Archive for the ‘satellites’ category

Oct 21, 2019

Rocket Lab To Begin Missions To The Moon In 2020 With New ‘Photon’ Spacecraft

Posted by in categories: evolution, satellites

Smallsat launcher Rocket Lab has announced its ambition to begin missions to the Moon in the near-future, using a new satellite launch platform it has developed called Photon.

Announced today at the International Astronautical Congress in Washington D.C., Rocket Lab – which current flies its Electron rocket from New Zealand and will begin launching from a U.S. site next year – said Photon would enable small spacecraft to reach lunar orbit or conduct lunar flybys.

Photon is an evolution of the company’s existing kick stage that is used to deploy satellites in orbit, including on the company’s ninth launch last week, which saw them deploy a satellite to their highest altitude yet. It fits into the existing Electron rocket and is essentially its own standalone spacecraft, containing its own instruments, propulsion, fuel tanks, and more.

Oct 21, 2019

Rocket Lab—yep, Rocket Lab—has a plan to deliver satellites to the Moon

Posted by in categories: energy, satellites

A Rocket Lab spokesperson told Ars that the new service, launching on an Electron rocket, would be capable of sending up to 30kg into lunar orbit and be available as soon as the fourth quarter of 2020. As for pricing, it was not disclosed. “Pricing is tailored to mission requirements, but we’ll be bringing previously impossible missions within reach at attainable prices,” the spokesperson said.

The “Photon” spacecraft is essentially a small third stage for the Electron rocket that provides in-space maneuvering capability for payloads. It combines propulsion, power, attitude determination and control, and radiation-tolerant avionics. These combined capabilities will allow Rocket Lab to deliver small spacecraft on lunar flyby missions, into a Near Rectilinear Halo Orbit (where NASA intends to build a small space station called the Lunar Gateway), L1/L2 points, or lunar orbit. It will take up to 14 days for the Photon vehicle to deliver a payload to lunar orbit.

Oct 17, 2019

The Top 10 Companies Working to Increase Longevity

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, business, food, genetics, life extension, neuroscience, Peter Diamandis, satellites

The core of what we do at Nanalyze is to tell our readers all they need to know about investing in emerging technologies. Sometimes that story is much, much bigger, and what we’re really talking about is investing in emerging industries. NewSpace is one example, launching about 15 years ago with the emergence of companies like SpaceX and Virgin Galactic. It’s probably only within the last five years that the NewSpace industry has achieved real liftoff, with dozens of startups doing everything from offering launch services to building satellites to developing business analytics from space-based imagery. While we may one day end up living on Mars, we’re more interested in living a long and fruitful life right here on Mother Earth, despite the specter of cancer and dementia. An entire industry is coalescing around human longevity, promising to beat these age-related diseases and extend our lives to biblical proportions.

We’ve been covering the topic of life extension for more than five years, beginning with a profile on an anti-aging company called Human Longevity Inc, whose founders include billionaire serial entrepreneur Peter Diamandis and J. Craig Venter, a leading genomics expert. More recently, we introduced you to nine companies developing products in regenerative medicine, a broad category that refers to restoring the structure and function of damaged tissues or organs. We also tackled the more controversial topic of young blood transfusions earlier this year, as well as covered the 2019 IPO of Precision BioSciences (DTIL), a gene-editing company that wants to fight disease and re-engineer food.

Oct 17, 2019

Could Elon Musk’s project erase the night sky?

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, satellites

If approved, 12,000 telecommunication satellites could blot out existing stars.

In the coming years, 12,000 or more artificial stars will join the sky.

Oct 16, 2019

A super-secure quantum internet just took another step closer to reality

Posted by in categories: finance, internet, quantum physics, satellites

Scientists have managed to send a record-breaking amount of data in quantum form, using a strange unit of quantum information called a qutrit.

The news: Quantum tech promises to allow data to be sent securely over long distances. Scientists have already shown it’s possible to transmit information both on land and via satellites using quantum bits, or qubits. Now physicists at the University of Science and Technology of China and the University of Vienna in Austria have found a way to ship even more data using something called quantum trits, or qutrits.

Qutrits? Oh, come on, you’ve just made that up: Nope, they’re real. Conventional bits used to encode everything from financial records to YouTube videos are streams of electrical or photonic pulses than can represent either a 1 or a 0. Qubits, which are typically electrons or photons, can carry more information because they can be polarized in two directions at once, so they can represent both a 1 and a 0 at the same time. Qutrits, which can be polarized in three different dimensions simultaneously, can carry even more information. In theory, this can then be transmitted using quantum teleportation.

