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Robert Pearlman
4,391 followers -
collecting space (history, stories, adventures, artifacts...)
collecting space (history, stories, adventures, artifacts...)

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From low-cost t-shirts to luxury leather totes, NASA's retired logotype, the "worm," is making a comeback, of sorts. The logo was recently re-added to the space agency's merchandising regulations, making way for its use by Target, Coach and other national brands. The worm was used from 1976 to 1992, when it was retired in favor of NASA's original graphic insignia, the "meatball."

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Two record-setting astronauts who launched together on a 1993 space shuttle mission were inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame on Friday (May 19) at NASA's Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida. Michael Foale and Ellen Ochoa are the 16th class of space shuttle veterans to enter the Hall. They were celebrated by their fellow astronauts, family members and the public for their contributions to space exploration.

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Sotheby's will auction an Apollo 11 moon rock bag that it is describing as "the most important space artifact to ever appear at auction." The cloth bag, which was recently at the center of a now resolved legal dispute, protected the first lunar samples collected from the surface of the moon. Sotheby's expects the bag will sell for $2 to $4 million, possibly establishing a new record for the most ever paid for a space exploration artifact at auction.

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The Museum of Flight in Seattle welcomes its new exhibit about the 1960s Space Race, APOLLO, opening to the public on Saturday (May 20). The permanent exhibit's centerpiece is the first public display of the Saturn V F-1 rocket engines recovered by Jeff Bezos and his expedition team in 2013. APOLLO also features an Apollo 12 moon rock, the first Apollo command module and moonwalker Pete Conrad's personal space memorabilia.

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One of the 20 original Soviet cosmonauts selected in 1960, Viktor Vasilyevich Gorbatko died Wednesday (May 17) at the age of 82. Gorbatko flew into space three times, on board Soyuz 7 in 1969 (just three months after the first U.S. moon landing), Soyuz 24 in 1977 and Soyuz 37 in 1980. He logged more than 30 days in orbit before leaving the cosmonaut corps in 1982.

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A creative director and avid space memorabilia collector, Duane King set about obtaining his own replica of the plaque that flew on NASA's Pioneer 10 and Pioneer 11 probes. Working with the same craftsman who engraved the original, King produced an exact replica, which he is now offering through a Kickstarter campaign. A laser-engraved, open edition reissue is also available, in an effort to expand the plaque's reach to all audiences.

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Astronauts will not fly on the first flight of NASA's Space Launch System (SLS), Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1), the space agency announced Friday (May 12). Despite a study determining it was technically possible to support a crew on the maiden flight, the additional cost, risk and time required to do so did not warrant the change. Instead, EM-1 will launch to the moon without astronauts on board, sometime in 2019.

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Astronauts Peggy Whitson and Jack Fischer installed a new avionics box and completed other tasks outside of the International Space Station on Friday (May 12), during the 200th spacewalk in support of the orbiting laboratory. Despite being cut short due to an airlock umbilical issue that in turn depleted power supplies to the astronauts' spacesuits, Whitson and Fischer made the milestone extravehicular activity a success.

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Bill Odom and Donn Binns join Don Brincka and Myron Pessin as the stars of the debut episode of a new Smithsonian Channel six-part television series airing Sunday (May 14). Though their names be unfamiliar, what they achieved is not: the Saturn V moon rocket. "America's Secret Space Heroes" explores the history of space exploration from the perspective of the unsung engineers and technicians who made it possible.

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A six-year dispute over a small stash of moon-flown bibles is now over after a Texas state agency dropped its claim. Carol Mersch, author of "Apostles of Apollo," regained the Apollo 14 flown microfilm bibles that she said were given to her by Rev. John Stout, the late founder of the Apollo Prayer League. Mersch's bibles were among the 300 flown by astronaut Edgar Mitchell.
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