"For three student teams, the dream of building and working on a real space mission is coming true. At 01:50 CEST (23:50 GMT) today, a trio of student-built CubeSats were released into space as part of ESA's Education Office 'Fly Your Satellite!' programme. Transmissions from the Fregat upper stage show that the door on the CubeSat deployer opened regularly, around 2 hours and 48 minutes after launch. Now the CubeSats are travelling in their final orbits, and their university teams are waiting for them to establish contact. In the first hour of flight, the CubeSats will be working autonomously in order to stabilise their motion, perform an internal health check, and deploy their antennae. Then they will establish communication with Earth."

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http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/ula.cubesat.jpg"Applications are now open for U.S. colleges and universities to compete for free CubeSat rides on United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rockets. ULA, the nation's most experienced launch company, has successfully launched 106 missions, including 55 CubeSats, with 100 percent mission success. Tyvak Nanosatellite Systems, Inc., will provide no-cost access to space for selected science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) CubeSat customers for rideshares on ULA's Atlas V launch vehicle, as well as low-cost access to space for commercial and U.S. government CubeSat customers. CubeSat competition applications, available at www.ulalaunch.com/cubesats.aspx, are due June 1, 2016, and winning schools will be announced during the summer. The cubesat competition is open to all U.S. accredited colleges and universities, which are encouraged to team or perform outreach with K-12 schools to further expand these opportunities throughout the STEM community. Other judging criteria for university proposals include technical requirements, mission objective and ability to meet their development schedule. Senior personnel from ULA and Tyvak will be on the selection committee."

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Second-Round Prizes in Cube Quest Challenge Awarded

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/cubequest.jpg"NASA has awarded $30,000 each to the five top-scoring teams that competed in the latest segment of the agency's small satellite Cube Quest competition. Cube Quest is a $5 million challenge that requires teams to design, build and deliver flight-qualified CubeSats capable of advanced operations near and beyond the moon. It is part of NASA's Centennial Challenges program, which engages the public to compete to solve challenges that will benefit the agency and the nation. Cube Quest comprises of two phases: ground tournament and in-space tournaments, or derbies. The Ground Tournaments serve as progress checks, and are held every six months, leading to an opportunity to be selected as one of three allocated slots on NASA's Orion capsule's first unmanned lunar flyby, Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1), planned for launch in 2018."

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TshepisoSAT, Africa's First Nanosatellite

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Promising cubes in space, YouTube, TEDxTableMountain

"What does it mean to democratize space? How can Africa take part in the immense opportunities that miniature satellites (CubeSats) represent? With his characteristic dry sense of humour, Prof van Zyl tells the story of TshepisoSAT, Africa's first nanosatellite - built by his team of students and CPUT staff and launched in November 2013. Overseeing a satellite programme that truly represents Africa serves as a unique platform to further the socio-economic development of Africa. To this end, Prof van Zyl has established the international African CubeSat programme and workshop series to provide an innovation and developmental forum."

Spotlight TEDx Talk: A mission to launch African nanosatellites

"Right now, a satellite only 10 cm wide and 10 cm tall circles our planet around 15 times a day, in flight thanks to a group of students at the French South African Institute of Technology in Cape Town. The tiny satellite, named "TshepisoSat" for the seSotho word for "hope and promise," has been in orbit for over two years, taking photos of the Earth and collecting data on radio waves in the ionosphere."

UK Students Can Send Their Computer Code Into Space

New Chance For UK Students To Send Their Computer Code Into Space For Tim Peake

"Following the success of the 'Astro Pi' competition, there is a new competition offering UK school children the chance to send their computer code to ESA astronaut Tim Peake on the International Space Station (ISS). Two augmented Raspberry Pi computers, called Astro Pis, are on board the ISS as part of ESA astronaut Tim Peake's Principia mission. Both are equipped with different cameras and a range of sensors that the students can use in a wide variety of experiments. The new competition 'Astro Pi Coding Challenges', launched this month, presents a specific problem to students and asks them to solve it with code. This approach differs from the 2015 competition, where students were given an open-ended brief to come up with their own ideas for experiments. This time, Tim has a particular task in mind for them, with two challenges on offer, both of which are music-based."

Student Image of Northwest Australia Taken by the Sally Ride EarthKAM

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/ccfid.jpg"This stunning image of the northwest corner of Australia was snapped by a student on Earth after remotely controlling the Sally Ride EarthKAM aboard the International Space Station. The EarthKAM program allows students to request photographs of specific Earth features, which are taken by a special camera mounted on the space station when it passes over those features. The images are posted online for the public and students in participating classrooms around the world to view. EarthKAM is the only program providing students with such direct control of an instrument on a spacecraft orbiting Earth, teaching them about environmental science, geography and space communications."

