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May 3, 2024

/ 5:30 p.m. CT (2230 GMT)

Medal of Freedom

: Former NASA astronaut and director of Johnson Space Center Ellen Ochoa was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Joe Biden during a White House ceremony on Friday (May 3). The first Hispanic woman to fly into space, Ochoa became the tenth U.S. astronaut to be presented with the country's highest honor. Among her fellow 2024 honorees was Jane Rigby, NASA chief scientist for the Webb Space Telescope.

May 4, 2024

/ 9:30 p.m. CT (0230 GMT May 5)

Signature Edition

: Eileen Collins' patch in the Space Hipsters 'Signature Edition' series reflects the title of her memoir, "Through the Glass Ceiling to the Stars." The collectible emblem depicts the 1999 shuttle launch on which she became the first woman to command a United States spacecraft, while also representing the women who blazed a path into space before her, those who gave their lives for spaceflight and her personal hurdles to reach orbit.

May 6, 2024

/ 12:00 a.m. CT (0500 GMT)

Return to Atlas, Cape

: It has been 56 years since a crewed mission has launched from Cape Canaveral and 61 years since an Atlas rocket carried an astronaut into orbit. Now, Boeing's Starliner commercial spacecraft is bringing human spaceflight back to the launch site and the booster. Boeing's crew flight test (CFT) will make history as NASA astronauts Butch Wilmore and Suni Williams extend legacies that began with the first U.S. human orbital flights.

May 6, 2024

/ 7:15 p.m. CT (0015 GMT May 7)

Calypso on Calypso

: It is the third "zero-g indicator" to be covered in sequins, the first to represent the uni-horned marine mammal and the first to share a name with its ride to orbit. Meet "Calypso," the "sparkly" narwhal, which is flying aboard "Calypso," the first Boeing CST-100 Starliner spacecraft to carry astronauts. "Calypso" (the doll) will be the signal for Butch Wilmore and Suni Williams that "Calypso" (the capsule) has entered orbit and microgravity.

May 8, 2024

/ 2:30 a.m. CT (0730 GMT)

Baked in space

: The first-ever food baked in space, a DoubleTree by Hilton chocolate chip cookie, is now on display at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Virginia. The new exhibit comes almost four and a half years after astronauts on the International Space Station used an oven developed by Zero G Kitchen and Nanoracks to show that baking in microgravity is possible. The cookie will later be displayed at the National Air and Space Museum in DC.

May 9, 2024

/ 12:25 a.m. CT (0525 GMT)

'THE INFINITE' returns home

: Three years after its U.S. premiere in Houston, "Space Explorers: THE INFINITE" has returned for a limited time encore. The fully-immersive, VR experience invites visitors to roam through a full-size virtual International Space Station to feel what it is like to be a member of the crew. New this time, guests also get an up-close view of the 2022 launch of NASA's Artemis I mission to the moon as was filmed by cameras at the pad.

May 11, 2024

/ 3:25 p.m. CT (2025 GMT)

Lego lunar rover

: Lego has set Aug. 1 as the launch date for its new Technic model of NASA's Apollo Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV). Built from 1,913 pieces, the $219.99 moon buggy can be displayed fully deployed or in its stowed configuration, folded up as the real LRV was to fit aboard the Apollo lunar module. The 1:8 model features working steering and suspension, as well detailed science experiments, astronaut tools and a "moon rock" collection.

May 14, 2024

/ 12:00 a.m. CT (0500 GMT)


: New York Times best-selling author Adam Higginbotham was a 17-year-old student in England when NASA's space shuttle Challenger was lost in flight, claiming the lives of seven astronauts. The tragedy left a lasting impression on his memory such that, 38 years later, he has written "Challenger: A True Story of Heroism and Disaster on the Edge of Space," what he describes as a "serious narrative non-fiction account" of the accident.

May 18, 2024

/ 12:00 a.m. CT (0500 GMT)

From tails to (umbilical) arms

: It took more than five years for the first of NASA's Space Launch System rockets to be ready to lift off its mobile launcher. With 3,601 pieces to fit together, those building the new Lego NASA Artemis Space Launch System should require considerably less time but it depends on how distracted they get from all of the "easter eggs" included in the set. From reused rocket parts to a nod to Classic Space, the kit is rich with details.

May 19, 2024

/ 9:55 a.m. CT (1455 GMT)

63-year countdown completed

: A Gemini capsule is included on Blue Origin's NS-25 New Shepard mission patch as a reference to what could have been. Gemini was flying when Ed Dwight reported to the Air Force's Aerospace Research Pilot School and was dubbed by the press as the United States' "first Black astronaut." Only he was never chosen for NASA's corps. Instead, Dwight, now 90, entered space for the first time on the NS-25 crew.

May 22, 2024

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

Mercury and Apollo and Dragon (oh my)

: The newly-renamed Griffin Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago debuted on Sunday (May 19) its renovated Henry Crown Space Center, including the second SpaceX Dragon capsule to go on permanent public display. Visitors can now view the twice-flown Dragon, as well as "Aurora 7" Mercury spacecraft and the Apollo 8 command module in new glass cases with immersive video and lighting effects.

May 29, 2024

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

Astronaut's diary relocated

: The National Library of Israel has received the diary kept by astronaut Ilan Ramon more than 20 years after it was found among the debris of space shuttle Columbia. The tattered pages, which document Ramon's life and research while in space, were previously held by the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. Ramon also wrote notes about the Jewish rituals he was to follow, including reciting the "Kiddush," the blessing over the wine.

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