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Liftoff! Used SpaceX Rocket Launches 10 Iridium Satellites into Orbit

A used SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched 10 new communications satellites into orbit from California's Vandenberg Air Force Base today (March 30) in a morning liftoff that also marked an anniversary for reusable rockets. The Falcon 9 rocket, which first flew in October 2017, launched the fifth set of Iridium Next satellites for Iridium Communications [...]

By | March 30th, 2018|Space|Comments Off on Liftoff! Used SpaceX Rocket Launches 10 Iridium Satellites into Orbit

NASA wants to spend tens of billions on SLS despite proven SpaceX Falcon Heavy

Ars Technica reports that Bill Gerstenmaier, chief of human spaceflight for NASA is still supporting the wasteful development of the multi-billion per year Space Launch System. The justification is that the SpaceX Falcon Heavy can deliver 18-22 tons to lunar orbit while Space Launch System could deliver a bit more. There are currently no payloads [...]

By | March 29th, 2018|Space|Comments Off on NASA wants to spend tens of billions on SLS despite proven SpaceX Falcon Heavy

NASA stalls $8bn James Webb Space Telescope again – this time to 2020

The launch date for the James Webb Space Telescope has been kicked back a year to 2020, NASA confirmed during a press conference on Tuesday. The instrument – a 6,200kg (13,668lb) telescope designed to look at stars formed soon after the Big Bang as well as closer objects – was scheduled to launch into the [...]

By | March 28th, 2018|Space|Comments Off on NASA stalls $8bn James Webb Space Telescope again – this time to 2020

The UK might be kicked out of EU plans to build an alternative to GPS

The UK’s decision to part ways with the European Union has reached a new frontier: space. According to reports from The Financial Times, the EU is trying to exclude the UK from its €10 billion Galileo project; an ongoing plan to launch 30 satellites that will provide an alternative to the US-controlled global positioning system [...]

By | March 27th, 2018|Space, UK Affairs|Comments Off on The UK might be kicked out of EU plans to build an alternative to GPS

The First SpaceX Falcon 9 Block 5 should launch in April and each could be reused 10 to 100 times

The current SpaceX Falcon 9 boosters that have been recovered were only designed to be reused 2-3 times but the new SpaceX Falcon 9 block 5 are expected to last for ten reuses. SpaceX has about 6 recovered boosters which will be reused. Most will be reused and not recovered in the next several launches. [...]

By | March 26th, 2018|Space|Comments Off on The First SpaceX Falcon 9 Block 5 should launch in April and each could be reused 10 to 100 times

European Space Agency teams with ICEYE Finnish start-up

The European Space Agency is to work with Finnish start-up ICEYE on ways to exploit its novel radar satellites. ICEYE-X1 was launched in January - the first of multiple spacecraft that will go up in the coming years. About the size of a suitcase, these are the world's smallest synthetic aperture radar satellites and cost [...]

By | March 26th, 2018|Space|Comments Off on European Space Agency teams with ICEYE Finnish start-up

Russia will beat NASA to mars and find water on the moon, says Putin

Russia will launch a mission to Mars in 2019 which if successful would beat NASA’s planned exploration of the red planet by a year. Vladimir Putin revealed his country’s space plans during a documentary about the president which was widely shared on social media. He said: "We are planning unmanned and later manned launches, into [...]

By | March 16th, 2018|Space|Comments Off on Russia will beat NASA to mars and find water on the moon, says Putin

Big harpoon is ‘solution to space junk’

Airbus is testing a big harpoon to snare rogue or redundant satellites and pull them out of the sky. The 1m-long projectile would be attached, through a strong tether, to a chase spacecraft. Once the target was captured and under control, the chase vehicle would then drag its prey down into the atmosphere to burn [...]

By | March 16th, 2018|Space|Comments Off on Big harpoon is ‘solution to space junk’

Elon Musk, speaking at SXSW, projects Mars spaceship will be ready for short trips by first half of 2019

Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk told an audience at South by Southwest that his timeline for sending a space vehicle to Mars could mark its first milestone early next year. The privately-funded venture, announced in September 2017, aims to send a cargo mission to the Red Planet by 2022. SpaceX's ultimate objective is to [...]

By | March 12th, 2018|Space|Comments Off on Elon Musk, speaking at SXSW, projects Mars spaceship will be ready for short trips by first half of 2019

FCC Accuses Stealthy Startup of Launching Rogue Satellites

On 12 January, a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) rocket blasted off from India’s eastern coast. While its primary cargo was a large Indian mapping satellite, dozens of secondary CubeSats from other countries travelled along with it. Seattle-based Planetary Resources supplied a spacecraft that will test prospecting tools for future asteroid miners, Canadian company Telesat [...]

By | March 11th, 2018|Space|Comments Off on FCC Accuses Stealthy Startup of Launching Rogue Satellites