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United Launch Alliance Reveals CubeSat Launch Program

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/ula.cubesat.jpg"ULA will offer universities the chance to compete for at least six CubeSat launch slots on two Atlas V missions, with a goal to eventually add university CubeSat slots to nearly every Atlas and Vulcan launch," said Tory Bruno, ULA president and CEO. "There is a growing need for universities to have access and availability to launch their CubeSats and this program will transform the way these universities get to space by making space more affordable and accessible."

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NASA Solicitation: Cubesat-scale Solar Sail for Space Propulsion

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/solarsail1.jpg "A cubesat-scale solar sail propulsion system is being developed at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) to provide propulsion for a 6U interplanetary cubesat to be used for the Near Earth Asteroid Scout (NEAS) project. NEA Scout will fly on the Space Launch System (SLS) Exploration Mission 1 (EM-1) mission scheduled for launch in 2018 and is being developed in collaboration with NASAs Jet Propulsion Laboratory."

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http://images.spaceref.com/news/2009/balloon19.jpg "NASA is accepting applications from graduate and undergraduate university students to fly their science and technology experiments to the edge of space on a scientific balloon mission. NASA is planning for a fall 2016 launch for the next High Altitude Student Platform (HASP) mission, a joint project between NASA and the Louisiana Space Consortium (LaSPACE) in Baton Rouge. "It's incredibly rewarding to support the students flying these experiments, many of whom are getting their first real taste of hands-on engineering and science," said Debbie Fairbrother, chief of NASA's Balloon Program Office. "Programs like HASP are key to educating, training, and inspiring the next generation."

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http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/morgan.jpg "A fleet of cubesats intent on advancing technology development, scientific research, and educational outreach recently hitched a ride into low Earth orbit (LEO). Through the Government Rideshare Advanced Concepts Experiment (GRACE), the National Reconnaissance Office's (NRO) L-55 mission included an auxiliary payload of 13 small research satellites, four of which were sponsored by NASA and nine by the NRO. The four NASA cubesats were selected through the agency's CubeSat Launch Initiative (CSLI) and were part of the Educational Launch of Nanosatellites (ELaNa) program."

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Cubes In Space Program

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/cubes.jpg "idoodlelearning inc., a global education company that prepares students to become 21st century learners, workers, and citizens by bridging the gap between traditional and digital learning, announced today a partnership with Colombia based Ideatech, for the addition of a high altitude balloon component to the 2016 Cubes in Space™ STE[A]M design competition for students. A STE[A]M-based global education program open to students ages 11-18, Cubes in Space provides students a no-cost opportunity to design and compete to launch an experiment into space. Utilizing formal or informal learning environments, students and educators are exposed to engaging content and activities in preparation for the design and development of an experimental payload to be integrated into a small cube (Cube). These Cubes will be launched on a high altitude balloon by Ideatech from a facility in Medellin, Colombia in May 2016. Another flight opportunity will be launched into space via sounding rocket from NASA Wallops Flight Facility on Wallops Island, VA in late June 2016."

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NASA Google+ Hangout Focuses on College Interns Rocket Experiments

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/quick-look-launch-BR.jpg "NASA's Digital Learning Network will host a Google+ Hangout on Tuesday, Oct. 6 at 1:15 p.m. EDT to discuss NASA's flight test of a modified sounding rocket motor, launch vehicle and spacecraft systems with the student interns who worked on the payload experiments. The flight test of the modified Black Brant sounding rocket motor and other technologies is scheduled for a suborbital mission on Wednesday, Oct. 7 between 7 and 9 p.m. EDT, from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. The student Rocket and Payload Integration Development (RaPID) team supported two experiments in the payload stack from NASA's Game Changing Development (GCD) Program within the Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD): the Advanced Near Net Shape experiment and the Orbital ATK LEO-1 CubeSat experiment."

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NASA Prepares for CubeSat Launch

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/m15-146_lunar_orbiter.jpg "Thirteen NASA and National Reconnaissance Office (NRO)-sponsored CubeSats are scheduled to launch aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket Thursday, Oct. 8, from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Prelaunch media briefings and launch commentary coverage will be carried live on NASA Television and the agency's website. Four of the CubeSats are NASA-sponsored and nine are NRO-sponsored, one of which was developed with NASA funding. All will be flown on the NRO's Government Rideshare Advanced Concepts Experiment (GRACE), which is an auxiliary payload aboard the NROL-55 mission."

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Simulation-to-Flight 1 (STF-1) CubeSat Mission

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/STF1_1506_01.jpg"The Simulation-to-Flight 1 (STF-1) CubeSat mission aims to demonstrate how legacy simulation technologies may be adapted for flexible and effective use on missions using the CubeSat platform. In addition, through a partnership between NASA GSFC, the West Virginia Space Grant Consortium and West Virginia University, the STF-1 CubeSat will host payloads for three secondary objectives that aim to advance engineering and physical-science research in the areas of navigation systems of small satellites, provide useful data for understanding magnetosphere ionosphere coupling and space weather, and verify the performance and durability of III-V Nitride-based materials."

