NASA Sets Coverage for SpaceX Crew-3 Briefings, Events, Broadcasts

SpaceX Crew-3 astronauts (from left) Matthias Maurer, Thomas Marshburn, Raja Chari, and Kayla Barron pose for a portrait during preflight training at SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, Calif. (Credit: SpaceX)

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (NASA PR) — NASA will provide coverage of the upcoming prelaunch and launch activities for the agency’s SpaceX Crew-3 mission with astronauts to the International Space Station. This is the third crew rotation mission with astronauts on the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft and the fourth flight with astronauts, including the Demo-2 test flight, as part of the agency’s Commercial Crew Program.

The launch is targeted for 2:21 a.m. EDT Sunday, Oct. 31, on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The Crew Dragon Endurance is scheduled to dock to the space station at 12:10 a.m. Monday, Nov. 1. Prelaunch activities, launch, and docking will air live on NASA Television, the NASA app, and the agency’s website.

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COSMIC-2 Achieves Full Operational Capability

Diagram shows how COSMIC-2 satellites detect how GPS satellite signals are distorted, or bent, as they travel through the Earth’s atmosphere. (Credit: NOAA)

SILVER SPRING, Md. (NOAA PR) — The Constellation Observing System for Meteorology, Ionosphere, and Climate (COSMIC-2) is a network  of six small satellites, each about the size of a standard kitchen oven, designed to improve weather prediction and model accuracy as well as space weather monitoring capabilities.

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Embedded Ventures Announces ‘First of its Kind’ Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with United States Space Force

MALIBU, Calif., Oct. 13, 2021 (Embedded Ventures PR) — Embedded Ventures, a new venture capital firm investing in dual-use space startups beyond launch, today announced an unprecedented multi-year agreement with United States Space Force (USSF)’s SpaceWERX office. SpaceWERX is expanding the space industrial base by forming collaborative research agreements between the military’s operational experts and the top innovators in industry and academia, leveraging commercial investment, and rapidly pursuing new space technologies, while setting ambitious goals since its creation.

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Hyperspace Challenge Accelerator Announces 24 Finalists to Participate in 2021 Cohort

Finalists Will Present Technologies That Can Solve Problems in Space to Compete for $100k in Cash Prizes at the Fourth Annual Hyperspace Summit on December 2

ALBUQUERQUE, NM, October 5, 2021 (Hyperspace Challenge PR) – Hyperspace Challenge, a business accelerator run by the Air Force Research Laboratory and CNM Ingenuity as part of the new SpaceWERX for the U.S. Space Force, announced today it has selected 13 startups and 11 university teams to participate in its 2021 cohort. Finalists comprising the cohort represent 13 states, as well as one company from Ottawa, Canada.

The new cohort is tasked with the development of technology that can be applied to or solve problems in the space domain. This is the first year the program will include a formal university accelerator track which aims to increase collaboration opportunities between the federal government and university research teams, traditionally siloed from commercial and government innovation.

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Space Force Selects More Than 900 Personnel to Transfer in FY 2022

ARLINGTON, VA (AFNS) — The Space Force, working with the Army, Navy and Marine Corps, has selected 670 active-duty service members and 259 civilians to transfer into the Space Force during fiscal year 2022. These volunteers come from the pool of candidates who applied in March 2021 and members who are currently assigned to Army and Navy units slated to transfer into the new service.

These new selects join the initial tranche of 50 selects announced in June 2021 and once transferred into the Space Force, they will account for about seven percent of the service, which totals nearly 13,000 military and civilians today.

“Successfully integrating the units, capabilities and people from Sister Services into the Space Force is critical to our mission and was one of the driving forces in creating the new service,” said Gen. David D. Thompson, Vice Chief of Space Operations. “We look forward to welcoming these Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and civilians into our force and encourage them to apply their experiences and perspectives to help us meet the needs of the Joint Force and shape a unique service culture.”

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Chief Master Sergeant Details Path Forward for Developing the U.S. Space Force

Chief Master Sergeant of the Space Force Roger A. Towberman speaks at the Air Force Association Air, Space and Cyber Conference in National Harbor, Md., Sept. 21, 2021. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jeremy L. Mosier)

By Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. — Chief Master Sgt. of the Space Force Roger A. Towberman took the stage at the Air Force Association Air, Space and Cyber Conference here Sept. 21, to share his vision for the future of Guardian development.

Towberman focused on the five objectives outlined in the Space Force’s human capital management plan, termed the “Guardian Ideal,” released earlier in the day.

