April 7-13, 2014 / Vol 33, No 14 / Hawai`i Island, USA

Yuri Gagarin 1st Human in Space Celebrated Worldwide at Yuri’s Night, Related Events

Yuri's Night 2014The 1st Human in Space, Yuri Gagarin, the accomplishment of human spaceflight and the expectations for the future of human exploration are celebrated April 12. This will be the 53rd anniversary of Yuri’s flight and the 33rd anniversary of the inaugural launch of NASA’s Space Shuttle. Over 139 events in 41 countries, 6 continents and LEO have registered so far, and there is a push to get an event in Antarctica. Yuri’s Night Catalyst Competition sponsored by collectSPACE will reward hosts for starting an event in a new city. Many are celebrating by joining the Space Apps Challenge Apr 12-13 to address global needs under the following categories: Technology in Space, Human Space Flight, Asteroids, Earth Watch, and Robotics. SpaceUp Bremen on Apr 11-12 will feature Johann-Dietrich Wörner (L) of German Aerospace Center DLR and Charles Romain (R) ESA Member of the 520-day isolation crew of Mars500 study. SpaceUp Seattle will occur Apr 12-13 at the Museum of Flight, and SpaceUp Vienna will be held at the Vienna Technical Museum on Apr 12. Yuri’s Night began in 2001 with about 67 events and reached record numbers in 2011 with over 100,000 people attending 567 events in 75 countries on all 7 continents and in space. (Image Credit: Yuri’s Night, NASA, GSFC, Russian World, SpaceUp, collectSPACE)

First NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge

calendar feature - human exploration rover challengeMore than 90 high school and college teams from across the planet gather for the 1st NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge on April 10-12 at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville AL. The new event, an evolution of the 20-year running Great Moonbuggy Race, will test engineering skills, innovation and problem solving on a rugged ~1,130-meter course simulating diverse terrain challenges of solar system exploration, such as asteroid debris fields, craters, lava tubes, ancient stream beds, erosion ruts and crevasses. Vehicles are constrained to an unassembled volume of 3.5 cubic meters (a 1.5×1.5×1.5 meter box). The fastest teams to fully assemble and then race their rover through the course will win; prizes are also given for teams that build the lightest vehicles, effectively address safety issues, find creative ways to fix any problems with their rover, and other accomplishments. The change in nomenclature for this event parallels the metamorphosis of NASA Lunar Science Institute into the Solar System Research Virtual Institute — and the expanding prominence of the entire Solar System as an essential focus of human exploration in the 21st Century. (Image Credit: NASA)

APR-JUN = All times for terrestrial events in local time unless noted.

= All times for international terrestrial events in local time unless noted.

= All times for space events, and…

= All times for international space / astro events in Hawaii Standard Time unless noted. Add 10 hours to obtain UT (‘Universal Time;’ Greenwich, England).

Weekly Planet Watch – Evening Planets: Mars (SE), Jupiter (SW), Saturn (S); Morning Planets: Venus (ESE).


Apr 7 — ISS, LEO: Exp 39 preparing for Apr 9 arrival of Progress 55P resupply ship with up to 1,700 kg of cargo; participating in live education events Apr 8 & 10; newest members Skvortsov, Artemyev, Swanson continue crew orientation.

Apr 7 — ISS, Undocking of Progress 54P, LEO: The 54th Progress cargo ship scheduled to undock, burn up during Earth atmosphere reentry; live coverage available, 13:45 UT.

Apr 7 — HISAKI (SPRINT-A), LEO: JAXA ultraviolet astronomy satellite studying atmosphere composition and magnetosphere behaviors of Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Io, Saturn.

Apr 7 — Juno, Jupiter Trajectory: Traveling at 75,892 kph, nearing Mars orbital path with one-way radio signal of about 17 minutes; spacecraft has traveled more than 2B km since Aug 2011 launch.

Apr 7 — Cassini, Saturn Orbit: Titan flyby scheduled at 963-km altitude; data shows ocean about the size of Lake Superior at south pole of Saturn moon Encleadus.

Apr 7 Interorbital Systems Corp., Mojave CA: NewSpace company analyzing data from recent launch of Common Propulsion Module Test Vehicle (3,048-meters); will reuse rocket for next test which will be finless and guided.

