THIS IS WHAT 2 DOZEN SATELLITES LOOK LIKE PACKED FOR LAUNCH ON A SPACEX FALCON HEAVY - SpaceX is gearing up for its busiest Falcon Heavy megarocket launch yet and now, thanks to the U.S. Air Force, we know what the epic rideshare looks like.
When the next SpaceX Falcon Heavy launches on Monday (June 24) from NASA's historic Pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the heavy-lift rocket will be carrying 24 different satellites for the Air Force's Space Test Program-2 mission. If you're wondering what two dozen satellites look like inside a Falcon Heavy nose cone, wonder no more. More
(Source: Space.com - Jun 20)
NOAA READIES FOR COSMIC-2 SATELLITE LAUNCH - COSMIC-2, a mission of six satellites designed to improve weather forecasts and space weather monitoring, is set to launch no earlier than June 24 from Cape Canaveral, Florida, aboard a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket.
The satellites, flying on the U.S. Air Force’s Space Test Program-2 mission, are known as the Constellation Observing System for Meteorology, Ionosphere and Climate (COSMIC-2). This mission is a partnership between the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States (TECRO) with NOAA and the Taiwan National Space Organization (NSPO), as designated representatives. More
(Source: WeatherNation - Jun 19)
WATCH A CHUNK OF SATELLITE MELT LIKE A MARSHMALLOW ON FIRE - Space junk is a worrisome problem, especially when wayward bits of technology survive reentry and land back on Earth as angry hunks of debris. European Space Agency researchers wanted to learn more about how satellites burn up during reentry, so they fried a satellite chunk in a plasma wind tunnel to see what happens. The footage is impressive. More
(Source: CNET - Jun 19)
FIREFLY OFFERING FREE LAUNCH FOR RESEARCH AND EDUCATIONAL PAYLOADS - Firefly Aerospace is asking academic institutions, startup companies and the public to submit ideas for payloads to launch, free of charge, on the inaugural orbital flight of the company’s Alpha rocket next year from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The Texas-based launch company said the initiative to host academic and educational payloads on the first Alpha launch will promote education in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math disciplines. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Jun 19)
SPACEX EXPLOSION A SET BACK FOR INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION - NASA CHIEF - NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine says the explosion that destroyed a SpaceX astronaut taxi in April will "no doubt" delay NASA's drive to return Americans to the International Space Station from U.S. soil later this year.
Speaking at the Paris Air Show in Le Bourget this Tuesday, Bridenstine stopped short of offering a clear flight timeline for its multibillion-dollar Commercial Crew Program, and said he would not prejudge the results of an investigation into the incident. More
(Source: RFI - Jun 19)
PROTON ROCKET, RUSSIAN-GERMAN ASTRONOMY SATELLITE ARRIVE AT LAUNCH PAD - A rocket-transporting railroad car ferried a Proton booster to its launch pad Friday at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan for final checkouts and testing before the vehicle’s scheduled June 21 liftoff with the Russian-German Spektr-RG X-ray telescope.
The Proton rocket began the trip to the Complex 81 launch pad Friday at around 6:30 a.m. local time in Kazakhstan. After pulling up to the pad, a hydraulic lift raised the rocket vertical, and ground crews moved a mobile gantry around the launcher to provide access for workers to complete inspections, testing and closeouts before next week’s launch. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Jun 17)
SPACE WEATHER SATELLITES SET TO LAUNCH - On June 24, the US and Taiwan are scheduled to launch a coterie of six small satellites that will orbit tropical latitudes. The satellites, a joint project of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Taiwan National Space Agency, will provide more frequent high-resolution data about temperature, pressure, and water vapor, improving tropical-storm forecasts. The project, called COSMIC-2 in the US and FORMOSAT-7 in Taiwan, will also provide an unprecedented level of detail about the planet’s ionosphere. More
(Source: Chemical & Engineering News - Jun 16)
SATELLITES EQUIPPED WITH A TETHER WOULD BE ABLE TO DE-ORBIT THEMSELVES AT THE END OF THEIR LIFE - There’s no denying it, we are facing an orbital debris problem! As of January 2019, the ESA’s Space Debris Office estimates that there are at least 34,000 pieces of large debris in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) – a combination of dead satellites, spent rocket stages, and other assorted bits of space junk. And with thousands of satellites scheduled to be launched in the next decade, that problem is only going to get worse.
This is a situation that cries out for solutions, especially when you consider the plans to commercialize LEO and start sending crewed missions to deep space in the coming years. More
(Source: Universe Today - Jun 16)
HAM RADIO SATELLITES TO DEPLOY FROM ISS - Three BIRDS-3 satellites with Amateur Radio payloads are scheduled to be deployed from the International Space Station on Monday, June 17. The BIRDS-3 constellation includes CubeSats from three countries: They are Nepal’s first satellite, NepaliSat-1; Uguisu from Japan, and Sri Lanka’s first satellite, Raavana-1. More
(Source: ARRL - Jun 15)
SPACE IS POLLUTED BY JUNK…AND IT’S GETTING WORSE - The major shift from state to commercial space programs, as well as a sharp rise in the number of upcoming launches, raises concerns about our efforts to manage the problem. n 2016, the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Copernicus Sentinel-1A satellite experienced a sudden dip in power and a physical jolt while orbiting 700 kilometers above Earth.The culprit turned out to be a millimeter-sized speck of space debris that hit one of the solar panels. It left a 40-centimeter dent. More
(Source: EOS - Jun 14)
INTERNATIONAL EXPERIMENTS SELECTED TO FLY ON CHINESE SPACE STATION - Six experiments have been granted a place aboard to the future Chinese Space Station through a joint international cooperation initiative, with three more receiving conditional acceptance.
