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Marc Boucher and Keith Cowing

At the beginning of April we wrote a letter to you, our readers. For the first time in twenty years of operation we asked for your help. To those of you who read our letter and are supporting us, thank you.

We don't have a paywall, out content is freely available. But to continue on, and do our job, we need the support of many more of you. We know we've got a good audience. We know some of you just can't support us. We understand that, times are tough. But for some, you can, and so we're appealing to you. We're not asking a lot. Even $5 a month will do just fine. We just need more of you to support us.

If you can think you support us at $5 or more then click here and pledge your support. If you want to give us a one time donation, then click here.

Thank you,
Marc and Keith
SpaceRef - NASA Watch - The Astrobiology Web

NASA FISO Presentation: Inflatable Antenna for CubeSats

"Now available is the May 6, 2015 NASA Future In-Space Operations (FISO) telecon material. The speaker was Alessandra Babuscia (NASA JPL) who discussed "Inflatable Antenna for CubeSats".

Marc's note: Harley Thronson of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and Dan Lester of the University of Texas, to their credit, have been holding almost regular weekly "Future In-Space Operations (FISO) Working Group Presentations" since 2006.

Commercial Space Watch is now SpaceRef Business, SpaceRef

Marc's note: SpaceRef is committed to providing timely, useful news and analysis on a wide variety of topics. Our web site focusing on business has been up until today called Commercial Space Watch. Today I'm happy to announce that in the first of many changes to the site we''re rebranding it as SpaceRef Business ( Over the coming months you'll see increased business coverage and services on the site.

One of those new initiatives is to include more user generated content on all our sites including SpaceRef Business. So starting today you Guest Blog Pitch us.

What are we looking for? We're looking for articles and commentary that would benefit the community regarding all aspects of the space sector: business, space policy, military space, space exploration, space science, technology and more. Learn more.

SpaceRef and the Secure World Foundation Enter Agreement on Multimedia Content Distribution, SpaceRef

"SpaceRef Interactive Inc. and the Secure World Foundation have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the purpose of disseminating original multimedia content from Secure World Foundation events. The first event to be distributed through SpaceRef's network is the Secure World Foundation release of the 2012 Space Security Index Executive Summary."

Marc's note: As of yesterday SpaceRef is now using a new provider, MailChimp, for our mailing lists. With the change we'll better able to respond to the needs of our readers. The upgrade includes a switch from our text based newsletter to an HTML based newsletter although you can opt to receive text only. We'll use a basic design for now, but will upgrade and enhance the newsletter as we go forward. We currently send out a weekday newsletter and breaking news as it happens. Out list is never shared or sold to anyone. You can opt-out at any time. If you're not on our mailing list why not join now?

- Join the SpaceRef network mailing list which includes NASA Watch updates.

- Join the SpaceRef Canada mailing list.

Marc's note: Last Friday SpaceRef upgraded its site search engine which is now available on NASA Watch, SpaceRef, Commercial Space Watch and SpaceRef Canada.

The new site search includes content from these SpaceRef web sites: NASA Watch, SpaceRef, SpaceRef Canada, Commercial Space Watch, OnOrbit, The Astrobiology Web and NASA Hack Space. I think you'll find the search very responsive and accurate and is updated continually.

Comment System Update

Marc's note: Last week we upgraded our comment system to a new version from our provider Disqus, however we've had reports of some users experiencing problems. We've informed Disqus of the issues and have reverted back to the previous version. When they fix the current version we'll do the upgrade.

Marc's note: Please note that from 11:00 pm ET tonight through 11:00 am ET tomorrow NASA Watch will be undergoing maintenance and may be unavailable at times during that time with commenting turned off. We're implementing a new commenting system. All old comments will be archived and ported to the new system.

Marc's update - 12:00 pm ET Dec. 26: As part of our ongoing plan to improve NASA Watch we've decided to implement a new comment system. The transition is ongoing and is taking a little longer than expected. This is due to the sheer number of comments that need to be migrated to our new system.

We'll be using Disqus a third party comment service which we've already implemented on some of the other SpaceRef web sites. One of the benefits of the new comment system will be a faster system, an ability to whitelist more commenters and a more effective and time saving spam filtering system. If you already have a Disqus account you can start commenting right away. Otherwise it just takes a couple of minutes to create a new commenting account.

The new system is effective immediately for new posts as of today. Older posts will have their comments transitioned over the next day. If you have any questions please send your inquiry to



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