New leadership for the IAF

Meeting in Vancouver, Canada during the 55th International Astronautical Congress, the General Assembly of the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) has elected a new eleven-person team to lead the activities of the 160-member organization for the coming two years.

The new President of the IAF is James V. Zimmerman who also serves as President of International Space Services, Inc. of McLean, Virginia, USA. Zimmerman replaces Marcio Barbosa, Deputy General Director of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), who served as IAF President from 2000 to 2004.
Continue reading

The Science in Space Challenge

Students from two classrooms will get a chance to see astronauts conduct their science projects through a national challenge program. NASA and Pearson Scott Foresman, publisher of pre-K through grade six educational books, are sponsoring the challenge.

“The Science in Space Challenge” calls for teachers to submit proposals, on behalf of their students, for a science and technology investigation. An astronaut will conduct the project on a Space Shuttle mission or on the International Space Station, while teachers and students follow along via TV or the Web.

Deadline for entries is June 3, 2005. A panel of key NASA science education experts will evaluate and select one entry each from grades K-6 and 7-12. NASA and Pearson Scott Foresman will announce the winners on or before September 6, 2005. Teachers can submit entries by email, regular mail, or fax.
Continue reading


Forty-seven years ago, the world changed, when the Soviet Union successfully launched Sputnik I on October 4, 1957.

The world’s first artificial satellite was about the size of a basketball, weighed only 183 pounds. It took about 98 minutes to orbit the Earth on its elliptical path. That launch ushered in new political, military, technological, and scientific developments. While the Sputnik launch was a single event, it marked the start of space exploration.
Continue reading


NASA Administrator Sean O’Keefe congratulated the SpaceShipOne team on the second successful flight of a human on a private spacecraft. Administrator O’Keefe was in the Mojave Desert, Calif., today to watch SpaceShipOne pilot Mike Melvill take off and safely land.

“Burt Rutan and Paul Allen and the rest of the team are great examples of the kind of determination and creativity that is helping America achieve its exploration goals,” Administrator O’Keefe said. “We at NASA applaud their terrific achievement today, as well as the spirit of competition behind the Ansari X Prize.We wish Mike continued safe travels to space,” he said.

From the orbiting International Space Station, NASA astronaut Mike Fincke took note of the SpaceShipOne flight. “Well, it was nice that [cosmonaut] Gennady [Padalka] and I weren’t the only two humans off the planet, even if it was only for a little while,” he said during space-to-ground transmissions today. “So, good job and congratulations to the SpaceShipOne team!”


Astronaut Mike Fincke, who is living and working on board the International Space Station, conveyed his congratulations to the SpaceShipOne team during space-to-ground communications today.

“Fantastic!” Fincke said upon hearing the news that test pilot Mike Melvill had successfully completed the first privately funded suborbital human space flight. “We were wishing them the best of luck. We’re all in the space business together, helping mankind get off the planet and explore the stars.”

“We’re really proud of them, and please, if possible, extend to them our happiest congratulations,” he said to the flight controllers in Mission Control Center at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston.


The following is a statement from NASA Administrator Sean O’Keefe about the first sub-orbital flight of a person on a private spacecraft.

“We applaud the remarkable achievement of Burt Rutan, Paul Allen and test pilot Mike Melvill following the first successful suborbital flight of SpaceShip One.

“Not unlike the first U.S. and Soviet space travelers in 1961, and China’s first successful spaceflight this year, these private citizens are pioneers in their own right. They are doing much to open the door to a new marketplace offering the experience of weightlessness and suborbital space flight to the public.

“We congratulate the SpaceShip One team and wish all those who may follow safe flights.”


The IMAX Corporation today, in association with Academy Award-winning actor Tom Hanks, and aerospace technology leader Lockheed Martin Corporation, announced a new IMAX 3-D space film, which will take moviegoers to the moon and allow them to walk side-by-side with the brave astronauts of the Apollo program.

IMAX will produce “Magnificent Desolation” along with Hanks’ and Gary Goetzman’s production company Playtone. Lockheed Martin will sponsor it.
Continue reading

Wetlands Management via satellite

Atlantis Scientific Inc. from Nepean, Ontario, Canada has been awarded EUR1,000,000 (1.6 million CND) by the European Space Agency (ESA), under the Data User Element (DUE) Program, to execute the Global Wetland Information Service (GlobWetland) Project over the coming 2 years. The Atlantis led consortium (joined by Wetlands International – NL, Synoptics – NL and Remote Sensing Solutions GmbH – DE) won the contract, and the project was officially kicked off by ESA on November 20th,, 2003.
Continue reading

ConeXpress ORS (Orbital Recovery System)

Paris, France; Leiden, Holland; Washington, D.C., November 25, 2003 Orbital Recovery Ltd. today signed a strategic teaming agreement with Dutch Space of Leiden Holland to develop a space tug for use in rescuing satellites stranded in orbit and extending the operational lifetimes of other telecommunications spacecraft.
Continue reading