Video: Brad Pitt Speaks with NASA Astronaut Nick Hague Aboard ISS

Video Caption: “What’s a spacewalk like? What do you feel?” As NASA prepares to send the first woman and next man to the Moon by 2024 under the #Artemis program, Brad Pitt is playing an astronaut in his latest film, Ad Astra. On Sept. 16 from NASA Headquarters in Washington, the actor spoke to astronaut Nick Hague about what it’s truly like to live and work in space.

JAXA, UAE to Cooperate on Educational Project on Space Station

UAE astronaut Hazzaa Al Mansoori holds Int-Ball training model. (Credit: MBRSC)

TOKYO (JAXA PR) — Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and The Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) of the United Arab Emirates will cooperatively perform an educational project that uses JAXA’s “Int-Ball”, a camera robot for the International Space Station, when the UAE astronaut gets on board the International Space Station for the first time.

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JAXA, Ricoh Develop Compact Spherical Camera for Use in Space

SOLISS system flight model (Credit: JAXA/Sony CSL)

TOKYO (JAXA PR) — The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Ricoh Company, Ltd. (Ricoh), today announced that they have jointly developed a spherical camera that can be used in outer space (outside the spacecraft) to capture 360-degree spherical images in a single shot.

This camera will be used as to monitor the operation of the biaxial gimbal of the SOLISS (Small Optical Link for International Space Station). (*1) It will be carried aboard the H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV8) “KOUNOTORI-8”, the cargo transporter to the International Space Station (ISS), which is scheduled for launch on September 11th, 2019.

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JAXA Spacecraft to Carry Science, Technology to the Space Station

HTV in flight (Credit: NASA)

HOUSTON (NASA PR) — The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) cargo ship H-II Transfer Vehicle-8 (HTV-8) is scheduled to lift off Sept. 10 at 5:33 p.m. EDT (6:33 a.m. Japan Standard Time) to the International Space Station from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Center, 10 years after JAXA launched its first HTV mission. HTV-8 arrives at the space station on Sept. 14.

Here are details about some of the scientific investigations and facilities heading to the orbiting lab on HTV-8.

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NASA Study Links Genetics and Vitamin Status to Eye Changes

Astronaut Karen Nyberg, Expedition 37 flight engineer, performs an Ocular Health fundoscope exam in the Destiny laboratory of the International Space Station. (Credit: NASA)

by Shaneequa Vereen
NASA Johnson Space Center

HOUSTON — Recent research findings show a link between nutrition, genetics and ocular changes during bed rest, an analog of spaceflight. These findings support and extend earlier findings in astronauts and may point to potential low-risk countermeasures. 

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Background Information on CIMON Mobile Astronaut Assistant

the CIMON mobile astronaut assistant is tested at the European Astronaut Centre’s Columbus training module. (Credit: DLR)

COLOGNE, Germany (DLR PR) — Developed and built in Germany, CIMON is a technology experiment to support astronauts and increase the efficiency of their work. CIMON is able to show and explain information, instructions for scientific experiments and repairs. Voice-controlled access to documents and media is an advantage, as the astronauts can keep both hands free.

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CIMON Mobile Astronaut Assistant Back on Earth After 14 Months on ISS

ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst interacts with the CIMON mobile astronaut assistant aboard the International Space Station. (Credit: ESA)
  • On 27 August 2019, the robotic astronaut assistant CIMON, which was developed and built in Germany, returned from the International Space Station on board the SpaceX CRS-18 spacecraft
  • A successor model of the technology experiment with extended functionality is currently being built and tested by Airbus on behalf of the DLR Space Administration; the ‘second’ CIMON also uses IBM ‘Watson’ artificial intelligence technology and he scientific aspects of the assistance system were co-developed and supervised by a team at Ludwig-Maximilian University Hospital in Munich

COLOGNE, Germany (DLR PR) — The Crew Interactive Mobile CompaniON (CIMON) mobile astronaut assistant, which is equipped with artificial intelligence (AI), returned to Earth on 27 August 2019. The SpaceX CRS-18 Dragon spacecraft carrying CIMON was undocked from the International Space Station (ISS) at 16:59 CEST; the capsule splashed down in the Pacific Ocean approximately 480 kilometres southwest of Los Angeles and was recovered at 22:21 CEST.

