satellites

iPhone satellite feature to have limited availability, still far away

iPhone satellite feature to have limited availability, still far away

There was a great deal of initial excitement over what was initially presumed to be a feature debuting on the iPhone 13. After all, who wouldn't want the ability to make calls or send messages even without a cellular network connection? Subsequent insider tips, however, doused cold water on that by setting expectations on what this support for LEO (Low-Earth Orbit) satellites can and cannot do. Additional information is now putting even more limits on where these emergency features will be available and, more importantly, when.

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Astroscale’s ELSA-d tackles space junk with successful capture mission

Astroscale’s ELSA-d tackles space junk with successful capture mission

Space is an increasingly crowded place. Dead satellites and other space debris orbit our planet, making it trickier to plan new launches and jeopardizing existing missions. Cleaning up this debris is a big challenge, however, one that private company Astroscale is working to address with its End-of-Life Services by Astroscale-demonstration (ELSA-d).

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iPhone satellite features will be for emergency situations initially

iPhone satellite features will be for emergency situations initially

With barely a month left, a new insider tip about the next iPhone seems to have set the Internet ablaze. Rumors of iPhone 13 features revolving around low-earth orbit (LEO) satellites have unsurprisingly produced some speculation and pushed one company's shares up briefly. That said, newer information is now tempering those expectations, claiming that the feature might be limited to very specific scenarios and might not even arrive until next year.

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iPhone 13 LEO satellite support will allow calls with no cell signal

iPhone 13 LEO satellite support will allow calls with no cell signal

Smartphones today have become more than just phones, with fewer people using them for actual calls. But, of course, there will always be people that use these devices as communication endpoints, and those are more dependent on cellular network coverage than any other smartphone functionality. It is, however, still possible to make calls without a cell signal, and that might be one of the iPhone 13's selling features, thanks to its rumored support for low-earth orbit or LEO satellite communications.

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34 new OneWeb satellites have been launched into orbit

34 new OneWeb satellites have been launched into orbit

There are numerous companies worldwide working to put small satellites into orbit capable of delivering broadband to any location on the globe. While the most well-known of these satellites is the SpaceX Starlink network, it's far from the only satellite constellation being placed in orbit specifically for broadband connectivity.

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Lockheed Martin LINUSS CubeSats are ready to upgrade satellites in space

Lockheed Martin LINUSS CubeSats are ready to upgrade satellites in space

Lockheed Martin has announced that its In-Space Upgrade Satellite System (LINUSS) is ready to be launched into space. These CubeSats are designed to upgrade existing satellites, adding new capabilities while extending the lifespan and usefulness of the satellites. The LINUSS CubeSats are described as demonstration units.

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SpaceX is buying a startup that could fit Elon Musk’s Starlink plans perfectly

SpaceX is buying a startup that could fit Elon Musk’s Starlink plans perfectly

Elon Musk's SpaceX has acquired satellite startup Swarm Technologies, adding the company's micro-satellites - and its coveted FCC licenses - to its portfolio. SpaceX is currently partway through rolling out its ambitious Starlink network, a constellation of low Earth orbit satellites with which it hopes to blanket the globe with affordable wireless internet connectivity.

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SpaceX is preparing a ruggedized Starlink satellite dish

SpaceX is preparing a ruggedized Starlink satellite dish

One of the biggest challenges of living in some rural communities or on off-grid land is the lack of broadband. Broadband is considered an essential service, and competition in some areas is nonexistent or lacking. Many rural Americans rely on slow and expensive older satellite services, but SpaceX is trying to change that. A new report indicates that SpaceX is currently working on a ruggedized version of its Starlink satellite dish.

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ESA conducts its first test of the European Ground System – Common Core software

ESA conducts its first test of the European Ground System – Common Core software

ESA has announced that it has successfully operated a spacecraft using its new so-called "space brain." The software is officially called European Ground System - Common Core (EGS-CC). The space agency says the software will be the brain of all European spaceflight operations in the years to come.

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NASA says CubeSat with plasma thrusters may set new deep space record

NASA says CubeSat with plasma thrusters may set new deep space record

Multiple payloads will be launched into space with the Orion spacecraft using the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket. Two of these secondary payloads will be CubeSats designed for deep space, including one equipped with plasma thrusters. According to the space agency, this small satellite will use electromagnetic waves to propel itself in space...and it may set a new record in the process.

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Chinese satellite reveals global net carbon has reached six gigatons

Chinese satellite reveals global net carbon has reached six gigatons

A Chinese satellite designed to monitor carbon output around the globe has created what the researchers say is the first global carbon flux map. The satellite is called Tansat and has found that the global net carbon is six gigatons. To put that in perspective, six gigatons is roughly 12 times the mass of all living humans.

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Researchers harness a NASA satellite to track microplastics in the Atlantic

Researchers harness a NASA satellite to track microplastics in the Atlantic

Researchers from the University of Michigan have devised a way to use data collected by NASA satellites to track the movement of tiny pieces of plastic in the Atlantic Ocean. The plastic they're tracking is known as microplastics and forms when plastic trash in the ocean begins to break down from a combination of sun rays and the motion of ocean waves. Microplastics are a significant concern for the marine ecosystem as the small pieces are harmful to marine organisms and the ecosystem in general.

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