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/ 1:20 a.m. CT (0620 GMT)
: The investigation into what led to SpaceShipTwo breaking apart in-flight during a test of its hybrid rocket engine began on Saturday (Nov. 1) as the names of the pilots who were flying the Virgin Galactic spacecraft were released. Michael Alsbury, 39, died in the crash, while Peter Siebold, 43, suffered serious injury. The National Transportation Safety Board may require a year to complete its investigation and make its recommendations.
/ 8:50 a.m. CT (1450 GMT)
: SpaceShipTwo's hybrid rocket engine fired as normal up until the spacecraft's tail booms feathered without being commanded and two seconds later the vehicle broke apart, NTSB investigators said on Sunday (Nov. 2). For reasons not yet known, video and telemetry data show that co-pilot Michael Alsbury unlocked the feathers 9 seconds into the rocket engine firing, but the handle needed to deploy the tail booms was not moved.
/ 4:00 p.m. CT (2200 GMT)
Astronaut advised Interstellar actors
: "Do you know how astronauts take showers? Oh my god," remarked actress Anne Hathaway, who stars as an astronaut opposite Matthew McConaughey in the new science fiction film "Interstellar." Hathaway, who at one time dreamed of flying in space, learned about life in Earth orbit (and destinations outward) from veteran NASA astronaut Marsha Ivins. Ivins shared her experience with the film's cast, as well as gave her approval for the design of the movie's spaceships.
/ 10:35 p.m. CT (0435 GMT Nov 10)
: One hundred and sixty five days after leaving Earth for the International Space Station, Roscosmos cosmonaut Max Surayev, astronaut Reid Wiseman of NASA, and Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency returned home Sunday night (Nov. 9). Descending to Earth aboard the Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft, the three Expedition 40/41 crew members landed in Kazakhstan.
/ 6:00 a.m. CT (1200 GMT)
: "Interstellar" lifted off this weekend, soaring beyond $50 million since opening Wednesday (Nov. 5). The sci-fi movie's depiction of space exploration was inspired in part by "the very specific look" of NASA's historic spacecraft, as well as director Christopher Nolan's strong belief in our "need to start looking out again and exploring our place in the universe more." The movie also inspired Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, and Jessica Chastain to review their own connections to space exploration, as the "Interstellar" stars told collectSPACE.
/ 2:35 p.m. CT (2035 GMT)
: A day after its Philae probe made history as the first craft to touch down on a comet, the European Space Agency on Thursday (Nov. 13) confirmed that the lander bounced twice before settling on the surface in the shadow of a cliff. Although photos returned from the probe show its immediate surroundings, mission managers are not yet certain of exactly where Philae finally landed.
/ 1:25 p.m. CT (1925 GMT)
First Hasselblad in space sells for $275K
: "It is a marvelous piece," said the UK-based collector who on Thursday (Nov. 14) won the first Hasselblad camera to fly in space at an auction in Boston. The historic artifact's new owner spoke exclusively with collectSPACE, sharing what attracted him to the camera, which has parts that flew with both Wally Schirra and Gordon Cooper on the last flights of NASA's Mercury Program. "It really gave mankind some of the first views of what was happening in space," he said.
/ 11:45 p.m. CT (0545 GMT Nov 15)
Philae falls silent
: With its batteries drained and not enough sunlight to recharge, ESA's Philae probe has fallen into "idle mode" for a potentially long silence. Most of its systems and all of its instruments have been shut off. From now on, no further contact with the first probe to land on a comet will be possible unless it is exposed to enough sunlight to generate power and wake Philae from sleep.
/ 12:00 a.m. CT (0600 GMT)
Comet landing lands on UK mail
: The first probe to land on a comet is being celebrated by the United Kingdom's Royal Mail with the use of a special postmark. Millions of letters delivered by the British postal service began arriving on Friday (Nov. 14) with the commemorative mark congratulating the European Space Agency on landing the Philae probe on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.
/ 9:15 a.m. CT (1515 GMT)
: A Gemini space capsule up for auction in Boston has drawn in more than just bids. The 2-ton boilerplate also attracted the local police for being parked in a loading zone. Narrowly avoiding a parking ticket, the capsule is set to be sold Thursday (Nov. 20), together with 600 other space artifacts, through RR Auction's website.
/ 8:45 a.m. CT (1445 GMT)
Do you want to launch a snowman?
When the Soyuz TMA-15M crew reaches space on Sunday (Nov. 23), they will know it is time to "let it go" when they see Olaf, the snowman from Disney's movie "Frozen," begin to float. Their carrot-nosed companion, in small plush doll form, will serve as both a traditional talisman and zero-g indicator for their four-orbit flight to the International Space Station.
/ 3:10 p.m. CT (2110 GMT)
TMA-15M to space station
A multi-national, all-air force crew lifted off to the International Space Station on Sunday (Nov. 23) on board Russia's Soyuz TMA-15M spacecraft. Anton Shkaplerov of Roscosmos, NASA astronaut Terry Virts, and Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti of the European Space Agency (ESA) will join the Expedition 42 crew after a four-orbit rendezvous with the station.
/ 12:25 p.m. CT (1825 GMT)
Beaming to Mars
: On Friday (Nov. 28), fifty years after the launch of the first successful mission to Mars, the space research funding company Uwingu will celebrate the Mariner 4 mission's anniversary with another Mars first — beaming 90,000 names, messages, logos and photos to the Red Planet. The result of Uwingu's "Beam Me to Mars" fundraising campaign, the project collected messages from the public, Mars mission scientists and celebrities.
/ 3:35 p.m. CT (2135 GMT)
By the letters E,F,T
: Elmo, Cookie Monster, Grover and the other muppets who reside on Sesame Street have partnered with NASA to help count down to the first launch of Orion, the agency's new spacecraft, on Exploration Flight Test-1 (EFT-1). Over the next ten days, the muppets will share facts about the next-generation capsule, which is designed to support NASA's Journey to Mars.
/ 8:10 p.m. CT (0210 GMT Nov 26)
Made In Space
: There is something special about the faceplate on Made In Space Inc.'s 3D printer installed onboard the International Space Station: it was made in space. Made In Space revealed its historic "First Print" on Tuesday (Nov. 25), the day after the logo-emblazoned part was printed aboard the station. The plate demonstrated the ability for the printer to create on-demand parts off-planet.
/ 8:00 a.m. CT (1400 GMT)
Gifts for space geeks
: 'Tis the season to be spacey, so collectSPACE presents five gifts sure to launch some holiday cheer. Whether lighting a (very big) candle or celebrating the season's most momentous mission, taking a tour of our planet or spending the next year in space, these gifts are sure to leave an out-of-this-world impression!
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