Archive: Space

Capitol under clouds

DoD, Congress In ‘Dialogue’ On Proposed Space Corps

Prompted by a controversial House-passed proposal to create a space corps in the Air Force Department, the Department of Defense has begun a “very good dialogue” with Congress on how military space activities should be organized, according to Pentagon acquisition chief Ellen Lord. “I think what we’re doing right now is having a very healthy […]

Artist's rendering of a GPS III satellite. Image: Lockheed Martin.

Air Force Accepts First GPS III Satellite From Lockheed Martin

The U.S. Air Force has formally accepted the first Global Positioning System (GPS) III satellite from prime contractor Lockheed Martin [LMT], the company announced Oct. 10. The “available for launch” milestone clears the way for the spacecraft, which is in storage, to lift off in 2018, Lockheed Martin said. Lockheed Martin is building a total […]

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

Air Force Seeks Bids For New Launch Vehicles

The U.S. Air Force released a solicitation late Oct. 5 that envisions developing new, domestically produced space launch vehicles to end the service’s reliance on Russian-made RD-180 engines. According to the request for proposals, issued by the Air Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center, the Air Force plans to award launch service agreements (LSAs) to fund […]

Artist's illustration of NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) heavy lift launch vehicle concept. Photo: NASA.

Pence Calls Moon ‘Stepping Stone’ to Mars

The Trump administration plans to send astronauts to the Moon to lay groundwork for manned missions to Mars and other deep-space destinations, Vice President Mike Pence said Oct. 5. “We will return American astronauts to the Moon, not only to leave behind footprints and flags, but to build the foundation we need to send Americans […]

Rep. Ami Bera (D-Calif.)

Satellite Traffic In Low Earth Orbit Needs Rules, Lawmaker Says

With low Earth orbit (LEO) becoming increasingly crowded with U.S. and foreign satellites, there is a growing need to craft operating rules to prevent collisions, a key congressman said Oct. 2. Policymakers are discussing LEO satellites “but we’re not talking about it fast enough,” said Rep. Ami Bera (D-Calif.), ranking member of the House Science, […]

SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk speaks during an April 25, 2014, press conference in Washington. Photo: SpaceX.

SpaceX Kickstarts Work On New Mars Rocket

SpaceX has begun “serious development” of a new rocket that it plans to use to start colonizing Mars in the 2020s, company founder Elon Musk announced Sept. 29. SpaceX has already ordered tooling and started erecting a facility to assemble the rocket, Musk said at the 68th International Astronautical Congress in Adelaide, Australia. The company has […]

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

National Space Council Nears First Meeting, Pence Says

The newly revived National Space Council plans to hold its first meeting “in just a few short weeks” in Washington, D.C., Vice President Mike Pence said late Sept. 25. Pence, the council’s chairman, made his comment while touring NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., to get an update on agency efforts to send […]

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Australia To Create Space Agency

Australia’s government has decided to form a national space agency to coordinate and lead the country’s space activities, which are scattered across many agencies. Michaelia Cash, Australia’s acting minister for industry, innovation and science, said Sept. 23 that the new agency will help the nation’s space companies grab a greater share of the global market. […]

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

Pence To Visit NASA’s Marshall Center

Vice President Mike Pence, President Donald Trump’s point man for space, was scheduled to visit NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., late Sept. 25 to receive an update on the agency’s efforts to send astronauts to deep space. Pence was expected to see an engine section test for the core stage of the […]

Artist’s illustration of the GPS IIF satellite. Photo: Boeing.

Air Force Aims To Make Routine Satellite Operations More Efficient

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. — The U.S. Air Force is looking for ways to make its routine satellite operations more efficient so that operators have more time to think creatively in contested space environments, according to a space official. Increasing the amount of automation and delegating activities to commercial providers are among the options the Air Force […]