[Space] 2020.11.15

Challenges | Campaigns | Solicitations
NASA seeks innovative approaches for excavating icy regolith and delivering water in extreme lunar conditions to enable human presence on the Moon. $5,000,000 in prizes. Begins November 2020. [Forward]
WEAR is an engineering design challenge seeking wearable technologies for exploring deep space. Open to middle-high school students in formal or informal education institutions. Intent to participate due Dec. 1. [Forward]
NASA’s looking for responses from a vast range of potential partners, including broadcasters and studios, as well as aerospace-specific companies, nonprofits, and schools. Proposals are due by December 11, 2020. [Forward]
Write an essay about leading a one-week expedition at the Moon’s South Pole. Participants receive a NASA certificate. Grand prize is a trip to the Artemis-1 Launch. Closes Dec. 17. [Forward]
NASA seeks scalable ideas that can address how to unload payloads from lunar landers on the lunar surface. $25,000 in total prizes. Submit by January 19, 2021. [Forward]
NASA needs the software for small unmanned aircraft systems usable for live flight operations. There are multiple challenges with $30,700 in total prizes. Closes March 1, 2021. [Forward]
NASA seeks solutions for energy distribution, management, or storage developable for space flight and future operation on the lunar surface. Up to $500K in prizes. September 25 - March 25, 2021. [Forward]
Join 62,361 volunteers and search for Planet 9 and new brown dwarfs in the backyard of the solar system using data from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission. [Forward]
Write or draw your vision of why you think Earth needs Space on a postcard and have it launched into space and back on a Blue Origin New Shepard rocket. [Forward]
The contest received over 2,000 entries. First place went to a toilet called the Translunar Hypercritical Repository 1 (THRONE). The winning team won $20,000 in prize money. [Forward]
Gaitee Hussain, Head of the Science Division at the European Space Agency (ESA), provides a free Zoom lecture about living around other stars that aren’t our sun. [Forward]
Image Credits: NASA/Bill White
Director of NASA's John F. Kennedy Space Center and Astronaut Robert D. Cabana will discuss NASA’s Artemis Program and the Gateway program: the planned permanent human presence on the Moon. [Forward]
For €10.00, kids worldwide can ask about space exploration. The event is divided into five one hour panels, each delivered by well-known academics, scientists, and professionals. [Forward]
The free webinar, followed by a Q&A, will be an enriching talk by Ran Livne and Dor Herman, two CEOs on the frontlines of AI in the space industry. [Forward]
Join TechCrunch's editors in Los Angeles on December 17 for a day of fireside chats and panel discussion with the top investors, founders, and technologists forging the future of space. [Forward]

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// FYI
Space Ecosystem | Startups | Deals
Blue Canyon has 90 satellites in production for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the U.S. Air Force, and NASA. The value of the acquisition was not disclosed. [Forward]
Founder Max Hoat says they’ve had a 10-year plan from day one, and the timeline hasn’t changed. They’re on track for an engine test at the end of 2021. [Forward]
The new Vector will leverage much of the design of the Vector-R rocket the original company had in development, but with new engines and an initial focus on suborbital markets. [Forward]
The novel 3D printer onboard the ISS uses just resin and light to create near-perfect ceramic pieces in microgravity. It could mark the beginning of space-enabled manufacturing. [Forward]
Space Exploration | Development
Live launch coverage will begin at 20:30 UTC (3:30 p.m. EST) on Sunday, November 15, 2020. Stream anywhere via NASA TV or the SpaceX website. [Forward]
John Logsdon, historian and expert in presidential space politics, says Bridenstine “has been a NASA administrator, not a Trump representative at NASA… He’s exceeded anyone’s expectations in the position.” [Forward]
Starship is the biggest, most powerful, most ambitious rocket ever built. SpaceX employed a litany of new technologies, developed new materials, and procured the most advanced rocket engines ever made. [Forward]
Astronomy | Astrophysics | Cosmology
Our galaxy holds an estimated 300 million potentially habitable worlds, with at least four within 30 light-years of our Sun. It’s estimated that 7% of Sun-like stars host such worlds. [Forward]
The fast radio bursts are likely generated by a magnetar, the most magnetic type of star in the universe. The astrophysical mechanics of how magnetars do this isn’t well understood. [Forward]
Astronomers believe water could exist in cold traps, pockets of the Moon in constant shadow. There are many cold traps, enough to potentially cover an area as large as Switzerland. [Forward]