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ESA: Be The First to Catch Signals From Student-built AAUSAT5 CubeSat

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/AAUSAT5_CubeSat.jpg"It is time to start listening to space. To celebrate the launch of the student-built AAUSAT5 CubeSat from the International Space Station into low Earth orbit, ESA's Education office challenges the amateur radio community to listen out for the tiny satellite. Be the first to send in your recorded signal from AAUSAT5 and you will receive a prize from ESA's Education Office. Launched on 19 August to the ISS, the Danish student CubeSat is now waiting for its deployment from the Japanese Kibo module's airlock. Sometime in the week of 5 October, an astronaut will manipulate a robotic arm to lift AAUSAT5 from the airlock and place it in orbit. Once launched from the International Space Station the CubeSat will begin transmitting signals to Earth that can be picked up by anyone with common amateur radio equipment."

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More ESA Student CubeSats Preparing for Space

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/OUFTI-1.jpg"While waiting for the first ESA student CubeSat to be deployed from the International Space Station at the beginning of October, the three Fly Your Satellite! CubeSats candidate for rocket launch are completing their environmental test campaign. During the past few months, the student satellites had to pass a number of tests in order to make sure they would be able to perform properly in the harsh conditions encountered during launch and in orbit. This test campaign represented Phase 2 of the Fly Your Satellite! educational programme. The satellites were tested before, between, and after being exposed to extreme environmental conditions, such as vibrations and temperature cycles in a thermal/vacuum chamber. These tests are necessary to demonstrate that the CubeSats are capable of working in these harsh environments and are not visibly damaged by them. The three CubeSats that underwent the 'Fly Your Satellite!' environmental test campaign are presented."

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Small Satellites Provide Big Payoffs

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/iss038e046586.jpg"When we think of space satellites that assist with communications, weather monitoring and GPS here on Earth, we likely picture them as being quite largemany are as big as a school bus and weigh several tons. Yet there's a class of smaller satellites that's growing in popularity. These miniaturized satellites, known as nanosatellites or CubeSats, can fit in the palm of your hand and are providing new opportunities for space science. "CubeSats are part of a growing technology that's transforming space exploration," said David Pierce, senior program executive for suborbital research at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "CubeSats are small platforms that enable the next generation of scientists and engineers to complete all phases of a complete space mission during their school career. While CubeSats have historically been used as teaching tools and technology demonstrations, today's CubeSats have the potential to conduct important space science investigations as well."

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ESA Survey: Future Educational Cubesat Initiatives

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/CubeSat_integration_in_depl.jpg"For a few years already, ESA's Education Office is very active in offering university students several educational opportunities related to CubeSat satellites. Up until now, ESA has completed the 'CubeSats on the Vega Maiden Flight' educational programme which involved twelve different CubeSat student teams that were supported by the Education Office, and of which seven student CubeSats were eventually launched on Vega on 13 February 2012. In the period between October 2012 and March 2013, ESA's Education Office also provided support for the test campaign of the HumSat-D student CubeSat. Based on this initial experience, the Education Office launched the Fly Your Satellite! Programme in 2013. Its first edition is currently ongoing, and it aims at launching a few student CubeSats into orbit in 2016."

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http://images.spaceref.com/news/comm.launch.2.jpg"The National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Science Mission Directorate (SMD), in collaboration with the Office of Education (OE) National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program (Space Grant) will release the Undergraduate Student Instrument Project (USIP) Student Flight Research Opportunity (SFRO) on or about August 21. USIP-2015 solicits proposals from U.S. institutions of higher education to develop an undergraduate-led Project Team that will fly a science and/or technology payload relevant to NASA strategic goals and objectives on a sounding rocket, balloon, aircraft, suborbital reusable launch vehicle (sRLV), or CubeSat launched on an orbital launch vehicle (hereafter referred to collectively as suborbital-class platforms)."

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Student Satellite Headed To International Space Station

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/AAUSat-5.jpg "A very special week is about to begin for approximately 30 students from Aalborg University, in Denmark, as their satellite - AAUSAT5 - waits to be launched to the International Space Station (ISS) on Wednesday 19 August. A few weeks later, AAUSAT5 will be deployed into orbit around Earth, marking the first ESA student CubeSat mission ever launched from the ISS: the pilot project of ESA's 'Fly Your Satellite from the ISS!' education programme. AAUSAT5, a CubeSat satellite entirely built by a university team with ESA's support, will reach the ISS aboard the Japanese HTV-5 cargo vehicle, planned to lift off from the Tanegashima Space Center in Japan."

