Main Engine Cut Off

Opinion and analysis of spaceflight, exploration, policy, and strategy, by Anthony Colangelo.

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T+231: The Future of Private Astronaut Missions to the ISS

In the wake of Axiom-1, NASA has revised the requirements for future Private Astronaut Missions. It seems to put pressure on the market to focus on a certain customer base, like research and national astronauts, and it definitely changes the math for future flights.

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T+230: Bob Pearce, Associate Administrator of NASA’s Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate

Bob Pearce, Associate Administrator of NASA’s Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate, joins me to talk about Aeronautics at NASA. We talk about how the directorate fits into the agency overall, how they develop its strategic direction, how they choose which projects to take on, how they transfer technology to industry, what they’re working on right now, and what they’ll tackle in the future.

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T+229: Space Insurance (with Richard Parker and John Farnsworth)

Richard Parker, Head of Space at Canopius, and John Farnsworth, insurance broker and space advocate, join me to talk about the (seemingly) most mysterious topic in spaceflight: insurance!

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T+228: Artemis I, Act I

Artemis I scrubbed its way through its first and second launch attempts, and is now undergoing repairs on the pad, ahead of its next launch attempt. I talk about the initial attempts, general thoughts on where we’re at with this program, where it’s headed in the future, and what public reactions to Artemis I have been.

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T+227: Astrobee, Free-Flying Robots on the ISS (with Jonathan Barlow)

Jonathan Barlow from the NASA Ames Research Center joins me to talk about Astrobee—the free-flying robots on the International Space Station that test new technologies, sensors, and operations, and assist astronauts and mission controllers alike. Jonathan is the Astrobee Lead Engineer and has been with the program since the beginning, so we go way back to its origins and talk in-depth about what the robots are up to today on the ISS.

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