August 1, 2016

Changes to Commercial Space Industry Could Benefit Oklahoma Spaceport (Source: Tulsa World)
When Bill Khourie stands on the concrete under the midday sun and squints toward the end of the runway three miles to the south, invisible behind the curving earth and dancing mirages, he believes he’s looking at the future. Khourie is the director of the Oklahoma Space Industry Development Authority, which has been trying since 1999 to lure space companies to Oklahoma. For years, the authority’s leadership has preached patience, saying the future will come.

Now, Khourie believes the future is so close he can almost see it. The commercial space industry is showing signs of growth as companies like SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, Blue Origin and United Launch Alliance have successfully blasted their spacecraft into the sky in recent months. (8/1)

Falcon Heavy vs Saturn V (Source: Universe Today)
Its an Epic Rocket Battle! Or a Clash of the Titans, if you will. Except that in this case, the titans are the two of the heaviest rockets the world has ever seen. And the contenders couldn’t be better matched. On one side, we have the heaviest rocket to come out of the US during the Space Race, and the one that delivered the Apollo astronauts to the Moon. On the other, we have the heaviest rocket created by the NewSpace industry, and which promises to deliver astronauts to Mars.

And in many respects, the Falcon Heavy is considered to be the successor of the Saturn V. Ever since the latter was retired in 1973, the United States has effectively been without a super-heavy lifter. And with the Space Launch System still in development, the Falcon Heavy is likely to become the workhorse of both private space corporations and space agencies in the coming years. Click here. (7/30)

Intelsat Confident in Ariane 5 to Launch Two Critical Satellites (Source: SpaceFlight Now)
Two Intelsat communications craft are in French Guiana getting configured for a dual-launch aboard an Ariane 5 rocket Aug. 24, the first time the global satellite operator has put two of its payloads on the same booster. The Intelsat 33e and Intelsat 36 satellites are set for launch Aug. 24 at 5:55 p.m. EDT at the opening of a 45-minute window.

Two Russian Antonov An-124 cargo planes delivered the spacecraft to French Guiana earlier this month, with Intelsat 33e arriving July 21 from its Boeing factory in El Segundo, California, and Intelsat 36 landing July 25 after a trip from Space Systems/Loral’s Palo Alto, California, manufacturing plant. (7/31)

Eutelsat Projects Growth Despite Near-Term Instability (Source: Space News)
Eutelsat is confident in its long-term growth prospects despite near-term instability. The company said Friday it is forecasting a decline in revenue of up to 3 percent in its new fiscal year, which ends in June 2017, before a return to growth in 2018. The company had projected that revenue decline in May, unsettling the industry, but officials said it did not reflect a long-term trend. Eutelsat also said Friday it would take several more months to negotiate a sale of its stake in Spanish operator Hispasat and finalize a joint venture with ViaSat for Ka-band broadband services. (8/1)

Japan Plans Microsat Launcher From Upgraded Suborbital Rocket (Source: Nikkei)
Japan is converting a sounding rocket into a vehicle designed to launch cubesats. A version of the SS-520 sounding rocket should be ready to launch cubesats as soon as December, pending a safety certification expected to be granted in October. The first payload will be a three-kilogram satellite developed by the University of Tokyo that will go into an elliptical orbit at an altitude of about 200 kilometers. (8/1)

Russia About to Drastically Boost Its Orbital Surveillance Capabilities (Source: Sputnik)
A new type of advanced surveillance satellites will soon bolster the reconnaissance capabilities of the Russian Aerospace Forces. The mainstay of the new space surveillance system will be the new 14F156 Razdan satellites, which are expected to replace the existing 14F137 Persona craft.

Several sources in Russian industrial and military circles have told the newspaper Kommersant that the Russian Aerospace Forces and the Progress State Research and Production Rocket Space Center are already discussing the specifics of engineering Razdan satellites. (7/29)

Humanity in Dire Need of Global System to Prevent In-Space Collisions (Source: Sputnik)
According to a recent analysis, the number of satellites orbiting the Earth has increased 40% in the past five years, currently standing at almost 1,400 known devices. Tech companies struggling to cope with the soaring demands of the communications industry are regularly sending new satellites into space. One Web, for example, intends to build and launch some 650 small satellites by 2019.

"There are potential constellations of well over 5,000 additional satellites that have been announced." The increased number of orbiting satellites could result in collisions in space as they feed a growing cloud of space debris circling the Earth. Tom Stroup suggests that a system to regulate satellite placement, as well as use, would dramatically lessen the physical risks of accidents in space for rapidly expanding communication markets. (7/28)

Roscosmos May Supply Components for Iranian Satellites (Source: Sputnik)
Russia's Roscosmos space corporation might receive an order for the supply of components for Iranian satellites, Russian Minister of Communications and Mass Media Nikolai Nikiforov said Thursday. Earlier in the day, Nikiforov and Iranian Minister of Communication Mahmoud Vaezi met in Moscow and discussed a number of issues. (7/29)

Researchers Measure, Monitor and Mitigate Potential Health Risks of Long Duration Spaceflight (Source: Space Daily)
Biomedical research that aims to prevent heart disease is an important part of the NASA Human Research Program. One example is the Cardio Ox study, which uses the unique microgravity environment of the International Space Station to understand changes to the cardiovascular system in astronauts living and working in low-Earth orbit. Click here. (7/29)

China Begins Developing Hybrid Spacecraft (Source: Xinhua)
China has launched a program to develop hybrid spacecraft. The vehicle is expected to make space travel much cheaper if it proves successful. According to China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation, the new vehicle will be powered by multiple engines in different phases of the flight into orbit. These engines include turbine, ramjet and rocket. The core technique is using the air's oxygen as an oxidiser to create power. Researchers say the hybrid launch vehicle will be mainly used for expeditions of between dozens to hundreds of kilometers from the earth. (8/1)

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