The results of the selection process were announced jointly Wednesday by the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the China Manned Space Agency (CMSA) on the sidelines of the 62nd session of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space in Vienna. More
(Source: SpaceNews - Jun 14)
INDIA PLANS TO HAVE ITS OWN SPACE STATION - India plans to have its own space station in the future and conduct separate missions to study the Sun and Venus, it said on Thursday, as the nation moves to bolster its status as a leader in space technologies and inspire the young minds to take an interest in scientific fields.
India’s space agency said today that it will begin working on its space station following its first manned mission to space, called Gaganyaan (which means “space vehicle” in Sanskrit), in 2022 — just in time to commemorate 75 years of the country’s independence from Britain. More
(Source: TechCrunch - Jun 14)
NEPAL’S FIRST SATELLITE ‘NEPALISAT-1’ TO TRAVEL AROUND EARTH FROM JUNE 17 - The NepaliSat-1, the Nepal’s first satellite launched into space by Japan’s Kyushu Institute of Technology on April 17 is to go through the Earth’s orbit from June 17.
The nano-satellite weighing 1.3 kilos was launched from the Virginia Space’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in the United States. It has been in the International Space Station since one and half month and will be released into the Earth’s orbit on June 17. More
(Source: Nepal 24 hours - Jun 14)
WORLD CUP 2019: ASTRONAUT CHEERS ON US WOMEN'S SOCCER TEAM FROM SPACE - Talk about nosebleed seats. A U.S. astronaut had the perfect view of the French stadium hosting the FIFA Women's World Cup — although the action may be a little bit hard to see from about 250 miles (400 kilometers) above Earth's surface.
"Finally made it to a @FIFAWWC in person," Anne McClain, a member of Expedition 59, tweeted on Tuesday (June 11), along with two pictures showing the cloudy view beneath the International Space Station. Red circles carefully mark Reims, France, the location of the epic match. More
(Source: Space.com - Jun 13)
DANGLING TAPE COULD BE USED TO DE-ORBIT OLD SATELLITES - In order to at least begin addressing the growing problem of space debris, numerous groups are now looking into methods of de-orbiting satellites once their operational lives have ended. One of the latest approaches involves getting the spacecraft to dispense a long strip of sunlight-catching tape, instead of using their own propellant. The technology is being developed via the three-year European Union E.T.PACK project, led by Spain's Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. More
(Source: New Atlas - Jun 13)
SPACEX SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHED AND LANDED ITS FALCON 9 ROCKET ON THE CALIFORNIA COAST THIS MORNING - Update June 12th, 11:20AM ET: Despite heavy fog obscuring the view of the launchpad, SpaceX successfully launched and deployed all three RADARSAT spacecraft into orbit this morning. After takeoff, the company also landed the Falcon 9 on the California coast amid the heavy fog.
Original story: This morning, SpaceX is set to launch its sixth Falcon 9 mission of 2019 out of southern California, sending three identical Canadian satellites into orbit. After takeoff, SpaceX will attempt to land its rocket on a landing pad next to the vehicle’s launch site. If successful, it will be the second time SpaceX has landed its vehicle on the California coast. More
(Source: The Verge - Jun 13)
NASA'S SET MISSION TO STUDY SATELLITE PROTECTION IS READY FOR LAUNCH - NASA's Space Environment Testbeds, or SET, will launch in June 2019 on its mission to study how to better protect satellites in space. SET will get a ride to space on a U.S. Air Force Research Lab spacecraft aboard a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
SET studies the very nature of space itself—which isn't completely empty, but brimming with radiation—and how it affects spacecraft and electronics in orbit. More
(Source: Phys.org - Jun 12)
NASA HAS ‘SPACE GRAVEYARD’ HIDDEN UNDER THE SEA WHERE HUNDREDS OF DEAD SPACECRAFT ARE BURIED - Deep in the South Pacific Ocean lies a graveyard of hundreds of fallen spacecraft.
Point Nemo, Latin for "no one", is around 4,000 metres deep and further from land than any point on Earth, making it the ideal spot to crash defunct rockets and satellites. At least 260 spacecraft – mostly Russian – have been laid to rest there by Nasa and other space agencies since it was first used in 1971. More
(Source: The Sun - Jun 12)
USED SPACEX ROCKET LAUNCHING 3 SATELLITES WEDNESDAY: HOW TO WATCH LIVE - SpaceX will launch three next-generation Earth-observing satellites for the Canadian Space Agency Wednesday (June 12), and you can watch the liftoff live.
A two-stage Falcon 9 rocket with a preflown first stage is scheduled to launch the three-spacecraft Radarsat Constellation Mission (RCM) tomorrow from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The 13-minute launch window opens at 10:17 a.m. EDT (1417 GMT; 7:17 a.m. local California time). More
(Source: Space.com - Jun 12)