SpaceUP UK Retro
It was fun at the first ever SpaceUP UK!
It was 2 full days of action in a perfect layout at the trendy King's Cross Impact Hub, with the support of 2 friendly staff. Here is a full view of the room(s) while we eagerly awaits for everyone's arrival!
People came from all parts of Europe, as well as all parts of UK to host sessions and participate in discussions. People of NASA and of ESA came along too! The event has been reaching far and wide. On social media, it reached 2.4 million audience on earth, and a little bit beyond. In fact, SpaceUP:UK has reached slightly beyond the crust of Earth with @Astro_Alex setting the records by tweeting to us from the orbit, yes, from the orbit!
Three seem to be the magic number during the weekend! There were three rooms, three organisers, three sponsors and three breaks for each day. Incidentally, three astronauts said "Hi"s too. @Astro_Alex said hi from the Orbit and @Astro_Wheels from Mission Control, Houston. Tim Peake said Hi on Skype from Start City at Russia and we continued on for a good half an hour (+) of Q&A! It was amazing and much appreciated for Tim to take some time to talk to us during the busy training schedule in Russia. Don't forget to take the tea into space, Tim!
The days were packed and the three rooms were running at capacity. Exhibitors has created a great atmosphere and discussion areas. Unexpected conversations came up at the ISU stand when Steph and Chris started to talk about art and how it mixes with space. It was a perfect event for discussions, discussions and discussions:
Citizen Inventor had 2 modest booking at the Mars room to discuss how to kick off projects on cubesats together, as well as how to get EXOSKN, the open source space suit project off the ground. A lot of useful discussion and the rooms were packed with extra chairs on both sessions. So thank you all for contributing on the day. More importantly, please help to keep the discussion and everything else going, join us and take some actions! Watch out for upcoming events to get more projects off the ground. It's never too late to join.
Towards the end, Kate (one of the organisers) was spotted to be under the influence of a different gravity in Mars (room), or was it the effect of Pubs nights?
If you've missed all these, well, don't miss the next one! But you can still catch a glimpse of SpaceUP:UK with regards to the schedule and topics covered at SpaceUP:UK's schedule page. Links to presentations are getting updated in time, so keep checking back over the next month or so. Media coverage will be updated there over time too, so keep polling the site.
CubeSATs launched with SpaceX
There much to get excited about SpaceX's resupply mission that has just launched a few hours ago.
The count down started at T-60. After lift-off, It took 10 minutes to reach the orbit before Falcon9 separates from Dragon. Dragon is expected to reach the ISS on Sunday and NASA is expected a space walk on Sunday too. Dragon is not only taking 2089kg of cargo up to ISS, but it will also be taking 1583kg of cargo back after it's due to stay for 3 weeks.
It's going to get busy with 5 CubeSats being launched:
Did I say it's going to get busy? It's not just for the scientist - but you too. Zac from KickSat has been putting out a call/contest to everyone on earth to participate in listening to the sprites signals. A tweet from BIS has just came in saying "@g8fjg has received signal from #KickSat CubeSat from 22KM East of London. Short bursts recorded and another satellite in the same orbit."
And for those who would rather watch, NASA is beaming video down, yes, beaming! With OPAL (Optical Payload for Lasercomm Science) on board of the cargo, NASA is expecting to laser beam video to earth. Why laser beam? "OPALS will demonstrate up to 50 megabits per second, and future deep space optical communication systems will provide over one gigabits per second from Mars." - source from NASA. NASA hopes to boost the connection speed by 50 times!
And of course, this missions is developing towards a reusable launcher, Falcon9 v.1.1 could show some landing legs on return.
A detail of the launch schedule and the content of the cargo is described here and here.