KOUROU, French Guiana (ESA PR) — Launcher integration for the inaugural flight of Vega-C began with the P120C solid-fuel first stage being delivered to the Vega Launch Zone (Zone de Lancement Vega, or ZLV) at Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana on 15 April 2022. P120C will also fly on Ariane 6, with two or four units serving as boosters depending on mission requirements.
The interstage segment to join the P120C first stage with the Z40 second stage followed on the 22nd.
The satellite, installed on the LARES System platform, is preparing to leave Italy to reach the European base in French Guiana where, on board the inaugural flight of the ESA Vega C launcher, it will be put into orbit.
MILAN, Italy (Italian Space Agency PR) — On 23 and 24 March 2022, the Pre-Shipment Review was held at theOHB Italia headquarters in Milan , during which the Italian Space Agency checked the status of the LARES2 System and authorized its shipment to the site launch, the European spaceport of Kourou in French Guiana.
The consortium led by Thales Alenia Space signs the feasibility study contract with Italian Space Agency
ROME, February 21, 2022 (Thales Alenia Space PR) — Thales Alenia Space, the joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), has signed a contract with the Italian space agency (ASI) to conduct a feasibility study for the PRISMA Second Generation (PSG) hyperspectral Earth observation system. It will be leading a consortium that includes Leonardo, Telespazio (the joint-venture between Leonardo (67%) and Thales (33%), e-GEOS and SITAEL.
The In-Q-Tel partnership supports technical capability enhancements
SAN FRANCISCO, February 17, 2022 (Orbital Sidekick PR) – Orbital Sidekick (OSK), the leader in commercial space-based hyperspectral monitoring,shares the validation of first light imagery from the company’s recent pathfinder mission and announces a strategic investment with In-Q-Tel (IQT).
To assess the data quality of its Aurora hyperspectral satellite sensor, which launched on June 30, 2021, OSK performed a comparative study between Aurora and two well-known sensors: Hyperion and PRISMA. The Aurora sensor was designed in the likeness of the Hyperion sensor, a hyperspectral instrument launched as part of Earth Observing-1 in 2000 (decommissioned in 2017). PRISMA, a mission from the Italian Space Agency (launched in 2019) consists of two hyperspectral detectors, which together cover the wavelength ranges of Aurora and Hyperion.
West Antarctica: Smith, Pope and Kohler glaciers are melting faster than expected.
Critical area: Free-floating undersides of glaciers melt the most.
Ice masses in West Antarctica could raise sea levels by up to 1.3 meters.
Focus: space travel, earth observation, global change, TanDEM-X
COLOGNE, Germany (DLR PR) — The South Pole has new problem children. A group of smaller glaciers are melting faster than expected: Pope, Smith and Kohler. So far, the neighboring ice giants Thwaites and Pine Island have been the focus of research because they are very fragile and could cause global sea levels to rise by up to 1.2 meters. The German Aerospace Center (DLR) has uncovered and analyzed the changes in West Antarctica together with international research partners. Using special radar data from the TanDEM-X and COSMO-SkyMed satellite missions, they tracked down the causes of the rapid melting of the smaller glaciers.
The dual use Italian Constellation at the Service of Security and Sustainability
The enlarged 4 satellites final constellation will represent an extraordinary monitoring system guaranteeing greater performance and a significant increase in possible applications.
Since 2008, the COSMO-SkyMed constellation has acquired approximately 2 million images, monitoring 7 billion square meters and generating vital data for our planet
ROME, 1 February 2022 (Thales Alenia Space PR) – The second satellite of the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation (CSG) constellation, built by Thales Alenia Space, a joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%) and operated in orbit by Telespazio, a joint venture between Leonardo (67%) and Thales (33%), was successfully launched today at 00.11 CET from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida (USA), on board of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
SpaceX is scheduled to launch the Italian Space Agency’s COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation radar surveillance satellite tonight from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. The launch is scheduled for 6:11 p.m. EST (2311 GMT). It will be the company’s fourth launch of the year.
After stage separation, Falcon 9 will return to Earth and land on Landing Zone 1 (LZ-1) at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.
The Falcon 9 first stage booster supporting this mission previously supported the launch of Arabsat-6A and STP-2. One half of the fairings supporting this mission previously supported Transporter-1, Transporter-2, and one Starlink mission, and the other half previously supported SAOCOM 1B, Transporter-2, and one Starlink mission.
