[Space] 2021.01.15

Challenges | Campaigns | Solicitations
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]
New challenge to feed future astronauts aims to create novel food production technologies that require minimal inputs to maximize safe, nutritious, and palatable food outputs for long-duration space missions. [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]
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. Closes June 18, 2021. [Forward]
Vespera is a smart and fully automated combination telescope and camera. Observe the night sky, capture celestial photos, and learn about the Cosmos all in one place. [Forward]
Join thousands of volunteers to help identify and classify samples of variable stars using SuperWASP, the world's most successful ground-based survey for transiting exoplanets. [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]
On Jan. 20 at 7 pm PT, join this free online discussion on the need for giant telescopes and what they might allow us to observe in the cosmos. [Forward]
This free event marks the 35th anniversary of Space Shuttle Columbia’s launch. Hear what it was like to be on board from Astronaut and 12th NASA Administrator Charles Bolden Jr. [Forward]
Feb. 8-12, interested professionals or curious students can join the free virtual Space Horizons conference for round table discussions with experts to explore current problems and solutions in space sustainability. [Forward]
ISDC 2021 will highlight the public and private efforts to push the boundaries of space exploration. Registration and pricing are pending. May 27-30, 2021 at the Sheraton Gateway Los Angeles. [Forward]
ISEC 2021 will focus on the Tether/Climber interface, Environmental Benefits of Space Elevators, and more. May 25-26, 2021 at the Sheraton Gateway Los Angeles. Price is pending. [Forward]

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// FYI
Space Ecosystem | Startups | Deals
SpinLaunch plans to spend $46 million on construction at Spaceport America over the next 10 years, with suborbital tests of its centrifugal launch technology planned for sometime in 2021. [Forward]
‘Space Tug’ is the first vehicle of its kind developed in the U.K. Once in orbit, it can navigate to any location under its own power, making multiple stops. [Forward] 
Space Exploration | Development
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
NASA extended the Juno mission at Jupiter through September 2025 and the InSight mission at Mars through December 2022. Each mission has already increased our understanding of our solar system. [Forward]
To colonize Mars, we need a source of metal for construction and manufacturing. The success of the BioRock experiment means biomining in space could work with the right tiny microbes. [Forward]
The order directs NASA, DoD, the Energy Department, and other agencies to collaborate on a technology roadmap, coordinating terrestrial-based advanced nuclear reactor and space-based nuclear power/propulsion efforts through 2030. [Forward]
India's Chandrayaan 2 has been orbiting the moon for over a year, but they've only shared three images from their high resolution camera—and two of those are blurry. [Forward]
2021 missions include putting the Perseverance Rover on Mars, traveling back to the Moon in Artemis 1, and DART which will test a proposed planetary defense from asteroids. [Forward]
Astronomy | Astrophysics | Cosmology
Possible methods of detection include gamma rays from colliding matter, gravity leaking from the other side of a wormhole, and observation of Odd Radio Circles. [Forward]
Image Credit: NANOGrav/T. Klein
Light from dozens of pulsars in the Milky Way is being used to detect a "gravitational wave background", the steady flux of gravitational radiation from cosmological events. [Forward]