The Cosmic Companion Newsletter

The premiere issue celebrating life, the Universe, and you know the rest...

Hello everyone!

This is the first issue of The Cosmic Companion newsletter, and I want to thank you all for being among the first to join up.

This week, we will talk about my new upcoming e-book, The First Woman on the Moon, and discuss highlights of space and astronomy news. I’ll also show you how to learn more about The Cosmic Companion, to keep up with all the amazing news, discoveries, and photos of the Cosmos that surrounds us all.

Let’s get ready for takeoff.

The First Woman on the Moon

I’m really excited about this new project, and I hope you will be as well. This e-book looks at the contributions of women to space programs around the world, starting with Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman in space, and the Mercury 13, the first group of American women trained as astronauts (although none ever flew to space).

In 2024, NASA plans to land astronauts on the Moon for the first time in over 50 years. Included in the crew will be the first woman to ever walk on the lunar surface. Although the crew for this mission has not yet been announced, the space agency has offered some tantalizing clues about their selection criteria. The First Woman on the Moon offers biographies of the 12 women likely to be chosen to be the first female astronaut to place her boots on the Moon as part of the Artemis 3 mission.

For anyone interested in space, science, or feminism, this work will offer insights, humor, and information you may not know about the women who pioneered space travel, and are now leading the way toward the permanent colonization of other worlds. Full of pictures, videos, tweets, and interactive links, this work takes full advantage of the e-book format, presenting this past and future history of women in space in a manner never before possible with paper books.

The First Woman on the Moon is due for release in late summer 2019.

This Week in Space

Using AI to Explore the Depths of Space - The largest structures in the Universe, superclusters of galaxies, are surprisingly hard to find, due to their thin, tenuous nature. Researchers from Lancaster University are now using artificial intelligence to find these groupings, which could uncover deep secrets about the nature of the Universe. Read more:

Seeing a Light in the Air of a Distant World - The Hubble Space Telescope has examined the atmosphere of the exoplanet Gliese 3470 b. This world, 12.6 times larger than the Earth, represents a class of planets unseen in our own Solar System. Despite being smaller than Neptune, the atmosphere of this world is mostly hydrogen and helium, similar to the atmosphere seen on Jupiter and Saturn. Read more:

Tough Decisions Loom as Voyager Just Keeps Going and Going… - The two Voyager spacecraft, launched in 1977, are far exceeding their planned mission lifetimes, and have become the first manmade vehicles to ever travel beyond the Solar System. However, as their batteries wear out, NASA has to make some tough decisions about the spacecraft, as they journey through uncharted space. Read more:

Hubble Finds a Black Hole that Shouldn’t Exist - When astronomers trained the Hubble Space Telescope on the spiral galaxy NGC 3147, they expected to find a torus (doughnut-shaped) ring around its supermassive black hole. Instead, they saw a thin disk of material surrounding the object, a shape which should not be possible around this type of black hole. Read more:

Searching the Arctic for Secrets of Extraterrestrial Life - As we look around the Solar System, astronomers are finding many worlds and moons are home to water, both liquid and frozen. Some of these extraterrestrial oceans could be home to the first alien life we will ever encounter. But how will we know them when we see them? A team of researchers is studying life beneath the ice of Alaska, in an effort to learn more about life on other worlds. Read more:

Thanks for reading! If you want to keep up with the latest updates and news about astronomy and space exploration, visit, join our Facebook page, and follow @TheCosmicCompanion on Instagram and @CompanionCosmic on Twitter.

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- James