SpaceX plans to launch another group of Starlink broadband satellites from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on Saturday, Jan. 29. The launch is scheduled for 3 p.m. EST (2000 GMT).
SpaceX will stream both launches beginning about 15 minutes before liftoff.
PLATiNO 1 and 2 are Earth observation satellites that will be launched on a Sun-synchronous orbit.
Both small satellites are due to be launched between 2022 and 2024.
PLATiNO is an all-electric multi-purpose small satellite platform developed in Italy, suitable for a wide range of applications (e.g. Optical, SAR, Telecom, etc.)
Évry-Courcouronnes, France, January 6, 2022 (Arianespace PR) — Arianespace has been awarded a launch contract by SITAEL, with the Italian Space Agency (ASI) as the final customer, to orbit PLATiNO 1 & 2 satellites, between 2022 and 2024 on Vega and Vega C. PLATiNO 1 and 2 are Earth observation small satellites operating on Sun-synchronous orbits. PLATiNO 1 will embark a Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR), operating in the X band, while PLATiNO 2 will carry an optical thermal instrument.
PARIS (ESA PR) — Green and digital transition in Europe will benefit from ESA expertise that supports national plans for investing recovery and resilience funds in space projects.
At the 303rd ESA Council meeting in Paris on 15 December 2021, ESA Member States took the decision to further the role of ESA as provider of expertise in support of national space plans, in particular in order to accompany the investment of Italian recovery and resilience funds in space programmes.
The corresponding arrangement for ESA’s assistance to the Italian National Project concerning Earth observation and space transportation and associated protocol were signed on the margin of the first Giornata Nazionale dello Spazio (Italian National Space Day), held at the Italian Space Agency (ASI) headquarters in Rome on 16 December 2021, by the Italian Minister for Digital Transition and Technological Innovation and delegated authority for space, Vittorio Colao, and ESA Director General, Josef Aschbacher, in the presence of the ASI President, Giorgio Saccoccia.
ROME (ASI PR) — A lot of Italian science born from the exclusive collaboration between NASA and the Italian Space Agency (ASI) was aboard the IXPE (Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer) satellite, which took off punctually from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida at 7.00 Italian time on 9 December. A Falcon 9 carrier from the private company SpaceX was used for the launch. The launch was attended by the president of the Italian Space Agency (ASI), Giorgio Saccoccia, and the administrator of NASA, Bill Nelson.
KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. — A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched NASA’s Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer ( IXPE) early Thursday morning from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The spacecraft will study of the most energetic objects in the universe – the remnants of exploded stars, powerful particle jets spewing from feeding black holes, and more.
The journey into deep space of the satellite of the Italian Space Agency’s LICIACube satellite has begun.
ROME (ASI PR) — The first planetary defense mission of NASA DART, which carries the LICIACube satellite built by Argotec, in collaboration and with the contribution of the Italian Space Agency (ASI), was launched as scheduled on Nov. 24 at 07.21 Italian time from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California.
NASA is gearing up to launch a new set of X-ray eyes on the cosmos. The first space observatory of its kind, the Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer, or IXPE, is built to study some of the most energetic objects in the universe – the remnants of exploded stars, powerful particle jets spewing from feeding black holes, and much more.
IXPE is set to launch Dec. 9 on a Falcon 9 rocket from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
VANDENBERG SPACE FORCE BASE, Calif. (NASA PR) — NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART), the world’s first full-scale mission to test technology for defending Earth against potential asteroid or comet hazards, launched Wednesday at 1:21 a.m. EST on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 4 East at Vandenberg Space Force Base in California.
Just one part of NASA’s larger planetary defense strategy, DART – built and managed by the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland – will impact a known asteroid that is not a threat to Earth. Its goal is to slightly change the asteroid’s motion in a way that can be accurately measured using ground-based telescopes.
VANDENBERG SPACE FORCE BASE, Calif. (NASA PR) — NASA will provide coverage of the upcoming prelaunch and launch activities for the agency’s first planetary defense test mission, the Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART). The mission will help determine if intentionally crashing a spacecraft into an asteroid is an effective way to change its course. DART’s target asteroid is not a threat to Earth.
DART is scheduled to launch no earlier than 1:20 a.m. EST Wednesday, Nov. 24 (10:20 p.m. PST Tuesday, Nov. 23) on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California.