Episode 620: Catching a Comet

• November 22nd, 2014

On this episode of Talking Space: Rosetta and the way the Philae lander had captured the imagination of the public. Even though the lander has gone into "sleep mode', its batteirs starved for power, reports of Philae's passing may be greatly exaggerated.  NASA's OSIRIS-REx team was also carefully following the journey of  Philae. Launching in 2016, OSIRIS-Rex,will attempt a landing on an asteroid in the hopes of returning a surface sample to Earth.  The team moves on to discuss the upcoming EFT-1 test flight. Set to go for 7:02 on 4 December. There are 8 things to look for  during the Orion's flight that Jason Rhian of Spaceflight Insider profiles. So is Russia really saying  do svidaniya to the ISS partnership and building their own station in 2017? Thie Russian news service  RT Seems to think so.   Is this fact or is this claim as  IB Times thinks full of sound and fury, signifying nothing? The team takes this claim to task. Finally the panel looks at a Lunar mission for everyone. A UK based group, Lunar Mission One, is preparing a new mission to the lunar South Pole in ten years. and YOU can be a part of it

Show recorded: 11/19/2014

Host This Week: Gene Mikulka. Panel Members: Mark Ratterman, Kathryn Robison and Kassy Tamanini aka Craft Lass

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Episode 619: Preparations and Evaluations

• November 14th, 2014
Expedition 41 is in the books and we revisit the landing and the passing of the baton to the Expedition 42 crew along with the International Space Station increment poster: a salute to  "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" by  Douglas Adams.

EFT-1 Preparations are rolling forward (in a literal sense) and the team discusses the  EFT1  press briefing about the Orion mission. The European Space Agency's Rosetta mission falls under the magnifying glass as they attempt to do what has never been done: land on a comet this week.

Orbital Sciences released their "Go Foward" plan in the wake of the 28 October Antares launch mishap. We examine all the pieces  of the recovery blueprint and offer opinion.  We end with a story of survival: How Peter Siebold Pilot of the doomed VSS Enterprise escaped as the craft disintegrated over the skies of California. Also offer an update on the progress of the crash which occurred on 31 October.

Recorded: Monday, 10 November 2014

Host This Week: Gene Mikulka
Panel Members: Mark Ratterman, Kathryn  Robison and Kassy Tamanini aka Craft Lass

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Episode 618: The Future Belongs to the Brave

• November 7th, 2014

On a sobering edition of Talking Space, the team gathers to discuss the loss of Virgin Galactic's SpaceShip Two on 31 October, 2014 over the skies of the Mojave Desertin California. The ill fated test flight of the VSS Enterprise left the pilot, Peter Siebold,hospitalized and sadly took the life of  it's co-pilot Michael Alsbury. The acting administrator of the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)Christopher A. Hart released some intriguing information during a late night 2 November Press conference that may be the first piece of the puzzle in determining the cause of the accident. Mark Ratterman offers additional insight into how the NTSB painstakingly conducts an accident investigation. 

The team then focuses back to the Eastern Shore of Virginia and discusses the information released by Orbital Sciences CEO David Thompson during an investor call on 29 October  concerning the failure of the Antares launch vehicle and the loss of the ORB3 Cargo Mission to the International Space Station. The ORB3 Cargo mission was launched on 28 October and disappeared  into a fireball over the skies of Virginia's Mid Atlantic Regional Spaceport. The Cygnus cargo ship, Donald K Slayton, was to have docked with the orbiting platform on 2 November. The team discusses was known about the accident on the record date.   

