Latest Space News
Tue, 1 Sep 2015 15:37:00 +0100
LISA Pathfinder, ESA’s gravitational-wave detection technology demonstrator, is ready to be shipped to Kourou in French Guiana in preparation for its launch in November. Airbus Defence and Space, the world’s second largest space company, has completed a series of intensive tests on LISA Pathfinder’s propulsion and science modules at IABG, near Munich, to prove its space worthiness.  The 1.9-tonne spacecraft, primed by Airbus Defence and Space will be launched on a Europ...
Tue, 1 Sep 2015 11:05:00 +0100
NASA has selected the potential next destination for the New Horizons mission to visit after its historic July 14 flyby of the Pluto system. The destination is a small Kuiper Belt object (KBO) known as 2014 MU69 that orbits nearly a billion miles beyond Pluto. This remote KBO was one of two identified as potential destinations and the one recommended to NASA by the New Horizons team.  Although NASA has selected 2014 MU69 as the target, as part of its normal review process the agency ...
Tue, 1 Sep 2015 08:40:00 +0100
Soyuz Flight VS12 Both Galileo navigation satellites for Arianespace’s September 10 launch have been installed on their side-by-side dispenser system, marking another milestone in preparations for the upcoming mission from French Guiana with the company’s workhorse medium-lift Soyuz. Operating in the Spaceport’s S3B clean room facility, mission team members mated the spacecraft pair with the dispenser, which will deploy the satellites by firing a pyrotechnic system ...
Mon, 31 Aug 2015 08:56:00 +0100
Astronomers using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have found that Markarian 231 (Mrk 231), the nearest galaxy to Earth that hosts a quasar, is powered by two central black holes furiously whirling about each other. The finding suggests that quasars—the brilliant cores of active galaxies – may commonly host two central supermassive black holes, which fall into orbit about one another as a result of the merger between two galaxies. Like a pair of whirling skaters, the black-...
Mon, 31 Aug 2015 02:00:00 +0100
Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has partnered with ViaSat and Optus to offer the Australian Defence Force (ADF) a proven solution for its utilisation of the Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) system. Under the team's response to the ADF's tender request, Australia has the opportunity to gain access to Northrop Grumman's Satellite Communications Operations and Planning Element (SCOPE) network management system, which is the only managing, operating and monitoring system that has already been...
Sat, 29 Aug 2015 05:35:00 +0100
An International Launch Services (ILS) Proton Breeze M successfully placed the Inmarsat-5 F3 (I-5 F3) satellite into a super-synchronous transfer orbit (SSTO) today. The spacecraft was launched for Inmarsat, the leading provider of global mobile satellite communications services. I-5 F3 is the third of Inmarsat's next-generation Global Xpress satellites, which launched on an ILS Proton. This marks the third Proton launch of the year and the 5th SSTO mission for ILS, a leader in providing launch ...
Fri, 28 Aug 2015 21:30:00 +0100
The U.S. Navy and Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) are ready to launch the fourth Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) secure communications satellite, MUOS-4, here on Monday, August 31, aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket. The launch window is between 6:07 a.m. and 6:51 a.m. EDT. We continue to monitor Tropical Storm Erika for potential impact to launch. Early-rising Californians may be particularly interested in the webcast to watch one of their "hometown" satellites launch live. Th...
Fri, 28 Aug 2015 20:10:00 +0100
When the third Boeing-built [NYSE: BA] Inmarsat-5 satellite, which is now in orbit, becomes fully operational later this year it will provide the technology and coverage necessary for worldwide high-speed broadband access. Inmarsat-5 F3 sent signals from space following its launch yesterday on an International Launch Services Proton Breeze M launch vehicle. After reaching final orbit, the spacecraft will undergo testing and checkout before becoming operational. "The Inmarsat Global Xpress ...
Fri, 28 Aug 2015 15:29:00 +0100
NASA has awarded a contract to Harkins Contracting Inc. of Salisbury, Maryland, for the construction of a new Mission Launch Command Center (MLCC) at the agency's Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, Virginia. The new 14,174 square-foot facility will serve as the hub for interfacing with and controlling rockets, their payloads and associated launch pad support systems during flight operations at Wallops. "The Wallops launch range mission set has seen steady growth, transformation and...
Fri, 28 Aug 2015 14:27:00 +0100
Europe's latest Galileo satellites are fully fuelled, leaving them ready to be attached to their launcher upper stage in preparation for their 11 September launch. Galileo 9 and 10 are due to launch atop a Soyuz launcher at 02:08 GMT on 11 September (04:08 CEST; 23:08 local time, 10 September) from Europe's Spaceport in French Guiana. Technicians donned spacesuit-like SCAPE (Self Contained Atmospheric Protective Ensemble) suits to fill each satellite with sufficient hydrazine fuel for thei...
