Kepler Communications launches its first two satellites

Canadian startup Kepler Communications launched its first two satellites in September built in its own facility as the company ramps up its plans to deploy a constellation for data and Internet of Things services. The two six-unit XL cubesats, known as Kepler-4 and Kepler-5 but nicknamed Antilles and Amidala, were among the 15 smallsat secondaryRead More

China selects astronauts for upcoming space station project

China’s human spaceflight agency has selected a group of 18 new astronauts to participate in the country’s upcoming space station project. The 18 new Chinese astronauts consist of seven pilots, seven spaceflight engineers and four payload specialists. The final selection includes just one woman. The process, which included primary, secondary and final selections, began inRead More

MBRSC releases satellite image ‘Mosaic’ captured by KhalifaSat

The Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Center (MBRSC) has announced the completion of an updated map of Abu Dhabi and Dubai using the UAE’s first high-resolution satellite image “Mosaic”, captured by KhalifaSat. The system captures a matrix of individual digital images to create a single high-resolution picture of the UAE’s terrain. This imaging system by MBRSCRead More

Airbus to build mobile telecommunications system for Al Yah Satellite Communications Company

Al Yah Satellite Communications Company, a UAE global satellite operator, has selected Airbus to build Thuraya 4-NGS, the next generation mobile telecommunications system that will drive the continued advancement of Thuraya’s L-band business. Thuraya 4-NGS will deliver higher capabilities and flexibility while increasing capacity and coverage across Europe, Africa, Central Asia and the Middle East,Read More

Airbus to fully reconfigure telecommunications satellite for Optus

Airbus Defense and Space has won a contract for a fully reconfigurable telecomunications satellite from Australia’s second largest telecommunications company and leading satellite operator Optus. The satellite will be based on Airbus’ new standard OneSat product line and is Airbus’ first contract from the Australian operator. Airbus will deliver an end-to-end solution, including design andRead More

Southwest Research Institute to design and build Solar Wind Plasma Sensor for NOAA

The Southwest Research Institute won a $15.6 million contract to design and build the Solar Wind Plasma Sensor for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Space Weather Follow On (SWFO) Lagrange 1 satellite. NOAA announced the cost plus, fixed-fee contract July 1, which it awarded through NASA. Under the contract, the Southwest Research Institute willRead More

Sluggish growth for the commercial launch industry in H12020

The first half of 2020 has been sluggish for the commercial launch industry, but its problems can’t be explained solely by the coronavirus pandemic. According to statistics compiled by SpaceNews, there were 45 orbital launch attempts in first six months of 2020, including four failed launches. That would put the overall launch industry on aRead More

UAE’s Mars Hope Probe to be launched on July 15, 2020

The UAE’s Mars Hope Probe is scheduled to launch to the red planet on July 15, 2020, the Emirates Mars Mission has announced. The first interplanetary exploration undertaken by an Arab nation, the probe will undertake a 495,000,000km journey to Mars. It is anticipated to enter Mars’ orbit in February 2021. The countdown to theRead More

UAE officials praise Space X manned missions as “beautiful and flawless”

UAE officials have welcomed the return of manned missions to space by the United States and say the achievement will benefit the sector globally. SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket blasted off on recently carrying Nasa astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley to the International Space Station. “The launch was beautiful and flawless,” said Salem Al Marri,Read More

Virgin Galactic conducts first test flight of SpaceShipTwo

Virgin Galactic conducted the first test flight of SpaceShipTwo from its New Mexico spaceport recently as the company edges closer to finally beginning commercial flights of the suborbital spaceplane. The company’s WhiteKnightTwo aircraft, with the VSS Unity SpaceShipTwo attached to it, took off shortly before 11 a.m. Eastern from Spaceport America in southern New Mexico.Read More