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Viktoria Urban

D-Orbit signs €2,2 million space debris removal contract with ESA

The UK branch of D-Orbit signed a €2,197M contract with ESA for phase 1 of the development and in-orbit validation of a “Deorbit Kit”, D-Orbit said. The agreement is part of ESA’s Space Safety Programme. The decommissioning kit is a self-contained suite of equipment that can be used with space vehicles of any size.

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Orolia awarded €70 million in atomic clock contracts for Galileo

Orolia is paid €70 million to provide atomic clocks for the first 12 satellites of the Galileo Second Generation System (G2S), Orolia announced. The funding comes in two contracts, one with ESA and the other with Leonardo. The news comes after the European Commission and ESA chose Orolia’s Skydel GNSS signal simulation core engine for the G2S radiofrequency constellation simulator in May.

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Masten is to develop positioning and navigation network on the Moon

Masten Space Systems was awarded a Phase II SBIR contract to develop and test a lunar positioning and navigation network prototype, Masten said. The GPS-like solution is part of the Air Force Research Laboratory’s AFWERX program. The network will boost cislunar security, improve landing accuracy and hazard avoidance by providing location tracking for spacecraft and astronauts on the lunar surface.

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Firefly Alpha failure caused by uneventful engine shutdown

Investigation uncovered that Firefly Aerospace’s first Alpha rocket had failed due to the shutting down of one of its first-stage engines, Firefly said. The launch took place at Vandenberg Space Force Base in California on 2nd September. The engine shut down just a few seconds after lift-off making the rocket tumble out of control two and a half minutes into the flight.

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China’s Chang’e-5 orbiter is set for another Moon flyby

The Chang’e-5 orbiter module is currently on its way back to the Moon following deep space tests according to reports. Last year, the orbiter delivered a return module containing 1.731 kg of lunar samples to Earth before setting off to deep space. Chang’e-5 orbiter was in orbit around Lagrange point 1 (L1) where it carried out orbit control tests and observations.

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FAA grounds Virgin Galactic space flights due to July mishap investigation

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) barred Virgin Galactic from flying SpaceShipTwo until the final mishap investigation from its July flight is over, Reuters reports. The FAA is investigating a deviation in the descent of the Virgin Galactic space plane to determine the issues would not affect public safety. Virgin Galactic rocket plane carried Richard Branson to space on 11th July.

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