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Last Flight for Atlantis Begins Tomorrow

Absent congressional action to delay the end of the space shuttle program, the Atlantis orbiter will make its final flight to orbit at 2:20 pm EDT tomorrow.   The weather forecast for the STS-132 launch is 70% favorable.  The 12-day mission will take a Russian mini research module and other equipment and supplies to the International Space Station (ISS).

Under the current plan, only two more shuttle flights remain:  STS-133 (Discovery) in September and STS-134 (Endeavour) in November.

 

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HASC Subcommittee Cuts Unclassified National Security Space Programs by $182 Million

The Subcommittee on Strategic Forces of the House Armed Services Committee (HASC) cut $182 million from the $9.9 billion FY2011 request for unclassified national security space programs today.  A committee press release lists the following additions and reductions:

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Bolden Will Do “Everything in My Power” to Make Commercial Launch Companies Succeed

NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden told the Senate Commerce Committee today that he will do “everything in my power” to ensure that the commercial launch companies at the heart of President Obama’s new plan for NASA succeed.   The magnitude of that commitment was the source of some contention at the hearing.

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Holistic Approach to Space Law and Policy Needed for the Space Community

One of the resounding themes of yesterday’s Space Law and Policy 2010 symposium was that of the need for holistic solutions – that take into account the role of a variety of players- to solve the regulatory issues facing the space community.

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NRC Says NASA Facilities Deferred Maintenance is “Staggering,” Affects Safety

A National Research Council (NRC) study committee reports that NASA’s basic research facilities are in a state of decline.    Committee co-chair John Best says that it is “imperative that NASA restore and maintain its basic research laboratories” or jeopardize its ability to meet major mission goals according to an NRC press release

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