Continuing a “drama-free” test flight, NASA’s unpiloted Orion spacecraft is set to fire its main engine Thursday to leave a distant orbit around the moon, heading for a flyby close to the lunar surface next week to swing onto a trajectory bringing it back to Earth for splashdown in the Pacific Ocean on Dec. 11.
The FCC has partially approved SpaceX’s application for the second generation of its Starlink constellation, allowing the company to launch up to a quarter of the proposed 30,000 satellites while deferring action on the rest.
Eutelsat said Dec. 1 it has ordered a geostationary broadband satellite to support multi-orbit services in the Americas from 2026.
NASA announced Monday it intends to cancel development of its GeoCarb mission, and instead implement a plan for pursuing alternate options to measure and observe greenhouse gases
NASA shared a response Wednesday on an independent review board established to assess plans and goals for the next generation of Earth-observing satellites:
OneWeb said SpaceX is slated to launch 40 of its satellites as early as Dec. 6 to complete almost 80% of its low Earth orbit broadband constellation.
China’s Tianzhou-4 cargo spacecraft released a small satellite after its departure from the Tiangong space station and ahead of its controlled deorbiting.
A commercial moon craft developed by the Japanese company ispace is awaiting launch from Cape Canaveral on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket that will send it on a five-month trajectory culminating in a lunar landing attempt next year, an achievement that could make ispace the first private company to accomplish the feat.
New Horizons remains healthy from its position deep in the Kuiper Belt, even as it speeds farther from the Earth and Sun by about 300 million miles per year!
Paris and Washington pledged Wednesday to reenforce their cooperation in space, particularly on exploration and climate, during a visit by France’s Emmanuel Macron to NASA headquarters alongside US Vice President Kamala Harris. The French president, on a state visit to the United States, highlighted the American lunar program Artemis, whose first uncrewed test mission launched in mid-November
While the European Space Agency has secured funding to continue the ExoMars mission for a 2028 launch, that plan requires cooperation with NASA that has yet to be finalized.
Dutch remote monitoring specialist Hiber is demanding $1.5 million from cash-strapped Astrocast after plans to be sold to the company ran out of time, according to the Swiss small satellite operator.
OroraTech, a German company developing a constellation of thermal mapping satellites for tracking wildfires and other applications, has raised an additional 15 million euros ($15.4 million) to support work on future satellites.
British handset maker Bullitt said Nov. 29 it will release a smartphone early next year capable of sending and receiving texts via satellites in geostationary orbit.
Space Safety News
by Jeff Foust — November 30, 2022
The French government said Nov. 29 it will join the United States and several other countries in a pledge not to conduct anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons tests that can leave hazardous debris in orbit.
The U.S. Space Force has received initial images from a new missile-warning satellite launched in July.
Science &Technology News
A Texas-based company has landed a five-year contract from NASA to build landing p²ads, roads and shelter on the moon and on Mars. ICON, which is known for its 3D-printed homes and military barracks, announced Tuesday it has won a $57 million contract from NASA to build Project Olympus, which will 3D-print infrastructure constructed from existing materials on the moon and Mars.
Pulsar Fusion, a UK rocket company that has seen its advanced space engines tested in the UK and Switzerland earlier this year, has been awarded funding from the UK Space Agency to develop ‘Integrated nuclear fission-based power systems for electric propulsion’ The project will be supported by Southampton and Cambridge Universities