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NASA Smallsat Program Research Opportunities

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/edsn1_0.jpg"They say big things come in small packages, and that's evident with the small satellites that are becoming ubiquitous around NASA centers, university labs and even elementary school science classes. These tiny satellites are relatively inexpensive, which makes space-borne research accessible to more people today than has been possible in the past. NASA is focused on its journey to Mars, and these small satellites are helping us develop the miniaturized technologies needed to reduce unnecessary weight and space aboard crewed spacecraft that could be used for research, life support and other things astronauts will need as they travel to the Red Planet. Closer to home, the technologies developed to work on satellites ranging in size from a refrigerator to a box of tissues could radically change the way we predict weather, provide Internet and television programming and cellular reception."

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http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/wff-2015-e05850.jpg"NASA launched a Terrier-Improved Malemute suborbital sounding rocket carrying the RockSat-X payload with university and community college student experiments at 6:04 a.m. EDT Wednesday, Aug. 12, from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. More than 60 students and instructors from across the continental United States, Hawaii and Puerto Rico were on hand to witness the launch of their experiments. The payload flew to an altitude of about 97 miles and descended via parachute into the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Wallops. Payload recovery operations began after lift-off."

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New CubeSat Opportunities for Low-Cost Space Exploration

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/cubesat20131206.jpg"Space enthusiasts have an opportunity to contribute to NASA's exploration goals through the next round of the agency's CubeSat Launch Initiative. Applicants must submit their proposals electronically by 4:30 p.m. EST, Nov. 24. The CubeSat Launch Initiative provides access to space for CubeSats developed by NASA centers, accredited educational institutions and non-profit organizations, giving CubeSat developers access to a low-cost pathway to conduct research in the areas of science, exploration, technology development, education or operations consistent with NASA's Strategic Plan. NASA does not provide funding for the development of the small satellites."

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http://images.spaceref.com/news/cubesat.jpg"NASA has selected eight university teams to collaborate on developing and demonstrating new technologies and capabilities for small spacecraft. The selected teams will work with engineers and scientists from NASA under a cooperative agreement, beginning in Fall 2015. The goal is to develop technologies for small spacecraft--some of which weigh only a few pounds--that dramatically enhance their ability to serve as powerful and affordable platforms for science, exploration and commercial space missions."

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http://images.spaceref.com/news/2012/Talos-Terrier-Oriole.jpg"Experiments developed by undergraduate community college and university students from across the United States will fly into space August 11 as part of an 872 pound payload flying on a NASA two-stage Terrier-Improved Malemute suborbital sounding rocket predicated to reach an altitude of 94 miles (152 kilometers). The launch is planned for 6 a.m. EDT from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. The window is from 6 to 10 a.m. EDT. Backup launch dates are August 12 through 14."

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Tracking Spacecraft Through the Cosmos Contest

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/DSA_3_Malarguee.jpg"Musicians, composers and audio buffs are invited to help celebrate 40 years of ESA's tracking station network. Create some truly cosmic sound and you may win impressive prizes, including a trip to our anniversary gala event in Spain. In 2015, ESA's Estrack ground station network celebrates 40 years and we are inviting original compositions for the 'Estrack 40th Anniversary Sound Contest.' The winner will be selected as the new theme audio for Estrack, and the composer will receive a paid invitation to the anniversary VIP event at Cebreros Tracking Station in Spain on 24 September. In addition to the grand prize winner, two runners-up and seven Top Ten entries will be selected, each of which will win ESA-branded prizes. In addition to the grand prize winner, two runners-up and seven Top Ten entries will be selected, each of which will win ESA-branded prizes."

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Student Satellite Wins Green Light for Station Deployment

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/AAUSat-5-1.jpg"Following more than a year of intense effort channelled into a 10 cm box, the first of ESA's student satellites to be released from the International Space Station has been accepted for launch. A standard CubeSat measuring 10 x 10 x 10 cm, AAUSat-5 has been designed and built by 30 students from the University of Aalborg in Denmark, backed by ESA's Education Office. It will be carried to the Station in August, where it will be despatched into space in conjunction with the mission of Danish ESA astronaut Andreas Mogensen. "The team will have their small CubeSat deployed into orbit from the International Space Station, the most gigantic space structure ever built," commented Piero Galeone of the ESA Education Office's Fly Your Satellite! venture."

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Students Start Mapping Cosmic Rays and Solar Wind with LUCID

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/TDS1-1Mar2013-150-800p.jpg"A satellite experiment to study cosmic rays and the solar wind that was devised by school students is now successfully collecting data in space. LUCID, the Langton Ultimate Cosmic ray Intensity Detector, uses particle detectors from CERN to study the radiation environment in low Earth orbit. 16-year old Cal Hewitt, from the Langton Star Center, will present the first results from LUCID at the National Astronomy Meeting 2015 in Llandudno on Monday, 6 July. LUCID was launched on 8th July 2014 on the Innovate UK-funded TechDemoSat-1, which carries payloads from a number of UK academic and governmental institutions. The LUCID project was first conceived by students in 2008 and was constructed by Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. It is one of a number of research projects developed at the Langton Star Center, the research center of the Simon Langton Grammar School in Kent."

