Month: February 2020

WASHINGTON — NASA plans for the first time to allow researchers to fly with their payloads on commercial suborbital vehicles, ending years of debate and deliberation. NASA released Jan. 29 a draft solicitation seeking payloads for its Flight Opportunities program, which provides rides for such payloads on high-altitude balloons, parabolic aircraft flights and commercial suborbital
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WASHINGTON — The head of the Commerce Department office with the mandate, but not the money, for civil space traffic management says he hopes the recent near-miss involving two satellites will help provide more attention to the issue. In an on-stage interview at the 23rd Annual Commercial Space Transportation Conference here Jan. 30, Kevin O’Connell,
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WASHINGTON — DirecTV’s Spaceway-1 satellite, which suffered a battery malfunction last month that could still cause it to explode, is moving out of geostationary orbit and away from other satellites, ground-based observations show.  Spaceway-1 began relocating Jan. 29, two satellite trackers told SpaceNews, and is continuing to raise its altitude to a “graveyard orbit” about
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WASHINGTON — Maxar Technologies on Jan. 31 announced a $142 million NASA contract to demonstrate in-space assembly using a robotic arm.  Maxar said the contract will take its Dragonfly robotics program, which started in 2015 as a DARPA study, and pair it with Restore-L, a refueling spacecraft the company is building for NASA.  Dragonfly has
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