Archive: Space

The Air Force's SBIRS GEO-4 missile-warning satellite lifts off on an Atlas 5 rocket. (Photo courtesy of United Launch Alliance)

Lawmakers Want DoD To Consider Smaller Buses For Key Satellites

Concerned that large, high-value satellites are vulnerable to growing threats from potential enemies, the House Armed Services Committee (HASC) wants the Department of Defense to consider making greater use of smaller spacecraft. The committee’s newly unveiled fiscal year 2019 defense authorization bill would require DoD to study the benefits and risks of using small- and […]

Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.). (Photo courtesy of office of Rep. Bridenstine.)

Bridenstine Takes Reins Of NASA

Former U.S. Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.) formally became NASA’s 13th administrator April 23, four days after his controversial nomination narrowly cleared the Senate. During a swearing-in ceremony at NASA headquarters in Washington, D.C., Bridenstine paid homage to several of his early and recent predecessors and pledged to build on their work.  “I will do my […]

Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.). (Photo courtesy of office of Rep. Bridenstine.)

Senate OKs Rep. Bridenstine To Lead NASA

The U.S. Senate narrowly approved Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.) as NASA’s 13th administrator April 19, ending a months-long stalemate over his controversial nomination. The 50-49 party-line vote came a day after the Senate voted, 50-48, to limit debate on the nomination. It also came three days after Vice President Mike Pence, while speaking at the […]

Michael Griffin, undersecretary of defense for research and engineering (DoD photo)

DoD’s Griffin Eyes Using Directed Energy For Space-Based Missile Defense

Pentagon technology chief Michael Griffin said April 17 that he wants to field a megawatt-class, directed energy (DE) device in space by the late 2020s to protect the United States against hostile long-range missiles. And “within a few years,” he wants to have a 100-kilowatt-class laser that can be deployed on an Army Stryker vehicle […]

Vice President Mike Pence (White House photo)

White House Finalizing New Policy On Space Traffic Management

The Trump administration is putting the finishing touches on a new space traffic management policy designed to protect U.S. national security and commercial spacecraft amid growing congestion in space, Vice President Mike Pence announced April 16. The National Space Council, which Pence chairs, will soon send the proposed policy to President Donald Trump for his […]

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Boeing, BAE, Rolls-Royce Invest In U.K. Hypersonic Engine Company

Boeing [BA] on Wednesday evening said its venture arm has made an investment in a small British company that is developing hypersonic propulsion technology for aircraft and rockets. The Boeing HorizonX Ventures investment in Reaction Engines is part of a $37.3 million funding round that includes Britain’s Rolls-Royce and BAE Systems. BAE in 2015 also […]

A launch of an Atlas V rocket. Photo: United Launch Alliance

Air Force To Launch Communications Relay Satellite

The U.S. Air Force announced April 6 that it plans to launch a new communications-relay satellite as part of a multi-payload mission later this month. The Continuous Broadcast Augmenting SATCOM (CBAS) satellite, which is intended for geosynchronous orbit, will continuously relay data from existing military communications satellites to support senior leaders and combatant commanders, Air […]

Illustration of NASA's James Webb Space Telescope. Photo: NASA.

NASA Delays Webb Telescope Launch Again To 2020

NASA announced another delay Tuesday for its $8.8 billion James Webb Telescope Project (JWST), pushing back the potential launch date to May 2020 following continued integration and testing issues. Problems with the massive telescope’s propulsion system and sunshield capabilities have forced NASA program officials to increase oversight of prime contractor Northrop Grumman [NOC]  integration & […]

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House Panel OKs Bills To Aid Space Industry

The House Science, Space and Technology Committee has approved two bills aimed at supporting the rocket propulsion and space support industries. One bill, proposed by Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.), would designate NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama as the agency’s lead center for rocket propulsion, including the development of new technology.  Such a designation […]

Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.). (Photo courtesy of office of Rep. Bridenstine.)

House Lawmakers Urge Senate Vote On NASA Administrator Nominee

More than 60 House members have signed a letter to Senate leaders urging them to schedule a vote on the nomination of Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.) to be NASA administrator. The letter, led by Rep. Brian Babin (R-Texas), chairman of the House Science Committee’s space panel, says that confirmation of a new NASA head is […]