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Raymond Describes U.S. Space Force Achievements, Plans, Challenges Ahead

Chief of Space Force Operations Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond gives an update on the U.S. Space Force during the Air Force Association Air, Space and Cyber Conference at National Harbor, Md., Sept. 21, 2021. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Areca T. Wilson)

By Charles Pope
Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. (AFNS) —Chief of Space Operations, Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond used a list of “firsts” and achievements across the Space Force’s brief history Sept. 21 to illustrate how the nation’s newest military service is “purpose built” for success at a time when the nation “can no longer take space for granted.” 

“Space is clearly a warfighting domain and we’re convinced that if deterrence were to fail, we’re going to have to fight and win the battle for space superiority,” Raymond told an audience of more than 2,000 during his keynote address at the Air Force Association Air, Space, and Cyber Conference. “Let me be clear; we don’t want to fight in space. We want to deter that from happening.” 

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Army, Navy SATCOM Mission Areas Shifting to U.S. Space Force

WASHINGTON (U.S. Space Force PR) — The Chief of Space Operations announced the transfer of Army and Navy satellite communications billets, funding and mission responsibility to the U.S. Space Force.

Space Force Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond made the announcement at the Air Force Association meeting in Washington, yesterday. The transfers are scheduled to be effective Oct. 1, 2021, if the DOD budget is passed and signed.

“We’re one team with our sister services and over the last year-and-a-half we have worked with the Army and the Navy and the Air Force to determine which capabilities come over to the Space Force,” Raymond said. “The intent was to consolidate (and) increase our operational capability; increase our readiness and do so in a more efficient manner.”

The changes are “a first tranche,” he said.

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South Korea to Boost Military and Civil Space Spending, Transfer Satellite and Launch Vehicle Technology to Private Sector

Test model of the Nuri (KSLV-II) booster. (Credit: Ministry of Science and ICT)

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

South Korea plans to invest more than $14.25 billion over the next decade to improve its military and civil space capabilities. The Republic of Korea will transfer satellite and launch vehicle technology to the private sector to boost the nation’s domestic capabilities and improve its international competitiveness. The nation is also deepening defense and civil space cooperation with the United States.

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Feinstein, Padilla & Carbajal Urge Air Force to Consider Vandenberg as Permanent Base for STARCOM

Delta IV Heavy carrying the NROL-71 satellite lifts off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. (Credit: ULA)

WASHINGTON (Dianne Feinstein PR)—Senators Dianne Feinstein and Alex Padilla and Representative Salud Carbajal (all D-Calif.) today expressed support for making Vandenberg Space Force Base the permanent location for the Space Training and Readiness Command (STARCOM) amid reports that the previous U.S. Space Command basing decision was based on politics, not merit.

“As you know, Vandenberg Space Force Base already plays an important role in space training and operations. Vandenberg trains space operators at the Air Education and Training Command’s 381st Training Group; manages missile testing; and launches satellites into polar orbit,” the members wrote in a letter to Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall. “Further, Vandenberg’s proximity to California’s world-renowned aerospace industry, universities, and research institutions makes it well-suited to support the permanent establishment of STARCOM.”

Full text of the letter is available here and below:

September 10, 2021

Mr. Frank Kendall
Secretary of the Air Force
1670 Air Force
Washington, D.C. 20330-1670 

Dear Secretary Kendall:

We write to express support for Vandenberg Space Force Base as the permanent location of the Space Training and Readiness Command (STARCOM) and to ask that you ensure the selection process is based on a rigorous and objective evaluation of each proposed site.  We are concerned about reports that the previous Administration’s decision to establish U.S. Space Command at Redstone Arsenal was based on politics instead of the merits, and ask you to ensure this does not happen in future basing decisions. 

We are also concerned about the decision to temporarily base STARCOM at Peterson Space Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado.  As you know, Vandenberg Space Force Base already plays an important role in space training and operations.  Vandenberg trains space operators at the Air Education and Training Command’s 381st Training Group; manages missile testing; and launches satellites into polar orbit.  Further, Vandenberg’s proximity to California’s world-renowned aerospace industry, universities, and research institutions makes it well-suited to support the permanent establishment of STARCOM.

We trust that under your leadership, future basing decisions will be carried out in an impartial manner and will follow established processes.  We look forward to working with you and your staff on behalf of Airmen, Guardians, and their families.  Thank you for your consideration, and please do not hesitate to reach out to us with any questions.  

