NASA Announces Summer Learning Opportunities For U.S. Students

NASA has unveiled plans for its 2013 Summer of Innovation project, which challenges middle school students across the United States to share in the excitement of scientific discovery and space exploration through unique, NASA-related science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) opportunities.

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Repairing the Station in Orbit

Expedition 35 Flight Engineers Chris Cassidy (pictured) and Tom Marshburn (out of frame) completed a spacewalk at 2:14 p.m. EDT May 11, 2013 to inspect and replace a pump controller box on the International Space Station’s far port truss (P6) leaking ammonia coolant. The two NASA astronauts began the 5-hour, 30-minute spacewalk at 8:44 a.m. A leak of ammonia coolant from the area near or at the location of a Pump and Flow Control Subassembly was detected on Thursday, May 9, prompting engineers and flight controllers to begin plans to support the spacewalk. The device contains the mechanical systems that drive the cooling functions for the port truss. Image Credit: NASA

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ISS Update

The International Space Station will shortly be receiving ESA astronaut Luca Parmitano. Arriving at the station just six hours after launch, he'll be onboard for six months. During this time ESA's fourth Automated Transfer Vehicle will dock to the station, in addition to other resupply vessels – Japan's HTV and SpaceX's Dragon, plus a test docking mission of Orbital Science's Cygnus vessel. Preparations will also be made for the addition of Russia's Multipurpose Laboratory Module.

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Luca Parmitano Mission VNR

The first of ESA's new generation of astronauts, Luca Parmitano from Italy, is about to undergo a long-duration stay onboard the ISS. After what will be the second ever same-day launch and docking to the station in a Russian Soyuz capsule, Parmitano's duties as flight engineer will include overseeing the docking of ESA's penultimate Automated Transfer Vehicle and two spacewalks. During six months in orbit he'll also be carrying out an intensive programme of experiments in microgravity.

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ARTES Applications: Space is open for business

The TIA Advanced Research in Telecommunications Systems (ARTES) programme enables European and Canadian industry to explore innovative concepts that produce
leading-edge products and services. The Applications programme within ARTES aims at developing commercially sustainable and operational applications and services which satisfy concrete user needs and are based on industry excellence.

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Can Canada’s sensational spacemen find happiness back on Earth?

Chris Hadfield, also known as “the coolest guy in outer space,” will soon be packing up his camera, guitar and keyboard for his descent back to Earth next week. But what, exactly, does he return to? Is any career back on solid ground going to be enough?

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NASA’s GROVER Debuts On Greenland’s Ice Sheet

NASA's new Earth-bound rover began testing on the Greenland ice sheet this week. GROVER, which stands for both Greenland Rover and Goddard Remotely Operated Vehicle for Exploration and Research, is an autonomous, solar-operated robot that carries a ground-penetrating radar to examine the layers of Greenland's ice sheet. Its findings will help scientists understand how the massive ice sheet gains and loses ice. The GROVER team, led by glaciologist Lora Koenig from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., arrived in Summit Camp, the highest spot in Greenland, on May 6, 2013. After loading and testing the rover's radar and fixing a minor communications glitch, the team began the robot's tests on the ice on May 8, defying winds of up to 23 mph (37 kph) and temperatures as low as minus 22 F (minus 30 C). The GROVER tests will continue through June 8. GROVER, a prototype, was first developed in 2010 and 2011 during summer engineering boot camps at Goddard, before further refinement, with NASA funding, at Boise State University. Its trial in Greenland will also serve as a test of using rovers in harsh polar regions to gather data. › Read More Image Credit: Lora Koenig / NASA Goddard

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