Space

PHOENIX – Greenhouse gas monitoring was a hot topic at the American Meteorological Society’s annual conference with international agencies discussing a global constellation and companies showing a new generation of sensors. “We are looking quite hard in Europe, in the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites and the Coordination Group for Meteorological Satellites at a carbon monitoring verification
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WASHINGTON — Thales Alenia Space said Jan. 10 it received a contract from the European Space Agency worth approximately 150 million euros ($172.4 million) to build the Fluorescent Explorer satellite. Fluorescent Explorer, or FLEX, is an ESA Earth Explorer mission that will measure photosynthetic activity by mapping vegetation fluorescence. The satellite is projected to launch
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SEATTLE — Despite a recent problem with one of its instruments, managers of NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope are confident that the mission can continue to operate well into the next decade. NASA announced Jan. 8 that the Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3) instrument on Hubble suffered a hardware problem that forced it to suspend operations.
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PHOENIX — Researchers examining data produced by small satellites launched in 2016 to track ocean winds were surprised the mission produced valuable information on soil moisture and flooding. NASA’s Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System, a constellation of eight 30-kilogram satellites built by the Southwest Research Institute and the University of Michigan, observed the Amazon River basin
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PHOENIX — The U.S. military’s highest priority weather satellite, a spacecraft requested by U.S. Strategic Command to observe clouds and theaters of operations, is on hold after NASA rescinded the contract award. In September the Space Rapid Capabilities Office, working with the NASA Ames Research Center’s small spacecraft prototyping office, awarded Sierra Nevada Corp. a $119
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PHOENIX –Lockheed Martin, prime contractor for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES) R Series, has halted work on GOES-T, the next spacecraft scheduled to launch, and turned its attention to successor GOES-U as it waits for Harris Corp. to complete modification of the spacecraft’s primary instrument, the Advanced Baseline Imager
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PHOENIX – Since the U.S. military is extremely reliant on satellites for communications, intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and geolocation, the Air Force is striving to augment space weather observations and improve forecast models. Unfortunately, progress often occurs at a glacial pace. “All of you probably learned about climate change and glacier movement,” said Ralph Stoffler, Air
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In his first national security meeting as acting defense secretary, Patrick Shanahan said DoD should stay focused on the national defense strategy and the strategic competition with China. WASHINGTON — Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan held his first national security meeting at the Pentagon on Wednesday. On his second day on the job, Shanahan informed
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WASHINGTON — NASA said Jan. 4 it is delaying a planned visit to the United States by Dmitry Rogozin, the head of the Russian space agency Roscosmos, a trip that had become increasingly controversial. In response to a SpaceNews inquiry, NASA Press Secretary Megan Powers said Rogozin’s visit to the United States, which had been
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MT LAUREL, New Jersey — Iridium Communications is less than a week away from the final launch of its 75-satellite Iridium Next constellation, but could opt to launch six ground spares sooner than later should the right rideshare opportunity open up, CEO Matt Desch said Jan. 3. Iridium’s final six second-generation satellites should finish construction
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DoD official: “The Space Force legislative proposal was a focus of Secretary Shanahan’s as deputy secretary, and those efforts are going to continue as scheduled.” WASHINGTON — Even with a packed agenda as acting defense secretary, Patrick Shanahan plans to remain hands-on in formulating a proposal to establish a new military branch for space. “The
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WASHINGTON — The House of Representatives, now under Democratic leadership, passed spending bills Jan. 3 that would fund government agencies that have been shut down for nearly two weeks, but the bills face a presidential veto threat. The House, hours after swearing in members for the 116th Congress, passed on a 241–190 vote H.R. 21,
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WASHINGTON — The ongoing partial government shutdown has led one company to delay an upcoming launch and could affect other commercial launches in the near future, including a key commercial crew mission. Exos Aerospace had planned to launch its SARGE suborbital rocket Jan. 5 from Spaceport America in New Mexico. That launch has been delayed
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To receive FIRST UP Satcom, a weekly SpaceNews newsletter for satellite and telecom professionals, sign up here. TOP STORIES One of Orbcomm’s first-generation satellites broke up Dec. 22, resulting in 34 trackable objects, according to the U.S. Air Force’s 18 Space Control Squadron. Marc Eisenberg, Orbcomm’s CEO, told SpaceNews the company is still investigating the cause of the
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Just as the new year began, so too did an incredible new era of space exploration, with NASA confirming a successful flyby of the most distant world human beings have ever encountered. (NASA) As revellers watched fireworks exploding in the night sky, billions of kilometres beyond the spectacle, NASA’s New Horizons probe quietly notched up another amazing
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Updated 1 p.m. Eastern with press conference comments. LAUREL, Md. — NASA’s New Horizons completed a close approach to a small body in the distant Kuiper Belt early Jan. 1, collecting data that may reveal new insights about the formation of the solar system. New Horizons made its closest approach to 2014 MU69, also known
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LAUREL, Md. — Even as NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft bears down on one object in the Kuiper Belt, the mission team is already thinking about a second potential flyby in the 2020s. New Horizons will fly by 2014 MU69, nicknamed Ultima Thule, on Jan. 1, making its closest approach of about 3,500 kilometers at 12:33
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