Month: March 2020

WASHINGTON — A startup that seeks to create refueling facilities in orbit for satellites has received a government grant to develop one essential technology for that system. San Francisco-based Orbit Fab received an award from America’s Seed Fund, a grant program run the National Science Foundation’s (NSF), the company announced March 31. The company plans
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — NASA announced March 30 it will fund the development of a cluster of six cubesats that will fly in formation above geostationary orbit to study solar storms. NASA said it selected for development the Sun Radio Interferometer Space Experiment (SunRISE) mission as a “mission of opportunity” for its heliophysics program. The mission, with
0 Comments
Satellite jamming and spoofing incidents will only increase, says CSIS analyst Todd Harrison WASHINGTON — Only a handful of countries — notably the United States’ military rivals China and Russia — are developing space weapons that could physically take down U.S. military satellites. But many nations and non-state actors increasingly are able to interfere with
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — Stratolaunch, the company founded by the late billionaire Paul Allen as an air-launch company, announced March 30 it is developing a reusable hypersonic vehicle designed to be launched from the company’s giant aircraft. Stratolaunch said it is pursuing development of a vehicle called Talon-A. That vehicle, powered by a liquid-propellant rocket engine, will
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — With the coronavirus pandemic limiting options for personnel to gather in mission control centers to operate spacecraft, some companies are turning to virtual approaches to maintain their spacecraft. The European Space Agency announced March 24 it was putting four of its science missions into a “temporary standby” mode to reduce the number of
0 Comments
Source selections for national security space launch, ground based strategic deterrent remain on track WASHINGTON — Big-ticket contracts for space launch services and for the development of a new intercontinental ballistic missile are scheduled to be awarded this year, and that is still the plan, senior officials said. With thousands of program managers and contracting
0 Comments
The U.S. Army Satellite Operations Brigade is increasing WGS satcom capacity to the hospital ship. WASHINGTON — U.S. Space Command units that operate communications satellites are providing additional bandwidth to the USNS Mercy hospital ship that arrived in Los Angeles March 27. The USNS Mercy, operated by the Military Sealift Command, will offer non-coronavirus medical
0 Comments
This story was updated March 28 after OneWeb announced its Chapter 11 filing.  WASHINGTON — Satellite internet startup OneWeb filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Friday after its largest investor, Softbank, rejected a request for additional funding. “It is with a very heavy heart that we have been forced to reduce our workforce and enter the
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — NASA announced March 27 it has selected SpaceX to provide cargo transportation services for the agency’s planned lunar Gateway. SpaceX is the first, and to date only, company selected by NASA for its Gateway Logistics Services program. Modeled on the commercial cargo program for the International Space Station, the program will pay for
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — Satellite internet startup OneWeb is expected to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy as soon as Friday after its largest investor, Softbank, rejected a request for additional funding, according to sources familiar with the situation.  OneWeb’s imminent filing was first reported by The Financial Times. Softbank, having already invested roughly $2 billion in OneWeb,
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — NASA is seeking bids to develop a new engine for its Orion spacecraft that will effectively be a plug-in replacement for the shuttle-era engine used on the spacecraft’s initial missions. NASA published a request for proposals March 19 for the Orion Main Engine with a deadline of June 11. The agency expects to
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — The Italian government declared aerospace companies exempt from the nationwide lockdown aimed at halting the spread of the coronavirus, enabling Avio to continue production of rockets, Avio CEO Giulio Ranzo said Thursday.  Since 60% of Avio’s revenue comes from manufacturing, the French government’s March 16 decision to suspend launches from the Guiana Space
0 Comments
The $1.5 million Small Business Innovation Research award was matched by $1.5 million from ATX Venture Partners and Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund. WASHINGTON — Slingshot Aerospace has won a $1.5 million U.S. Air Force contract matched by $1.5 million in private funds to expedite the deployment of artificial intelligence-driven data analytics to
0 Comments
SAN FRANCISCO – Iceye, the Finnish Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) satellite operator, unveiled a new product March 26: imagery with a resolution of 25 centimeters. Iceye produces the 25-centimeter SAR imagery with data acquired by a single satellite staring at a location for 10 seconds. “The full amount of data from an individual satellite acquisition
0 Comments
SASC is “committed to continuing congressional oversight and data collection necessary to drafting the NDAA.” WASHINGTON — The Senate Armed Services Committee has developed a “paper hearings” process to execute oversight and collect data for the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act during the COVID-19 pandemic. “To protect the health of everyone involved, traditional hearings are