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NASA Launches Suborbital Rocket With Student Experiments

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/quick-look-launch-BR.jpg"NASA successfully launched a NASA Terrier-Improved Orion suborbital sounding rocket carrying student experiments with the RockOn/RockSat-C programs at 6 a.m., today. More than 200 middle school and university students and instructors participating in Rocket Week at Wallops were on hand to witness the launch. Through RockOn and RockSat-C students are learning and applying skills required to develop experiments for suborbital rocket flight. In addition, middle school educators through the Wallops Rocket Academy for Teachers (WRATS) are learning about applying rocketry basics in their curriculum."

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ESA's Parabolic Flight Opportunities for Students Restart

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/ARID_team.jpg"The ESA Education Office's 'Fly Your Thesis!' programme is back, after having a short break of three years. The first new flight campaign is planned for late 2016. The deadline for applications is 21 September 2015. Fly Your Thesis! allows Master and PhD students from ESA Member and Cooperating States to design, build and fly scientific or technology-related experiments in microgravity. These are the conditions that astronauts experience in space. The dramatic reduction of gravity up to a few thousandths of the pull on Earth provides experimental conditions that are impossible to reproduce in ground-based laboratories."

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LISA Pathfinder Prepares For Final Exams

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/LISA_Pathfinder_2015.jpg"The summer is coming and that means students across Europe are sitting their final tests. ESA's LISA Pathfinder, a technology demonstrator that will pave the way for space-based gravitational wave observatories, is no different. LISA is currently in the test centre at IABG (Industrieanlagen-Betriebsgesellschaft), Ottobrunn, Germany. "Everything is running nominally and we are on schedule, which is the most important thing," says Ulrike Ragnit, AIV and launch campaign manager for LISA Pathfinder. LISA Pathfinder is a rather special spacecraft. It is designed to measure how well we can isolate a macroscopic body from all external forces except gravity. If successful, it will open the door to a new breed of spacecraft that can observe the gravitational Universe. For astronomers, this will be as if they developed a new sense, providing access to a view of the Universe that is wholly different to what they can detect now via electromagnetic radiation."

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LightSail Team Prepares for Sail Deployment

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/lightsail.jpg "LightSail is almost ready for its moment in the sun. This afternoon, mission managers gave the go-ahead for a manual solar sail deployment as early as Tuesday, June 2 at 11:44 a.m. EDT (15:44 UTC), providing the spacecraft completes an arduous set of Monday preparations. Since waking up Saturday after eight days of silence, the spacecraft has been busy sending telemetry back to Earth, snapping test images and preparing itself for sail deployment."

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NASA Asteroid Redirect Mission App

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/arm-screen-1.jpg "Learn from NASA leaders, engineers and scientists about NASA's Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM), a stepping stone along our path to human pioneering of Mars. ARM will be the first-ever robotic mission to visit a large near-Earth asteroid, collect a multi-ton boulder from its surface, and redirect it into a stable orbit around the moon. Once it's there, astronauts will explore it and return with samples in the 2020s. Using concept maps as a navigation tool, browse through hundreds of videos, images, and texts on benefits to be gained and capabilities needed to extend human presence beyond low Earth orbit into the proving ground and eventually to Earth independence."

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CubeSat Initiative Aids Solar Sails in Space

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/15-101a.jpg"With help from NASA, a small research satellite to test technology for in-space solar propulsion launched into space Wednesday aboard an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, as part of the agency's CubeSat Launch Initiative. The Atlas V sent the U.S. Air Force's X-37B space plane on its fourth mission, which also is carrying NASA's Materials Exposure and Technology Innovation in Space (METIS) investigation that will expose about 100 different materials samples to the space environment for more than 200 days."

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The CubeSat Challenge

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/medium.jpg"The goal of this challenge is to design a small satellite frame optimized for additive manufacturing. By using the benefits of design for additive manufacturing (DFAM) principles: Mass distributions and materials can be rethought to minimize weight, Part count can be reduced to improve producibility, and ultimately, cost can be reduced."

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http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/img_0423.jpg"NASA is extending an opportunity to college and university teams to propose small spacecraft technology projects that they can conduct in collaboration with NASA researchers. This is the second time NASA has issued this type of call after the highly successful efforts that emerged from the first call in 2013. The Small Spacecraft Technology Program is issuing the Smallsat Technology Partnerships solicitation as an appendix to the Space Technology Mission Directorate's NASA Research Announcement for 2015. This is opportunity will engage university students and graduate researchers in advancing technology of value to NASA and the nation and help strengthen our high-tech workforce. Proposals are due by June 5, 2015."

