Space

WASHINGTON — For the third time in less than five months, a prototype of SpaceX’s Starship next-generation launch vehicle was destroyed in a test at the company’s South Texas facilities April 3, although this failure may an issue with the test itself. The Starship SN3 vehicle was on the pad at SpaceX’s test site at
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WASHINGTON — While NASA has resumed some work on the James Webb Space Telescope, project officials say even that limited level of activity will soon come to a halt because of the coronavirus pandemic. NASA announced March 20 that it suspended work on the space telescope, which had been undergoing integration and testing, or I&T,
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SAN FRANCISCO – Momentus, a Silicon Valley in-space transportation startup, announced a launch service agreement April 1 with Odysseus Space, a satellite applications startup based in Taiwan. Under the agreement, Momentus will provide in-space transportation for a satellite built by Odysseus for Taiwan’s National Cheng Kung University. National Cheng Kung University worked with Odysseus to
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In response to the SBIR solicitation, a space startup is developing a geospatial intelligence-based tool that can help governments identify infected areas. WASHINGTON — The U.S. Air Force Small Business Innovation Research office has posted a new solicitation that includes COVID-19 countermeasures as an area of interest. The March 30 Small Business Innovation Research solicitation,
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WASHINGTON — NASA has completed the crew for the first operational SpaceX commercial crew mission to the International Space Station, one that will not include any Russian cosmonauts after Roscosmos officials said they would not fly on what they consider an unproven vehicle. NASA announced March 31 that it had assigned veteran astronaut Shannon Walker
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WASHINGTON — NASA announced March 30 it will fund the development of a cluster of six cubesats that will fly in formation above geostationary orbit to study solar storms. NASA said it selected for development the Sun Radio Interferometer Space Experiment (SunRISE) mission as a “mission of opportunity” for its heliophysics program. The mission, with
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WASHINGTON — Stratolaunch, the company founded by the late billionaire Paul Allen as an air-launch company, announced March 30 it is developing a reusable hypersonic vehicle designed to be launched from the company’s giant aircraft. Stratolaunch said it is pursuing development of a vehicle called Talon-A. That vehicle, powered by a liquid-propellant rocket engine, will
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This system is meant to unlock the full potential of satellite data Raytheon has developed a prototype system for managing the floods of satellite data that help generate warnings and intelligence information for combatants and eventually, civilian first responders and researchers. The U.S. government’s global satellite network produces a constant flood of data — petabytes and petabytes
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The U.S. Army Satellite Operations Brigade is increasing WGS satcom capacity to the hospital ship. WASHINGTON — U.S. Space Command units that operate communications satellites are providing additional bandwidth to the USNS Mercy hospital ship that arrived in Los Angeles March 27. The USNS Mercy, operated by the Military Sealift Command, will offer non-coronavirus medical
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Source selections for national security space launch, ground based strategic deterrent remain on track WASHINGTON — Big-ticket contracts for space launch services and for the development of a new intercontinental ballistic missile are scheduled to be awarded this year, and that is still the plan, senior officials said. With thousands of program managers and contracting
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This story was updated March 28 after OneWeb announced its Chapter 11 filing.  WASHINGTON — Satellite internet startup OneWeb filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Friday after its largest investor, Softbank, rejected a request for additional funding. “It is with a very heavy heart that we have been forced to reduce our workforce and enter the
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WASHINGTON — NASA announced March 27 it has selected SpaceX to provide cargo transportation services for the agency’s planned lunar Gateway. SpaceX is the first, and to date only, company selected by NASA for its Gateway Logistics Services program. Modeled on the commercial cargo program for the International Space Station, the program will pay for
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WASHINGTON — Satellite internet startup OneWeb is expected to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy as soon as Friday after its largest investor, Softbank, rejected a request for additional funding, according to sources familiar with the situation.  OneWeb’s imminent filing was first reported by The Financial Times. Softbank, having already invested roughly $2 billion in OneWeb,
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SMC Commander Lt. Gen. Thompson: “The AEHF launch is one of those we consider absolutely mission essential.” WASHINGTON — A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket lifted off on March 26 at 4:18 PM EST from Space Launch Complex-41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, carrying a $1.4 billion Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF-6) communications
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WASHINGTON — The Italian government declared aerospace companies exempt from the nationwide lockdown aimed at halting the spread of the coronavirus, enabling Avio to continue production of rockets, Avio CEO Giulio Ranzo said Thursday.  Since 60% of Avio’s revenue comes from manufacturing, the French government’s March 16 decision to suspend launches from the Guiana Space
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The $1.5 million Small Business Innovation Research award was matched by $1.5 million from ATX Venture Partners and Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund. WASHINGTON — Slingshot Aerospace has won a $1.5 million U.S. Air Force contract matched by $1.5 million in private funds to expedite the deployment of artificial intelligence-driven data analytics to
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SASC is “committed to continuing congressional oversight and data collection necessary to drafting the NDAA.” WASHINGTON — The Senate Armed Services Committee has developed a “paper hearings” process to execute oversight and collect data for the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act during the COVID-19 pandemic. “To protect the health of everyone involved, traditional hearings are
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After decades of fighting to be taken seriously, meteorologists say space weather is beginning to get the attention it deserves. The Trump administration established the Space Weather Operations, Research and Mitigation working group, an interagency panel to coordinate federal work aimed at building resilience to the effects of space weather. In addition, space weather legislation
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WASHINGTON — Small launch vehicle startup Astra has postponed its next launch attempt after the rocket was damaged in what local officials say was an “anomaly” during a prelaunch test. Astra had been preparing for a launch of its “Rocket 3.0” vehicle as soon as March 24 from Pacific Spaceport Complex – Alaska. A previous
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CSF President Eric Stallmer: “The large companies will be fine. I’m worried about their suppliers.” WASHINGTON — The Commercial Spaceflight Federation, an industry group that represents 85 companies in the space sector, is working with congressional committees to ensure coronavirus stimulus legislation includes assistance for small and mid-size suppliers, CSF President Eric Stallmer told SpaceNews.
