Satellite News

China’s space industry faces impacts of coronavirus outbreak

China’s space industry is suffering adverse effects from the coronavirus outbreak which has so far infected mare than 30,000 in mainland China.

OneWeb’s first large batch of satellites launch on Arianespace Soyuz rocket

A Soyuz rocket launched 34 small broadband satellites for OneWeb Thursday from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, marking the beginning of a multi-launch campaign for the company. 

OneWeb plans April launch break to tweak satellite design

Instead of kicking off a sustained campaign of monthly launches, OneWeb intends to take a break in April after putting up 68 satellites with the pair of launches planned for February and March.

Watch Solar Orbiter launch live

Watch the launch of ESA’s new powerful Sun explorer, Solar Orbiter, on ESA Web TV on Monday 10 February from 03:30 GMT (04:30 CET).

Exploration News

Industry puzzled by NASA withdrawal of CLPS task order

NASA withdrew without explanation last week a task order for its commercial lunar lander services program, frustrating many of the companies involved.

Luca emerges from Soyuz MS-13

ESA astronaut Luca Parmitano returned to Earth today alongside NASA astronaut Christina Koch  and Roscosmos cosmonaut Alexander Skvortsov, marking the end of his second six-month International Space Station mission known as ‘Beyond’. Christina Koch became new world recordwomen for the longuest flight in orbit .

SpaceX is holding a Starship career day to ramp up its Mars colonization effort

SpaceX is hosting a Starship career day today (Feb. 6) at the company’s facility near the South Texas village of Boca Chica, where the big spaceship is coming together.

Launcher News

Opportunities grow for smallsat rideshare launches

SpaceX disclosed new details about its small satellite rideshare efforts Feb. 5 as it, and other programs like it by large launch vehicle operators, put new pricing pressure on small launch vehicle companies.

Ariane 6 launch site gets ready

The first Ariane 6 flight is scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2020

PLD Space books first suborbital flight, nears resolution of engine setback

Spanish launch startup PLD Space says secured a second customer for the maiden flight of its Miura 1 reusable suborbital rocket while tackling development issues that prevented the mission from occurring last year. 

Virgin Orbit nearing first launch

Virgin Orbit says it is weeks away from the first orbital launch of its LauncherOne rocket as the company makes plans to move quickly into operations if that flight is successful.

NewSpace  News

A French smallsat company has raised more than $100 million to deploy an Internet of Things constellation.

Kinéis raised 100 million euros ($110 million) from a mix of public and private investors to fully fund the development of a constellation of 25 16U cubesats to provide IoT connectivity services, along with tracking ships using a secondary Automatic Identification System payload. The company plans to launch its satellites in groups of five during the second half of 2022, with service starting early in 2023. Kinéis spun out last year from Collecte Localisation Satellites (CLS), a French maritime and environmental monitoring company. [SpaceNews]

Momentus announces customers for in-space shuttle service

SteamJet Space Systems is the latest customer to sign up for Momentus’ Vigoride space transportation service.

Space Safety News

NASA safety panel calls for reviews after second Starliner software problem

A NASA safety panel is recommending a review of Boeing’s software verification processes after revealing there was a second software problem during a CST-100 Starliner test flight that could have led to a “catastrophic” failure.

Technology News

Aurora to test deorbit tether on Momentus mission

Finnish startup Aurora Propulsion Technologies signed a contract at the SmallSat Symposium to fly a deorbiting technology demonstration with Momentus Space.

Anti-solar cells: A photovoltaic cell that works at night

What if solar cells worked at night? That’s no joke, according to Jeremy Munday, professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UC Davis.

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