Archive: Space

Orbital's Minotaur IV launches from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on Aug. 26, 2017, carrying the ORS-5 space-tracing satellite. Photo: Orbital ATK.

Air Force Studying Alternatives To Troubled ORS-6 Satellite

The U.S. Air Force has scrubbed the launch of a weather demonstration satellite, citing unspecified “technical issues” with the spacecraft’s bus. The Air Force’s Space Rapid Capabilities Office (Space RCO), formerly the Operationally Responsive Space (ORS) office, had planned to launch the ORS-6 satellite on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket in February. The mission would […]

The UK's Royal Air Force recently launched its first small satellite, Carbonite-2. (Credit: SSTL-Beaucroft-Photography)

UK Nears Completion Of First Defense Space Strategy

The United Kingdom is drafting its first defense space strategy and intends to unveil it this summer, citing growing threats to its space operations. The strategy, which Gavin Williamson, the UK’s defense secretary, recently announced at the first-ever UK defense space conference in London, “will set out plans to protect UK operations against emerging space-based […]

Air Force Space Command chief Gen. John Raymond. Photo: Air Force.

Air Force Hikes Funding For New Space Consortium

The U.S. Air Force’s new Space Enterprise Consortium, which promotes the development of industry prototypes, is getting a five-fold increase in funding because the service is pleased with its results, according to a top Air Force space official. Air Force acquisition chief Will Roper recently approved raising the consortium’s $100 million ceiling to $500 million […]


DARPA Launch Challenge Program Nears Releasing RFI For Potential Payloads

The Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) will soon issue a request for information on commercial and government payloads it could use in an upcoming launch competition, an agency official said May 23. The RFI will be “coming out in the next week or two,” said Todd Master, program manager for the DARPA Launch Challenge. […]

The twin GRACE-FO satellites will follow each other in orbit around Earth, separated by about 137 miles.
Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA Set To Launch Water-Watching Satellites

NASA and the German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ) say they are on track to launch a pair of Earth-observing satellites May 22 aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Built by Airbus Defence and Space in Germany, the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment Follow-On (GRACE-FO) satellites are set […]

Orbital's Minotaur IV launches from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on Aug. 26, 2017, carrying the ORS-5 space-tracing satellite. Photo: Orbital ATK.

Air Force Pursuing Makeover For Operationally Responsive Space Office

The U.S. Air Force is beefing up the Operationally Responsive Space (ORS) office to help the 11-year-old organization improve its ability to quickly develop urgently needed space capabilities, service Secretary Heather Wilson said May 17. The Air Force is adding about 50 people to the office, which is based at Kirtland Air Force Base in New […]

Artist's illustration of NASA's Space Launch System (SLS). Photo: NASA.

More Delays In NASA Space Missions Won’t Be Tolerated, House Panel Says

The House Appropriations Committee is warning NASA that lawmakers will not put up with further delays in the agency’s space-exploration missions. In a new report explaining the fiscal year 2019 Commerce-Justice-Science appropriations bill, the committee expresses concern that the delays have occurred despite “record investments” in NASA.  “These slips are intolerable and must not continue,” the committee […]

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine (NASA photo)

Moon Efforts Won’t Hurt Mars Goal, NASA Head Says

The Trump administration’s new push to return humans to the Moon will not come at the expense of efforts to send American astronauts to Mars, according to NASA’s new leader. While NASA recently released a draft solicitation seeking industry help in sending payloads to the Moon, that step should not be interpreted as a sign […]


DARPA Sees Strong Interest In Competition To Spur Rapid Space Launches

More than 20 teams have indicated they might participate in the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency’s (DARPA’s) Launch Challenge, a competition designed to promote rapid access to space for the Department of Defense, the agency said May 7. During the challenge, which is slated for late 2019, each participant will be expected to launch a […]

Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), chairman of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee

House OKs Bill To Create One-Stop Shop For Commercial Space Activity

The U.S. House of Representatives has approved a bill that would create a “one-stop shop” in the Commerce Department’s Office of Space Commerce to authorize private-sector space activity, including exploration and remote sensing. The House passed the proposed American Space Commerce Free Enterprise Act (H.R. 2809) by voice vote April 24. The bill now heads […]