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NASA has awarded a contract extension to the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, to continue operations and science support for the agency’s Chandra X-ray Observatory. from NASA

Five new NASA Earth science campaigns will take to the field starting in 2020 to investigate a range of pressing research questions, from what drives intense East Coast snowfall events to the impact of small-scale ocean currents on global climate. from NASA

Medical students from The University of Texas Health Sciences Center (UTHealth) in Houston will speak with an astronaut aboard the International Space Station next week. from NASA

Delayed due to inclement weather, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) now is targeting 1:52 p.m. EDT Saturday, Sept. 22 (2:52 a.m. Sept. 23 in Japan), for the launch of its unpiloted H-II Transfer Vehicle-7 (HTV-7) cargo spacecraft. from NASA

Experts from NASA will preview two upcoming spacewalks outside the International Space Station to continue upgrades to the orbiting laboratory’s power system in a briefing at 2 p.m. EDT Thursday, Sept. 27, at the agency’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. from NASA

Members of NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft team will host a Science Chat at 1 p.m. EDT Wednesday, Sept. 19, on humanity’s farthest planetary flyby, scheduled to occur Jan. 1 when the spacecraft encounters a mysterious object in the Kuiper Belt nicknamed “Ultima Thule.” from NASA

NASA has named Holly Ridings its new chief flight director, making her the first woman to lead the elite group that directs human spaceflight missions from the Mission Control Center at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. from NASA

NASA’s Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite-2 (ICESat-2) successfully launched from California at 9:02 a.m. EDT Saturday, embarking on its mission to measure the ice of Earth’s frozen reaches with unprecedented accuracy. from NASA

NASA Fellowship Activity has awarded fellowships through NASA’s Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP) and Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD) to 12 graduate students totaling $1.9 million to conduct research and contribute directly to NASA’s work and mission. from NASA

Students in Georgia and Washington, D.C., will talk live with two NASA astronauts on the International Space Station next week as part of NASA’s Year of Education on Station. from NASA