Scaled Composites has set up an on line fund to help the family of Michael Alsbury, the pilot lost in the SpaceShipTwo accident. If you wish to contribute visit the GoFundMe site at this link

Show recorded 11/3/2014

Host this week: Sawyer Rosenstein. Panel Members: Gene Mikulka, Mark Ratterman, Kathryn "Kat" Robison and Kassy Tamanini aka Craft Lass

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Episode 617: The Loss of Antares

• October 31st, 2014

On this special episode of Talking Space, we throw out our originally-scheduled show to discuss the loss of the Orbital Sciences Orb-3 mission. The Antares rocket had a failure upon launch and exploded within 20 seconds of lifting off. The rocket was unmanned, carrying a Cygnus spacecraft with more than 5,000 pounds of supplies and science experiments to the International Space Station. In this episode we break down the facts of what is known and what is not known. We also discuss what was said in the press conference and where both Orbital and NASA stand. One interesting examination we look at is how all different forms of media covered the event from national news to local to Orbital themselves. We then look at the next steps in the investigation and the future state of the ISS as well as Orbital Science's contract with NASA for these resupply missions. Also included is a brief discussion of some of the science experiments onboard that were lost.

If you find any debris, DO NOT keep it as a souvenir or even touch it. Call the Incident Response Team at 757-824-1295.

This is obviously an ongoing story, and keep in mind this was recorded on the night of the launch failure. We will continue to update via Twitter and future episodes as information becomes available. Our hearts go out to the team at Orbital Sciences and to all of those who had experiments or equipment onboard.

Show recorded 10/28/2014

Host this week: Sawyer Rosenstein. Panel Members: Gene Milulka, Kathryn "Kat" Robinson and Kassy Tamanini aka Craft Lass

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Episode 616: Here Comes the Judge

• October 24th, 2014

The Talking Space team plays "catch-up" this week opening the discussion with NASA's Commercial Crew Program (CCP) decision. NASA decided on 16 September, 2014,  to go with the conical shaped spacecraft offered by Boeing (CST-100) and  SpaceX (Dragon Version 2)  over the Sierra Nevada Corporation lifting body design, Dreamchaser. This week, a judge with the US Claims Court allowed NASA to continue work on CCP related  activities while the US General Accounting Office considers SNC's challenge to the overall decision.

The International Space Station is becoming a very busy place with robotic cargo vehicles coming and going. The team gives a traffic report for the orbiting laboratory with cargo ships from SpaceX, Roscosmos and Orbital Sciences.

Want to go to Mars? You can, well okay, virtually. The team describes how to pick up your boarding pass not only for NASA's upcoming Exploration Test Flight 1, but for a future mission to the Red Planet.

Our Mars focus continues with the once every million year encounter that occurred on 19 October, 2014 when Comet Siding Spring made its historic close encounter with the fourth rock from the Sun.

Additional Links:
Aviation Week: NASA Document Spells Out Reasons for SNC's Commercial Crew Loss

Host this week: Sawyer Rosenstein
Panel Members: Mark Ratterman, Gene Mikulka

Show Recorded 10/22/2014

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Episode 615: Hashtags for Space Outreach

• October 16th, 2014

Our guests for this episode Kathryn "Kat" Robison and our very own Kassy Tamanini (aka Craft Lass) took on the task of studying the impact of social media on space flight outreach and awareness. In an academic paper entitled "Hastags for Outreach", both had an opportunity to present their findings at the 2014 International Astronautical Congress held in Toronto, Ontario from 29 September  to 3 October. This installment explores the results of their combined research. Ms. Roberson is a graduate student and teaching assistant at Youngstown State University in Ohio,  Her main speciality is the impact of social media and how it is leveraged by various interest groups. Ms. Tamanini has distinguished herself not only as a talented singer/songwriter with her ground breaking 2009 single "Bake Sale for NASA"  but as a leader in innovative science outreach methods. Both are the masterminds behind the blog "Geek Girls Night Out" an online community for "female geeks both in and off line." 

