MILITARY COMMANDERS COULD USE MORE SATELLITES FOR TACTICAL SURVEILLANCE - Pacific theater Air Force commander Gen. Kenneth Wilsbach said one of the items on his wish list are low-orbiting surveillance satellites to help track targets on the ground, at sea and in the air.
“Yes, I am absolutely in favor of more space-based ISR,” said Wilsbach, the commander of Pacific Air Forces at U.S. Indo-Pacific Command. ISR is the military abbreviation for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. More
(Source: SpaceNews - Sep 18)
TURKEY TO LAUNCH TüRKSAT 5A SATELLITE INTO SPACE ON NOV. 30 - Turkey will launch the Türksat 5A satellite into space on Nov. 30, Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Adil Karaismailoğlu said Wednesday.
Türksat 5A is a broadcast satellite that will operate in the Ku band at the 31 degrees east longitude slot in geostationary orbit, covering Turkey, the Middle East, Europe and large regions of Africa. It will provide television services and improve broadband data networks. It reportedly has a launch mass of 3,500 kilograms (7,716 pounds) and electrical power of 12 kilowatts. More
(Source: Daily Sabah - Sep 17)
SATELLITES WATCH HURRICANE SALLY MAKE LANDFALL IN ALABAMA - Hurricane Sally made landfall in Alabama as a Category 2 storm early Wednesday morning (Sept. 16) as satellites monitored the storm from space.
Sally landed near Gulf Shores, Alabama, at about 5:45 a.m. EDT (0945 GMT), according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), which caught sight of the landfall using the GOES-East satellite. More
(Source: Space.com - Sep 17)
MILITARY EARLY WARNING SATELLITES TO BEGIN MIGRATION TO NEW GROUND SYSTEM - Lockheed Martin announced Sept. 16 it received a $51.2 million contract to begin integrating U.S. missile warning satellites with a new ground system that is being developed to command and control all military satellites in the future.
Under the contract from the U.S. Space Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center, Lockheed Martin will start the process of migrating a Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS) geosynchronous satellite... More
(Source: SpaceNews - Sep 17)
SPACE FORCE SET TO RECEIVE SIXTH ANTI-JAMMING SATELLITE BY END OF YEAR - The sixth Advanced Extremely High Frequency satellite completed its On-Orbit Test (OOT) period Aug. 27, clearing the way for it to be transferred to the U.S. Space Force by the end of 2020, primary contractor Lockheed Martin announced Sept. 15. More
(Source: C4ISRNet - Sep 17)
CHINA LAUNCHES 9 SATELLITES INTO SPACE FROM OCEAN PLATFORM - China launched a Long March 11 rocket from an ocean platform in the Yellow Sea early Tuesday (Sept. 15), successfully sending nine satellites into orbit.
The launch took place at 09:23 local time (01:23 GMT/9:23 p.m. Eastern Monday) from a 524-feet-long (159.6 meters) launch platform named De Bo 3. The mission is China's second ocean-based launch, following a first Long March 11 sea launch in June 2019. It is the first time however that China has used new seaport facilities at Haiyang in eastern China. More
(Source: Space.com - Sep 16)
THE FIRST COMMERCIAL AIRLOCK IS HEADING TO THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION LATER THIS YEAR - Later this year, SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket will take off from central Florida, carrying a large metal cup destined to be attached to the outside of the International Space Station. The hardware is a first-of-its-kind commercial airlock, designed to get payloads and other materials from inside the pressurized space station out into the vacuum of space. More
(Source: The Verge - Sep 16)
NOAA WEATHER SATELLITE TRANSITIONS TO NEW ROLE FOR U.S. MILITARY - A weather satellite built and launched for NOAA in 2006 to help track hurricanes approaching the United States has been repositioned to monitor weather conditions in the Middle East to support U.S. military operations in the region.
The GOES-13 satellite, no longer needed for monitoring weather over the United States, was transferred from NOAA to the U.S. Air Force last year under an interagency agreement. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Sep 15)
NASA-NOAA SATELLITE HELPS CONFIRM TEDDY NOW A RECORD-SETTING TROPICAL STORM - NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite provided an infrared image of Tropical Depression 20 that helped confirm it organized and strengthened into Tropical Storm Teddy. Teddy, which has broken a hurricane season record, is expected to become a major hurricane later in the week, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC). More
(Source: Phys.org - Sep 15)
10 EXCITING SPACE MISSIONS AND LAUNCHES LEFT TO WATCH IN 2020 - It’s hard to believe that we are almost three-quarters of the way into 2020, though it also feels like March never ended. Life on Earth has been disastrous this year, but if it’s any consolation, humans have been making great progress up there in space, making 2020 one of the most fruitful years for the space industry in history.
