NEW SOLAR POWER GENERATOR TO BE DEPLOYED TO SPACE STATION - A new solar power generator prototype developed by Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) and research teams in the United States, will be deployed on the first 2020 NASA flight launch to the International Space Station.
According to research published in Optics Express, the compact, microconcentrator photovoltaic system could provide unprecedented watt per kilogram of power critical to lowering costs for private space flight. More
(Source: Phys.org - Nov 15)
LIFE ON THE SPACE STATION IS ABOUT TO GET REALLY WEIRD AND LONELY - Right now, there are six astronauts aboard the International Space Station, floating 408km above our heads. But soon things could be about to get a lot lonelier up there. Delays in building new spacecraft to get astronauts into space mean that the next trio of astronauts set to join the ISS in April 2020 are facing the possibility of being the space station’s lone occupants for six months. More
(Source: Wired.co.uk - Nov 15)
TWO CHINESE SATELLITE LAUNCHERS LIFT OFF THREE HOURS APART - Chinese rockets performed two satellite delivery missions in a three-hour span Wednesday, carrying a commercial Earth-imaging satellite and five mysterious surveillance payloads into orbit.
The launches originated from two separate spaceports in northern China, using a light-class solid-fueled Kuaizhou 1A launcher and a liquid-fueled Long March 6 rocket, according to Chinese state media reports.
The back-to-back launches carried different missions into orbit, and were not originally planned to occur on the same day. Officials aborted a Kuaizhou 1A launch attempt last month for unspecified technical reasons. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Nov 14)
SPACEX EXECUTES GROUND-BASED TEST FIRING FOR CREW DRAGON’S LAUNCH ESCAPE SYSTEM - SpaceX went the distance today with a static-fire test of its Crew Dragon space taxi’s launch escape system — the same type of test that ended in a costly explosion when it was conducted in April.
A photo released after the firing shows the Crew Dragon’s SuperDraco thrusters blazing away on the test stand at SpaceX’s Florida facility. The full-duration firing brings the company one step closer to flying NASA astronauts to the International Space Station next year. More
(Source: GeekWire - Nov 14)
RUSSIAN SCIENTISTS PROPOSE CREATION OF SEPARATE ISS MODULE FOR SPORTS, MEDICINE - The Institute of Biomedical Problems of the Russian Academy of Science (IBMP RAS) considers it necessary to create a special module for sports and medical experiments at the International Space Station (ISS), IBMP deputy chief designer Yevgenia Yarmanova said.
"If we recall the plans for the Russian segment of the ISS, initially it would have included two Science Power Modules (SPM). More
(Source: Space Daily - Nov 12)
SPACEX SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHES FALCON 9 ROCKET WITH 60 SATELLITES ON BOARD - The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 9:56 a.m. Monday, with 60 Starlink satellites on board.
The satellites will beam internet service to hard-to-access places across the world, according to SpaceX, which was founded in 2002 by entrepreneur Elon Musk.
It was the fourth launch for the Falcon 9, and the first time that SpaceX reused the tip of the rocket known as the fairing. SpaceX deployed a first round of Starlink satellites in May. More
(Source: Fox Business - Nov 11)
HOW TO TRACK AND PHOTOGRAPH SECRET SPACECRAFT - Earlier this year, Dutch science journalist and satellite tracker Ralf Vandebergh successfully snagged detailed images of the X-37B, the Air Force’s secret spaceplane that recently landed, in low orbit using a hand-trafficking method—catching sight of the vehicle and guiding his 10-inch reflector telescope manually—and video-based imaging techniques.
Want to capture a satellite, booster rocket, or the ISS in action? Follow Vandebergh’s lead. More
(Source: Popular Mechanics - Nov 11)
SPACEX READIES UPGRADED STARLINK SATELLITES FOR LAUNCH - New satellites for SpaceX’s Starlink broadband network set for launch Monday from Cape Canaveral will debut several performance and safety upgrades, but they do not include changes to reduce the brightness of the satellites, a modification SpaceX says it will introduce on future Starlink craft to mitigate their impacts on ground-based astronomy. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Nov 11)
HIBER STARTS COMMERCIAL IOT TRIALS ON GLOBAL SCALE - Hiber‘s Internet of Things (IoT) network is now live, following the launch of its first two nanosatellites in late 2018. After three years of product development, the commercial launch of the fully automated end-to-end service known as Hiberband, marks the latest step for Hiber, where it will see its first customers trialling the technology. More
(Source: Via Satellite - Nov 10)
CHEAP IOT SATELLITE NETWORK GETS APPROVAL - Space communications start-up Swarm Technologies will begin delivering commercial, bi-directional Internet of Things (IoT) data early next year, according to the company, which has just received its regulatory go-ahead to launch its satellites and transmit.
