Atlas V and H-IIB fly this week

Orbital News
17 May 2020 1314 – Atlas V X-37B US Military
20 May 2020 1731 – Tanegashima H-IIB Kounotori-9 ISS Cargo

Regional News
15 May 2020 – Airdrie AB students contact ISS by ham radio
15 May 2020 – None hurt in plane crash 75km from Fort Frances
15 May 2020 – MB seeks businesses to deploy Internet to the North
16 May 2020 – Air Canada lays off 20000, over half the workforce
16 May 2020 – National Microbiology Lab chief takes UK job, cites family
17 May 2020 – Safe pilot, bent wing in Bloodvein MB mishap
18 May 2020 – Medicine Hat air ambulance pleads for funds
18 May 2020 – Wildfires near Dauphin MB
19 May 2020 – Delta will fill planes to 60% for social distance
19 May 2020 – York Space Systems opens new facility in Denver
20 May 2020 – SK wildfire grows to 375 km2
21 May 2020 – Iowa SU features NASA work of Sara Mayne
21 May 2020 – MN astronaut Karen Nyberg talks with Ars Technica
21 May 2020 – U Wisconsin develops nanostructured PVDF spacecraft shield

Further news
15 May 2020 – Artemis Accords would enshrine Space Law concepts in a Treaty
15 May 2020 – China adds satellite internet to space infrastructure priorities
15 May 2020 – NASA Stennis partial reopen
15 May 2020 – Tokyo2021 loses another event – meteor shower satellite fails in orbit
17 May 2020 – Bill Norrie of Calgary sailed across the Pacific
17 May 2020 – Snowbird dead, another injured in Kamloops BC crash
18 May 2020 – NASA Michoud partial reopen
19 May 2020 – Annie Glenn dies in Minnesota, age 100
19 May 2020 – Head rolls at NASA after Artemis procurement probe
20 May 2020 – Skyrora completes Skylark-L rocket engine test
20 May 2020 – WFIRST now called the Roman Space Telescope
21 May 2020 – NASA takes extra time for DM-2 Flight Readiness Review
21 May 2020 – NSF feature on Crew Dragon abort modes

COVID-19 matters
15 May 2020 – COVID patients that need ventilators have 50 to 75% survival rate
15 May 2020 – FDA notice issued on inaccurate Abbott COVID test
15 May 2020 – SaskTel retirees fix donated computers to help keep communities connected
15 May 2020 – SK closes 12 rural ERs on two days’ notice
15 May 2020 – Sudbury library opens phone line for folks that want to chat about books
15 May 2020 – The Forks Market reopens in Winnipeg
15 May 2020 – U Alberta will conduct fall semester online
16 May 2020 – COVID causes blood clots in serious cases
17 May 2020 – Fire contained at Winnipeg hospital
18 May 2020 – Fuse33 Makerspace in Calgary fabs 12000 faceshields
19 May 2020 – Canada-US border closure extended to 21 June 2020
19 May 2020 – Civic honour planned for SD food workers
19 May 2020 – U Wisconsin creates COVID Crush video game
21 May 2020 – 2020 Grey Cup in Regina cancelled due to COVID
21 May 2020 – Privacy problem with ND/SD Care19 phone app
21 May 2020 – Rigid US medical supply chain ignored new test labs

Late News
13 May 2020 – JournoDrone shot down in Butterfield MN

KZ-1A orbits two tech testbeds this week

A KZ-1A rocket carries two Xingyun-2 satellites to SSO from Jiuquan, 12 May 2020, 0116 UT. (Weibo)

Orbital news
08 May 2020 0549 UT – CNSA next-generation crew capsule lands after deorbit
08 May 2020 – Fregat from 2011 continues disintegration in high orbit
11 May 2020 1533 UT – CZ-5B first stage falls into Atlantic by luck alone
11 May 2020 1608 UT – Cygnus NG-13 departs ISS
12 May 2020 0116 UT – Jiuquan KZ-1A 2x Xingyun-2 EOS/Comm/Demo

Regional news
09 May 2020 – Statement by Winnipeg Airport rebuffed by Transport Canada
11 May 2020 – WestJet cancels flights into July
12 May 2020 – Snowbirds fly over Manitoba
12 May 2020 – MB 150 digital book collection holds hidden gems in aerospace history
12 May 2020 – Vincent Ledvina (U North Dakota) works on Aurora camera
13 May 2020 – Alberta wildfire still burns one year later
13 May 2020 – Budget cut means more layoffs at U Manitoba
13 May 2020 – Dr. Carl Isaacson featured by Minnesota Space Grant
13 May 2020 – U Minnesota Balloon Team featured by Minnesota Space Grant
13 May 2020 – Delta Airlines stops service to Saskatoon
14 May 2020 – Snowbirds fly over Saskatoon and Regina
14 May 2020 – Iowa Space Grant asks colleges for project proposals

