May 4, 2014 / 5:00 p.m. CT (2200 GMT) Astronaut Hall of Fame: Shuttle astronauts Shannon Lucid, the only U.S. woman to live on board the Russian space station Mir, and Jerry Ross, the first person to launch seven times from Earth into space, were enshrined in the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame on Saturday (May 3) at a public ceremony held under Space Shuttle Atlantis at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida. The two comprised the 13th group of space shuttle astronauts to be inducted and 86th and 87th members to enter the Hall.
May 6, 2014 / 8:00 a.m. CT (1300 GMT) Used spacecraft for sale: Billed as the first historic spacecraft to be put up for auction in Europe, the twice-flown Soviet-era VA space capsule being sold by Lempertz in Brussels, Belgium on Wednesday (May 7) is expected to sell for as much as $1 to $2 million. The spacecraft was launched on two uncrewed orbital spaceflights in 1977 and 1978, and decades later was sold to a British commercial spaceflight company for its possible reuse. The capsule is being auctioned along with two Sokol KV-2 spacesuits.
May 7, 2014 / 6:05 a.m. CT (1105 GMT) Bill Dana (1930-2014): Distinguished NASA test pilot and aeronautical engineer Bill Dana died Tuesday (May 6) at age 83. Dana's long and illustrious career at NASA Dryden (now Armstrong) Flight Research Center spanned 48 years, during which he logged more than 8,000 hours in over 60 different aircraft from helicopters and sailplanes to the hypersonic X-15 and the lifting body precursors to the space shuttle. In 2005, Dana was awarded astronaut wings for his flights above 50 miles on the X-15 rocket plane.
Armstrong Flight Research Center: NASA on Tuesday (May 13) held a ceremony at its flight research center in California to formally mark the renaming of the facility for the first person to walk on the moon, Neil Armstrong. The event, which included remarks by the late astronaut's sons and the grandson of Hugh L. Dryden, the aeronautics pioneer who served as the center's prior namesake, ended with a low flyover by a NASA F-18 jet and the unveiling of a revised sign – the same sign that Armstrong once posed under as a research pilot working at the center in 1962.
May 18, 2014 / 1:55 p.m. CT (1855 GMT) Wubbo Ockels (1946-2014): Wubbo Ockels didn't set out to be an astronaut, let alone be the first Dutch citizen to fly in space. "I saw men landing on the Moon and thought it was cool, but I never associated that at all with myself," Ockels, 68, who died on Sunday (May 18), said in a 2010 interview with the European Space Agency. Ockels made one spaceflight as the record eighth crewmember on the last successful flight of the space shuttle Challenger in 1985. He went on to become a professor and champion for sustainable engineering, including helping his students win the World Solar Challenge with a solar-powered car.
May 21, 2014 / 7:00 a.m. CT (1200 GMT) Story Time From Space: "I absolutely love to read, and I can't think of a better location to read this next story [than] with the Cupola behind us," begins NASA astronaut Michael Hopkins from aboard the International Space Station, as part of the first Story Time From Space video. The project, which has recruited the orbiting outpost's crew to film themselves while reading from a series of science-themed children's books, is now crowd-funding the launch of science demonstrations to compliment the stories.
May 22, 2014 / 6:05 a.m. CT (1105 GMT) Saving a space probe: For the first time in its history, NASA has granted permission to a private team seeking to revive and resume the use of a long-abandoned space probe. If successful, the ISEE-3 Reboot Project aims to return the 1978 International Sun-Earth Explorer satellite to a halo orbit near Earth, 30 years after it was repurposed to chase after comets. The project could provide a unique tool for educating students and the public about spacecraft operations and data gathering, as well as offer insights into the effects of the space environment on the probe.
May 23, 2014 / 8:45 a.m. CT (1345 GMT) Apollo joystick auction: A joystick used to land the Apollo 15 lunar module on the moon sold Thursday (May 22) for more than half a million dollars, topping the highest price ever paid at a public auction for a part of a NASA spacecraft. The $610,065 for the rotational hand controller was recorded during RR Auction's 7th Space and Aviation Autograph and Artifact Auction, which listed more than 600 aeronautic and space exploration relics. The joystick's sale was complimented by another part from the Apollo 15 lunar lander, the crewman optical alignment sight, for $126,175.
May 28, 2014 / 10:40 p.m. CT (0340 GMT May 29) Soyuz TMA-13M docks at station: Russian cosmonaut Maxim Suraev, Reid Wiseman of NASA, and Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency arrived Wednesday (May 28) at the International Space Station for a five and a half month stay as members of the Expedition 40/41 crew. The trio were launched earlier the same day from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on a four orbit flight aboard Russia's Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft.
SpaceX Dragon V2: SpaceX CEO and chief designer Elon Musk unveiled the company's upgraded Dragon V2 (Version 2) capsule on Thursday (May 29), debuting a "21st century spaceship" designed to fly astronauts to and from Earth orbit. Among the capsule's features are leather-lined bucket seats for up to seven crew members, landing legs, and the world's first printed engines. Developed to be fully reusable, the Dragon V2 may fly uncrewed as soon as late next year and with its first astronauts by mid-2016.
May 31, 2014 / 10:05 a.m. CT (1505 GMT) 'Leave Your Mark' emblem contest: World View Enterprises has launched a contest to design an emblem for its 'Voyagers' who will fly to the 'edge of space' onboard its balloon-lofted, fully-pressurized 'space capsule.' The "Leave Your Mark on Spaceflight" competition invites the public to both design and vote on insignias. The winner will be awarded $500 and an all-expenses paid trip for two to witness the unveiling of World View's space capsule.