AFTER MAKING HISTORY, NASA’S TINY DEEP-SPACE SATELLITES GO SILENT - The first two tiny satellites to ever go interplanetary have fallen silent in deep space for some unknown reason, and it’s likely we may never hear from them again. But for NASA, which launched the probes last year, this loss of communication isn’t considered a failure. Before the pair went quiet, these vehicles demonstrated that tiny satellites could become critical tools for exploring other worlds deep within our Solar System.
The silent satellites are the two MarCO probes — nicknamed EVE and WALL-E from Pixar’s sci-fi movie — which flew to Mars along with NASA’s InSight lander last year. More
(Source: The Verge - Feb 7)
ARIANESPACE LAUNCHES INDIAN, SAUDI TELECOM SATELLITES IN YEAR’S FIRST ARIANE 5 MISSION - European launch provider Arianespace completed the first Ariane 5 mission of the year Feb. 5, lofting two telecom satellites into geostationary transfer orbits.
The Ariane 5, Europe’s heavy-lift rocket, took off from Kourou, French Guiana, at 4:01 p.m. Eastern. Saudi Geostationary Satellite-1/Hellas Sat-4, a hefty 6,500-kilogram “condominium satellite,” carrying payloads for two operators, separated from the launcher’s upper stage after 27 minutes. GSAT-31, a 2,540-kilogram satellite for the Indian Space Research Organisation, separated 42 minutes after liftoff. More
(Source: SpaceNews - Feb 6)
A PLAN TO CREATE ARTIFICIAL METEORS - Everyone loves a good meteor shower, but what about an artificial one? A Japanese company plans to create one and has just launched hundreds of pellets to space. They’ll ultimately rain down again in colorful displays. Meteors are one of nature’s most awe-inspiring phenomena. These “shooting stars” streak across the night sky quite regularly and can put on intense displays during annual meteor showers. Now, a Japanese company called AstroLive Experiences (ALE) is planning to create the first-ever artificial meteor shower. More
(Source: EarthSky - Feb 6)
HOW SMALL SATELLITES WILL HELP POLICE EARTH'S VAST OCEANS - The oceans are just too big to police—and if you want just one example, consider fishing.
Illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing nets up to 26 million tons of fish each year, which adds up to almost a quarter of the profits of legal fishing. Powered by a shadow fleet, this multi-billion-dollar criminal enterprise hurts legit fishermen and wreaks environmental havoc through overfishing. More
(Source: Popular Mechanics - Feb 5)
HOW A SHOE-BOX SIZED SATELLITE COULD TRANSFORM LOGISTICS COMMUNICATIONS - As telecommunication giants begin moving large areas of the country to 5G cellular communications networks over the next several years, there is another technological breakthrough getting little attention that is lowering the cost of tracking and other communications vital to supply chains.
Low-cost, low-orbit satellites have gone from a vision to reality in recent years, and they are being increasingly used to support global tracking needs for logistics companies, especially in the maritime and air segments. More
(Source: FreightWaves - Feb 5)
OVER 10 LITERS OF WATER LEAKED FROM SPACE TOILET AT US SEGMENT AT ISS - Over 10 liters of water leaked from the toilet at the US segment of the International Space Station (ISS) on Friday and had to be collected across the segment by the crew using towels, a source in the Russian space industry told Sputnik Monday. The leakage comes several months after the ISS crew detected a minor air leak caused by a microfracture on a wall of the orbital module of the Soyuz MS-09. More
(Source: Sputnik International - Feb 5)
INDIAN COMMUNICATION SATELLITE TO BE LAUNCHED BY ARIANE ROCKET - Indian communication satellite GSAT-31 will be put into orbit by Arianespace’s Ariane 5 heavy lift rocket on February 5 from its spaceport in French Guiana, the company said in a statement. According to Arianespace, its rocket Ariane 5 has been authorised for lift-off after the review of its launch readiness.
The rocket will carry two satellites – Saudi Geostationary Satellite 1/Hellas Sat 4 and the GSAT-31. More
(Source: The Siasat Daily - Feb 4)
IRAN IMPROVING ITS ROCKETS TEN YEARS AFTER ITS FIRST SATELLITE LAUNCH - On 2 February 2009 the Islamic Republic of Iran made its first satellite launch, using a Safir rocket to deploy a small satellite, Omid. Ten years later Iran is boastful about plans for the future of its space program as it begins to mature, with new rockets entering service and new satellites preparing to launch.
The February 2009 launch of Omid, whose name means “Hope” in Farsi, saw Iran become the ninth sovereign nation to place a satellite into orbit using a rocket of their own development. More
(Source: NASASpaceFlight.com - Feb 3)
MOMENT METEOR HIT CUBA CAUGHT ON SATELLITE CAMERA (VIDEO) - Atmospheric radar systems caught the moment when a meteor smashed into western Cuba near the town of Viñales on Friday afternoon, stunning onlookers as far away as the Florida Keys. Colorado State University’s Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere caught the projectile hurtling through space to rock the Pinar del Rio province with what witnesses described as two large blasts. More
(Source: RT - Feb 2)