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WHY ASTRONOMERS WORRY ABOUT THE BRIGHTNESS OF SPACEX'S STARLINK SATELLITE MEGACONSTELLATION - SpaceX is planning to launch the second installment of its Starlink megaconstellation on Monday (Nov. 11), and astronomers are waiting to see — well, precisely what they will see.
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SATELLITE NEWS

COMPOSITE IMAGE OF SPACEX STARLINK SATELLITE SWARM COMPOSITE IMAGE OF SPACEX STARLINK SATELLITE SWARM - Last week – on Monday, November 11, 2019 – a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched 60 more Starlink satellites to Earth-orbit. According to Stephen Clark at SpaceFlightNow.com, the satellites traced paths across twilight skies around the world last week, and, even this morning (November 18) astrophotographers are still capturing them, as shown in this image from our friend Padraic Koen.    More
(Source: EarthSky - Nov 19)


NO WAY BACK SPACE DEBRIS
SPACE POLLUTION POSES EXISTENTIAL THREAT NO WAY BACK SPACE DEBRIS SPACE POLLUTION POSES EXISTENTIAL THREAT - Since the start of space exploration, countless spacecraft have disintegrated in outer space, leaving a ring of space debris orbiting planet Earth. The international space community has slowly woken up to the fact that littering space is not a victimless crime. Space debris poses a threat to orbital stations. The International Space Station (ISS) moves in space at a speed of 8 km per second   More
(Source: RT - Nov 18)


CHINA TO BUILD SPACE STATION ACCOMMODATING 3 ASTRONAUTS CHINA TO BUILD SPACE STATION ACCOMMODATING 3 ASTRONAUTS - China is scheduled to build and operate a space station in 2022, which will accommodate three astronauts, and space would be reserved for enlargement. Zhou Jianping, an academician at the Chinese Academy of Engineering and the chief designer of China's manned space program, said at the Forth China Summit Forum on Human Factors Engineering that the station, which will orbit 340 to 450 kilometers above Earth's surface, could be enlarged to 180 tons if necessary and will accommodate three to six astronauts, Xinhua News Agency reported Sunday.   More
(Source: ecns - Nov 18)


CHINA LAUNCHES SECOND KUAIZHOU-1A ROCKET IN FOUR DAYS CHINA LAUNCHES SECOND KUAIZHOU-1A ROCKET IN FOUR DAYS - In just a little more than a four day period, from the very same pad, with the very same launch team and launch truck, China has launched yet another Kuaizhou-1A rocket carrying satellites into orbit. This flight, fresh on the heels of yet another flight with the Jilin-1 Gaofen-2A satellite on November 13, lifted off from the mobile launch pad at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwestern China today at 10:00 UTC. Chinese media has later declared the launch a success.   More
(Source: NASASpaceFlight.com - Nov 18)


1ST UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA SMALL SATELLITE NOW IN SPACE 1ST UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA SMALL SATELLITE NOW IN SPACE - University of Minnesota senior Jenna Burgett was on bleachers two miles from the NASA Virginia launching site on Nov. 2, watching a rocket launch into space that carried a small satellite she and other students helped create. “The sound hits you and from two miles away ... the bleachers were shaking. You can hear it resonating in your ears and in your chest,” said Burgett, manager of the University’s Small Satellite Project.   More
(Source: U.S. News & World Report - Nov 17)


SPACEWALKERS BEGIN SPACEWALKERS BEGIN "OPEN HEART SURGERY" TO REPAIR COSTLY COSMIC RAY DETECTOR - Two astronauts ventured outside the International Space Station Friday for the first of four spacewalks to repair a $2 billion cosmic ray detector, breezing through difficult work to prep the device for invasive surgery to splice in new coolant pumps and extend the instrument's life probing the composition of the universe. "We're going to perform what could be considered open heart surgery on this amazing experiment," said Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano, the current space station commander.   More
(Source: CBS News - Nov 16)


BROADBAND SATELLITE TO SERVE PACIFIC ISLANDS DELIVERED TO FLORIDA LAUNCH BASE BROADBAND SATELLITE TO SERVE PACIFIC ISLANDS DELIVERED TO FLORIDA LAUNCH BASE - A powerful commercial communications satellite to broadcast Internet signals over the Asia-Pacific region has arrived at Cape Canaveral for final launch preparations ahead of a planned Dec. 15 liftoff on top of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. The JCSAT 18/Kacific 1 communications satellite, based on Boeing’s 702MP satellite design, is a shared spacecraft between Sky Perfect JSAT Corp. of Japan and Kacific, a startup telecom company headquartered in Singapore.   More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Nov 16)


WATCH SPACEWALK ON FRIDAY NOVEMBER 15 WATCH SPACEWALK ON FRIDAY NOVEMBER 15 - On Friday, November 15, 2019, two astronauts will venture outside the International Space Station for the first of a series of complex spacewalks to repair a cosmic ray detector. NASA TV begins its live spacewalk coverage Friday at 10:30 UTC (5:30 a.m. EST). Translate UTC to your time. The astronauts, Luca Parmitano of ESA (European Space Agency) and NASA Flight Engineer Drew Morgan will set their spacesuits to battery power at 12:05 UTC (7:05 a.m EST), signifying the start of their spacewalk.   More
(Source: EarthSky - Nov 15)


NEW SOLAR POWER GENERATOR TO BE DEPLOYED TO SPACE STATION 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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)

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