Electron’s “It’s a Test” successfully reaches Space, falls short of Orbit

Rocket Lab joined the ranks of only a few private companies capable of sending rockets into space, debuting their innovative Electron rocket on Thursday in a long-awaited shakedown mission. However, the rocket fell short of reaching orbit, Rocket Lab said after the test flight.

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Boeing & DARPA Reveal Phantom Express Space Plane Design

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) picked Boeing’s Phantom Works division to complete advanced design work for the agency’s Experimental Spaceplane (XS-1) program that aims to build and fly an autonomous, reusable hypersonic space plane capable of dispatching medium-class satellites into Low Earth Orbit.

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Weak Simulations, Inadequate Software & Mismanagement caused Schiaparelli Crash Landing

The European Space Agency concluded its inquiry into the crash landing of the experimental Schiaparelli Mars Lander last October, citing a lack of understanding and modeling of parachute dynamics experienced at high speed, insufficient failure identification and recovery options in the craft’s software and mismanagement of subcontractors & hardware acceptance as contributing factors for the botched landing sequence.

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Satellite Trackers spot Classified NROL-76 (USA-276) Satellite in Low Earth Orbit

Three weeks have passed since the secretive NROL-76 satellite launched atop a Falcon 9 rocket. Now satellite trackers have gotten hold of the clandestine spacecraft operated by the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office in a Low Earth Orbit 400 Kilometers in altitude.

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Launch Week Arrives for Rocket Lab’s Electron

An innovative new rocket relying on electrically-driven engine pumps, 3D-printed components and an all-composite structure stands ready for liftoff atop its New Zealand Launch Pad to become the first in a series of Small Satellite Launch Vehicles to reach the commercial market, offering affordable access to space.

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Arianespace-Operated Soyuz Rocket lifts Multi-Purpose Communications Satellite for SES

A highly sophisticated multi-use communications satellite relying on 3D printed parts and ion propulsion lifted off from French Guiana on Thursday atop a Russian-built Soyuz ST-A rocket, carrying out only its second Geostationary Transfer Mission from the French-operated space port on the edge of the Amazon jungle.

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Expendable Falcon 9 aces heaviest Geotransfer Mission to Date with Inmarsat 5-F4 Mobile Comms Satellite

A powerful satellite is on its way to join Inmarsat’s Global Xpress fleet to deliver seamless global Internet and data connectivity to airline passengers, maritime crew and government users after successfully launching atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket on Monday.

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