The return to flight of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket, still a “couple of months” away, will also be the first launch of an upgraded version of the vehicle with increased performance, the company’s president said Aug. 31.
Weather has pushed back the Atlas 5 launch of a U.S. Navy mobile communications satellite that had been scheduled for Monday morning.
Inmarsat confirmed that the satellite was healthy and had been placed in the correct super-synchronous transfer orbit 15 hours and 31 minutes after the launch from Russia’s Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
A Proton M rocket launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome at 7:44 a.m. EDT on its first mission since a failed launch in May. Confirmation of a successful mission, however, is not expected until the rocket's upper stage releases the Inmarsat-5 F3 satellite more than 15 hours after liftoff.
India’s GSLV placed the GSAT-6 satellite into geostationary transfer orbit Aug. 27 in the second straight success for the rocket's domestic upper stage.
The U.S. Air Force will award SpaceX $1 million to study the ins and outs of mating national security satellites to the company’s Falcon 9 rocket.
Responding to Congressional criticism that suggested the agency was giving SpaceX special treatment, Administrator Charles Bolden said NASA is conducting an independent review of the company’s June launch failure.
Commercial space transportation company Blue Origin said Aug. 24 that it will make an announcement in Florida in September widely believed to be linked to proposals to build and launch rockets from there.
The U.S. Army’s efforts to field a rocket for launching small, low-orbiting satellites on short notice continue to come up empty.
Europe’s Ariane 5 heavy-lift rocket on Aug. 20 launched two commercial telecommunications satellites in the vehicle’s 67th consecutive success and the fourth of six missions planned for 2015.
Having delayed the award of follow-on Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) contracts until at least November, NASA is considering ordering more International Space Station cargo deliveries from Orbital ATK and SpaceX, both of which had already quietly hauled in additional orders under CRS deals signed in 2008.
Former SpaceX Business Development Senior Vice President Barry Matsumori has joined Virgin Galactic’s start-up LauncherOne launch service, Virgin Galactic confirmed Aug. 19.
NASA ordered two more cargo deliveries to the International Space Station from Orbital ATK under a 2008 Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) contract, a company spokeswoman said Aug. 12.