Apr 7 Astrobotic Technology Inc., Multiple Locations: Testing camera & laser-guided hazard-detection system to be used on 2015 Griffin Moon lander; Mobility Testbed Rover performing test drives.

Apr 7 Deep Space Industries, McLean VA: Working on proposals for NASA Asteroid Initiative including technologies for capturing surface materials, scouting / prospecting work, making use of asteroid as resource after crew leaves.

Apr 7 — Canaveral Council of Technical Societies, Cocoa Beach FL: 43rd Space Congress: A Revolution of Space Exploration & Enterprise.

Apr 7-8 — Mubadala Aerospace, Middle East Business Aviation Association, et al, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates: Global Aerospace Summit 2014: Aviation, Aerospace, Defence, Space.

Apr 7-9 — Keck Institute for Space Studies, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Caltech/NASA, Pasadena CA: Applications of Asteroid Redirection Technology Workshop.

Apr 7-9 — Royal Society of Chemistry, Leiden, The Netherlands: Astrochemistry of Dust, Ice and Gas.

Apr 7-11 — International Space University, Strasbourg, France: Executive Space Course.

Apr 7 — Moon: 11.9° S of Pollux, 10:00.

Apr 7 — Asteroid 2010 GC35: Near-Earth flyby (0.068 AU).

Continued from…

Mar 28 – Jul 28 — NASA, University of Hawaii, Mauna Loa HI: Hawai‘i Space Exploration Analog and Simulation (HI-SEAS) Mission 2; six-member crew live in habitat on slopes of Mauna Loa at 2,500-meter elevation to simulate long-duration Mars mission.

Apr 5-8 — American Physical Society, Savannah GA: American Physical Society (APS) April Meeting 2014.


Apr 8 — California Institute of Technology, Pasadena CA: Public Panel – The Future of Human Spaceflight; featuring Astronauts Tom Jones, Garrett Reisman, Rusty Schweickart; moderated by Louis Friedman of Planetary Society.

Apr 8 — Royal Astronomical Society, London, United Kingdom: Public Lecture: The Heartbeat of the Stars; presented by Yvonne Elsworth from University of Birmingham.

Apr 8 — The Space Show, Online / Tiburon CA: Host Dr. David Livingston talks with space historian and author Bob Zimmerman.

Apr 8 — GLXP, Online / International Locations: Google Lunar XPRIZE Team Hangout with Team Indus and Hakuto; hosted by Dr. Pamela Gay.

Apr 8-10 — Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel MD: Titan Through Time Workshop 3.

Apr 8-11 — Flexure Engineering, LunarCubes, Cocoa Beach FL: 4th International Workshop on Lunar Science Applications (LSA 4); to focus on Compact and Cryogenic Science and Technology Applications.

Apr 8-11 — NOAA National Weather Service Space Weather Prediction Center, Boulder CO: Space Weather Workshop: The Meeting of Science, Research, Applications, Operations, and Users; at Millennium Hotel.

Apr 8 — Moon: At apogee (distance 404,049 km), 05:00; 6.5° S of Beehive Cluster, 15:00.

Apr 8 — Asteroid 2014 EF4: Near-Earth flyby (0.082 AU).


Apr 9 — RSA, Launch Soyuz / Progress 55P, Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan: An RSA Soyuz rocket set to launch 55th Progress cargo ship to ISS, 21:26 local time, live coverage available; set to arrive about 6 hours later.

Apr 9 — Thales Alenia Space, Space Radiation Superconducting Shield (SR2S) FP7 Programme, Turin, Italy: Workshop: Superconductive Space Radiation Shielding for Exploration Missions; at Advanced Logistics Technology Engineering Center.

Apr 9 — NASA HQ, Washington DC: Discovery 2014 Announcements of Opportunity Workshop; at One Washington Circle Hotel.

Apr 9-11 — ASTech Paris Region, Paris, France: Space Access 2014; at Cap 15 Conference Center.


Apr 10, 11 — Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Caltech/NASA, Pasadena CA: Lecture Series: “For the Benefit of All Mankind” – The JPL Technology Transfer Program; presented by Indrani Graczyk, Manager Commercial Program Office at JPL.

