TORONTO, December 16, 2021 (Kepler Communications PR) — Kepler Communications announced today the signing of a contract with Spire Global, Inc. (“Spire”) (NYSE: SPIR), a leading global provider of space-based data, analytics, and space services, to launch a test of Kepler’s ÆTHER network. This will serve as an initial test bed for Kepler’s ÆTHER service and will also help Spire evaluate how the technology can support its goal to collect accurate, timely and global data.
Announced at Satellite 2021, ÆTHER is the fulfilment of Kepler’s mission to enable the space economy by delivering the infrastructure for always-on, real-time connectivity to space-based assets. With ÆTHER, Kepler will solve one of the key challenges facing low earth orbit missions, which is limited connectivity with Earth, by relaying data through the ÆTHER network. Without an always-on, real-time communications link, operators must wait until the satellite is above a ground station to learn about the health of the asset, confirm satellite location, or identify anomalous behavior. In addition, the value of the data collected by satellites diminishes with time until it eventually reaches Earth. By providing an always on, real-time link to satellites, Kepler’s ÆTHER service delivers an important new service to the space community, while opening a new market for Kepler’s satellite technology.
WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — NASA is inviting the public to take part in virtual activities and events ahead of the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope. Webb will be the world’s largest and most powerful space science observatory. It will build upon the discoveries of other missions to answer fundamental questions about the universe and its origins. Launch is scheduled for no earlier than Wednesday, Dec. 22, at 7:20 a.m. EST on an Ariane 5 launch vehicle from French Guiana.
CHARLOTTE, N.C., October 26, 2021 (Satellogic PR) — Satellogic, a leader in sub-meter resolution satellite imagery collection, announced today that it has signed a letter of intent (the “LOI”) with Agencia Espacial del Paraguay (“AEP”) to develop a Space-as-a-Service program for the country. As a result of this LOI, Satellogic and AEP will undertake various technological and scientific projects in accordance with AEP’s Institutional Strategic Plan and the Space Policy of Paraguay.
The LOI provides a framework for the start-up and development of a dedicated satellite constellation network. Satellogic’s Dedicated Satellite Constellation Program enables municipal, state, and national governments to manage a fleet of satellites over a specific area of interest and develop a geospatial imaging program at unmatched frequency, resolution, and cost.
LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. (SMC PR) — Lt. Gen. John F. Thompson, Commander, Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC), recently announced the establishment of the Space Safari Program Office within SMC’s Special Programs Directorate. Space Safari responds to high-priority, urgent space needs by rapidly acquiring, integrating and executing missions in support of USSPACECOM requirements and other combatant commander needs. These missions are not typically a part of an enduring program of record, but respond to high priority needs to deploy space systems quickly to respond to emerging threats.
As a high-speed integrator for specialized space missions, Space Safari operates with a unique mission focus, rapidly connecting space vehicles, specialized payloads, launch campaigns and ground systems, all while coordinating with the operational community and end-users. Similar to the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s Big Safari office, Space Safari uses mature technology and existing production lines to quickly repurpose and integrate space assets from multiple organizations.
LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. (SMC PR) — The U.S. Space Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center’s Cross-Mission Ground & Communications Enterprise (ECX) has awarded a firm-fixed price contract totaling $32.5 million, to Palantir USG Inc on April 30, 2021.
This sole source award provides a Data-as-a-Service (DaaS) Platform and converges three separate mission areas (Space C2, NORAD-NORTHCOM, and Project Brown Heron) using the same tech stack called Warp Core. It supports the Project Brown Heron effort under the U.S. Air Force Vice Chief of Staff, by providing a common data foundation that improves readiness information, which is a critical component of DAF-wide COVID-19 analysis and decision-making effort.
January 9, 2020 – Reston, Va. – The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and Blue Origin have partnered to create Design/Build/Launch (DBL), a new competition designed to launch experimental payloads to study the effects of short-duration microgravity.
VASIMRÂ® VX-200 Meets Full Power Efficiency Milestone
Ad Astra Press Release
Houston, TX â€“- Nov. 23, 2010 — Ad Astra Rocket Companyâ€™s VASIMRÂ® VX-200 rocket prototype demonstrated its highest power efficiency and performance so far in tests, which ended Friday November 19 at the companyâ€™s Houston laboratory. Last weekâ€™s results met the efficiency milestone set by the company as it specifies the requirements for the VF-200 flight engine for the International Space Station. The VX-200 is the full power laboratory prototype that provides the technical basis for the design of the flight hardware.
The Ad Astra Rocket Company, founded in 2005 by Costa Rican astronaut and physicist Franklin Chang, announced Wednesday that it will become a limited public corporation, offering stock to investors willing to pay a minimum of $25,000 on Costa Ricaâ€™s National Stock Exchange.
New Rocket Engine Could Reach Mars in 40 Days Space.com
A mission trajectory study estimated that a VASIMR-powered spacecraft could reach the red planet within 40 days if it had a 200 megawatt power source. That’s 1,000 times more power than what the current VASIMR prototype will use, although Ad Astra says that VASIMR can scale up to higher power sources.
NASA will study the use of Ad Astra Rocket Company’s VASIMR engine for use on a lunar tug concept that would travel between low Earth orbit, lunar orbit and libration points, according to a January 21 procurement document. A video from Ad Astra showing how such a mission would work is above.
Ad Astra Rocket Company, a world leader in plasma rockets and MEI Technologies, Inc., a nationwide aerospace, defense and technology company, have joined forces creating a strategic alliance in support of Ad Astra’s Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket (VASIMRÂ®) rocket development.
Costa Rican creates plasma rocket to pick up space trash Global Post
Before launching speedier Mars missions, Chang Diaz proposes some practical uses of the rocket closer to Earth. It could, for example, act like a DHL in outer space, in which plasma-thrust crafts would transport packages, mainly fuel, to satellites or spaceships on the cheap â€” well, cheaper. Shipments that today run to the tune of a billion dollars, according to the CEO, would cost half a billion on Ad Astra spacecrafts.
He mentioned another use that flies closer to the heart of his eco-friendly homeland. These ships could start to clean up the clutter left by disused satellites.
Ad Astra Rocket Companyâ€™s VASIMRÂ® VX-200 rocket prototype reached its highly- coveted 200 kW maximum power milestone at 11:59 am (CST) in tests conducted at the companyâ€™s Houston laboratory. The DC power trace actually exceeded the design requirement by 1 kW and exhibited the clear signature of a well established plateau at peak power (see graph).
It’s possible that one of the most unexpected places on earth â€“ or in space â€“ to find an Irish flag. But there it is, the tricolour, on a prototype plasma rocket being developed by a US company for express trips to Mars.
Route to Mars may come through Costa Rica Tico Times
The route to Mars may go through Costa Rica. On Wednesday, Ronald Chang, executive director of Ad Astra Rocket Company Costa Rica, gave a presentation at the National Museum that detailed how Costa Rica has the opportunity to serve as a vital cog in the first-ever mission to Mars.
In his presentation, Ronald Chang explained that his brother created an ion plasma rocket, the Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket, known as VASIMR, which can reach Mars in 39 days. Using technology currently available, a rocket can travel to Mars in eight to nine months.