Friday Flybys (vol. 4)

This week's Flybys (in, as always, no particular order)...

Mo' Congressional space: SpaceRef graciously transcribes
Congressman Ken Calvert's speech at the eighth annual AST Commercial Space Transportation Conference. Rep. Calvert (R-CA) last week took the helm at the House Science Committee's Space and Aeronautics Subcommittee and already the new chair wins praise: Rand Simberg over at Transterrestrial Musings says Rep. Calvert will be "very good for the commercial space industry."

Also at the AST gathering, DOT Secretary Mineta announced draft space safety guidelines, but all I got is this silly
press release, which promises, "detailed explanation of the guidelines later in the conference." I'll post 'em when I see 'em.

Could Miss Carly be the new Sean O'Keefe? Jeff Foust was clearly joking (or not?) when he noted today on Space Politics, "hey, I hear Carly Fiorina is looking for a new job, and she did serve on the Aldridge Commission…" Hmm... (Then again, Martha Stewart is getting out of the slammer shortly and she would just love to decorate neighboring planets...) Speculation about the identity of the new NASA chief continues...

Another top ten list: For aerospace industry buffs, lawyers and clients, the Aerospace Industry Association has identified
Top Ten Aerospace Industry Issues for 2005. (My favorite: Promote Sustained National Support for a Next-Generation, Human-rated Space Vehicle and Robotic Space Exploration Program.)

In case you missed the multi-million dollar Superbowl ad starring the new Volvo XC90 V8 and Sir Richard Branson looking so natural in a cool spacesuit (and you also didn't see the ad during The West Wing, ER, or that e-verison of it on a zillion sites across Webspace), here's the deal: Volvo and Virgin Galactic have teamed up to hype the SUV and give away a sub-orbital ride on a spaceship. (Three days of pre-flight training included.) Enter the contest
here. And fasten your safety harness. Winner will be announced March 24 at the New York International Auto Show.

And on
Our Earth as Art, oogle spectacular images of the home planet taken by Landsat-7 and the Terra Satellite's Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER), courtesy of the USGS and NASA.

Happy Valentine's Weekend.

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