Further news
09 May 2020 – USSF buys SpaceX data from other launches
10 May 2020 – Latest Starship SN4 cryotest reaches 750 kPa pressure
11 May 2020 – Virgin Galactic goes on sale to prop up sister airline
12 May 2020 – NASA signs deal for additional Soyuz seat
13 May 2020 – Falcon 9 test fires on pad ahead of ninth Starlink delivery
13 May 2020 – Crew Dragon DM-2 astronauts are in pre-launch medical isolation
14 May 2020 – EPA will not regulate water pollution from perchlorate, oxidizer for solid rockets
14 May 2020 – Intelsat goes bankrupt
14 May 2020 – Artemis program schedule slides into 2021

COVID-19 matters
08 May 2020 – FDA approves Rutgers easy but imperfect COVID spit test
08 May 2020 – Land-O-Lakes co-op opens up Wi-Fi for rural users
08 May 2020 – 3M to make 96 million N95 masks monthly at WI, SD factories
09 May 2020 – COVID spreads at Minnesota Amazon plant
09 May 2020 – Close quarters make COVID hard to fight at Iowa meat plant
09 May 2020 – FDA approves antigen test, faster than virus PCR
09 May 2020 – Lopinavir-ritonavir + ribavirin + interferon beta-1b drug triplet passes Phase II
11 May 2020 – COVID cases mount at Alberta food processors
12 May 2020 – Dr. Susan Kline (U Minnesota) tests drug cocktails against COVID
12 May 2020 – U Saskatchewan plans all-remote fall semester
12 May 2020 – Air Guard flyovers of Minnesota
12 May 2020 – Zyus Life Sciences of Saskatoon wants to print vaccine with plants
12 May 2020 – Rural SK lacks the broadband capacity for everyday needs
12 May 2020 – “MN Masks On” volunteers make masks for hospital visitors
13 May 2020 – Saskatchewan out 2.2 M$ for COVID tests now banned by Health Canada
13 May 2020 – Sask journo in UK takes a trial dose of U Oxford ChAdOx vaccine
14 May 2020 – Mayo and 5000 tests: Convalescent plasma doesn’t hurt COVID patients

Coronavirus information

This is a list of official websites with information on COVID-19 coronavirus in the region.

If you need general information not specific to your area, Ars Technica has published an excellent series.

Continue reading “Coronavirus information”

Progress cargo launched to ISS this week

A Soyuz-2.1a rocket sends Progress MS-14 to the International Space Station from Baikonur, 25 Apr 2020. (Roscosmos)

Soyuz launched the uncrewed Progress cargo module to the ISS early Saturday, and NASA announced three winning bidders for commercial crew lunar landers Thursday.

COVID-19 science
27 Apr 2020 – CDC officially adds 6 more symptoms of COVID
30 Apr 2020 – Experts welcome news on Remdesivir with caution
30 Apr 2020 – High hopes for antigen tests

Orbital News
25 Apr 2020 0151 UT – Baikonur Soyuz Progress MS-14 ISS Cargo
29 Apr 2020 – ISS Kibo deploys Quetzal-1, Guatemalan cubesat

Regional News
25 Apr 2020 – Kit plane C-GTET survives emergency landing
28 Apr 2020 – JetBlue alters MSP service due to COVID
28 Apr 2020 – Layoffs at U Sask could start 4 May
28 Apr 2020 – VP visits Mayo without mask

Further News
24 Apr 2020 – ViaSat gets FCC approval for 20 MEO netsats
26 Apr 2020 – Al Amal, Emirati Mars orbiter, at Tanegashima for July launch
26 Apr 2020 – SN4 survives cryo test, first Starship to pass
28 Apr 2020 – SpaceX sunshield shadows shiny Starlink sats
29 Apr 2020 – An-225, world’s largest plane, will fly PPE to Québec
29 Apr 2020 – CZ-5B rolled to pad at Wenchang for ~5 May launch
29 Apr 2020 – Electron rocket goes vertical at Virginia spaceport, for tests
30 Apr 2020 – Blue Moon, Starship, and Alpaca selected for lunar lander awards
30 Apr 2020 – FDA approves NASA ventilator