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NASA Launches RockSat-X Payload

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2015/RockSatX201501.s.jpg"A NASA Terrier-Improved Malemute suborbital sounding rocket carrying the RockSat-X payload was successfully launched at 7:01 a.m., Saturday, April 18, from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Recovery of the payload with the six university experiments is in progress. The rocket carried experiments developed by undergraduate students from the Universities of Colorado, Northwest Nazarene, Puerto Rico; Nebraska and Virginia Tech."

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NASA Helps Students Launch High-Power Rockets

"More than 30 high school, college and university teams will launch student-built rockets during the 15th annual NASA Student Launch event April 10-11 near NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. Middle school and high school teams will launch their rockets to an altitude of one mile, deploy onboard science experiments and land safely using a system of recovery parachutes. University and college teams will participate in either the Mini-Mars Ascent Vehicle (Mini-MAV) or the Maxi-Mars Ascent Vehicle (Maxi-MAV) divisions. Mini-MAV teams must use a robotic system to autonomously load a payload into their rocket, launch to half a mile and eject the payload during descent. Maxi-MAV teams, competing for a share of $50,000 in prize money, will attempt to meet more autonomy requirements before also launching to a half mile."

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Indian Crowd Sourced Spacecraft

sunsets.jpg"For the first time, space is not longer the exclusive preserve of advanced technology institutes and scientists. Isro's Space Application Center (SAC) has invited engineering institutes across the country to share their research ideas at a workshop on April 28 at Ahmedabad on the best possible ways of using its NEMO-AM satellite observations and for developing critical technologies for such missions in the future. Next Generation Earth Monitoring and Observation Aerosol Monitoring (NEMO-AM) is one of Isro's most crucial next generation high-performance 'micro-satellite' (small satellite) missions. The satellite weighs just 15 kg with dimensions of 2.2 ft length, 2 ft breadth and 1 ft in height. It will be launched at an altitude of 500 km above the earth. The project is a joint venture of Isro with the Space Flight Laboratory (SFL) of the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies."

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Moon Research Investigating Dust Expulsion Removal Systems

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"Moon Research Investigating Dust Expulsion Removal Systems (Moon RIDERS) is an educational project partnering Hawaii high school students with NASA, Google Lunar XPRIZE teams, and the Pacific International Space Center for Exploration Systems, which is a project of the Japan-U.S. Science, Technology and Space Applications Program of the University of Hawaii at Hilo Department of Physics and Astronomy, to develop and implement real-life lunar surface experiments. The test is hosted by NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute, headquartered at Ames. The students are testing a hardware system developed in conjunction with Kennedy Space Center in Florida to remove lunar dust. The system uses high voltage square waves to ripple dust away from the surface."

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NASA Provides Space Access for University Developed Experiments

"NASA will fly six university experiments developed by undergraduate students from its Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia between 6:45 and 10 a.m., Friday, March 27. The experiments will examine technology development, microgravity science and the search for life in the upper atmosphere and near space during the suborbital mission, which will reach an altitude of nearly 94 nautical miles. The experiments, which will fly aboard a NASA Terrier-Improved Malemute sounding rocket, were developed through the RockSat-X program, a collaboration with the Colorado Space Grant Consortium at the University of Colorado at Boulder. The back-up launch dates are March 28-30."

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ESA Selects Sixth 'Spin Your Thesis!' Teams

"Four teams of university students have been selected to develop and conduct their hypergravity experiments during ESA's sixth 'Spin Your Thesis!' campaign, to be held 7-18 September 2015. The campaign will take place at the Large Diameter Centrifuge facility located at ESA's European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) in Noordwijk, the Netherlands. Two teams will use the centrifuge equipment during the first week, followed by the other teams during the second week."

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Hawaii High Schools Selected for Student Lunar Flight Experiment

"PISCES announced this morning the two participating Hawaii high schools selected for the Moon RIDERS (Research Investigating Dust Expulsion Removal Systems) student lunar flight experiment during a dual-location press conference on Oahu and Hawaii Island. Kealakehe High School in Kailua-Kona and `Iolani School in Honolulu have been selected in the unprecedented STEM project partnering PISCES with NASA's Kennedy Space Center to involve students in a real-life lunar flight experiment that will be flown to the surface of the Moon.  The press event included messages from Hawaii's Governor and U.S. congressional leaders, as well as presentations by NASA Swamp Works, educational leaders, and participating students."

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XTRONAUT: Extreme, Extended, Exploration

"Xtronaut develops and supports innovative education-based initiatives and outreach programs associated with the OSIRIS-REx Mission, as well as other robotic space exploration missions. OSIRIS-REx is a NASA funded mission designed to launch (2016) an unmanned vehicle to rendezvous with an asteroid (2018), collect a sample from the asteroid and conduct various experiments, and return the sample to Earth (2023)."

