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Earth observation

ILA Berlin Air Show 2016, a platform for innovation for the global aerospace industry

Berlin, 30 May 2016 – The ILA Berlin Air Show is now even more firmly established as a platform for presenting innovations covering all aspects of the world’s aerospace industry. From 1 to 4 June the ILA 2016 will feature the latest aircraft, innovative hi-tech products and technology, and a …

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Orbital ATK still in Saudi Arabian reconnaissance satellite bid

U.S. satellite and rocket manufacturer Orbital ATK has partnered with Riyadh-based Rakaa Holding to support its efforts to sell electro-optical reconnaissance satellites to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It is believed that Saudi Arabia is in the market for two to eight high-resolution reconnaissance satellites over the coming years, and …

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Spacepower in the Middle East: The Paradox of Strategic Depth and Transparency

Tragically, the Middle East has been the backdrop for changes in the character of war over the past few decades. With the rapid dissemination of high-resolution Earth observation satellites throughout the region, even more changes in the character of war are in store, argues ThorGroup’s Dr. John B. Sheldon. The unique, …

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Saudi Arabia and Belarus agree on space cooperation

Saudi Arabian officials visited Minsk, the capital city of Belarus, on 16 May 2016 for discussions on various topics of mutual interest with their Belarusian counterparts. The discussions resulted in a number of agreements between the two countries, including one that commits Belarus providing Saudi Arabia with optics technologies for …

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UAE and Japan sign space cooperation agreement

In a move that cements an already thriving space relationship, the United Arab Emirates Space Agency signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) with the Government of Japan last week, setting the stage for strategic collaboration in space exploration and science between the two countries. The UAE-Japanese MoC is the latest …

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Iranian Space Agency announces future satellite plans

Speaking to senior officials earlier this week at an Iranian Space Agency (ISA) meeting, the ISA Director Mohsen Bahrami announced that Iran will launch two indigenously built satellites in the very near future, and that three other satellites are currently being manufactured. The two satellites due to be launched are …

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No Pressure: The Hope Mars Mission and the Future of UAE Space Exploration

Recent developments in international space exploration plans for Mars have inadvertently placed the UAE’s Hope Mars Mission in the forefront, and impact the future of UAE’s space exploration ambitions. ThorGroup’s Chairman and President, Dr. John B. Sheldon, explains. Without even knowing or asking for it, the past several weeks have …

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DigitalGlobe and Auracle Geospatial partner to focus on mineral exploration

DigitalGlobe, the Westminster, Colorado, USA, based commercial high-resolution satellite imagery company has partnered with Auracle Geospatial, located in British Columbia, Canada, in order to develop search capabilities for mineral resources exploration. The Middle East region produces not only oil and natural gas but also has large deposits of aluminium, chromium, …

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Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030: A Golden Opportunity for Space?

ThorGroup’s Chairman and President, Dr. John B. Sheldon, explores the role of space in Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 recently announced economic and social reform programme. He argues that Vision 2030 is a golden opportunity for Saudi Arabian space. Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the son of King Salman and Deputy Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, …

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Iran’s Future Spy Satellites: What Can Be Done?

With the Iranian sanctions regime steadily coming apart, it is only a matter of time before Iran acquires – or even develops on its own – a high-resolution imaging satellite that will revolutionise its military and civil remote-sensing capabilities. Such a development is of particular concern to a number of countries …

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