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Space Missions

Indian Human Spaceflight: Gaganyaan Mission In 2022 To Orbit Three Astronauts, Cost $1.4 Billion

The Indian government announced on 28 December 2018 that its Gaganyaan human spaceflight mission expected to take place in 2022 will consist of three crew members, last for five to seven days in orbit, and is budgeted for the equivalent of U.S.$1.43 billion, according to Indian media reports. Announced in …

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#SpaceWatchGL Interview: Dr. Christina Giannopapa, Head of Political Affairs Office At The European Space Agency

The European Space Agency’s (ESA) Political Affairs Office plays an integral and varied role in the organisation. Torsten Kriening was lucky enough to spend some time with Christina Giannopapa, Head of Political Affairs Office, Office Strategy Department, Director General’s Services, ESA, to find out more about her role and the …

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Israel’s SpaceIL And IAI Complete Beresheet Lunar Lander; Launch Expected February 2019

Israeli not-for-profit SpaceIL and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) completed the construction of the SpaceIL lunar lander and, in a ceremony at IAI facilities prior to being shipped to Cape Canaveral, placed a time capsule on board the spacecraft that will stay on the Moon indefinitely. The spacecraft, recently named Beresheet …

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Singapore’s Astroscale Meets With GK Launch Services To Discuss ELSA-d Launch

GK Launch Services, a subsidiary of Glavkosmos, Lavochkin Association, and Astroscale Japan Inc. held a kick-off meeting in Moscow on 12 December 2018 under the agreement on launch services for the Astroscale End-of-Life Services by Astroscale-demonstration (ELSA-d) satellite. ELSA-d will be orbited within a Soyuz-2 cluster mission that is scheduled …

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China And France’s CNES Discuss Climate Science And Space Cooperation

The President of the Centre national d’études spatiales (CNES), the French national space agency, spoke with Chinese counterparts on 10 December 2018 about Sino-French cooperation in space-based climate change monitoring, oceanography, environmental monitoring, space exploration, and space science. Jean-Yves Le Gall addressed the preparatory meeting of the French-Chinese joint science …

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Rocket Lab Successfully Launches ELaNa NASA Satellites From New Zealand

U.S. small satellite launch company Rocket Lab has launched its third orbital mission of 2018, successfully deploying satellites to orbit for NASA. The mission, designated Educational Launch of Nanosatellites (ELaNa)-19 , took place just over a month after Rocket Lab’s last successful orbital launch, ‘It’s Business Time.’ Rocket Lab has …

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Singapore’s Astroscale Enters Data Sharing Agreement With ESA

Astroscale UK Ltd., part of Astroscale Pte. Ltd., the market-leader in developing a space debris removal service to secure long-term spaceflight safety, has signed an agreement with the European Space Agency (ESA) to exchange data and expertise related to space debris collision avoidance, environmental monitoring of debris, and the development …

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Virgin Galactic Achieves Spaceflight Success, With Help From UAE Investment

Virgin Galactic, the private spaceflight company founded by Virgin Group chairman Sir Richard Branson achieved success on 13 December 2018 after its SpaceShipTwo Unity (VSS Unity) reached suborbital space for the first time over the Mojave Desert in California, United States. VSS Unity reached an altitude of 82.7 kilometres near …

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#SpaceWatchGL Interview: Dr. Mohammed Al Ahbabi Of The UAE Space Agency

Clear Objectives for a New Space Pioneer The UAE Space Agency has set out its stall right from the very beginning. It is highly ambitious, and since its establishment just four years ago, it has come an incredibly long way. It has overseen the initiation the Emirates Mars Mission (EMM) …

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Australia’s CSIRO To Build CSIROSat-1 To Detect Invisible Infrared Light

Australia’s national science agency, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), has announced that it would be extending its Earth observation capabilities by acquiring Australia’s first CubeSat designed to detect invisible infrared light. To be known as CSIROSat-1, the new satellite will allow researchers from CSIRO and other institutions …

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