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Scientists have long theorized that the great apes, like chimpanzees and gorillas, possessed intelligence significantly above that of simple
- Rocket Lab enters a new era with Virginia launch
- SpaceX moves closer to Starship’s first orbital flight test
- News from Quindar, AstroForge and more
This week’s Electron launch from Virginia was a major win for Rocket Lab and the United States, as it provided a rapid and on-demand launch capability to either hemisphere. The mission, aptly titled “Virginia is for Launch Lovers,” is another step in the company’s effort to increase launch cadence and provide an essential service for both businesses and consumers.
The Rocket Lab team was understandably nervous leading up to the launch, given the many technical difficulties they had previously experienced. However, they succeeded in launching their 33rd Electron rocket successfully and raising awareness of space exploration in the process.
In 2014, small startup Rocket Lab announced they would be building a Global Launch System (GLES) rocket. The GLES rockets will be used to launch small payloads into low-Earth orbit. The company has made significant
SpaceX’s ambitious Starship launch system can now be described as a “wet dress rehearsal.” Throughout late 2017 and early 2018, SpaceX conducted several successful wet dress rehearsals of the Starship launch system from its Starbase site in southeastern Texas. This major milestone in CEO Elon Musk’s quest to turn long-haul interplanetary transportation from science fiction to reality can now be described as a critical step towards human space exploration. The next wet dress rehearsal is scheduled for later this year, and SpaceX is on track for achieving its ultimate goal of putting astronauts into orbit by 2022.
The ambitious effort to send something called Starship—essentially a prototype of a future human spaceship—into orbit for the first time is certainly heating up. Recent indications point to an imminent launch, and if everything goes according to plan, the vehicle could well be on its way into space by the end of the month. This would be a major step forward for SpaceX, as it would represent yet another successful launch from their Cape Canaveral facility.
SpaceX’s launch goal for the upcoming full stack quest: a Falcon 9 and crewed Dragon launch to orbit and then another Falcon 9 launch with a payload of 500,000 lbs. to Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO). During the 2nd GTO flight SpaceX plans to do an interesting maneuver called a “re-entry burn” that will allow them to return most of the vehicle’s propellants back into Earth’s atmosphere.
In 2008, billionaire Jeff Bezos founded the space exploration company, Space X. With its cutting-edge technology and ambitious mission objectives, the company has become a major player in the space industry.
More news from TG+ and beyond
- Astrobotic’s Peregrine lunar lander successfully completed its flight acceptance campaign. The next step is preparing it for shipment to Cape Canaveral, Florida, to be received by Astrobotic’s launch partner United Launch Alliance. (Astrobotic)
- AstroForge, an asteroid mining startup, announced its first two missions, both of which will launch this year. (TechGround)
- Atomos Space closed a $16.2 million Series A round to fund a demo mission of the company’s orbital transfer vehicle tech. (TechGround)
- Isar Aerospace, a German rocket startup, signed a deal with Spaceflight for one dedicated launch in 2026, with the option to add an additional launch to take off in 2025. (Spaceflight)
- NASA validated a novel rocket engine design, a “rotating detonation rocket engine,” that uses more power and less fuel than propulsion systems being built today. (NASA)
- NASA will partner with DARPA to develop a nuclear propulsion system, with the goal of demonstrating a nuclear thermal engine as soon as 2027. (SpaceNews)
- Quindar raised $2.5 million to change the way space companies conduct satellite mission management. (TechGround)
- SpaceX’s Falcon 9 flew its heaviest payload ever at 17.4 metric tons. (SpaceX)
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