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Sending the Garden of ETON to Space

"In order for longterm space missions to be successful, a renewable food source is needed. We've developed a hydroponic garden specifically designed to function under conditions of microgravity - ETON. We've been offered the opportunity to launch NanoETON on the ISS to test our hypothesis that water can be circulated in microgravity using centripetal force. This research may help the development of hydroponic gardens for future space missions."

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Student Scientists Ready to Launch Experiments to Space Station

"Students will look to the skies this week when SpaceX's fifth commercial resupply services (CRS) mission to the International Space Station lifts off at 6:20 a.m. EST Tuesday, Jan. 6, from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft will carry scientific research conceived and designed by students who are learning first-hand what it takes to conduct research in space. Eighteen Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP) teams worked to prepare the investigations in time to fly to the space station. The teams previously had their research aboard Orbital Sciences' Antares rocket, which suffered a failure during launch in October."

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Build Your Own Cubesat For Less Than $6,000

"Satellites have traditionally been expensive with even lower cost solutions like Cubesat costing six figure amounts, limited to those with larger budgets. The PocketQube Kit addresses these problems and widens access to space for smaller budget organisations. The PocketQube Kit is ideal for a wide range of groups who are interested in building a low cost Satellite. For example Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (or STEM) educators, from K-12, High School up to University. The Kits is also ideal for Governmental customers looking to begin a program."

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University Researchers Develop Zero-G Expresso Technology

The Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science at Portland State University (PSU) today announced another advance in the development of micro-gravity drinking cups. The new design makes possible the enjoyment of espresso and other drinks in the low-gravity environments of spacecraft. It is the second such innovation to be announced by PSU, following the zero-gravity coffee cup unveiled last summer. Without the pull of gravity, fluids behave very differently than on earth. Instead of 'pouring,' a liquid retains a more globular shape held together by its own surface tension. This phenomenon complicates even the most basic of maneuvers such as drinking a cup of coffee.

Send Your Computer Code Into Space with Tim Peake

"Leading UK space organisations have joined forces with British ESA Astronaut Tim Peake and Raspberry Pi to offer students a chance to devise and code their own apps or experiment to run in space. Two Raspberry Pi computers are planned to be flown to the International Space Station (ISS) as part of Tim's 6 month mission and both will be connected to a new "Astro Pi" board, loaded with a host of sensors and gadgets. Launched today at an event held by the UK Space Agency, the Astro Pi competition will be officially opened at the BETT conference (21-24 January) and will be open to all primary and secondary school aged children who are resident in the United Kingdom. The competition will be supported by a comprehensive suite of teaching resources that are being developed by ESERO-UK and Raspberry Pi."

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Deadline Extended: Student Spaceflight Experiments Program

The National Center for Earth and Space Science Education and the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education, in partnership with NanoRacks LLC, announce an authentic science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, opportunity for school districts across the U.S. and space station partner nations. The newest flight opportunity, Mission 8 to the International Space Station, or ISS, gives students across a community the ability to design and propose real experiments to fly in low-Earth orbit on the ISS. This opportunity is part of the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program, or SSEP.

2015 NASA High-Altitude Student Platform Opportunity

NASA is accepting applications from students at U.S. colleges and universities who want to send experiments to the edge of space on a high-flying scientific balloon. The annual NASA project provides near-space access for 12 undergraduate and graduate student experiments to be carried by a NASA high-altitude research balloon. The flights typically last 15 to 20 hours and reach an altitude of 23 miles. Experiments may include compact satellites or prototypes. The experiments are flown aboard the High-Altitude Student Platform, or HASP, a balloon-born instrument stack launched from the Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility's remote site in Fort Sumner, New Mexico. The goals of the project are to provide a space test platform to encourage student research and stimulate the development of student satellite payloads and other space-engineering products.

The National Center for Earth and Space Science Education and the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education, in partnership with NanoRacks LLC, announce an authentic science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, opportunity for school districts across the U.S. and space station partner nations. The newest flight opportunity, Mission 8 to the International Space Station, or ISS, gives students across a community the ability to design and propose real experiments to fly in low-Earth orbit on the ISS. This opportunity is part of the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program, or SSEP.

Each participating community will receive a real microgravity research minilaboratory capable of supporting a single microgravity experiment and all launch services to fly the minilab to the space station in fall 2015 and return it to Earth.

2015 NASA High-Altitude Student Platform Opportunity

NASA is accepting applications from students at U.S. colleges and universities who want to send experiments to the edge of space on a high-flying scientific balloon. The annual NASA project provides near-space access for 12 undergraduate and graduate student experiments to be carried by a NASA high-altitude research balloon. The flights typically last 15 to 20 hours and reach an altitude of 23 miles. Experiments may include compact satellites or prototypes.

