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#SpaceWatchGL Column: Dongfang Hour China Aerospace News Roundup 7 June – 13 June 2021

by Blaine Curcio and Jean Deville - As part of the partnership between SpaceWatch.Global and Orbital Gateway Consulting we have been granted permission to publish selected articles and texts. We are pleased to present “Dongfang Hour China Aerospace News Roundup 31 May – 6 June 2021”.

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Blue Origin sells seat on New Shepard’s first human flight for $28 million

Blue Origin sold a seat on its first human spaceflight in July for $28 million, the company said. Jeff Bezos’ space venture auctioned off a seat for $28 million on its first crewed spaceflight scheduled on July 20, it said; the winning bidder will fly to space with the Amazon founder and his brother Mark on Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket.

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Virgin Orbit eyes SPAC deal valuing it at $3bn, Sky reports

Virgin Orbit is close to merging with a SPAC, valuing Richard Branson’s company at $3 billion, Sky News reported. Virgin Orbit is close to finalising a deal to combine with NextGen Acquisition II, a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) set up by George Mattson, a former Goldman Sachs banker, Sky News reported.

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#SpaceWatchGL Opinion: India’s Space Venture: Groundwork for Private Sector

Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), India’s pillar for space exploration, is one of the top six governmental space agencies in the world. Progress in the space endeavours marked by ISRO has received applauds across the globe, especially with the successful Mars Orbital Mission which made India the first nation to reach Mars in a maiden attempt.

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KSAT to support Intuitive Machines’ Missions to the Moon

Kongsberg Satellite Services (KSAT) will support and service Intuitive Machines (IM) for all its Moon missions, the company announced. KSAT has entered a long-term agreement with IM to support every stage of IM’s missions to the Moon, from launch and early operations, through transit, including lunar operations, KSAT said. IM will use KSAT services for its 2022 IM-1 mission.

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#SpaceWatchGL Opinion: Communications from MEO: Smart SkyNet – The Next Competitive Frontier?

In an age of LEO constellation mania, it’s easy to forget that there are other non-GEO orbits that can be used very effectively for connecting the unconnected. In particular, I refer to Medium-Earth Orbit, or MEO, an orbit long-frequented by navigation satellites, and, less long-frequented by communications satellites, namely SES’s O3b constellation.

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Northumberland Sustainable Space Specialist NORSS Claims Back £10k for Innovation

An Alnwick-headquartered sustainable space specialist NORSS has received £10,000 in research and development (R&D) tax credits, thanks to the innovation demonstrated in its projects. Opening sustainable opportunities in outer space for businesses, the government and the public, NORSS was formed in 2017 and specialises in Space Situational Awareness

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