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April 1, 2021

/ 2:30 p.m. CT (1930 GMT)




Designing Discovery

: Milan Madge saw the real space shuttle Discovery on display at the National Air and Museum long before he knew that he would lead the team of LEGO designers in building a toy brick model of the winged orbiter. A long-time fan of the space shuttle (and its earlier LEGO versions), Madge spoke with collectSPACE about developing the new set, which went for sale at LEGO Stores and on LEGO.com on Thursday (April 1).


April 2, 2021

/ 5:15 p.m. CT (2215 GMT)


Commander's cover

: It took 38 years, but Richard Truly is about to get one of the ten envelopes that he and his STS-8 crewmates autographed while aboard the space shuttle Challenger. While his four fellow astronauts each got theirs, Truly's went missing – and he was the only stamp collector on board the 1983 mission. The reunion is thanks to another collector, David Ball, who won the STS-8 cover after it was listed on eBay without explanation.


April 5, 2021

/ 8:00 a.m. CT (1300 GMT)


Space Explorers Club

: Registrations open on Monday (April 5) for the Space Explorers Club, the new virtual engagement program from the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation. Limited to 35 members, the club will present a different astronaut speaker each month, beginning with Apollo 13 and space shuttle Enterprise pilot Fred Haise in May. Registrants will also receive autographs, a certificate and, when possible, a special invite to an in-person meet.


April 7, 2021

/ 4:15 p.m. CT (2015 GMT)


Philip Chapman, 1935-2021

: NASA's first astronaut born in Australia, Philip Chapman died on Monday (April 5) at the age of 86. Selected with the second class of scientist-astronauts in 1967, Chapman coordinated the experiments for the 1971 Apollo 14 moon landing, but resigned from NASA a year later before flying into space himself. Chapman went on to work on commercial reusable spacecraft and the development of solar power satellites.


April 9, 2021

/ 3:00 a.m. CT (0800 GMT)


'Yu.A. Gagarin' launches

: Three new crew members for the International Space Station launched Friday (April 9) aboard the "Yu.A. Gagarin," Russia's Soyuz MS-18 spacecraft named for the first human to fly into space 60 years ago this month. Cosmonauts Oleg Novitskiy and Pyotr Dubrov together with astronaut Mark Vande Hei lifted off on a two-orbit rendezvous to join ISS Expedition 64/65.


April 9, 2021

/ 2:00 p.m. CT (1900 GMT)


Casio celebrates STS-1 at 40

: Casio's new G-Shock digital watch marks 40 years since the first launch of NASA's space shuttle. The limited edition watch, which goes on sale on Monday (April 12), features design elements inspired by the aesthetics of the Columbia orbiter, including a backlight that illuminates a silhouette of the space shuttle and a dial adorned by the NASA's red "worm" logotype.


April 10, 2021

/ 6:15 p.m. CT (2315 GMT)


UAE astronauts

: The United Arab Emirates (UAE) doubled the size of its astronaut corps on Saturday (April 10), announcing two new members, including a woman. Mohammad AlMulla and Nora AlMatrooshi will train with NASA's next astronaut class at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, where first Emirati astronaut Hazza AlMansouri and his backup Sultan AlNeyadi are already preparing for future missions to the space station and perhaps the moon.


April 12, 2021

/ 9:00 a.m. CT (1400 GMT)




Universal Astronaut Insignia

: Ever since Yuri Gagarin returned from the first human spaceflight 60 years ago Monday (April 12), there have been pins and other devices to represent subsets of the world's space fliers. Now, the Universal Astronaut Insignia from the Association of Space Explorers is available to unite everyone who has traveled beyond Earth, on orbital and suborbital flights.


April 13, 2021

/ 4:45 p.m. CT (2145 GMT)


LEGO Ulysses

: Originally set to launch with the recently-launched NASA Space Shuttle Discovery set, LEGO is set to release a VIP reward kit of the NASA and European Space Agency (ESA) Ulysses solar probe. The kit will be available for 1,800 VIP points beginning Wednesday (April 14). Just like the real Ulysses deployed in 1990, the LEGO model includes the booster stages that propelled the robotic probe out of Earth orbit to begin its 18-year mission.


April 14, 2021

/ 2:45 p.m. CT (1945 GMT)


25 cents per Ride

: The U.S. Mint will issue a 2022 coin celebrating Sally Ride, the first female U.S. astronaut to fly into space. Ride will be one of the first honored as part of the Mint's American Women Quarters Program, which will represent up to 20 distinguished U.S. women on circulating and numismatic 25-cent coins through 2025.


April 15, 2021

/ 4:00 p.m. CT (2100 GMT)


Distant Voyager

: NASA's New Horizons is about to reach a mile marker that only four other spacecraft have surpassed before. On Saturday (April 17), the robotic probe will be 50 AU (astronomical units) from the sun, or 50 times the distance between Earth and the sun. To mark the milestone, New Horizons turned its camera out toward the farthest spacecraft, Voyager 1, and captured an image of the star field from its vantage point in the Kuiper Belt.