The experiments are flown aboard the High-Altitude Student Platform, or HASP, a balloon-born instrument stack launched from the Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility's remote site in Fort Sumner, New Mexico. The goals of the project are to provide a space test platform to encourage student research and stimulate the development of student satellite payloads and other space-engineering products.

Students to Control Satellites from New Mobile Lab

Santa Clara University's School of Engineering added a new tool to its program that monitors and controls satellites. The Mobile Mission Control Lab (MMCL) is a 28-foot trailer loaded with equipment that allows students to communicate with satellites for longer periods of time than ever before. "The satellites we control for NASA and our industry partners only fly over the local area a few times a day and only for a few minutes each time," says Engineering Professor Chris Kitts. "This mobile station makes us more efficient and agile. We now have the potential to more than double our communication time. It's a huge learning opportunity for our students."

Radio Amateurs Report Hearing 4M Moon Orbiter JT65B Signal

"A Chinese Long March 3C/G2 rocket carried the Manfred Memorial Moon Mission (4M) lunar flyby experiment into space at 1759 UTC on October 23, on its way to a lunar transfer orbit and a return to Earth in about 9 days. Radio amateurs in Oceania and Europe have reported hearing the JT65B from the onboard Amateur Radio payload. Lunar flyby is to occur, nominally, on October 28, and the Amateur Radio package will transmit continuously throughout the voyage. During the lunar flyby, the spacecraft will be about nearly 248,000 miles from Earth and between 7440 and 14,480 miles from the Moon. The 4M Amateur Radio payload is transmitting a WSJT JT65B beacon and telemetry on 145.980 MHz. Roland Zurmely, PY4ZBZ, in Brazil, was reported to be the first to receive telemetry from the JT65B beacon at 1918 UTC."

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Belgian Students Are Closer To Their Ticket to Orbit

A team of Belgian students have taken steps towards gaining their 'Ticket to Orbit!', not for themselves, but for the CubeSat they are developing. OUFTI-1 is designed and developed, and now being tested by a team of students from the University of Liege, Belgium. It has a mass of approximately 1kg and dimensions of approximately 10x10x10cm. It is designed to demonstrate the D-STAR digital communication protocol and validate high-efficiency solar cells. D-STAR is an amateur radio digital communication protocol. Once OUFTI-1 is in orbit, it will allow radio operators worldwide to communicate through the CubeSat.

RockOn Rocket With Student Experiments Launches Successfully

RockOn Sounding Rocket Launches Successfully

"The RockOn Terrier-Improved Orion sounding rocket containing multiple student-built experiments launched successfully at 7:21 a.m. EDT on June 26, 2014 from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. The payload was recovered and has been returned to Wallops. The students will conduct their preliminary analysis on their experiments later this afternoon. According to the preliminary information, the payload flew to an altitude of 73.3 miles and landed via parachute 43.9 miles from Wallops Island in the Atlantic Ocean 12.16 minutes after launch."

Students Study Earth From NASA's DC-8

College Students Study Earth From NASA's DC-8 Flying Lab

"Thirty-two undergraduate students from a like number of colleges and universities are participating in an eight-week NASA Airborne Science Program field experience designed to immerse them in the agency's Earth Science research. Flying aboard NASA's DC-8 airborne laboratory, students will measure pollution, aerosols (small particles suspended in the atmosphere) and air quality in the Los Angeles basin and California's central valley. They will also use remote sensing instruments to study forest ecology in the Sierra Nevada and ocean biology along the California coast."

RockOn! Workshop at NASA Wallops

Rocket Week Launches June 21 at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility

"Students and educators from across the United States will become "rocket scientists" during two workshops at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia this month. The seventh annual RockOn! workshop, conducted in partnership with the Colorado and Virginia Space Grant Consortia, will provide 61 community college and university students and instructors the opportunity to learn how to build a scientific payload for a suborbital rocket flight.  This workshop is June 21-26."

3D Printing in Space

Made In Space 3D Printer Gets Green Light from NASA for Launch

"After passing the last NASA test, Made In Space will see its 3D printer launched to the International Space Station (ISS) in August by SpaceX as part of NASA's 4th Commercial Resupply mission (CRS-4). Originally the 3D printer was scheduled to fly on the SpaceX CRS-5 mission but because the company met all its milestones early the launch was moved up to CRS-4."

Rocket Experiments for University Students (REXUS) Campaign

Mission Accomplished for REXUS 15 & 16 Student Experiments

"This year's Rocket Experiments for University Students (REXUS) campaign has been completed. Eight student experiments reached the stratosphere on two rockets. Now the hard work of analysing the results begins. 20 May 2014 was the day it all became real. For 18 months, students had been working to develop experiments and apparatus. Now, 46 of them were gathered at the SSC Esrange Space Center in northern Sweden, and their rocket flights were just a week away."

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