Industry News

//Industry News
Industry News2016-12-22T11:38:44-06:00

Op-ed | The space industry: A closer look at the new ecosystem

“One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Those immortal words belong to history. But in the long story of human evolution, 50 years is only the blink of an eye, hardly of import when measured against the rhythm of civilizations. The expanding “bubble” of human activities in space. The wave front, now extending to the moon and, [...]

Pentagon presses case for Space Force amid political uncertainty

WASHINGTON — Defense Department officials will attend a White House meeting on Tuesday to discuss preparations for the standup of a Space Force as soon as Congress authorizes a new service. A White House source told SpaceNews the Oct. 15 meeting will be a “routine DoD update” related to the anticipated establishment of a new military service. Preparations to create [...]

LeoLabs unveils next generation with Kiwi Space Radar

SAN FRANCISCO – LeoLabs, the Silicon Valley space mapping startup, announced Oct. 14, initial operation of the Kiwi Space Radar, the firm’s third space surveillance radar and first with updated technology to track debris as small as two centimeters in low Earth orbit. “We founded the company on the promise that we would deliver this technology,” Dan Ceperly, LeoLabs co-founder [...]

Satellite industry slowly embracing the cloud

MOUNTAIN VIEW, California — Intelsat CEO Stephen Spengler says that satellite operators didn’t jump on the cloud services bandwagon as fast as the rest of the telecommunications industry.  “A few years ago I would say we wouldn’t really think about working with cloud providers, as an industry,” said Spengler, whose company operates around 50 geostationary satellites‚ one of the largest [...]

China begins preparations for crucial Long March 5 rocket launch

HELSINKI — China is set to attempt a return-to-flight of its Long March 5 rocket at the end of the year, with success required for the country to proceed with its major space ambitions. Two cargo transport ships left port on the Yangtze river late Friday Eastern for the northern city of Tianjin. They are expected to collect components of [...]

Stratolaunch gets mystery new owner

HOUSTON — Stratolaunch, the venture founded by the late Paul Allen to develop an air-launch system, has “transitioned” ownership, but the company is not disclosing who the new owner is. In a brief statement Oct. 11, Stratolaunch said that it “transitioned ownership and is continuing regular operations.” The company had been owned by Vulcan Inc., the holding company of Microsoft [...]

Op-ed | Priority-one for space policy should be to protect U.S. satellites

Should dominance be our immediate space security priority? The short answer is no. Why? Doing so jeopardizes achieving the more urgent task of protecting our critical satellites. Dominance may be desirable but, for now, the United States must tackle the weightier task of preventing Russia and China from disabling our key satellites. Lt. Gen. Robert Ashley, director of the Defense [...]

Descartes Labs raises $20 million to create Earth’s digital twin

SAN FRANCISCO – Descartes Labs, a company that specializes in applying machine learning to geospatial datasets, raised $20 million in a Series B-2 bridge financing round, bringing the Santa Fe, New Mexico, firm’s total raised to nearly $60 million. With the additional funding announced Oct. 11, Descartes will pull in data from a diverse group of satellites to create Earth’s [...]

Pence added to IAC 2019 opening ceremony

WASHINGTON — U.S. Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to speak during the opening ceremony of the 70th International Astronautical Congress here Oct. 21, the IAC’s organizers announced this week. Pence chairs the National Space Council the Trump administration reestablished in 2017 to guide and coordinate civil, commercial, national security and international space policy matters. The IAC’s organizers, the International [...]

NASA and SpaceX agree commercial crew development is the “highest priority”

LAS CRUCES, N.M. — NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and SpaceX Chief Executive Elon Musk eased two weeks of tension between them Oct. 10, saying they were on the same page regarding development of commercial crew systems. Bridenstine toured SpaceX’s headquarters in Hawthorne, California, and told media afterwards that development of vehicles to carry astronauts to the International Space Station, including [...]

Astroscale, ClearSpace aim to make a bundle removing debris

SAN FRANCISCO — Within a year, Astroscale plans to begin a complex series of demonstrations to show the startup’s spacecraft can grab a piece of space debris and dispose of it in the atmosphere. If the 2020 End-of-Life Service by Astroscale-demonstration (ELSA-d) mission is successful, it could prompt satellite operators to begin designing spacecraft for in-orbit retrieval and convince space [...]

Air Force integrates missions, strengthens information warfare capabilities

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO, Texas (AFNS) --In March 2019, Air Force leaders decided to create a new information warfare numbered air force with enhanced missions and capabilities.Sixteenth Air Force activated at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Oct. 11, integrating Twenty-Fourth Air Force, to include Air Forces Cyber, and Twenty-Fifth Air Force into a single headquarters that will provide global intelligence, surveillance [...]

NASA considering purchase of additional Soyuz seats

LAS CRUCES, N.M. — NASA expects to buy at least one more Soyuz seat from Russia to provide assured access to the International Space Station should commercial crew vehicles suffer additional delays. In a media briefing after a visit to SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, California, Oct. 10, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said NASA was in discussions with Roscosmos about ensuring [...]

Huan Nguyen First Vietnamese American Navy Rear Admiral

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Huan Nguyen became the first Vietnamese American promoted to the rank of rear admiral during a ceremony at the Navy Memorial in Washington, D.C., Oct. 10.  Nguyen, 60, will serve as the Deputy Commander for Cyber Engineering at the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) on the Washington Navy Yard. NAVSEA Commander Vice Adm. Tom Moore served as [...]

NASA official hints first SLS launch could slip to mid-2021

LAS CRUCES, N.M. — While NASA continues to wait to set a new official date for the first launch of its Space Launch System, an agency official said Oct. 10 that the launch could slip as late as the middle of 2021. NASA’s formal estimate of the first launch of SLS, a mission called Artemis 1, remains late 2020. That [...]