Apr 10-11 — NASA, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Baltimore MD: NASA Community Workshop on the Global Exploration Roadmap; to discuss Asteroid Redirect Mission, human lunar surface missions, extended duration missions in lunar vicinity, human-assisted sample return, evolutionary path to Mars.

Apr 10-12 — NASA HQ, Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville AL: NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge (formerly Great Moonbuggy Race); at U.S. Space & Rocket Center.

Apr 10-12 — Louis Cruls Astronomy Club, Campos dos Goytacazes, Brazil: 7th International Meeting of Astronomy and Astronautics; featuring Astronaut Paolo Nespoli, José Monserrat Filho (AEB), Robert Naeye (Sky & Telescope), many more; free.

Apr 10 — Moon: 5.0° SSW of Regulus, 13:00.


Apr 11 — Cassini OTM-377, Saturn Orbit: Spacecraft conducts Orbital Trim Maneuver #377 today.

Apr 11 — Royal Astronomical Society, London, United Kingdom: Royal Astronomical Society Ordinary Meeting; Bridging the Gap – Comets after Stardust and Before Rosetta Meeting; Non-equilibrium Plasmas, From the X-rays to the UV – Challenges for Modeling Meeting; at Burlington House.

Apr 11 — Lunar and Planetary Institute, Houston TX: LPI Seminar Series: Planetary Volcanism: Environmental Effects on Eruption Style; presented by Karl Leon Mitchell from JPL / Caltech.

Apr 11 — NASA HQ, Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute, Online / Washington DC: Asteroid Grand Challenge: Virtual Seminar Series; Dan Britt speaks on physical properties of NEAs, 11:00 EDT.

Apr 11 — Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA, Greenbelt MD: Goddard Scientific Colloquium: Saturn’s Great Northern Storm of 2010-2011: From storm clouds to hot vortices; presented by Brigette Hesman of GSFC & University of Maryland, 15:30 EDT.

Apr 11 — Peninsula Astronomical Society, Los Altos Hills CA: Lecture: The Dynamical Universe – Evolution of the Cosmic Structure; presented by Dr. Zarija Lukic from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Apr 11-12 — Space Innova LLC, Space Tourism Society, National Space Society – Puerto Rico Chapter, San Juan, Puerto Rico: Caribbean Space Summit 2014; to discuss commercial space travel; at Puerto Rico Convention Center.

Apr 11-12 — SpaceUp, DLR, Bremen, Germany: SpaceUp Bremen; the “unconference” where participants decide space issues / topics to discuss, schedule and structure of event.

Apr 11 — Asteroid 2014 FS52: Near-Earth flyby (0.039 AU).


Apr 12 — Yuri’s Night Celebrations, Global: Yuri’s Night 2014; annual worldwide party to celebrate Yuri Gagarin’s 1st flight into space and promote space exploration.

Apr 12 — SpaceUp, Vienna, Austria: SpaceUp Vienna; the “unconference” where participants decide space issues / topics to discuss, schedule and structure of event; at Vienna Technical Museum.

Apr 12-13 — British Interplanetary Society History Committee, Shropshire, United Kingdom: Cosford IV – Propulsion, Projects, People and Places.

Apr 12-13 — NASA, Global: International Space Apps Challenge; participants develop mobile applications, software, hardware that could contribute to space exploration missions, help improve life on Earth.

Apr 12-13 — SpaceUp, Museum of Flight, Seattle WA: SpaceUp Seattle; the “unconference” where participants decide space issues / topics to discuss, schedule and structure of event; US$20-25.

Apr 12-13 — Rockland Astronomy Club, Suffern NY: 23rd Anniversary: Northeast Astronomy Forum; featuring Alan Stern, Neil deGrasse Tyson (virtual), Matt Greenhouse, Garik Israelyan, more.

Apr 12 — Asteroid 2003 GS: Near-Earth flyby (0.087 AU).

Apr 12 — Asteroid 2011 CH50: Near-Earth flyby (0.096 AU).


Apr 13 — NSS Seattle – Chapter of National Space Society, Seattle WA: Regular Meeting of NSS Seattle; at the Museum of Flight, free and open to public.

Apr 13-17 — ESA, Noordwijkerhout, The Netherlands: 10th European Space Power Conference (ESPC 2014); at NH Conference Centre Leeuwenhorst hotel.