COVID-19 response
24 Apr 2020 – Two SK meat plants close
25 Apr 2020 – Winnipeg seamstress donates facemasks
27 Apr 2020 – MB researcher studies difference in COVID outcomes in men and women
27 Apr 2020 – Sask experts caution against herd immunity strategies
28 Apr 2020 – Alberta pilots fly masks north
28 Apr 2020 – MN, SD meat plants ordered reopened
28 Apr 2020 – Winnipeg fair, Red River Ex, cancelled due to COVID
29 Apr 2020 – Alberta workers call for meat plant closures
29 Apr 2020 – Outbreak prevents Lloydminster from joining SK reopen plan
29 Apr 2020 – U Regina students sell facemasks
30 Apr 2020 – Duluth firms make PPE
30 Apr 2020 – North Dakota SU trains contract tracers
30 Apr 2020 – U North Dakota makes Viral Transport Media reagent

Earthquake disrupts Salt Lake City airport

On 18 March 2020 at 13:09:31 UT, an earthquake damaged Salt Lake City International Airport, and threw air traffic in the Mountain States into further disarray. The 5.7 magnitude wobbler and its aftershocks made the Delta Airlines hub temporarily unusable, though the airport resumed limited operations after several hours.

Most airports in South Dakota, Montana, and Wyoming that rely on the Salt Lake City hub still have a flight to another Delta hub. Casper and Cody don’t, but are also served by United out of Denver. Butte’s only scheduled passenger flights are to Salt Lake City.

Fourth Starlink flight launched this week

60 satellites of the Starlink communications constellation are carried from Cape Canaveral on a Falcon 9 rocket on 29 January 2020 at 1406 UT. (SpaceX)

Orbital News
25 Jan 2020 – ISS EVA 227 (Parmitano, Morgan) fixes Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer
29 Jan 2020 1406 UT – Canaveral Falcon 9 Starlink 4
29 Jan 2020 2339 UT – Satellite collision avoided by just 47 meters
30 Jan 2020 – Spitzer Space Telescope end of mission

Regional News
24 Jan 2020 – Calgary Airport hit hard by MAX 8 ground stop due to Air Canada, WestJet fleets
27 Jan 2020 – Ellsworth AFB officer dies in E-11A crash
27 Jan 2020 – Jon Christopherson and Shankar Ramaseri of USGS EROS lecture at U North Dakota (Video)
27 Jan 2020 – Benjamin Fitzgerald (U Wisconsin – Whitewater) featured by Wisconsin Space Grant

Further news
24 Jan 2020 – Prototype spacecraft arrives at Wenchang ahead of CZ-5B demo launch
29 Jan 2020 – Boeing will pay to redo Starliner uncrewed test

Ariane 5 ends the week

Orbital news
15 Jan 2020 0253 UT – Taiyuan CZ-2D ÑuSat x2 Jilin-1 Tianqi-5
15 Jan 2020 – ISS EVA225 (Koch, Meir) fixes battery system
16 Jan 2020 0302 UT – Jiuquan KZ-1A Yinhe-1
16 Jan 2020 2105 UT – Kourou Ariane 5 KONNECT GSAT-30

Regional news
10 Jan 2020 – Lucas Bauer (U Wisconsin-Madison) featured by Wisconsin Space Grant
10 Jan 2020 – Space Force commander visits U North Dakota, Cavalier AFS
12 Jan 2020 – Cessna TR182 N736YU crashes near Dunn Mountain, MT, 4 dead
13 Jan 2020 – USGS EROS “Eyes on Earth” Podcast 14 released
13 Jan 2020 – Safe emergency landing in Calmar, AB
14 Jan 2020 – Bismarck Career Academy to buy its own plane
14 Jan 2020 – Allegiant announces seasonal flights
14 Jan 2020 – Iran crash casualites revised, investigators now cooperating
16 Jan 2020 – Joseph B. Habeck (U Minnesota-Twin Cities) featured by Minnesota Space Grant

Further news
10 Jan 2020 – Graduation of NASA Astronaut Group 22, “The Turtles”
12 Jan 2020 – Maesawa puts gameshow in critical path for moon flight
12 Jan 2020 – SLS test article reaches Stennis Space Center

Late news
06 Jan 2020 – 44th Air Race Classic will fly between Grand Forks and Terre Haute June 2020

Allegiant plans 2020 summer flight season

Allegiant Air has issued a press release for its 2020 summer routes. Several Midwest cities are getting extra destinations, specifically:

Nashville to Fargo, Sioux Falls, Bozeman, and Peoria;
Boston and Los Angeles to Grand Rapids;
Chicago-Midway and Memphis to Des Moines;
Austin to Des Moines and Grand Rapids; and
St. Louis-MidAmerica to Savannah.

