SPARKS, Nev. (October 7, 2015) – In anticipation of a second phase of flight testing, Sierra Nevada Corporation’s (SNC) Space Systems has announced significant updates to two Dream Chaser® spacecraft currently in development. The spacecraft are the atmospheric engineering test article (ETA) and the advanced composite orbital vehicle, which when tested will undergo a suborbital and orbital flight regimen, respectively. SNC’s Mark Sirangelo provided a program update at the International Symposium for Commercial and Personal Spaceflight (ISPCS) in New Mexico.
Orbital ATK plans to launch its next two commercial resupply missions to the International Space Station on Atlas 5 rockets, grabbing a launch slot in March after a next-generation U.S. weather satellite was delayed, industry officials said.
The decision also gives engineers readying Orbital ATK’s Antares rocket, which is being outfitted with a new type of engine, some extra breathing room in their test sequence at the Antares launch base at Wallops Island, Virginia, said Frank Culbertson, president of the company’s space systems group.
The Ansari XPRIZE helped kick off a new era of space exploration by opening up a challenge for private suborbital flight. But since then, the XPRIZE Foundation set its sights a little higher – about 238,000 miles away. And now, Israeli team SpaceIL looks to be the closest to the finish line of the Google Lunar XPRIZE, becoming the first team in the competition to certify a launch with the foundation.
While other teams have announced work on contracts to fly, SpaceIL is the only one certified by the XPRIZE Foundation thus far, and by reaching that milestone, the team has extended the deadline for all other competitors by a year. SpaceIL's contracted SpaceX for a Falcon 9 flight to an unspecified part of the moon in late 2017. Once there, the team will have to get a lander to the surface and move a craft 500 meters to claim the $30 million prize.
Israeli-based Team SpaceIL has signed up to launch a robotic lander to the moon on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket in the latter half of 2017, thanks to an arrangement with Seattle-based Spaceflight.
SpaceIL will be a “co-lead” customer for the launch, the organizers of the $30 million Google Lunar X Prize competition said in a news release on Wednesday. That makes SpaceIL the first team to provide official verification of its launch contract, and confirms that efforts to put the first privately funded spacecraft on the moon by the end of 2017 will be an honest-to-goodness competition.
If all goes according to plan, the world’s first private lunar mission will be launched just two years from now. SpaceIL, an Israeli nonprofit, has secured a launch contract with California-based Spaceflight Industries, and will aim to land a rover on the moon in the second half of 2017. It’s the first such launch contract to be verified by the $30 million Google Lunar XPrize competition.
Only three nations have landed modules on the moon—the US, Russia, and China. If SpaceIL is successful, Israel will be the fourth.
A private team from Israel has become the first to secure a launch contract to loft a rover into space and, with any luck, on to the moon in the second half of 2017.
SpaceIL has signed a deal with California-based Spaceflight Industries which will see it launch its craft aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 launcher. The deal is the first verified launch contract to be made by any of the teams competing in the Google Lunar XPRIZE competition, which promises $30 million to the first private organization to land on the moon.
A clear frontrunner has emerged in the Google Lunar XPRIZE (GLXP) contest that is challenging private companies to land a spacecraft on the Moon. An Israeli-based team is the first to purchase a launch contract – a flight on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, expected in the second half of 2017, in a bit to win the competition.
If all goes to plan, the Tel Aviv-based company known as SpaceIL will not only scoop first place and a $20 million (£13 million) share of the $30 million (£20 million) prize fund, but it will also become only the fourth organization or agency to land on the Moon (the Soviet Union, the U.S. and China are the others), and obviously the first Israeli effort.
JERUSALEM, Israel (October 7, 2015) - At a press conference held in Jerusalem on Wednesday, alongside Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, and Bob Weiss, vice chairman and president of XPRIZE, SpaceIL announced a significant milestone in its race to the moon: securing a “ticket to the moon” on a SpaceX Falcon 9 launcher, with a mission scheduled for the second half of 2017. With this, SpaceIL becomes the first team to produce a verified launch contract in the US$30 million Google Lunar XPRIZE competition, and aims to accomplish not only the first Israeli mission to the moon, but also the world’s first private lunar mission.
