The willingness of United Launch Alliance’s parent companies to fund a next-generation rocket hinges on winning relief from the ban on the Russian-made engine that powers its current government workhorse, the Atlas 5.
The Indian government’s Union Cabinet on May 21 approved a budget of $484 million to build and launch 15 PSLV rockets between 2017 and 2020, meeting a demand for 4-5 launches per year “with the possibility of clinching commercial launch service contracts,” according to the office of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi.
Op-ed | Congress Can Help the Commercial Launch Industry This Week if We’re All Willing To Work Together
An amendment offered by Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.) would replace the text of the House Republicans' SPACE Act with the bipartisan Senate commercial space bill.
ViaSat said it is facing capacity limits on more than half the beams on its ViaSat-1 satellite and that the situation will worsen until ViaSat-2, slated to launch on a Falcon Heavy rocket next year, is in orbit.
Russia’s Proton rocket failure on May 16 is having immediate ripple effects on future missions for commercial and government customers — starting with mobile satellite services operator Inmarsat.
An International Launch Services (ILS) Proton rocket carrying Mexico’s Centenario mobile communications satellite failed about eight minutes and 10 seconds after liftoff May 16 in what early reports said was a problem with the rocket’s third stage.
A defense authorization bill just drafted in the U.S. Senate would leave United Launch Alliance with fewer Atlas 5 rocket engines than the company says it needs to stay in the competitive national security launch arena until its next-generation rocket becomes available around the end of the decade.
A Virginia-owned launchpad damaged in October when Orbital ATK’s Antares rocket exploded moments after liftoff is almost fixed, but the company is at loggerheads with the state and the federal government over who should pay the last $2 million owed in repairs.
Airbus Safran Launchers has submitted its formal bid to design and build the Ariane 6 rocket, a contract to be valued at around 3.2 billion euros that the European Space Agency hopes to sign by the end of June.
The House Armed Services Committee said $220 million should go strictly to development of a “rocket propulsion system, and the necessary interfaces to the launch vehicle, to replace non-allied space launch engines.” The White House views this approach as shortsighted.
The two commercial geostationary-orbit telecommunications satellites launched March 1 aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket — a launch that debuted a new all-electric satellite design by Boeing — are expected to reach their final orbits at least a month ahead of schedule, their owners said.
The House Science Committee approved four bills on commercial space topics during a lengthy markup session May 13 marked by partisan divides on a number of issues.
The head of Europe’s Arianespace launch consortium on May 12 said the company can beat competitor SpaceX in the open market with a euro/dollar exchange rate at today’s levels and the planned 5-6 percent reduction in Ariane 5 rocket production and launch costs.
NASA is planning to request proposals later this year for the dedicated launch of very small satellites, a move that has received widespread but not universal support among developers of small launch vehicles