The seasonal flights start between mid-May and early June and will run through the summer.

Long March 5 success highlights the week

A Long March 5 rocket carried the SJ-20 saellite from Wenchang to orbit, 27 Dec 2019 1245 UT (Weibo)

Orbital News
27 Dec 2019 1245 UT – Wenchang CZ-5 SJ-20 commsat
29 Dec 2019 – Christina Koch sets an orbital endurance record

Regional News
27 Dec 2019 – 12 injured in LN2 breach at Beechcraft plant in Wichita
28 Dec 2019 –

Dr. Cheryl Rockman-Greenberg of Winnipeg named to the Order of Canada, for work on genetic disorders.
Also named, three from Ontario and B.C. for aviation matters, and
James Cameron of Saskatoon, for achievements in film.

29 Dec 2019 – Kauaʻi tourist flight crash killed two from Wisconsin
29 Dec 2019 – Starlink satellites spotted over Manitoba
30 Dec 2019 – Bismarck offers $4000 scholarships for new pilots
30 Dec 2019 – MDA splits off from Maxar in 1 G$ CAD deal
30 Dec 2019 – Sun Country Airlines may add Sioux Falls to express bus network
30 Dec 2019 – Honeywell cuts 90 aerospace jobs in Minnesota
31 Dec 2019 –

Colin O’Brady of Jackson Hole,
Andrew Towne of Grand Forks,
and 4 international adventurers,
reached Antarctica after rowing from South America

31 Dec 2019 – Billings adds flights to Dallas, Portland on American, Alaska
31 Dec 2019 – Colorado-based planes to track GHG emissions
02 Jan 2020 – United flight slides off runway at Bismarck Airport
02 Jan 2020 – Unidentified drones fly after sunset in Colorado and Nebraska

Further News
29 Dec 2019 – Boeing updates public on Starliner recovery and checkout
30 Dec 2019 – Iridium wonders aloud about how to deorbit 30 dead commsats
30 Dec 2019 – SLS test slips to perhaps April or later
02 Jan 2020 – Japanese Momo rocket test postponed

Late News
19 Dec 2019 – New (?) spaceport licence sought for the local airport near Cape Canaveral
22 Dec 2019 – Myrtle Cagle, pilot of Mercury 13 fame, dead at 94
23 Dec 2019 – Alaska Airlines upgrades Bozeman to mainline 21 May 2020
23 Dec 2019 – FAA ends untrained ATC quota, U of North Dakota pleased
25 Dec 2019 – Sioux Falls crash revisited one year later

KZ-1A flew twice in less than a week

A KZ-1A rocket lifts off from Jiuquan with two commsats from German company KLEO Connect, 1000 UT 17 Nov 2019. (Weibo)

Orbital News
17 Nov 2019 ~1000 UT – KZ-1A KL-Alpha x2

Regional News
Recently – Lance Nichols (Montana State University) featured by Montana Space Grant
11 Nov 2019 – Mary Claire Mancl (University of Wisconsin-Madison) featured by Wisconsin Space Grant
13 Nov 2019 – Kelsey Mueller (Iowa State University) named Iowa EPSCoR coordinator
15 Nov 2019 – Jack Stutler (University of Minnesota-Twin Cities) featured by Minnesota Space Grant
15 Nov 2019 – Omaha NOAA WSR-88D Weather Radar refurbished
18 Nov 2019 – Nicholas Hennigan (Milwaukee School of Engineering) featured by Wisconsin Space Grant
19 Nov 2019 – South Dakota Space Grant awardee Brad Goff (Lake Area Technical Institute) featured by KELO-TV
21 Nov 2019 – Skies features Natalie Esser, Albertan kit-plane builder and sport-flyer

Further News
15 Nov 2019 – Structural failure caused SARGE crash
19 Nov 2019 – SNC fêtes ‘Shooting Star’ external cargo module for Dream Chaser
20 Nov 2019 2126 UT – Starship Mk 1 suffers BLEVE during Liquid Nitrogen fill, SpaceX will move on to Mk 3 model

Late News
11 Nov 2019 1456 UT – CCAFS F9 Starlink
13 Nov 2019 0105 UT – Hayabusa2 departs from asteroid Ryugu
13 Nov 2019 0340 UT – Jiuquan KZ-1A Jilin-1 Gaofen-02A
13 Nov 2019 0635 UT – Taiyuan CZ-6 Ningxia-1 x5