Fri, 28 Aug 2015 00:02:00 +0100
NASA has completed the first developmental test series on the RS-25 engines that will power the agency's new Space Launch System (SLS) rocket on missions deeper into space than ever before. The test series wrapped up Thursday with a seventh hot fire test of a developmental RS-25 engine on the A-1 Test Stand at NASA's Stennis Space Center in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. The test ran for a full-duration 535 seconds. "The completion of this test series is an important step in getting SLS ready...
Thu, 27 Aug 2015 15:00:00 +0100
Space Systems/Loral , LLC (SSL) today announced that a high performance satellite designed and built for Australia's new nbn(tm) broadband network has arrived at the European Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana , where it will be launched aboard an Ariane 5 launch vehicle by Arianespace . The high capacity broadband satellite, which will provide service to more than 200,000 Australians, demonstrates SSL's leadership in providing satellites for high speed internet access. SSL has provided the...
Thu, 27 Aug 2015 13:50:00 +0100
Early September will see the very first force-feedback-based teleoperation of a rover-based robotic arm system on Earth from the International Space Station, orbiting 400 km above our heads. Danish ESA astronaut Andreas Mogensen will take control of the Interact Centaur rover, which incorporates a pair of arms to perform precision operations. In the process Andreas will make use of haptic control - providing him with force feedback to let him feel for himself as the robotic arms encounter ...
Thu, 27 Aug 2015 09:55:00 +0100
The shimmering colors visible in this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image show off the remarkable complexity of the Twin Jet Nebula. The new image highlights the nebula’s shells and its knots of expanding gas in striking detail. Two iridescent lobes of material stretch outwards from a central star system. Within these lobes two huge jets of gas are streaming from the star system at speeds in excess of one million kilometers (621,400 miles) per hour. The cosmic butterfly pictured i...
Wed, 26 Aug 2015 17:25:00 +0100
Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) delivered on schedule the telescope structure for NASA's James Webb Space Telescope Aug. 24 to Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, paving the way for the integration of the 18 hexagonal mirrors that will help scientists observe the formation of the first stars and galaxies over 13.5 billion years ago. Northrop Grumman is under contract to NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center and leads the industry team that designs and develops the Webb Te...
Wed, 26 Aug 2015 16:43:00 +0100
Following the decision of the State Review Board, the Proton M/Breeze M integrated launch vehicle (ILV) carrying the Inmarsat- 5 F3 telecommunications spacecraft was rolled out to the Launch Facility, Area 200 earlier this morning of August 25. Here, the ILV was erected vertically onto the launch table and Khrunichev together with other space-industry companies, commenced Day 1 of countdown operations. Ground processing for the upcoming launch is proceeding on schedule. According to the Russ...
Wed, 26 Aug 2015 15:00:00 +0100
Space Systems/Loral, LLC (SSL), a leading provider of commercial satellites, today announced it was awarded a contract from the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to study on-orbit robotic assembly of geostationary communications satellites. Called Dragonfly, the program is designed to enable larger and more powerful satellites that cannot be launched fully assembled, to be packaged in pieces within a standard launch vehicle fairing. "The Dragonfly program gives SSL the ...
Tue, 25 Aug 2015 23:18:00 +0100
Half of the residents of the International Space Station will take a spin around their orbital neighborhood in the Soyuz TMA-16M spacecraft on Friday, Aug. 28. NASA Television coverage will begin at 2:45 a.m. EDT. Expedition 44 Commander Gennady Padalka of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) and Flight Engineers Scott Kelly of NASA and Mikhail Kornienko of Roscosmos will move the Soyuz from the station's Poisk module to the Zvezda docking port. The relocation maneuver will begin with...
Tue, 25 Aug 2015 17:03:00 +0100
United Launch Alliance (ULA) and the U.S. Air Force have demonstrated a commitment to innovation and continuous improvement through implementation of Off-site Vertical Integration (OVI) of several structural elements and the Centaur upper stage for the Atlas V launch vehicle. OVI significantly reduces the number of lifting operations performed at the Vertical Integration Facility (VIF) at Cape Canaveral , taking them off the critical path and allowing for reduced time between launches. Relocati...
Tue, 25 Aug 2015 15:00:00 +0100
Last Friday, 21 August, ESA's billion-star surveyor, Gaia, completed its first year of science observations in its main survey mode. After launch on 19 December 2013 and a six-month long in-orbit commissioning period, the satellite started routine scientific operations on 25 July 2014. Located at the Lagrange point L2, 1.5 million km from Earth, Gaia surveys stars and many other astronomical objects as it spins, observing circular swathes of the sky. By repeatedly measuring the positions of t...
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