NASA has selected Axiom Space of Houston to provide at least one habitable commercial module to be attached to the International Space Station as the agency continues to open the station for commercial use.
“NASA has once again recognized the hard work, talent, and experience of Houstonians as we expand the International Space Station and promote commercial opportunities in space,” said Sen. John Cornyn of Texas. “I’m proud Axiom will continue to build upon Texas’ legacy of leading the nation in human space exploration.”
This selection is a significant step toward enabling the development of independent commercial destinations that meet NASA’s long-terms needs in low-Earth orbit, beyond the life of the space station, and continue to foster the growth of a robust low-Earth orbit economy.
“Today’s announcement is an exciting and welcome step forward in the efforts to commercialize low-Earth orbit,” said Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas. “This partnership between NASA and Axiom Space – a Houston, Texas original – illustrates how critically important the International Space Station is, and will continue to be, for developing new technologies for low-Earth orbit and beyond, and for continuing America’s leadership in space. Congratulations to Axiom Space on this exciting award – Houston is known as Space City for a reason, and I look forward to this great Space City company and NASA turning this announcement into reality.”
The element will attach to the space station’s Node 2 forward port to demonstrate its ability to provide products and services and begin the transition to a sustainable low-Earth orbit economy in which NASA is one of many customers. NASA and Axiom next will begin negotiations on the terms and price of a firm-fixed-price contract with a five-year base performance period and a two-year option.
“Congratulations to Axiom Space! This is not only a win for Texas, Johnson Space Center, and the International Space Station, it is also a great step forward for NASA as we move towards an increased commercial presence in low-Earth orbit,” said Rep. Brian Babin of Texas. “I am proud to see this work coming to Space City – Houston, Texas – as the Lone Star State continues to lead in space exploration well into the future.”
Developing commercial destinations in low-Earth orbit is one of five elements of NASA’s plan to open the International Space Station to new commercial and marketing opportunities. The other elements of the five-point plan include efforts to make station and crew resources available for commercial use through a new commercial use and pricing policy; enable private astronaut missions to the station; seek out and pursue opportunities to stimulate long-term, sustainable demand for these services; and quantify NASA’s long-term demand for activities in low-Earth orbit.
“Axiom’s work to develop a commercial destination in space is a critical step for NASA to meet its long-term needs for astronaut training, scientific research, and technology demonstrations in low-Earth orbit,” said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. “We are transforming the way NASA works with industry to benefit the global economy and advance space exploration. It is a similar partnership that this year will return the capability of American astronauts to launch to the space station on American rockets from American soil.”
NASA selected Axiom from proposals submitted in response to a solicitation through Appendix I of NASA’s Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships (NextSTEP) 2 Broad Agency Announcement, which offered private industry use of the station utilities and a port to attach one or more commercial elements to the orbiting laboratory.
Because commercial destinations are considered a key element of a robust economy in low-Earth orbit, NASA also plans to issue a final opportunity to partner with the agency in the development of a free-flying, independent commercial destination. Through these combined efforts to develop commercial destinations, NASA is set to meet its long-term needs in low-Earth orbit well beyond the life of the station.
The agency will continue to need low-Earth orbit microgravity research and testing to enable future missions to the Moon and Mars, including the arrival of the first woman and next man on the Moon with the Artemis III mission as part of the agency’s Artemis lunar exploration plans.
Learn more about NASA’s efforts to develop a robust low-Earth orbit economy here.
STUDY: Being Wealthy Adds 9 More Healthy Years to Your Life
Being wealthy adds nine years to healthy life expectancy: a life free from disability and pain, according to transatlantic research.
The 10-year study, conducted across the UK and US, looked at all the social and economic factors behind the reasons why people sink into ill-health as they age.
“We found that socio-economic inequalities in disability-free life expectancy were similar across all ages in England and the US but the biggest socio-economic advantage in both countries and across all age groups was wealth,” said Dr Paola Zaninotto, a professor in epidemiology and healthcare at University College London, which led the research.
Published on Tuesday in the Journal of Gerontology, the data from 10,754 UK adults aged 50 and older, and 14,803 US adults over 50, examined how long people can expect to live free from disabilities and to what extent socio-economic factors play a part.
The English Longitudinal Study of Ageing and the US Health and Retirement Study both found that while life expectancy is a useful indicator of health, the quality of life as we age is crucial to determining our health.
“By measuring healthy life expectancy we can get an estimate of the number of years of life spent in favourable states of health or without disability,” said Zaninotto.
“We know that improving both the quality and the quantity of years that individuals are expected to live has implications for public expenditure on health, income, long-term care of older people and work participation and our results suggest that policy makers in both England and the US must make greater efforts into reducing health inequalities,” she added.
In both countries people in the study were divided into groups based on total household wealth. Comparisons were made between the richest and least wealthy groups.
The paper shows that at 50 the wealthiest men in England and the US lived about an additional 31 healthy years, compared with about 22 to 23 years for those in the poorest wealth groups.
Women from the wealthiest groups from the US and England lived around an additional 33 “healthy” years, compared with 24.6 and 24 years from the poorest wealth groups in England the US respectively.
Recent ONS statistics also showed that those aged 65 are seeing their healthy life expectancy increase: since 2009, men in England and Wales aged 65 have gained 31.5 weeks of life and 33.5 weeks of healthy life. Women of the same age have gained 17.4 weeks of life and 23.3 weeks of healthy life over the same period.
But the data also revealed that children born today are likely to spend a larger proportion of their lives in poor health than their grandparents.