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HELSINKI — The test launch of the Long March 5B heavy-lift rocket carrying a Chinese new-generation spacecraft is going ahead despite the coronavirus outbreak. The prototype new-generation crewed spacecraft payload is designed to be capable of deep space travel, including crewed lunar missions. Measures introduced to contain the COVID-19 outbreak have altered, but not halted,
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Ongoing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on the global space industry. Scroll down for daily updates. Follow our reporters on Twitter for updates. Sign up for our newsletters. For full stories, click here. Space events delayed or canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic MARCH 22 Rocket Lab is proceeding with upcoming launches after being classified as an
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SEAKR Engineering will join Lockheed Martin’s team for the Protected Tactical Satcom (PTS) program. WASHINGTON — Space electronics supplier SEAKR Engineering, based in Colorado, was tapped by Lockheed Martin to help develop a satellite communications payload for the U.S. Space Force. SEAKR will join Lockheed Martin’s team for the Protected Tactical Satcom (PTS) program, industry
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WASHINGTON — The next meeting of the National Space Council, already scaled back because of the coronavirus pandemic, has been postponed, the White House announced March 21. In a brief statement, the White House said that the March 24 meeting of the council, chaired by Vice President Mike Pence, had been postponed to a date
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WASHINGTON — Arianespace launched 34 small broadband satellites for OneWeb March 21, expanding the startup’s constellation to 74 satellites in low Earth orbit.  Arianespace’s Soyuz rocket lifted off from Russia’s Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 1:06 p.m. Eastern. The satellites will separate at an altitude of 450 kilometers over the course of the 3-hour and
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Virgin Orbit spokesman: “Unavoidably, this will have some impact on our launch date, and on the launches that immediately follow.” WASHINGTON — Virgin Orbit announced March 20 that it will continue operations at its facility in Long Beach, California, after state officials categorized the work as an essential service that should not be completely shut
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Ellen Lord memo: “If you work in a critical infrastructure industry you have a special responsibility to maintain your normal work schedule.” WASHINGTON — Defense Department contractors in sectors such as aerospace, manufacturing and intelligence are part of the United States’ critical infrastructure and have to continue working during the coronavirus emergency, Undersecretary of Defense
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WASHINGTON — NASA has elevated two centers to the highest level of its pandemic response plan, halting preparations for a major test of the Space Launch System. In a statement late March 19, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced that the Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans and the Stennis Space Center in Mississippi will move
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WASHINGTON —  The global space industry stands to fare better than other industries buffeted by the coronavirus pandemic because demand for its services are largely undiminished by the outbreak, according to a report released March 18.  Government customers in defense and emergency response have robust needs for satellite connectivity and geospatial data in times of crisis, and
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SAN FRANCISCO – Boston University student and professors spent eight years developing what they affectionately call the Toaster. It’s a six-unit cubesat scheduled to launch in late March on a Rocket Lab Electron flight from New Zealand’s Mahia Peninsula to detect electrical currents in Earth’s atmosphere. The mission called ANDESITE, or Ad-Hoc Network Demonstration for
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WASHINGTON — NASA announced March 18 it plans to perform a crewed flight of SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft, with two NASA astronauts on board, as soon as the latter half of May. In a media advisory, NASA said the launch of the Demo-2 mission was scheduled for no earlier than mid-to-late May on a Falcon
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