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Industry News2016-12-22T11:38:44-07:00

U.S. Space Force begins to organize Pentagon staff and field operations

WASHINGTON — The United States’ first chief of space operations for the U.S. Space Force is still wearing his U.S. Air Force uniform. “But I’m not in the Air Force anymore,” says Gen. John “Jay” Raymond. “I’m in the Space Force.” Two days after being sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence as chief of space operations, Raymond remains, for now, [...]

Arianespace launches Eutelsat, ISRO satellites on first 2020 mission

WASHINGTON — European launch provider Arianespace completed its first launch of the year Jan. 16, sending two communications satellites into geostationary transfer orbits.  The Ariane 5 rocket lifted off from the Guiana Space Center at 4:05 p.m. Eastern with the 3,600-kilogram Eutelsat Konnect satellite and the 3,400-kilogram GSAT-30 satellite.  Eutelsat Konnect separated from the rocket’s upper stage about 28 minutes [...]

Luxembourg establishes space industry venture fund

WASHINGTON — The government of Luxembourg has invested in a new fund intended to support space startups, a move that will be one of the last for the country’s most prominent backer of the industry. Étienne Schneider, deputy prime minister of Luxembourg and the country’s economy minister, said Jan. 16 that the government invested an undisclosed amount into Orbital Ventures, [...]

Space startups warming to U.S. government as investor, customer

WASHINGTON — Space startups are becoming more acquainted with the U.S. government as a customer and an investor, though the pathways to both remain difficult, a panel of experts said Jan. 14.  “2019 was the year of government,” Carissa Christensen, CEO of analyst firm Bryce Space & Technology, said at a Washington Space Business Roundtable event here. “We saw many [...]

ESA seeks new cooperative agreement with EU

WASHINGTON — With its funding secured for the next three years, the head of the European Space Agency is now focused on implementing those key programs while establishing a new cooperative agreement with the European Union. At a press briefing Jan. 15 at ESA’s Paris headquarters, ESA Director General Jan Woerner reviewed the outcome of the agency’s Space19+ ministerial meeting [...]

China launches Yinhe-1 commercial low Earth orbit 5G satellite

HELSINKI — China carried out its second orbital launch in just over 24 hours late Wednesday, sending the Yinhe-1 commercial 5G satellite into low Earth orbit. A Kuaizhou-1A solid launch vehicle lifted off from a mobile platform at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China at 10:02 p.m. Eastern.  Aboard was the 227-kilogram Yinhe–1 (Galaxy-1) technology verification satellite for [...]

NOAA signals strong appetite for radio occultation

Article was updated Jan. 16 with information about Spire Global radio occultation work. BOSTON – The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration seeks to dramatically increase the supply of radio occultation soundings it feeds into weather forecast models. NOAA currently obtains slightly more than 2,000 soundings daily from its own satellites and those of its international partners. The agency has a [...]

Air Force Aid Society launches new enhancements to its mobile budget app

The initial version of the AFAS Budget Builder App was launched in 2018 and was created primarily as a budgeting tool to help Airmen and their families improve how they save and budget their money each month. Prior to the Budget Builder App, AFAS provided paper check registers to Airmen and other service members to manually track monthly expense activity.

Spire Global shares early data from GNSS Reflectometry satellites

BOSTON – Spire Global shared early data from new Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) Reflectometry cubesats at the American Meteorological Society conference here. Spire launch two GNSS Reflectometry cubesats Dec. 11 on an Indian Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle. The spacecraft, equipped with bistatic radars to observe how GNSS signals scatter after bouncing off Earth surface features, began collecting data Jan. [...]

Orbital debris mitigation guidelines still useful, if complied with

ARLINGTON, Va. — A long-standing guideline for deorbiting satellites within 25 years, criticized by many in the space industry for being too long, is still effective for reducing the growth of orbital debris so long as satellite operators abide by it, according to an orbital debris expert. Guidelines for mitigating orbital debris, including one at the international level published in [...]