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Cosmonauts Prepare to Move Soyuz on Space Station

Soyuz MS-14 spacecraft (Credit: Roscosmos)

MOSCOW (Roscosmos PR) — On August 22, 2019 the Soyuz MS-14 unpiloted ship test launch took place according to the International Space Station flight program. On August 24 due to the technical issues the automatic docking of the ship to the ISS was cancelled. To organize its docking, on August, 26 the Soyuz MS-13 piloted spacecraft will be redocked from the Zvezda service module to the Poisk Mini-Research Module 2 of the Russian segment of the ISS.   

The estimated time of the Soyuz MS-13 detachment from the Zvezda module is at 03:34 UTC, the docking to the Poisk module is at 03:59 UTC. The whole operation will last for about 25 minutes. The docking will be performed manually by the ship’s commander Alexander Skvortsov with onboard engineers Luca Parmitano and Andrew Morgan taking part. On August, 25 the ISS crew is training to redock the spacecraft and carrying out its depreservation.   

The redocking will be performed to free up the Zvezda service module docking unit, which will be used to dock the Soyuz MS-14 spacecraft on August 27, 2019 at 03:12 UTC.

Soyuz MS-14 Docking Attempt Goes Awry; Second Attempt Set for Tuesday

Soyuz MS-14 spacecraft (Credit: Roscosmos)

MOSCOW (Roscosmos PR) — The Soyuz MS-14 is the first piloted spacecraft, which was launched using the Soyuz-2.1a carrier rocket. In order to certify the system and ensure the safety of cosmonauts the launch on August, 22 was unpiloted and was successful without any issues.  This provides an opportunity to use this space complex for the crewed missions.

However, during the docking of the ship a fault occurred in the ISS equipment responsible for the safe approach and airlocking. Therefore the Mission Control Center decided to withdraw the ship to a safe distance to ensure the safety of the crew.  The RSC Energia specialists offered the State Commission the following Soyuz MS-14 redocking variant: 

  • On August, 26 Alexander Skvortsov crew will manually redock the Soyuz MS-13 piloted ship from the Zvezda module to the Small Research Module-2, where the Soyuz MS-14 was meant to dock.
  • On August, 27 the second automatic docking attempt will take place, with the Soyuz MS-14 docking to the Zvezda module.

 Presently the Soyuz MS-14 is in normal spin in the Sun awaiting the redocking. Tomorrow Alexander Skvortsov will take an additional training according to the normal procedure using the onboard simulator to redock the Soyuz MS-13. The situation is complicated, however is under control.

Data Rate Increase on Space Station Supports Future Exploration

The International Space Station as it appears in 2018. Zarya is visible at the center of the complex, identifiable by its partially retracted solar arrays. (Credit: NASA)

By Matthew D. Peters
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

GREENBELT, Md. — NASA recently doubled the rate at which data from the International Space Station returns to Earth, paving the way for similar future upgrades on Gateway, NASA’s upcoming outpost in lunar orbit, and other exploration missions. This new data rate will enable the space station to send back more science data faster than ever before. 

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Video: Meet the Really Scary Looking Robot Russia is Sending to ISS

Video Caption: Roscosmos Space Corporation launches Soyuz missile to the International Space Station piloted for the first time in history by the humanoid robot Skybot F-850. F.E.D.O.R. chooses The Rockets track “Electric Delight” for his journey – on this official video.

NASA Television Coverage Set for Uncrewed Soyuz Mission to Space Station

Soyuz MS-11 spacecraft docking at the International Space Station. (Credit: NASA)

HOUSTON (NASA PR) — An uncrewed Russian Soyuz spacecraft is set to launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Wednesday, Aug. 21, at 11:38 p.m. EDT (8:38 a.m. Aug. 22 Baikonur time) on a test flight to validate the spacecraft’s compatibility with a revamped Soyuz booster rocket. The booster will be used to transport crews to the International Space Station beginning in spring 2020.

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Canadian Space Robot Dextre to Expand Ability to Refuel Spacecraft in Orbit

Rendering of Dextre on the end of Canadarm2, holding an advanced vision system. (Credit: CSA/Neptec)

LONGUEUIL, Quebec (CSA PR) — From August 13 to 14, Dextre, Canada’s robotic handyman on the International Space Station, will conduct a demonstration of how robots could refuel satellites and spacecraft to extend their useful lifetimes.

NASA’s Robotic Refueling Mission 3 (RRM3) will use Dextre’s proven ability to perform highly delicate tasks on the International Space Station, to test the hardware and procedures needed to store and transfer cryogenic fluids.

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