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Algeria’s AlSat-Nano prepared for early September launch from India

Algeria’s AlSat-Nano is being readied for launch sometime between late August and early September 2016 from the Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO) Satish Dhawan Space Centre, in Andhra Pradesh on the eastern coast of India. AlSat-Nano is sharing the launch into orbit on an ISRO Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) …

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Egypt on the road to establishing national space agency amidst controversy

The Egyptian government, under the leadership of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, has agreed upon draft legislation that will eventually create a national space agency for the belaboured country. The announcement was made on 3 August 2016, and aims to harness space technologies for the purposes of economic development and for …

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Iran, Azerbaijan cement space cooperation agreement

Iranian and Azerbaijani officials signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for space cooperation between the two countries, days before Iranian President Hassan Rouhani visits the Azerbaijani capital, Baku, on 8 August 2016. Iranian Minister for Communication and Information Technology Mahmoud Vaezi and Azerbaijani Minister Communications and High Technologies Ramin Namigoglu …

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Israel’s ImageSat to provide satellite imagery for Rio Olympics security

ImageSat International N.V., the Yehuda Or, Israel-based commercial satellite imagery company, has been selected by the Brazilian Ministry of Defence to provide Brazilian authorities with high-resolution satellite imagery to provide security monitoring of the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro beginning on 5 August 2016. ImageSat operates the …

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Iran and Russia to jointly build a remote sensing satellite for Tehran

Iranian press reports claim that Iranian industry and as yet unnamed Russian satellite manufacturers are to jointly build a National Remote Sensing Satellite for Iran. Mahmoud Vaezi, Iran’s Minister of Communication and Information Technology, recently completed an official visit to Moscow where he met with several Russian government officials and …

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Virgin Galactic gets important go-ahead for resuming flight-testing

Virgin Galactic, the spaceflight company founded and owned by British entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson, received an important regulatory go-ahead on 1 August 2016 to resume flight-testing of its SpaceShipTwo spacecraft. The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration’s Office of Commercial Space Transportation (FAA-AST) awarded Virgin Galactic an operator license for SpaceShipTwo. The …

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Russia’s RSC Energia to help Egypt build EgyptSat-A remote sensing satellite

The Moscow, Russia, headquartered Rocket and Space Corporation Energia (RSC Energia) revealed on 28 July 2016 that it has signed a deal worth U.S.$100 million to help build the Egyptsat-A, the replacement for Egyptsat-2 that in April 2015 failed in orbit after only a year after its launch. Egyptsat-A is …

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The Necessity of Coherent Space Policy in the Shadow of the Iranian Resurgence

Are Middle East governments ready to counter a resurgent Iran in space? American space law expert and policy consultant, Michael J. Listner, makes the case for more countries in the region to develop comprehensive national space policies so that their defence establishments can adequately prepare defensive measures in the space domain. …

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