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“The Eagle has landed”

2018-10-08
Lockheed Martin has revealed its concept for a new crewed lunar lander: a single stage, fully reusable system that incorporates flight-proven technologies and systems from the NASA Orion spacecraft. In its initial configuration, the lander would deliver a crew of four and 2,000 pounds of cargo to the Moon’s surface for up to two weeks.
Article

Zwick Roell provides flexible materials testing over a wide temperature range

2018-10-19
To enable the tests required for development work to be performed with maximum efficiency, the Zwick Roell Group (ZwickRoell) – a global supplier of materials testing machines based out of Ulm, Germany – developed a materials testing machine that can be equipped with both a temperature chamber and a high-temperature furnace.
Article

Virgin Galactic takes first passenger to space

2019-02-26
Virgin Galactic’s spaceplane, SpaceShipTwo or “VSS Unity,” made its fifth powered test flight and second space flight late last week with three individuals on board. In addition to pilots Dave Mackay and Mike Masucci, Virgin Galactic’s first non-pilot passenger and the world’s first female commercial spacefarer – Beth Moses – also qualified for commercial astronaut wings from the Federal Aviation Administration.
Article

VPT rad-hard point of load converters designed for digital processing in space environments

2018-07-24
VPT Inc. is introducing its SVPL series space-qualified, radiation-hardened point of load DC-DC converters – covering an input voltage range of 3.1 volts to 13.2 volts and offered in 6-, 9-, and 12-amp output surface-mount options – designed specifically for space applications facing harsh radiation environments while requiring low voltages and tight regulation for high-performance processors.
Article

U.K. Space Agency partners with industry to advance spaceflight program

2018-07-16
U.K. Space Agency officials in Swindon, England, are partnering with Lockheed Martin in Bethesda, Md., to execute several strategic projects to support the U.K. Spaceflight Program, with a goal of building its first commercial spaceport in Scotland and achieving its first vertical space launch in the early 2020s.
Article

Toyota takes up challenge of space, brings electrified, automated vehicle technologies

2019-03-13
Technology transfer and collaboration continue to grow globally among mobility engineering professionals focused on aerospace and automotive applications. Cross-industry partnerships received a boost this week, as Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Toyota Motor Corp. officials announced increased cooperation on unmanned, electrified, and automated rovers for space exploration.
Article

Three stages of separation: bidding farewell to the Delta II launch vehicle

2018-09-14
The upcoming launch of the NASA ICESat-2 will be the last liftoff for the Delta II rocket, whose reliability made it a mainstay for civil, military, and commercial space customers. The medium-lift Delta II is manufactured by United Launch Alliance (ULA), a joint venture between Lockheed Martin Space Systems and Boeing Defense, Space & Security, and features main and upper-stage engines supplied by Aerojet Rocketdyne of Sacramento, Calif.
Article

Stratolaunch composite air-launch aircraft pulls the wheels up during latest taxi test

2019-01-17
Seattle-based Stratolaunch Systems Corporation is fast approaching the first flight of its Stratolaunch aircraft. According to a brief social media post, the aircraft – the largest in the world in terms of wingspan – reached a speed of 136 miles per hour during a high-speed taxi test at the Mojave Air and Space Port in Mojave, California.
Article

Stratolaunch all-composite aircraft achieves first flight

2019-04-15
Stratolaunch Systems Corp., founded by Paul G. Allen, in Seattle, Washington, has completed the first flight of the Stratolaunch, the world’s largest all-composite aircraft, with a dual-fuselage design and wingspan greater than the length of an American football field. The Stratolaunch aircraft took flight on April 13 at 0658 PDT from the Mojave Air & Space Port in Mojave, California; achieved a maximum speed of 189 miles per hour; and flew for 2.5 hours over the Mojave Desert at altitudes up to 17,000 feet. 
Article

SpaceX tests Raptor engine, prepares for Starship “hop”

2019-02-07
Hawthorne, California-based SpaceX has test fired its Raptor rocket engine at its Rocket Development and Test Facility, in McGregor, Texas. The Raptor is designed to power the Super Heavy first stage and Starship second stage launch vehicles.
Article

Space launch providers submit proposals for National Security Space Launch program

2019-08-16
Four companies – Blue Origin, Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems, SpaceX, and United Launch Alliance (ULA) – recently submitted proposals for the U.S. Air Force's Phase 2 Launch Services Procurement (LSP) competition. Two of those companies will be awarded with up to 34 launches over a five-year period under the National Security Space Launch (NSSL) program.
Article

Space Tango takes its next steps in orbital manufacturing

2018-11-19
Lexington, Kentucky-based Space Tango is aiming to launch an autonomous robotic orbital platform by the mid-2020s. The platform, called ST-42, is designed for scalable manufacturing in space and will leverage the unique environment of microgravity to produce high-value products across multiple industries.
Article

Soft tests for autonomous vehicles

2018-03-15
Statistics may point to human fallibility being the cause of almost all road accidents, but the switch to a connected robotic environment must ultimately deliver every nano-second of every day on the promise of a guaranteed near-total safety highway environment. Today’s grudging acceptance by the global public of the inevitability of deaths and injuries on the road will not continue in a driverless environment.
Article

Sensuron enables real-time structural health monitoring onboard NASA’s X-56 UAV

2019-04-04
In contrast to the stiff, rigid wings found on most commercial aircraft, flexible wing technology is considered essential to next generation, fuel efficient aircraft. However, flexible wings are susceptible to “flutter,” or highly destructive aeroelastic instability. To better understand and mitigate flutter, engineers at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center (AFRC) equipped the X-56 with fiber optic sensing (FOS) technology.
Article

SaraniaSat wins $5M NASA InVEST contract for hyperspectral thermal imager

2018-08-01
SaraniaSat, an aerospace startup in Los Angeles, won a three-year, $5.1 million NASA In-Space Validation of Earth Science Technologies (InVEST) contract to test and advance the company’s Hyperspectral Thermal Imager (HyTI), being touted as a unique, disruptive technology for hyperspectral remote sensing, a technology also known as imaging spectroscopy used to detect and identify minerals, vegetation, and manmade materials.
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