Sierra Nevada Corporation’s Dream Chaser spaceplane is still holding on to the hope of flying missions for NASA despite losing out on the role of a Commercial Crew carrier for the Agency. Although little information has been heard about the future of the spacecraft of late, SNC is hoping to win favor from NASA in the upcoming award of the Cargo Resupply Services 2 (CRS2) contract.
PARIS — Social media giant Facebook and satellite fleet operator Eutelsat have agreed to pay $95 million over about five years to lease the Ka-band spot-beam broadband capacity on a satellite scheduled to launch in mid-2016 and to provide service for Facebook’s Internet.org and a new Eutelsat subsidiary focusing on African businesses.
The lease of all the Ka-band capacity on Israel-based Spacecom Ltd.’s Amos-6 satellite — about 18 gigabits per second of throughput — can be extended for up to two years at a reduced rate, Spacecom said in an Oct. 6 filing with the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.
The contract includes a provision that Spacecom purchase, on behalf of Eutelsat and Facebook, an insurance policy covering project-related risks that would not otherwise be covered by Spacecom’s own insurance policy covering the satellite’s launch and first year in orbit.
PARIS — Social media giant Facebook and satellite fleet operator Eutelsat, in one of the first concrete projects on behalf of Facebook’s Internet.org plan to connect unconnected populations worldwide, on Oct. 5 said they would jointly lease Ka-band broadband satellite capacity covering Africa.
The two companies said they had leased the entire Ka-band payload on Israel-based Spacecom’s Amos-6 satellite, scheduled for launch in mid-2016 aboard a Falcon 9 rocket operated by SpaceX of Hawthorne, California. Eutelsat said the lease of the capacity, to be financed about equally by Facebook and Eutelsat, is for five years, ending in 2021.
Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) may not have been awarded a multi-billion dollar commercial crew contract by NASA, but that isn’t stopping the company from moving forward with plans for their Dream Chaser “spaceplane”. Preparations are underway for the Louisville, Colorado-based company to launch the second phase of their Dream Chaser flight test program, significantly upgrading their Engineering Test Article (ETA) and simultaneously building an advanced composite orbital vehicle for an “upcoming suborbital and orbital flight regimen” beginning in 2016.
“The SNC team is readying the ETA in order to begin the second phase of atmospheric flight testing early next year and our strategic partner, Lockheed Martin, is leveraging best practices in tooling and composites to manufacture the first orbital Dream Chaser spacecraft,” said Mark Sirangelo, corporate vice president, SNC’s Space Systems, at the International Symposium for Commercial and Personal Spaceflight (ISPCS) in New Mexico. “Both efforts have been ongoing simultaneously and we are very pleased with the progress to date.”
After Louisville-based Sierra Nevada Space Systems lost the NASA bid to ferry astronauts to and from the International Space Station, many wondered about the future of its Dream Chaser spacecraft.
But rumors of its demise were greatly exaggerated: Space Systems chief Mark Sirangelo said Wednesday that two versions of Dream Chaser will begin flight tests early next year.
"We've come a long way — despite not having the NASA money — and we've been freed up to advance more rapidly," he said in an interview. "In some ways, because no one was focusing on us, we've been able to get a lot more done."
An Israeli group seeking to win a $30 million prize will fly their spacecraft to the moon in 2017, with the help of a SpaceX rideshare.
Designed by nonprofit SpaceIL, the unmanned dishwasher-sized probe will attempt to land on the moon, transmit digital pictures and video back to earth, and “hop” 500 meters across its surface. Performing these three tasks will make the probe eligible for Google’s Lunar XPRIZE, created to reward construction of cheap, effective technology for commercial space exploration.
The probe’s trip to space was was arranged by Spaceflight Industries, a company that aims to make booking spaceflight as easy as buying a plane ticket.