Show recorded 10/13/2014

Host this week: Gene Mikulka. Panel Member: Mark Ratterman with special guests Kathryn "Kat" Robinson and Kassy Tamanini aka Craft Lass

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Episode 614: NASA’s Flying Saucer

• August 11th, 2014

On this episode of Talking Space, we look at two interesting events you can see with the naked eye, the Supermoon and the Perseid meteor shower. We talk about whether the supermoon is really that noticeable, or if we just make it seem bigger since we know it's supposed to be bigger. We then talk about three launches within one week, all from the same launch site in Florida. We also look at a fourth launch which was ESA's final ATV, and what this last resupply vehicle from Europe means for the future of the ISS. We then look at a flying saucer type device which NASA is studying for future use on Mars. Then, special guest Jason Rhian joins us for a summary of the 17th Annual International Mars Society Convention. Lastly, we look at a solar powered fridge.

Below is a video of NASA's LDSD "Flying Saucer". Video courtesy NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory

[To view this video, visit http://talkingspaceonline.com]

For more on LDSD inclduing additional pictures and videos, visit the NASA website: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/tdm/ldsd/

For more on the Mars Society conference, check out Jason's story: http://www.spaceflightinsider.com/space-flight-news/17th-annual-international-mars-society-conference-closes-calls/

Host this week: Sawyer Rosenstein. Panel Member: Mark Ratterman with special guest Jason Rhian

Show recorded 08/11/2014

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Episode 613: All the SpaceFest-ivities Part 2

• July 17th, 2014

On this episode of Talking Space, we continue our discussion of SpaceFest VI, which was held in May in Pasadena, California. We begin where we left off last episode, with a look at some of the talks and panels from this year's event. We look at ion engines, the Russian space program, comets and more, all of which were discussed at the event. We include a final recap of some more of our favorite moments, and discuss a trip to the Mount Wilson Observatory after the event. Finally, we wrap up with another space event that happened the week after SpaceFest, and that was the International Space Development Conference, or ISDC. Mark Ratterman joins us with a special interview with Azam Shaghaghi about the event.

For more on SpaceFest, visit http://spacefest.info

For more on ISDC and other items heard during the interview, visit the following links:

https://twitter.com/STS_Canada 
https://twitter.com/ISDC 
http://nss.org/
http://isdc.nss.org/2014/index.html

An image was inserted here. To view it, visit http://talkingspaceonline.com

Host this week: Sawyer Rosenstein. Panel Member: Gene Mikulka with Mark Ratterman and special guest Azam Shaghaghi

Show recorded 06/06/2014

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Episode 612: All the SpaceFest-ivities Part 1

• July 13th, 2014

On this episode of Talking Space, we begin our two part discussion of a recent trip to Pasadena, California for SpaceFest VI. The event features astronauts, artists, and other vendors and speakers as a way to talk about current topics in the space community and meet some of the people who made the past possible. During this part, we talk about the events leading up to the event including a tour of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and a visit to Endeavour at the California Science Center. We then begin talking about the opening event with the Apollo astronaut panel. Afterwards, we talk about what was on the floor of the event, and a special birthday celebration for an astronaut.

Tune in to Part 2 to hear about the panels and discussions as well as a look at another Californai conference that happened around the same time.

Images were inserted here. To view them visit http://talkingspaceonline.com

Host this week: Sawyer Rosenstein. Panel Member: Gene Mikulka

Show recorded 06/06/2014

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Episode 611: That’s My Shuttle

• May 9th, 2014

On our 200th episode of Talking Space, we welcome on decorated fighter pilot and two-time shuttle astronaut Bob Springer. We begin with his military career and his favorite planes to fly. We also talk about his time in the TOPGUN program. Then it's onto how he got from test piloting to being a space shuttle mission specialist. Then it's on to his flights, including two that never flew and the connection the flights, and Bob, had to the Challenger Disaster. The other flights included STS-29 and STS-38. Finally, we talk about his work with Boeing, the Kennedy Space Center, and his vision for the future.

Below is the STS-38 patch as described in the episode:

[An image was inserted here. To view it, visit http://talkingspaceonline.com]

A huge thank you to everybody who has helped the show grow to what it is today, allowing us to create 200 episodes!

Host this week: Sawyer Rosenstein. Panel Members: Gina Herlihy, Gene Mikulka, Mark Ratterman and special guest astronaut Bob Springer

Show recorded 04/17/2014

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