ISS astronauts assemble tools for robotic refueling demo

ISS astronauts assemble tools for robotic refueling demo

If humans are ever to settle the Solar System sustainably, a number of technologies will need to be perfected, including in-space refueling.

As such, NASA created the Robotic Refueling Mission, or RRM, a series of experiments designed to understand and perfect technologies for robotic propellant transfer and help extend the life of spacecraft.

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'New era in spaceflight': Crew Dragon docks with ISS

'New era in spaceflight': Crew Dragon docks with ISS

For the first time since the end of the Space Shuttle program, a U.S. spacecraft designed to fly humans has docked with the International Space Station.

At 10:51 UTC March 3, SpaceX’s unpiloted Crew Dragon Demo-1 spacecraft made contact with the docking adapter at the forward end of the International Space Station.

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NG-10 Cygnus ends post-ISS mission after deploying satellites

NG-10 Cygnus ends post-ISS mission after deploying satellites

Having launched Nov. 17, 2018, and spent 81 days attached to the International Space Station, the NG-10 Cygnus, named SS John Glenn by Northrop Grumman, was unberthed Feb. 8 to perform a two-week stand-alone mission. That post-ISS flight came to an end at about 09:00 UTC Feb. 25, 2019, when the spacecraft’s engine performed a deorbit burn to lower its orbit enough for Earth’s atmosphere to drag it down, safely burning it up of the Pacific Ocean.

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NASA planning to buy 2 more seats aboard Russian Soyuz spacecraft

NASA planning to buy 2 more seats aboard Russian Soyuz spacecraft

While the first Commercial Crew flights are just around the corner, NASA is looking to buy a little more buffer time in order to ensure uninterrupted access to the International Space Station.

First reported by NASASpaceflight, a procurement document published on Feb. 13, 2019, shows the U.S. space agency is looking to buy two more seats aboard Russian Soyuz spacecraft. These seats would presumably be on Soyuz MS-15 and Soyuz MS-16 in the fall of 2019 and spring of 2020 respectively.

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NG-10 Cygnus departs ISS to perform secondary mission

NG-10 Cygnus departs ISS to perform secondary mission

Northrop Grumman’s NG-10 Cygnus spacecraft has departed the International Space Station after three months at the orbiting complex.

Loaded inside the disposable cargo freighter is 2,500 kilograms of trash and unneeded equipment. Cygnus is now set to perform a two-week free-flight mission to deploy three CubeSats, according to NASA.

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‘Hundreds’ of impacts found on ESA’s Columbus module

‘Hundreds’ of impacts found on ESA’s Columbus module

Each International Space Station module is designed with micrometeoroid debris protection. A recent survey of the European Space Agency’s Columbus module shows just how much it is needed.

According to a news release from ESA, a survey performed Sept. 6, 2018, using the station’s 17.6-meter robotic arm showed “hundreds of impacts” across the surface of the Columbus module.

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SpaceX completes 16th Dragon mission to ISS

SpaceX completes 16th Dragon mission to ISS

After spending just over a month attached to the International Space Station, SpaceX's CRS-16 Dragon spacecraft departed the outpost and returned to Earth.

Loaded with more than 1,800 kilograms of equipment and experiments for a return to Earth, Dragon was unberthed from the Harmony module at around 20:00 UTC Jan. 13, 2019.

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Falcon 9 with Crew Dragon vertical at Launch Complex 39A

Falcon 9 with Crew Dragon vertical at Launch Complex 39A

The year 2019 is already off to a fast start with multiple deep space encounters performed by several robotic spacecraft. Closer to home, however, another vehicle is being prepped for its first orbital flight: SpaceX’s Crew Dragon. However, schedule unknowns still remain.

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Home for Christmas: Soyuz MS-09 crew lands in Kazakhstan

Home for Christmas: Soyuz MS-09 crew lands in Kazakhstan

Three people made a fiery return to Earth in a Soyuz capsule after spending 197 days in space, mostly aboard the International Space Station.

Russian cosmonaut Sergey Prokopyev, NASA astronaut Serena Aunon-Chancellor and European Space Agency astronaut Alexander Gerst landed in a frigid Kazakhstan at 5:02 UTC Dec. 20, 2018 in their Soyuz MS-09 spacecraft’s descent module.

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