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Middle East

#SpaceWatchGL Op’ed: NewSpace and the Geoeconomic Space Race to Come in the Indian Ocean Region

With China’s Belt and Road Initiative coming under criticism, and a proposed infrastructure programme in the offing from the so-called ‘Quad’ powers of Australia, India, Japan, and the United States, ThorGroup GmbH Chairman and President, Dr. John B. Sheldon, argues that the Quad powers tap the potential of their NewSpace …

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Israel’s Spacecom In Talks With Ukrainian Space Agency on Sharing Communications Satellite

Facing financial problems and an uncertain future, Israel’s Spacecom is now looking abroad to expand its satellite communications business. An announcement posted by the State Space Agency of Ukraine (SSAU) reports that talks were held between its head, Pavlo Dehtiarenko, and David Pollack, Spacecom CEO, in Kyiv late last month. …

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Arabsat-6A In Final Tests Before SpaceX Falcon Heavy Launch Later in 2018

Lockheed Martin, the giant U.S. aerospace company, has completed the assembly of the ARABSAT-6A communications satellite, and has shipped it to the Lockheed Martin facilities in Sunnyvale, California, for final tests and preparations prior to its launch on board a SpaceX Falcon Heavy launch vehicle later this year. Once successfully …

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Middle East Satellite TV Geopolitics: Saudi-Owned MBC Pulls All Turkish Programming Off the Air

In a move that has confounded industry executives and frustrated millions of Arab satellite television viewers across the Middle East and North Africa, Saudi-owned satellite television broadcaster Middle East Broadcasting Centre (MBC) has pulled all Turkish programming from its channels as of 0100 Mecca Time, on Friday, 2 March, 2018. …

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UAE’s MBRSC Extends Astronaut Application Deadline Until End of March 2018

UAE astronaut

The United Arab Emirate’s Dubai-based Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) has announced the extension by a month of the registration deadline for the UAE Astronaut Programme until 31 March, 2018. This development “aims to optimize entries to the programme as well as allow the space centre time to process …

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Satellites Over the Mediterranean: SpaceX Successfully Launches Spain’s PAZ Reconnaissance Satellite

SpaceX successfully launched Spain’s high-resolution synthetic aperture radar  (SAR) PAZ reconnaissance satellite from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, on Thursday, 22 February, 2018. The successful launch of PAZ is the latest by a Mediterranean country and intensifies the space-based surveillance and reconnaissance competition of the geopolitically important sea. The …

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Israel’s Gilat Expanding Its Presence In Central America

Israeli satellite communications and networks company Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd. is expanding its presence to Central America through its new contract with Hispasat. This multi-million-dollar venture will provide commercial broadband services throughout Mexico using capacity on the Amazonas-5 High Throughput Satellite (HTS). Based in Israel, Gilat is a worldwide leader …

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MBR Space Settlement Challenge Fund Launches On Guaana Platform

Open research funding platform Guaana piloted its fund distribution platform in partnership with the Dubai Future Foundation (DFF). The Mohammed bin Rashid Space Settlement Challenge fund (2,000,000 AED, approximately U.S.$540,000) will be distributed as seed grants for all areas of research that explore bold ideas and radical solutions for living …

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UAE Space Agency Signs Memorandum of Understanding with France’s CNES for Climate Change Observatory

Further details have emerged about the content of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between the UAE Space Agency and the French space agency, the Centre national d’études spatiales (CNES) on the sidelines of the World Government Summit in Dubai, on 12 February, 2018. The MoU was signed by H.E. Dr. …

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