United Launch Alliance Names Former NASA Shuttle Launch Director Mike Leinbach Director of Human Spaceflight Operations

Mike Leinbach, Shuttle Launch Director, Joins ULA

CENTENNIAL, Colo., Jan. 16, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — United Launch Alliance (ULA) announced today that Mike Leinbach has joined the company as the Director of Human Spaceflight Operations.

“We are fortunate to have Mike with his wealth of human spaceflight experience join the ULA team,” […]

Pentagon interest in cybersecurity may ease contractors’ pain from cuts

Jeffrey MacMillan/FOR WASHINGTON POST – Northrop Grumman’s is the Defense Department’s largest supplier of unmanned systems and the government’s biggest cybersecurity provider, spokesman Randy Belote said in an e-mail.

By Chris Strohm and David Lerman, Published: January 15 Plans by the Pentagon to invest more in cybersecurity and space-based capabilities may ease the blow for defense […]

ESOcast 40: When Speed Matters – Discovery of the Accelerating Universe Wins Nobel Prize for Physics

In the past two decades, astronomers have made a truly revolutionary discovery: that the cosmos is not only expanding, but is doing so at an ever-faster rate. The discovery of the accelerated expansion of the Universe was awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics.

More episodes of the ESOcast are also available here

China gets a JFK moment

Employees transfer the Long March II-F rocket to the launchpad in the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center

President Obama’s decision in 2010 to cut NASA’s budget and abandon the Constellation program, established by the Bush administration, which was charged with returning Americans to the moon by 2020 and creating an “extended human presence on the […]

Colorado in space: Buzz Aldrin’s son on how a spaceport would change the state’s economy

By Kelsey Whipple

Dr. Andrew Aldrin

Colorado currently hosts the number two space economy in the country, but the possibility of adding a spaceport on the Front Range could raise our rank while raising the industry’s stakes. Whether you plan to see the moon in your lifetime or not, the issue is a hot topic […]

NASA Intends To Add $375M to Lockheed’s Orion Contract for Delta 4 Test Launch

By Dan Leone

Delta IV Heavy/MPCV

WASHINGTON — NASA intends to add $375 million to Lockheed Martin Space Systems’ $6.4 billion Orion space capsule contract so that the company can procure a Delta 4 rocket to power a 2014 test flight of the next-generation crew vehicle.

In a procurement notice posted online Jan. 6, NASA […]

Space a Priority in Leaner U.S. Military

By Space News Staff

Leon E. Panetta. Credit: Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images

The Pentagon will continue to invest in space capabilities even as it pares down its force structure in response to massive budget pressures, U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Jan. 5.

“As we reduce the overall defense budget, we will protect and […]

Arianespace Set To Ride The Power of Three In 2012

by Staff Writers Kourou, French Guiana (ESA) Jan 09, 2012

The next Soyuz fight from French Guiana is targeted for this summer, carrying two more Galileo In-Orbit Validation satellites. It will be preceded by a Baikonur Cosmodrome Soyuz mission on May 23 that is to orbit Europe's MetOp-B meteorological satellite.

Arianespace is preparing for […]

Stephen Hawking marks 70th birthday with speech to leading cosmologists

‘Look up at the stars and not down at your feet,’ says scientist, unable to attend symposium in person due to ill health

Alok Jha, science correspondent guardian.co.uk, Sunday 8 January 2012 14.34 EST Article history

Stephen Hawking, 70, revealed his schoolfriends made a bet that he 'would never come to anything'. Photograph: David Parry/PA

[…]

America’s Deep Space Vision: Settlement of the Moon and Mars versus Asteroid Visits

by Harrison Schmitt

(Reactions to recent events by Harrison Schmitt — Heartland Institute Board member, former U.S. Senator (R-N.M.), and the last man (and first scientist) to set foot on the moon. (Cross-posted at America’s Uncommon Sense):

America’s eroding geopolitical stature, highlighted by the July 21, 2011, end to flights of the United States Space Shuttle, has reached crisis proportions. Obama Administrationofficials now […]