NASA, on behalf of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, recently awarded a $248 million sole-source contract for the Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS-1) spacecraft to Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corporation, Boulder, Colorado. Ball will design, build and test the spacecraft; integrate government-furnished instruments; integrate the satellite with the launch vehicle; and support launch operations and on-orbit checkout.
NASA, on behalf of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, has awarded a $98 million contract to ITT Corporation of Fort Wayne, Indiana, for the Cross-track Infrared Sounder (CrIS) instrument planned for flight on the first Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS-1) in 2014. JPSS is the restructured civilian portion of the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System.
Throughout time, humans have explored their surroundings, crossing oceans and landmasses in pursuit of knowledge and glory. This thirst for knowledge also turned eyes skyward, causing the curious to try to understand the vastness of existence around the planet Earth. As technology advanced, the desire to venture into the cosmos became increasingly possible, until man walked on the moon and equipment traveled much farther away. Fortunately for those who are still on terra firma, gathering information about the universe is much easier than launching on a rocket ship. People can learn and discover more about deep space through adventures in cyberspace without the need for oxygen tanks or special suits.
NASA's Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio, has awarded a one-year contract option to ASRC Aerospace Corporation of Greenbelt, Maryland, for technical, engineering and scientific services in the areas of aeronautics, microgravity science, space exploration and related science and technology activities in support of Glenn's Lewis Field and Plum Brook Station, Sandusky, Ohio. The option has a value that will not exceed $50 million and increases the value of the contract to $260 million.
AeroTech Research Inc., has been awarded a NASA Small Business Innovative Research contract to develop a software toolset that quantifies the beneficial effects of equipping aircraft with improved weather avoidance technologies. The Advanced Weather Avoidance Requirements Evaluation software will allow airlines and avionics manufacturers to quantify costs and benefits of implementing technologies that reduce the impact that severe weather can have on aircraft operations.
PlantCML, an EADS North America company, recently received a five-year contract from NASA to provide the Communicator!NXT emergency notification system, which alerts employees, contractors and visitors via multiple communications devices, including landline telephones, cell phones, smartphones, pagers and emails of an emergency, such as fire, inclement weather, evacuations, security threats and building lockdowns.
Over the next two days, hackers from across the globe will team up on nearly every continent for the second Random Hacks of Kindness (RHoK) event aimed at finding solutions to real-world problems in areas affected by natural disasters.
Student Katherine Ackerman blogs her experience at this morning's launch of Space Shuttle Discovery: "There was a giant rush of air, an enormous flame, and-kaboom-blastoff! I'm torn between saying that it looked like the world was ending and that it looked like the world was being created anew."
Those of us on the East Coast are probably tired of looking at snow, but even if you're located elsewhere on the planet, you can download the NASA Images iPhone app for a variety of gorgeous sights.