HOW LONG SHOULD A SATELLITE LAST: FIVE YEARS, TEN YEARS, 15, 30? - Satellite manufacturers and operators attending the Space Tech Expo here offered contrasting views on how long satellites should continue to work in orbit.
For years, government and commercial operators sought to extend the life of satellites by sending them into orbit with plenty of fuel and components designed to withstand 15 years of harsh radiation. Now, the market is diversifying. Customers want everything from cubesats built for six-month missions to geostationary communications satellites designed to last decades. More
(Source: SpaceNews - May 25)
NEWEST NOAA WEATHER SATELLITE SUFFERS CRITICAL MALFUNCTION - The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released some bad news today: the GOES-17 weather satellite that launched almost two months ago has a cooling problem that could endanger the majority of the satellite’s value.
GOES-17 is the second of a new generation of weather satellite to join NOAA’s orbital fleet. More
(Source: Ars Technica - May 24)
AMATEUR RADIO TRANSPONDERS ON PLANNED CHINESE SATELLITES TO INCLUDE HF - China’s Amateur Radio Satellite organization, CAMSAT, has released some details of three new Amateur Radio satellites that could be launched as early as September. Two of the satellites, CAS-5A and CAS-6, will carry transponders, and one of them will have HF capability.
CAS-5A is a 6U CubeSat. It will an HF/HF (21/29 MHz) mode linear transponder; an HF/UHF (21/435 MHz) mode linear transponder; an HF CW telemetry beacon; VHF/UHF mode linear transponder; a VHF/UHF mode FM transponder; a UHF CW telemetry beacon, and UHF AX.25 4,000/9,600-baud GMSK Telemetry. More
(Source: ARRL - May 23)
RUSSIA TO CREATE ORBITAL INTERNET SATELLITE CLUSTER BY 2025
- Russian Space Systems Company (part of the State Space Corporation Roscosmos) plans to implement a project to create a global satellite communications network, which will require 288 satellites operating in the 870 km orbit by 2025, Company representative and project Head Yuri Mishin said on Tuesday.
"The Efir project envisages an aerospace infocommunications network. This is the project of creating orbital Internet. We plan 288 satellites in the 870km obit. They will form a system expected to start operating in 2025," Mishin said at the presentation titled: "Space Services for the Digital Economy" in Moscow.
(Source: TASS - May 23)
RIDESHARE LAUNCH BY SPACEX SERVES COMMERCIAL AND SCIENTIFIC CUSTOMERS - A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket powered by a reused first stage climbed into orbit Tuesday from California’s Central Coast, carrying five satellites to upgrade Iridium’s global messaging service and two research craft to study Earth’s water cycle.
The rideshare mission, arranged between SpaceX, Iridium, and the German research center in charge of launching the Earth science satellites, took off at 12:47:58 p.m. PDT (3:47:58 p.m. EDT; 1947:58 GMT) from Space Launch Complex 4-East at Vandenberg Air Force Base.
The 229-foot-tall (70-meter) rocket climbed through a mostly sunny midday sky, and a marine cloud layer that threatened to obscure viewing of the launch stayed offshore over the Pacific Ocean. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - May 23)
CHINA'S SPACE AMBITIONS CONTINUE WITH REPORTED LAUNCH OF SATELLITE TO EXPLORE FAR SIDE OF THE MOON - China launched a relay satellite early on Monday designed to establish a communication link between earth and a planned lunar probe that will explore the dark side of the moon, the official Xinhua news agency said.
Citing the China National Space Administration, Xinhua said the satellite was launched at 5:28 a.m. (21:28 GMT Sunday) on a Long March-4C rocket from the Xichang launch centre in the southwest of the country. More
(Source: CNBC - May 22)
THIS IS WHAT AMERICA’S NEW SPACE SHUTTLES LOOK LIKE - US astronauts haven’t had their own ride into orbit since the space shuttle was retired in 2011. Two private companies are racing to replace it and become the first to fly astronauts for NASA.
Boeing and SpaceX are being paid billions of dollars to build and operate crewed space capsules that will take humans to the International Space Station. NASA and the two companies recently shared new pictures of the astronauts and their custom spacesuits training for their flights with simulated missions in mock-up capsules. More
(Source: Quartz - May 22)
ANTARES ROCKET LAUNCHES NASA CARGO TO SPACE STATION IN DAZZLING PREDAWN LIFTOFF - An Orbital ATK Antares rocket pierced the clouds in the predawn sky over Virginia this morning (May 21) with a dazzling predawn launch to deliver more than 3 tons of vital supplies to the International Space Station.
The Antares rocket launched an uncrewed Cygnus cargo ship at 4:44 a.m. EDT (0844 GMT) from Pad-0A of NASA's Wallops Flight Facility here, and successfully reached orbit 9 minutes later. The Cygnus, also built by Orbital ATK, is expected to arrive at the space station on Thursday (May 24). More
(Source: Space.com - May 22)
ORBITAL ATK READIES CARGO SHIP FOR LAUNCH TO SPACE STATION - Orbital ATK readied an upgraded Antares rocket for launch Monday from Wallops Island, Va., to deliver more than 3 tons of crew supplies, science gear, spare parts and three small satellites to the International Space Station to test miniaturized, low-cost technologies for Earth observation applications.
The experiments headed for orbit include a quantum physics study that will attempt to cool atoms to a billionth of a degree above absolute zero, another to test a novel technique for separating liquids and one devoted to learning more about how concrete sets up in the absence of gravity. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - May 21)