SpaceIL — an Israeli nonprofit competing in the Google Lunar X Prize competition — will use SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket to launch its lunar lander into space, the group announced today in Jerusalem. The rocket will launch the team's vehicle into lower Earth orbit sometime in the second half of 2017. From there, the rocket will carry the lander farther into space, and then the spacecraft will propel itself the rest of the way to land gently on the Moon.
With today's announcement, SpaceIL is the first of the 16 Lunar X Prize teams to book a ride off the planet. If the mission succeeds, it will be the first Israeli mission — as well as the first private spaceflight mission — to soft-land a vehicle on the lunar surface. Eran Privman, CEO of SpaceIL, claimed the group isn't focused on the competition, but they are confident they can win. "I promise you once we land on the Moon, we’ll look around and see we are the first," he said.
The Google Lunar XPrize has its first official entrant in a contest designed to launch a new-age space race.
Israeli team SpaceIL announced Wednesday it has become the first to sign a formal contract with the contest, which challenges private teams to be the first to land a rover on the moon by the end of 2017. Launched in 2007, the Google Lunar XPrize (GLXP) includes a $20 million grand prize for the first privately funded team to land a craft on the moon and then cover 500 meters of the lunar surface while beaming high-definition footage back to Earth.
Israeli non-profit space exploration company SpaceIL has announced that it’s become the first company to successfully deliver a launch contract in pursuit of Google’s $30 million lunar XPRIZE payout.
Google has supported the lunar XPRIZE initiative since 2007 to try and spur “a new era of affordable access to the moon and beyond.” In order to nab the $20 million first prize, a team needs to land a privately funded rover on the moon that’s capable of transmitting HD video and images back to earth, and that can travel at least 500 meters. Teams also have to prove that 90 percent of their funding came from private sources to qualify.
Team SpaceIL, a team of engineers based in Israel, has just managed to secure a “ticket to the moon”—in the form of an official, verified launch contract—for its spacecraft on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. The spacecraft will hitch a ride in a specially designed capsule on the Falcon 9; once separated from the launcher and released from the capsule, it will use navigation sensors to guide it to the lunar surface. Here’s a first look at the craft that will be heading to the moon in 2017:
From 2007-2010, 29 teams from 16 countries registered to compete in the Google Lunar XPRIZE. Today, 16 teams from 13 countries remain in the competition. They now have 6 months left to secure a contract for their launch to the moon. Welcome to the new space race.
NASA may believe that it'll be the first to land humans on Mars, but don't tell that to Las Vegas betting houses. Popular Mechanics has asked Docsports' Raphael Esparza to set odds for the first organization to put people on Mars, and he believes that SpaceX stands a much better chance of reaching the Red Planet (5 to 1) than anyone else, including NASA (80 to 1). To put it bluntly, SpaceX has the money and the motivation that others don't -- NASA would be the favorite, but its budget cuts are holding it back.
A lot of rhetoric has been thrown around over the last several years about how the United States is “falling behind” in space and ceding its leadership role. This rather pessimistic assessment is largely based on the status of U.S. government space programs. NASA’s current human space exploration program is perceived as a shadow of its glory days of the 1960s, and U.S. national security space capabilities no longer have the same relative advantage over near-peers as in the late 1990s and early 2000s after the fall of the Soviet Union.
However, taking a broader perspective of space activities leads to a much different conclusion: The United States is doing more in space than ever before, and in ways that no other country can match.
MDA is the latest high profile company to partner with OneWeb in its effort to build a constellation of over 900 small satellites in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) to provide affordable broadband services to areas of the Earth that are underserved.
MDA will provide OneWeb with antenna for the satellite constellation and payload design and engineering services. Terms of the deal were not announced. However, should OneWeb raise sufficient funds to build the complete constellation of over 900 satellites, the resulting contract would be significant to MDA.
MDA's Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue office on the West Island of Montreal will perform the work.
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