6 PLANET SATELLITES WILL HITCH RIDES TO ORBIT WITH SPACEX STARLINK LAUNCHES - Earth-observing satellites will tag along on two upcoming launches for SpaceX's Starlink megaconstellation.
Six SkySat spacecraft operated by San Francisco-based company Planet will ride to low Earth orbit (LEO) atop SpaceX Falcon 9 rockets in the near future, representatives of both companies announced Wednesday (May 13). More
(Source: Space.com - May 16)
WANT TO HACK A SATELLITE? NOW’S YOUR CHANCE TO IMPRESS THE AIR FORCE - Hundreds of hackers signed up to try to break into an orbiting satellite. And yes, it’s perfectly legit.
"Hack-A-Sat", which is partly backed by the United States Air Force, will offer $250,000 in prizes in a unique contest to get into a small satellite in orbit. The qualification round is coming up online soon as part of the popular hacking conference Defcon, on May 22. The final round, also online, will see the satellite hacking attempt take place in August. More
(Source: Forbes - May 16)
JAPANESE SATELLITE FILLED WITH 'SHOOTING STAR' PELLETS WON'T SPAWN ARTIFICIAL METEOR SHOWER AFTER ALL - We'll have to wait another few years to see a Japanese company's first big artificial-meteor sky show.
Tokyo-based ALE (Astro Live Experiences) had planned to generate "shooting stars" this year with its ALE-2 satellite, which launched to Earth orbit in December 2019 atop a Rocket Lab Electron booster. More
(Source: Space.com - May 16)
HUSKYSAT-1 (HO-107) TRANSPONDER IS OPEN - The transponder on HuskySat-1, now designated as HuskySat-OSCAR 107 (HO-107), has been activated and is open for use and testing, AMSAT Vice President – Operations Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA, reports.
“It’s fairly sensitive, and 5 – 10 W is plenty most of the time. There are some fades due to satellite orientation, and some passes are definitely better than others. Strong signals may impact the beacon strength.” More
(Source: ARRL - May 16)
CHINESE ROCKET DEBRIS PASSED OVER NYC, LA AS IT FELL TO EARTH, SCIENTISTS SAY - A 20-ton piece of a Chinese rocket passed over New York City and Los Angeles before it crashed to the Earth this week, scientists tracking its descent say.
The debris, which came from a rocket that was launched in early May, is the fifth-largest piece of space junk to plunge uncontrolled through Earth's atmosphere, according to experts who track space debris and satellites. More
(Source: NBCNews.com - May 15)
NASA TV TO AIR LAUNCH, CAPTURE OF CARGO SHIP TO INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION - NASA will broadcast the launch of a Japanese cargo spacecraft to the International Space Station beginning at 1 p.m. EDT Wednesday, May 20, live on NASA Television and the agency’s website.
The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries are scheduled to launch the unpiloted H-II Transport Vehicle-9 (HTV-9) on a Japanese H-IIB rocket at 1:30 p.m. (2:30 a.m. Thursday, May 21, Japan time) from the Tanegashima Space Center in southern Japan. More
(Source: NASA - May 15)
SATELLITE OPERATOR INTELSAT FILES FOR CHAPTER 11 BANKRUPTCY - Satellite operator Intelsat, which launched the world's first commercial communications satellite Intelsat 1 in 1965, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Wednesday (May 13) in order to ease a multibillion-dollar debt and join an FCC spectrum clearing program.
In a statement Wednesday, Intelsat representatives said the bankruptcy filing was spurred, in part, by the company's plan to join the FCC's accelerated clearing of the C-band spectrum to make way for faster 5G wireless satellite communications. More
(Source: Space.com - May 15)
SPACEX READIES ROCKET FOR FINAL FALCON 9 LAUNCH BEFORE CREW FLIGHT - SpaceX fired up a Falcon 9 rocket at Cape Canaveral Wednesday in a pre-flight test for a Starlink satellite launch Sunday, moving closer to the company’s final mission before sending two NASA astronauts into orbit for the first time May 27.
The test-firing occurred at 10 a.m. EDT (1400 GMT) Wednesday on pad 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - May 14)
VIDEO FROM SPACE: COMPANIES SIGN DEAL TO LAUNCH 1ST 'EARTHTV' SATELLITE IN 2021 - We now know how Sen's first Earth-casting satellite will get to its orbital perch.
Sen, a British company that plans to provide ultra-high definition (UHD) video of Earth to the masses, has signed a deal with California-based Momentus to get its first "EarthTV" satellite aloft in the summer of 2021. Under the contract, the little satellite will launch with Momentus' Vigoride space tug atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. More
(Source: Space.com - May 14)