They will also benefit from substantially smaller increases in their life expectancy than those born a few years earlier, in the first decade of the 21st century.
In contrast, the proportion of life expected to be spent in good health in the UK has decreased between 2009-11 and 2016-18, from 79.9% to 79.5% for males and from 77.4% to 76.7% for females.
This article’s headline was amended on 20 January 2020 to more accurately reflect the content of the article.
Copyright © 2020 theguardian.com. All rights reserved.
New Book Explores What Being a Man Means in 2020
Written by Destin Gerek, an internationally recognized expert on masculinity and male sexuality, The Evolved Masculine helps men navigate perilous times.
In the decade that just ended, once-powerful men such as Roger Ailes, Harvey Weinstein and the late Jeffrey Epstein toppled from their lofty positions after the toxic way they treated women became public. At the same time, women spoke out and continued to make inroads into politics and other traditionally male preserves.
Destin Gerek: The Evolved Masculine
And while this may be unsettling for some men, it is a good thing, notes Destin Gerek, an internationally recognized expert on masculinity, male sexuality and male empowerment. As he points out in his new book, The Evolved Masculine: Be The Man The World Needs & The One She Craves (Archetypal Publishing), “We are living in a time in which notions of masculinity and femininity and the roles of men and women are being questioned and have become more fluid than ever before. … Increasingly powerful women have necessitated men to rethink their own role: These radical changes have become increasingly uncomfortable for us as men. They have forced us to look within, reassess our own outdated programming, and evolve our understanding of masculinity and what it means to be a man.”
Gerek’s book aims to fill that void even as it chronicles his own transformative search for the answers to what is masculinity, what is the beauty and good in it, and what qualities and values it adds to men’s lives.
Gerek has been featured in Entrepreneur, Details, the Associated Press, and the San Francisco Chronicle, and on Showtime and Playboy Radio, among others.
In an interview, he can discuss:
- What does it mean to be a good man in 2020?
- Why does he say that recreating the world to allow for women and the feminine to flourish doesn’t need to be at the expense of men?
- How can men cope with the confusing and conflicting messages that surround them?
- What did he learn from creating his Erotic Rockstar avatar than led him to a seemingly endless stream of lovers in over two dozen countries?
- How can men unleash their sexuality without becoming “one of those guys” women despise?
- What are some of the concepts he promotes that challenge what we have been taught to believe?
Praise for The Evolved Masculine
“Destin Gerek is THE most informed and skillful educator of conscious masculinity today. During a daunting era for the modern man, he fearlessly leads them out of confusion and into clarity, power, and purpose. His wisdom is the guidance every man should have if he wants to play a bigger game.” – Eva Clay, LCSW, clinical sexologist and founder of the Institute of Intimacy Arts
“This book takes real risks. Destin plumbs the depths of his own story (and psyche) to offer a path to any person ready for reinvention. … The Evolved Masculine turns the idea of authenticity on its head, and arrives, surprisingly, at a place of vulnerable and authentic being for men.” – Boysen Hodgson communications director, ManKind Project USA
“I could hardly put it down. … I feel greater understanding and compassion for men as a result of reading The Evolved Masculine.”– KC Baker, founder, WomanSpeak, Inc.
About the Author
Destin Gerek is a globally recognized leading voice in masculinity, sexuality, and personal empowerment. He is founder and CEO of The Evolved Masculine, a pioneering coaching and training company for men and an international speaker and hosts a podcast by the same name.
Move Over Avocado Toast: New Report Shows 92% of Millennial Millionaires Have Purchased Property
In an effort to help luxury real estate professionals better understand this influential group of current and future homeowners, the company partnered with WealthEngine to analyze key aspects of the millennial millionaire lifestyle, including wealth creation, philanthropy, property investments, spending trends and more.
“Millennial millionaires are projected to become one of the richest and most influential generations in history, said Charlie Young, president and CEO of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. “This report is a smart way to get a detailed look at this generation. Real estate professionals should take notice as understanding this generation will be key to growing your business in decades to come.”
Today, there are approximately 618,000 millennial millionaires in the United States.
According to the WealthEngine data, the vast majority – 93 percent – have a net worth between $1 million and $2.49 million, but the generation stands to be worth even more. In the coming decades many more millennial millionaires will be minted as part of “The Great Wealth Transfer;” millennials are projected to inherit $68 trillion from predecessors.
“This population of millennial millionaires is large and only getting larger – by 2030 millennials are projected to hold five times the wealth they hold today, said Craig Hogan, vice president of luxury for Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. “How are they investing in real estate now? How will that change when the Great Wealth Transfer takes place? This report is a must read for any real estate professional looking to build life-long relationships with top clients today and tomorrow.”
Other notable report findings include the following:
- The top states for millennial millionaires: California (44%), New York (14%), Florida (5%), Massachusetts (5%), Texas (5%), Washington (4%) and New Jersey (4%)
- Eight of the top ten ZIP codes are concentrated in California’s Silicon Valley, but the surprise #1 ZIP code? Traverse City, Michigan
- Walkability is welcome: millennials value walkable neighborhoods over well-established luxury communities
- But they’re not giving up driving altogether. The top car model for millennial millionaires is the BMW 3 Series; compare that to the top car for all millennials, the Chevrolet Silverado
- Homeownership is high: 92% have purchased property, with 80% purchasing a single-family dwelling
- Home Improvement = Customization: 77% are interested in home improvement as a way to personalize their space
- Charitable causes are compelling: 56% of millennial millionaires donate to charities
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