Oct 16, 2019

SpaceX says 12,000 satellites isn’t enough, so it might launch another 30,000

Posted by in category: satellites

SpaceX makes preliminary filing with ITU as it considers big Starlink expansion.

Oct 12, 2019

Radiation detector with the lowest noise in the world boosts quantum work

Posted by in categories: computing, quantum physics, satellites

Researchers from Aalto University and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland have built a super-sensitive bolometer, a type of thermal radiation detector. The new radiation detector, made of a gold-palladium mixture makes it easier to measure the strength of electromagnetic radiation in real time. Bolometers are used widely in thermal cameras in the construction industry and in satellites to measure cosmic radiation.

The new developments may help bolometers find their way to quantum computers. If the new radiation manages to function as well in space as it does in the laboratory, it can also be used to measure in space more accurately.

“The new detector is extremely sensitive, and its —how much the signal bounces around the correct value, is only one tenth of the noise of any other . It is also a hundred times faster than previous low-noise radiation detectors,” says Mikko Möttönen, who works as a joint Professor of Quantum Technology at Aalto University and VTT.

Oct 9, 2019

Ekipazh: Russia’s top-secret nuclear-powered satellite

Posted by in categories: energy, military, satellites

There is strong evidence from publicly available sources that a Russian company called KB Arsenal is working on a new type of military satellite equipped with a nuclear power source. Called Ekipazh, its mission may well be to perform electronic warfare from space.

KB Arsenal, based in St. Petersburg, is no newcomer to the development of nuclear-powered satellites. In the Soviet days it built satellites known as US-A (standing for “active controllable satellite”), which carried nuclear reactors to power radars used for ocean reconnaissance (in the West they were known as “radar ocean reconnaissance satellites” or RORSAT for short.) The satellites had been conceived in the early 1960s at the OKB-52 design bureau of Vladimir Chelomei before work on them was transferred to KB Arsenal at the end of that decade. The satellites’ three-kilowatt thermoelectric reactors, known as BES-5 or Buk, were built by the Krasnaya Zvezda (“Red Star”) organization. The US-A satellites operated in low Earth orbits at an altitude of roughly 260 kilometers and, after finishing their mission, the reactors were boosted to storage orbits at an altitude of about 900 kilometers.

Oct 6, 2019

Virgin Orbit Plans First Satellite Launch in 2 Months

Posted by in category: satellites

Virgin thinks it can make its way to orbit — but can it compete with SpaceX?

Oct 4, 2019

FIRST UP | Intuitive Machines hires SpaceX for 2021 rideshare • Maxar awards contract for Gateway arrays • OrbitFab raises $3M for propellant depots

Posted by in categories: finance, satellites, solar power, sustainability

Lunar lander developer Intuitive Machines has signed a contract with SpaceX for its first mission to the moon. The company announced this week that a Falcon 9 will launch its Nova-C lander in 2021 as part of a rideshare mission, but terms of the deal were not disclosed. The company won a contract from NASA in May to carry five payloads to the moon on that mission as part of the agency’s Commercial Lunar Payload Services program. Separately, a federal appeals court this week upheld a verdict in favor of the company in a suit against Moon Express, another commercial lunar lander company. That suit, involving work disputes between the companies, led to Intuitive Machines receiving $4.1 million in cash and stock. [SpaceNews]

Maxar Technologies awarded a contract to Deployable Space Systems to manufacture flexible solar arrays for the first element of NASA’s lunar Gateway. The contract this week is for a pair of Roll Out Solar Array solar panels, each capable of producing 32.5 kilowatts of power. The arrays will be used on the Power and Propulsion Element that Maxar is building for NASA that will serve as the foundation for the Gateway in orbit around the moon. [SpaceNews]

A startup planning propellant depots in orbit for refueling satellites has raised $3 million. OrbitFab announced Thursday it raised the seed round of funding from venture capital fund Type 1 Ventures, Techstars and others. The company is working on technology to allow for refueling of satellites using small depots in orbit, and recently tested that technology on the International Space Station. At a conference in Washington earlier in the week, the company said it was still working on raising a funding round but hopes to have its first tanker in orbit by the end of next year. [TechCrunch].

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