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — The European Space Agency announced March 24 it is suspending regular operations of four of its missions, including one recently launched spacecraft, to reduce staffing needs during the coronavirus pandemic. ESA said in a statement it was putting into a “temporary standby” mode the four-satellite Cluster space science mission in Earth orbit, the
0 Comments
After decades of fighting to be taken seriously, meteorologists say space weather is beginning to get the attention it deserves. The Trump administration established the Space Weather Operations, Research and Mitigation working group, an interagency panel to coordinate federal work aimed at building resilience to the effects of space weather. In addition, space weather legislation
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — APT Satellite reported a 14% revenue drop in 2019 as regional competitors with new satellites started taking market share.  The Hong Kong-based operator reported $1.06 billion Hong Kong dollars in 2019 revenue ($137 million at current exchange rates). Profits attributable to shareholders dropped 28.5% to 362.3 million Hong Kong dollars ($46.7 million).  APT
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — Small launch vehicle startup Astra has postponed its next launch attempt after the rocket was damaged in what local officials say was an “anomaly” during a prelaunch test. Astra had been preparing for a launch of its “Rocket 3.0” vehicle as soon as March 24 from Pacific Spaceport Complex – Alaska. A previous
0 Comments
SAN FRANCISCO – Demand is growing for satellite imagery to gauge the economic impact of the new coronavirus and to conduct remote monitoring of facilities and infrastructure. Ursa Space Systems, a satellite data and analytics firm in Ithaca, New York, can see the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on global oil inventories. Ursa offers customers
0 Comments
Ongoing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on the global space industry. Scroll down for daily updates. Follow our reporters on Twitter for updates. Sign up for our newsletters. For full stories, click here. Space events delayed or canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic MARCH 22 Rocket Lab is proceeding with upcoming launches after being classified as an
0 Comments
Virgin Orbit spokesman: “Unavoidably, this will have some impact on our launch date, and on the launches that immediately follow.” WASHINGTON — Virgin Orbit announced March 20 that it will continue operations at its facility in Long Beach, California, after state officials categorized the work as an essential service that should not be completely shut
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — The next meeting of the National Space Council, already scaled back because of the coronavirus pandemic, has been postponed, the White House announced March 21. In a brief statement, the White House said that the March 24 meeting of the council, chaired by Vice President Mike Pence, had been postponed to a date
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — Arianespace launched 34 small broadband satellites for OneWeb March 21, expanding the startup’s constellation to 74 satellites in low Earth orbit.  Arianespace’s Soyuz rocket lifted off from Russia’s Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 1:06 p.m. Eastern. The satellites will separate at an altitude of 450 kilometers over the course of the 3-hour and
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — NASA has suspended work on the James Webb Space Telescope as it prioritizes what agency missions require people to be on site during the coronavirus pandemic. In a statement March 20, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said NASA had completed an assessment of work across the agency, deciding which projects are essential enough to
0 Comments
Ellen Lord memo: “If you work in a critical infrastructure industry you have a special responsibility to maintain your normal work schedule.” WASHINGTON — Defense Department contractors in sectors such as aerospace, manufacturing and intelligence are part of the United States’ critical infrastructure and have to continue working during the coronavirus emergency, Undersecretary of Defense
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — NASA has elevated two centers to the highest level of its pandemic response plan, halting preparations for a major test of the Space Launch System. In a statement late March 19, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced that the Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans and the Stennis Space Center in Mississippi will move
0 Comments
WASHINGTON — Many services space companies provide have strong demand drivers that are not curtailed by the coronavirus outbreak, an attribute that may protect the industry compared to other sectors, according to a report released March 18. Government customers in defense and emergency response have robust needs for satellite connectivity and geospatial data in times
0 Comments
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Inside the stout fins of a fish that prowled the shallow waters of an estuary in what is now eastern Canada about 380 million years ago, scientists have found what they call the evolutionary origins of the human hand. FILE PHOTO: An artist’s reconstruction of the extinct fish Elpistostege watsoni, which lived
0 Comments
Spaceship Earth has a deadly infection, and it has already spread to all decks and levels. Not to be overly dramatic, as only a small percentage of people will lose their lives in this pandemic, but the specter is there, and may come as close as a colleague, neighbor, family member or even our own
0 Comments