satellites

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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WISA Woodsat test flight takes it to the stratosphere

WISA Woodsat test flight takes it to the stratosphere

Yesterday we talked about the world's first wooden satellite called the WISA Woodsat. The satellite was built using specially treated plywood panels on its exterior to reduce the cost of building satellites meant to be used in space. On June 12, the Woodsat had its first test flight giving it a taste of the conditions it might be subject to in space when it is attached to a weather balloon to be carried to an altitude of approximately 30 kilometers above the Earth's surface into the stratosphere.

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ESA contributes to wooden WISA Woodsat mission

ESA contributes to wooden WISA Woodsat mission

Building and launching satellites is an expensive proposition, and there are companies around the world looking to make that cheaper. The ESA has announced it will put the first wooden satellite into orbit. The sunlight is called the WISA Woodsat, and it's a 10x10x10 cm CubeSat nanosatellite built from standardized boxes.

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Lockheed Martin won a $1 billion contract for operating and maintaining SBIRS

Lockheed Martin won a $1 billion contract for operating and maintaining SBIRS

Lockheed Martin is thrilled after receiving a $1 billion contract that will see it operate and maintain the ground control systems of the Space Based Infrared System or SBIRS ground control centers. The US Space Force announced the contract on June 4. SBIRS is a component in the DOD missile warning network that is designed to detect ballistic missile launches.

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SpaceX Starlink Speedtest results are very inconsistent

SpaceX Starlink Speedtest results are very inconsistent

Elon Musk envisioned that SpaceX's Starlink satellite constellation would be able to deliver Internet to areas underserved by most carriers. The service, however, would have to cater to a broad range of users and locations located in a narrow band of areas where those satellites could actually reach. Starlink promised speeds faster than your average DSL or fiber Internet and Speedtest creator Ookla discovered that be true but only for certain areas. In others, it actually did worse than what consumers already had.

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Amazon taps ULA to launch its Project Kuiper Starlink-rivaling satellites

Amazon taps ULA to launch its Project Kuiper Starlink-rivaling satellites

Amazon will use United Launch Alliance to deploy the first satellites in its Starlink-rivaling constellation, with nine missions planned as it embarks on its planet-spanning internet provider. ULA will use nine Atlas V launch vehicles for Project Kuiper, it's been confirmed today, as Amazon plays catch-up to SpaceX's already-operational service.

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NASA developed a new method of predicting volcanic eruptions using satellites

NASA developed a new method of predicting volcanic eruptions using satellites

It's notoriously difficult to predict volcanic corruptions. There are often signs that a volcano is likely to erupt in the future, including an increase in seismic activity, changes in gas emissions, and sudden ground deformation but accurately predicting eruptions is hard. Part of the challenge is that no two volcanoes behave exactly the same way before they erupt and another part is because only a few of the active volcanoes around the world have monitoring systems in place.

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A groundbreaking satellite just rescued another from its death orbit

A groundbreaking satellite just rescued another from its death orbit

Two satellites docking, while still in space, sounds like the plot of a sci-fi movie, but that's just what Northrop Grumman has done to extend the lifespan of one of Intelsat's TV satellites. IS-10-02 may not have an interesting name but it's certainly important to Intelsat, being responsible for part of the company's satellite TV service across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and South America.

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SpaceX’s domination of low Earth orbit increases collision risk says expert

SpaceX’s domination of low Earth orbit increases collision risk says expert

SpaceX has been putting large numbers of satellites into low Earth orbit as part of its Starlink program to bring broadband Internet to every corner of the planet. SpaceX is rapidly deploying satellites with multiple launches aboard its own Falcon 9 rockets typically putting 60 of its satellites into orbit at a time. So far, SpaceX has put about 1300 satellites into orbit and aims to have around 42,000 in orbit by 2027.

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Mission will test new technology for removing satellites from orbit

Mission will test new technology for removing satellites from orbit

Space junk orbiting the earth is becoming a more significant problem as more satellites are placed into orbit. Popular orbits are becoming very crowded, and many of the spacecraft orbiting there are decommissioned and nonfunctional. However, it's impossible to get the satellites out of orbit with current technology in most cases.

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