“Swarm will begin rolling out its commercial, two-way data offerings in early 2020,” Sara Spangelo, co-founder and CEO told me in a recent e-mail. The company aims to deploy 150 satellites before the end of 2020, she says. More
(Source: Network World - Nov 8)
SPACEX TEST-FIRES ROCKET FOR NEXT LAUNCH OF 60 STARLINK SATELLITES - SpaceX has fired up the rocket booster that will ferry the company's next batch of Starlink satellites into space.
The company conducted a static-fire test on Tuesday (Nov. 5) of a Falcon 9 rocket at Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, the company said on Twitter. That rocket is expected to send 60 Starlink internet satellites into space no earlier than Monday (Nov. 11), ending a nearly three-month launch hiatus for the company. More
(Source: Space.com - Nov 7)
SPACEFLIGHT AND ROCKET LAB WILL PUT A JAPANESE SHOOTING-STAR SATELLITE INTO ORBIT - Seattle-based Spaceflight says it’s handling the pre-launch logistics for a Japanese satellite that’s designed to spray artificial shooting stars into the sky.
Tokyo-based ALE’s spacecraft is just one of seven satellites due to be sent into orbit from New Zealand as early as Nov. 25, aboard a Rocket Lab Electron launch vehicle.
It’ll be the 10th Electron launch, earning the nickname “Running Out of Fingers.” It’ll also be the first launch to test the guidance and navigation hardware as well as the sensors that Rocket Lab will eventually use to help make the Electron’s first stage recoverable. More
(Source: GeekWire - Nov 7)
A BIPARTISAN GROUP OF SENATORS WANTS TO EXTEND THE SPACE STATION TO 2030 - A bipartisan quartet of United States senators has filed a new bill that sets out space policy for NASA over the coming decade. The new authorizing legislation is largely consistent with much of NASA's present activities, but it differs from White House policy in some key respects. More
(Source: Ars Technica - Nov 7)
ADIDAS IS PARTNERING WITH THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION TO TEST PRODUCTS IN SPACE - Adidas is going above and beyond the confines of Earth and looking to the stars to push the boundaries of innovation.
The apparel company is launching a multi-year partnership with the International Space Station (ISS) US National Laboratory. More
(Source: CNN - Nov 6)
CHINA TESTS GRID FINS WITH LAUNCH OF GAOFEN-7 IMAGING SATELLITE - A Chinese Long March 4B delivered an Earth observation into orbit satellite late Saturday, with grid fins guiding the descent of the rocket’s first stage.
The launch took place at 11:22 p.m. at the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in north China. For the first time the Long March 4B first stage carried a grid fin system to constrain the area in which it falls. More
(Source: SpaceNews - Nov 6)
SPACE STATION RECEIVES SPACEWALKING GEAR, NEW BAKING OVEN - NASA astronaut Jessica Meir took control of the International Space Station’s Canadian-built robot arm Monday to capture a Northrop Grumman Cygnus supply ship carrying crew provisions, spacewalking gear to repair an aging particle physics experiment, tech demo satellites for the U.S. military, and an oven to bake the first cookies in space. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Nov 6)
SPACEX PLANNING TO LAUNCH 30,000 ADDITIONAL STARLINK GLOBAL INTERNET SATELLITES - The Space Exploration Technologies Corp. known as SpaceX has recently filed the paperwork to send 30,000 new satellites to the sky. The official paperwork was filed with the International Telecommunication Union and it is expected to be fulfilled soon.
Elon Musk’s SpaceX already has the permission to launch 12,000 new satellites into space and they have filed the paperwork for 30,000 more. The company is planning to launch such an such enormous amount of satellites to ensure that the their network can meet the upcoming demand. More
(Source: Forbes - Nov 3)
REPAIR EQUIPMENT FOR PARTICLE PHYSICS EXPERIMENT ABOARD NEXT STATION CARGO LAUNCH - Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus supply ship set for liftoff Saturday will deliver to the International Space Station the final hardware for a series of ambitious spacewalks later this month to install a new coolant system on the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer, a $2 billion particle physics experiment seeking the cosmic signatures of dark matter and antimatter.
The new coolant system, along with specially-built spacewalking tools, are stowed inside the automated Cygnus cargo craft awaiting liftoff Saturday at 9:59 a.m. EDT (1359 GMT) from Wallops Island, Virginia. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Nov 3)
A FRENCH SPACE STARTUP IS LAUNCHING WINE INTO ORBIT - If the space industry these days really is an opportunity on par with the dawn of the internet, Nicolas Gaume is a businessman built to take advantage.
Gaume believes in the future. He founded his first technology company, which made video games, as a 19-year old in 1990. “I’ve built nine different companies in very different areas,” he told Quartz last year. “I was a millionaire, I was a billionaire, I was bankrupt, I was a millionaire again.” More
(Source: Quartz - Nov 3)