Already, Elon Musk’s rocket company SpaceX has successfully launched 16 missions, including its first ever crewed flight to the International Space Station as well as 10 Starlink missions. More
(Source: Observer - Sep 15)
ASTRA LAUNCH FALTERS DURING FIRST STAGE BURN - Astra’s privately-developed small satellite launcher crashed shortly after liftoff from Alaska Friday evening on the company’s first try at reaching orbit.
The startup launch company confirmed on Twitter that the flight ended during the rocket’s first stage burn, following a successful liftoff and initial climb from a launch pad at the Pacific Spaceport Complex on Kodiak Island, Alaska. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Sep 13)
KUAIZHOU-1A FAILS DURING JILIN-1 LAUNCH - China launched a new high-resolution remote sensing satellite for the Jilin-1 satellite constellation on Saturday morning from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center. However, the solid fuelled Kuaizhou-1A launch was declared a failure after several hours of waiting for information from Chinese state media.
No specifics were noted other than the rocket failed to deliver the satellite into the designated orbit. More
(Source: NASASpaceFlight.com - Sep 13)
ISS TO CHANGE ORBIT TO AVOID SPACE DEBRIS - The orbit of the International Space Station (ISS) will be adjusted to ensure that it avoids a collision with a US spacecraft, Roscosmos said on Saturday.
"On Monday, September 14, 2020, at 02:23 Moscow time, the International Space Station is predicted to approach the American BRICSat-2 satellite, which has turned into so-called ‘space debris’," the state corporation noted. More
(Source: TASS - Sep 13)
NASA SPACE STATION ON-ORBIT STATUS 10 SEPTEMBER, 2020 - ISS REBOOST - As a free-flying, cube-shaped robot dubbed Astrobee zipped through the International Space Station today, the Expedition 63 trio aboard was occupied with upkeep and experiment maintenance tasks.
Astrobee is autonomous, and therefore no additional burden to the busy schedule of Commander Chris Cassidy of NASA and Russian cosmonauts Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan Vagner. More
(Source: Space Ref - Sep 12)
NASA'S AQUA SATELLITE CAPTURES DEVASTATING WILDFIRES IN OREGON - NASA's Aqua captured this image of a huge number of wildfires that have broken out in Oregon. Some began in August, but the majority started after an unprecedented and historically rare windstorm that swept through the Cascade foothills in the afternoon of Monday Sep. 7 through the morning of Tuesday Sep. 8. Wind gusts up to 65 mph were clocked during the event. More
(Source: NASA - Sep 12)
US SPACE FORCE DEVELOPING A STRATEGY TO IMPROVE SATELLITE COMMUNICATIONS - As the U.S. Space Force builds out its fiscal 2022 budget, the nascent service is developing a new strategy to govern how it builds and leases satellite communications and services, Lt. Gen. Bill Liquori explained during the Defense News Conference Sept. 9. The strategy follows the Enterprise SATCOM Vision the Space Force released in February. More
(Source: C4ISRNet - Sep 11)
SPACEX’S DARK SATELLITES ARE STILL TOO BRIGHT FOR ASTRONOMERS - Starlink, a “megaconstellation” of hundreds of Internet satellites launched by the aerospace company SpaceX, has been causing headaches for astronomers by outshining celestial objects. Set to eventually include tens of thousands of spacecraft beaming high-speed Internet to the entire planet, Starlink has a downside for stargazing: the satellites reflect enough sunlight at night to be seen clearly with the naked eye (not to mention sensitive telescopes). More
(Source: Scientific American - Sep 11)
HOW COLD WAR POLITICS SHAPED THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION - On November 2, 2000, astronaut Bill Shepherd and cosmonauts Yuri Gidzenko and Sergei Krikalev arrived at the International Space Station. The moment began a permanent human presence in space. Over the past two decades, 240 people from 19 countries have stayed in the world’s premiere orbital laboratory. The station is a paragon of space-age cosmopolitanism, but this enduring international cooperation was hard-won. More
(Source: Smithsonian - Sep 11)
CHINA'S REUSABLE EXPERIMENTAL SPACECRAFT RETURNS TO EARTH AFTER TWO-DAY MYSTERY MISSION - China's mysterious reusable experimental spacecraft has safely landed after two days in space, according to state media, and may have deployed a satellite while in orbit.
A brief report in the state-run Chinese media outlet Xinhua said the spacecraft, which launched on Friday (Sept. 4), landed on Sunday (Sept. 6). The launch has been linked with China's plans these past few years to build and operate a reusable space plane, although that connection has not yet been confirmed. More
(Source: Space.com - Sep 10)