April 16, 2021

/ 10:20 p.m. CT (0320 GMT Apr 17)


Starship HLS

: NASA has chosen SpaceX's Starship to be its first lunar lander since the Apollo program 50 years ago. The steel-built spacecraft will deliver the next man and first woman to the moon on a demo mission for NASA's Artemis program. SpaceX's Starship was selected over human landing systems (HLS) proposed by Dynetics and Blue Origin's "National Team," which remain eligible to compete for future recurring, sustainable Artemis missions.


April 17, 2021

/ 1:10 a.m. CT (0610 GMT)


Soyuz MS-17 lands

: NASA astronaut Kate Rubins and Roscosmos cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov safely landed back on Earth on Saturday (April 17), riding on Russia's Soyuz MS-17 spacecraft. The three logged 185 days aboard the International Space Station, serving as members of the Expedition 63/64 crew.


April 18, 2021

/ 7:00 p.m. CT (0000 GMT Apr 19)


Apollo 13 recovery revisited

: After looking up at their new statues, Apollo 13 crewmates Jim Lovell and Fred Haise briefly struck the same poses as their bronze selves at Space Center Houston on Saturday (April 17). Fifty-one years to the day after their splashdown and recovery, as depicted by the sculpture, the astronauts were joined by their families and the flight directors who led their return to Earth to toast the anniversary and dedicate the installation.


April 19, 2021

/ 10:30 a.m. CT (1530 GMT)




Wright brothers moment on Mars

: NASA's Ingenuity Mars Helicopter lifted off, hovered and settled back down on Monday (April 19), achieving the first powered flight on a world other than Earth. The feat, which took place 117 years after the Wright brothers accomplished the same at Kitty Hawk, demonstrated the aerial exploration of Mars may be possible on future missions. Ingenuity was in flight for 39.1 seconds and reached 10 feet above Jezero Crater.


April 20, 2021

/ 6:15 p.m. CT (2315 GMT)


E pluribus unum

: The U.S. Commission of Fine Arts and the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee have reviewed the designs for a 2022 coin honoring astronaut Sally Ride, the first American woman in space. A part of the American Women Quarters Program, Ride will be depicted looking out a window on the space shuttle Challenger, if the Secretary of Treasury agrees with the recommendations.


April 23, 2021

/ 5:15 a.m. CT (1015 GMT)


Endeavour lifts off, again

: SpaceX's Crew-2 mission lifted off with four astronauts from three countries for the International Space Station on NASA's first crewed mission to fly on a reused rocket stage and crew capsule. Shane Kimbrough, Megan McArthur, Thomas Pesquet and Aki Hoshide launched aboard the Crew Dragon Endeavour atop the Falcon 9 first stage that boosted the Crew-1 crew.


April 23, 2021

/ 11:00 a.m. CT (1600 GMT)




GuinGuin, the flying penguin

: The Crew-2 astronauts revealed their zero-g indicator on reaching Earth orbit, a plush penguin named "GuinGuin." The gray, white and orange doll was seen floating about the SpaceX Dragon "Endeavour" attached to a tether. Chosen by their kids, the "fluffy" toy penguin was made by London-based Jellycat.


April 26, 2021

/ 1:30 a.m. CT (0630 GMT)


'For All Mankind' FAQ

: Looking back at the second season of "For All Mankind," which concluded Friday (April 23), one of the most frequently asked questions was how, in this alternate history, did the space shuttle fly to the moon? Series creator Ronald D. Moore and astronaut Garrett Reisman spoke to collectSPACE about the behind-the-scenes discussions that led to the orbiters' lunar flights.


April 28, 2021

/ 11:15 a.m. CT (1615 GMT)




Michael Collins, 1930-2021

: A member of the first lunar landing crew, Michael Collins has died at the age of 90. As the command module pilot on Apollo 11, Collins orbited the moon while Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the surface. On his first spaceflight, Gemini 10, Collins was the first person to spacewalk between vehicles. After leaving NASA, Collins became the first director of the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum.


April 28, 2021

/ 11:55 p.m. CT (0455 GMT Apr 29)


Tianhe for Tiangong

: The first module for China's long-planned space station is now in Earth orbit. Launched on a Long March 5B rocket, the Tianhe or "Harmony of Heavens" core will serve as the hub for the T-shaped orbital complex. The Tiangong space station will be crewed by three astronauts for up to six months at a time. China is planning to assemble the space station by the end of 2022.


April 29, 2021

/ 3:15 p.m. CT (2015 GMT)


'The Infinite'

: The largest VR project to ever be filmed in space is about to get real. Felix & Paul Studios, together with PHI Studio, are launching "THE INFINITE: Living Among the Stars," a new immersive exhibition featuring 200 hours of virtual reality footage shot on the International Space Station. Set to tour North America over the next five years, "THE INFINITE" will enable more than 100 people at a time to free roam the ISS and experience a spacewalk.



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