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Space Missions

NASA selects five US firms for lunar lander studies

NASA announced it will grant US $146 million to five US companies to conduct studies for future lunar lander concepts. This will enable a “steady pace of crewed trips to the lunar surface under the Artemis program,” NASA said. The five companies and their awards are Blue Origin: US $25.6M, Dynetics: US $40.8M, Lockheed Martin: US $35.2M, Northrop Grumman: US $34.8M and SpaceX: US $9.4M.

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BAE Systems acquires In-Space Missions

BAE Systems acquired In-Space Missions to make it a fully-owned subsidiary, In-Space announced. In-Space, founded in 2015, designs, builds and operates bespoke space missions for customers. The company specialises in space services for earth observation, navigation, satellite communications, and space exploration.

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Space startups launch YEESS to make their case in Europe

Six European space start-ups founded the Young European Enterprises Syndicate (YEESS) to “facilitate and accelerate the New Space dynamic in Europe”, the companies said yesterday at the launch of YESS on the Space Forum in Luxembourg. The founding members of YEESS are Aerospacelab, Anywaves, ConstellR, Exotrail, Pangea Aerospace and Satlantis.

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JAXA and ESA spacewalkers carry out system upgrades on ISS

Astronauts Akihiko Hoshide of JAXA and Thomas Pesquet of ESA conducted the first spacewalk by two international partner astronauts without a NASA astronaut on Sunday, 8:15 a.m. ET, NASA reported. The event happened just three days after the Russian spacewalk. This was Hoshide’s fourth and Pasquet’s sixth extravehicular activity (EVA) and the 12th spacewalk of the year.

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SpaceX launches all-civilian crew into three-day Earth orbit

SpaceX is launching four civilians into space on Wednesday, 8:00 pm ET from launch pad 39A, at NASA's Kennedy Center, Reuters reports. The three-day mission marks the first time to enter Earth orbit with exclusively private citizens. The news comes after billionaires Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos both conducted few-minute space flights during the summer.

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Space Café Australia by Annie Handmer Recap: Vienna Tran on Healthcare for Earth and Space

In this latest instalment of Space Café Australia, host Annie Handmer is joined by space medicine researcher Vienna Tran to speak about how space affects the human body, the philosophical questions that arise from human spaceflight. Vienna is a space medicine researcher who has investigated the use of artificial gravity for the hip muscles of astronauts during a prolonged bed rest analogue.

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South Korean consortium invests in Relativity Space

A consortium of three South Korean companies invests US $50 million in American rocket start-up Relativity Space, News Naver reported. The three companies are Hanwha Aerospace, NH Investment & Securities and Consus Asset Management. The investment is part of the US $650 million Relativity Space raised in the Series E funding round in June, Maeil Economic Daily said.

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SpaceX to launch GOES-U geostationary weather satellite

NASA has selected SpaceX to launch the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-U (GOES-U) mission, the U.S. space agency said. The total cost for NASA to launch GOES-U is $152.5 million, which includes the launch service and other mission-related costs, NASA said. The mission is targeted to launch in April 2024.

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DARPA increases Lockheed Martin’s Blackjack contract

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) increased Lockheed Martin’s contract for the Blackjack program by US $25.3 million, the agency announced. The Blackjack project is aimed at validating high-speed military communication, navigation and missile warning capabilities of small satellites.

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Register Today For Our Space Café “33 minutes with Jean-Jacques Tortora” On 21 September 2021

This Space Café WebTalk will feature Jean-Jacques Tortora , director of the European Space Policy Institute, in conversation with Torsten Kriening, publisher of SpaceWatch.Global. Space and Geopolitics: What’s at stake for Europe? Since June 1, 2016, Jean-Jacques Tortora serves as the Director of the European Space Policy Institute.

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