Sincerely,

Dianne Feinstein
United States Senator

Salud Carbajal
Member of Congress 

Alex Padilla
United States Senator 

ManTech Wins $476 Million U.S. Space Force Contract for Systems Engineering and Integration Supporting Launch Enterprise Programs

HERNDON, Va., Sept. 07, 2021 (ManTech PR) — ManTech (Nasdaq: MANT), a leading provider of innovative technologies and solutions for mission-critical national security programs, has been awarded a $476 million contract by U.S. Space Force to provide systems engineering solutions for the agency’s Space and Missile Center – now redesignated as Space Systems Command (SSC).

With this 10-year prime contract award, ManTech continues its support for a wide array of mission critical space launch programs with launch service integration, fleet surveillance and certification for space and missile systems at Space Force facilities at Los Angeles Air Force Base, Vandenberg Space Force Base and Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. As part of this contract, ManTech is Bringing Digital to the Mission with its investment in Intelligent Systems Engineering solutions to support the Space Force goal of fielding a digital engineering ecosystem fostering both innovation and speed of delivery.

“As the trusted partner of this prominent customer since 2010, we are proud and excited to take the next steps in advancing the missions of U.S. Space Force,” said Andrew Twomey, Executive Vice President and General Manager of ManTech’s Defense Sector. “Applying the world’s finest Intelligent Systems Engineering capabilities, we will meet the standard set by U.S. Space Force – ‘Way Above’ – to build on America’s dominance in space.”

About ManTech

ManTech provides mission-focused technology solutions and services for U.S. defense, intelligence community and federal civilian agencies. In business more than 52 years, we excel in full-spectrum cyber, data collection & analytics, enterprise IT, systems engineering and software application development solutions that support national and homeland security. Additional information on ManTech can be found at www.mantech.com.

Representatives Lamborn and Crow Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Establish a Space Force National Guard and Reserve

WASHINGTON (Doug Lamborn/Jason Crow PR) — U.S. Representatives Doug Lamborn and Jason Crow, both members of the House Armed Services Committee and Co-Chairs of the House Space Force Caucus, joined in introducing the Space National Guard Establishment Act. This bipartisan legislation will establish a Space National Guard as a Reserve component of the Space Force, our nation’s newest military branch.

“For 25 years, our National Guard space units have provided operational and tactical assistance to protect our nation’s vital interests in space and enhance our military lethality,” said Congressman Doug Lamborn. “Today, they work side-by-side with their active-duty counterparts, both in uniform and often as civilian contractors, bringing vital experience to the mission that enhances our national security space enterprise. This important legislation would officially create the Space National Guard. Colorado has more Guardsmen conducting space missions than any state in the Union. I am happy to join Rep. Crow on this important issue.” 

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Phase Four Wins U.S. Space Force Contract at SpaceWERX Pitch Day

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (Phase Four PR) — Phase Four, the creator of the radio-frequency thruster for satellite propulsion, announced today that it has secured a contract with the U.S. Space Force at the SpaceWERX Pitch Day held on August 18th, 2021 for the company’s propellant-agnostic Maxwell engine. Under the contract, Maxwell will utilize ASCENT, a green propellant developed by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, to enable multi-mode propulsion capability, which combines the high thrust capabilities of chemical propulsion and the high efficiency capabilities of electric propulsion.

“Space is rapidly becoming congested and contested,” said Phase Four CEO, Beau Jarvis.  “The U.S. Space Force and commercial satellite operators must increase the maneuverability of their spacecraft to operate safely and minimize on orbit risks.”

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Kendall, Raymond Stress Importance of Space and Space Force’s Success in Separate, High-profile Speeches

Frank Kendall

COLORADO SPRINGS, Co (AFNS) — Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall offered unambiguous support Aug. 24 for the still evolving U.S. Space Force, noting the critical role space plays in the nation’s security, the essential functions space enables in everyday life, and why access must be assured as space becomes more congested and contested.

“It is impossible to overstate the importance of space-based systems to national security,” Kendall said during his keynote address at the 36th Space Symposium, an influential, weeklong gathering of military, commercial, and academic space experts from around the world. The speech was Kendall’s first major address since becoming the 26th Secretary of the Air Force on July 28.

“Strategic stability depends on space-based reliable early warning and communications systems,” Kendall said. “… I can assure you that this Administration will continue the work of establishing, equipping, training, and sustaining the newly formed Space Force and of increasing the resiliency of our essential space systems.”

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