The first landing of a man on an asteroid will take place in 50 years, and Rogozin named Ukrainian enterprises that he dreams of appropriating: News Digest

Selection of space news for breakfast: Bezos wants to send a radio telescope to the far side of the Moon, and Amazon will support the development of a dozen space startups, including one from Ukraine. Ten years ago, a private spacecraft delivered cargo to orbit for the first time.

Amazon Web Services to support the development of 10 startups

Amazon Web Services has selected ten space startups that will participate in the development acceleration program. These companies will receive a course of consultations with mentors and 100 thousand dollars each for development. There is one company from Ukraine among the winners — this is a provider of satellite data analysis services EOS Data Analytics. However, companies from all over the world participating in the program are also engaged in rocket launches, satellites and financial activities related to space. 

Large asteroid to fly past Earth this week

A “potentially hazardous” asteroid measuring more than a mile long will zoom past Earth this week, the largest asteroid expected to get relatively close to our planet in 2022. The asteroid, named 1989 JA, is estimated to be 1.1 miles long, according to NASA’s Center for Near Earth Object Studies. For reference, the asteroid is twice the size of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the tallest building in the world.

The launch of a cubesat CAPSTONE delayed

The CAPSTONE mission, short for “Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment,” will now launch no earlier than June 6, NASA announced. The launch window runs through June 22.

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NASA astronaut Ann McClain demonstrates the glove of a spacesuit (image of 2019). The glove consists of several layers of material for additional thermal protection and comfort, and heaters are built into each fingertip. Source: NASA

Azure Space offers Custom Vision tools for satellite imagery

Microsoft is working with partners to identify commercial space applications for the latest software tools the tech giant has developed. In one of the many applications being explored for Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s Spaceborne Computer 2, NASA is testing a Microsoft tool called Custom Vision to see whether it helps simplify the task of inspecting astronaut gloves to identify signs of damage after spacewalks.

Firefly preparing for second launch at Vandenberg

Firefly Aerospace is preparing for another rocket launch at Vandenberg Space Force Base. The company’s first launch in September 2021 ended with an explosion over the Pacific Ocean about two-and-a-half minutes after takeoff. Some debris from the rocket was even found in the Orcutt area. Despite the explosion, Firefly’s CEO called it “a very successful first flight” because they were able to gather a lot of data to help improve future launches.

BlueHalo wins $1.4 billion contract to upgrade U.S. satellite control network

The Space Rapid Capabilities Office awarded BlueHalo a $1.4 billion eight-year contract to add communications capacity to the ground network used by the U.S. military to command and control its satellites. The Space RCO, a U.S. Space Force organization that procures and manages classified space systems, announced that BlueHalo was awarded a so-called other transaction authority contract — a type of cooperative agreement used by the government to speed up projects. The contract is for the project known as satellite communications augmentation resource program.

OneWeb Completes Installation Of First Low Earth Orbit Satellite Gateway Station in Ghana

Ghana has become the first West African country with a Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite gateway station. The satellite company OneWeb, announced that it had successfully completed the installation of 15 OneWeb antennas and associated equipment at a Satellite Network Portal (SNP) in Accra, Ghana’s capital in collaboration with TinSky Connect, a converged communication solutions provider.

Supply chain challenges also present opportunities for the space industry

Supply chain disruptions continue to pose a challenge for the space industry, but some see those disruptions as an opportunity for new approaches and innovation. Chris Winslett, Lockheed Martin program director for its work on the SDA Transport Layer, said that many smallsat manufacturers had, in recent years, shifted away from space-grade components because of their long lead times in favor of more widely available commercial and automotive-grade alternatives. “But with the issues of the pandemic, we actually saw a lot of commercial and automotive parts have longer lead times than space parts,” he said. “It’s been an interesting few years.”

Launcher wins Space Force contract to support engine development

Launcher won a $1.7 million contract from the U.S. Space Force that will assist the company’s development of a high-performance rocket engine for its small launch vehicle. Launcher announced it received the SBIR Phase 2B tactical funding increase, or TACFI, award from the Space Force earlier this month to accelerate work on the company’s E-2 engine. That includes full-duration testing of the engine’s turbopump and long-duration testing of the combustion chamber.


Asteroid 16 Psyche is estimated at several quintillion dollars. Photo: VICE

First human landing on an asteroid by 2073, say scientists

The first human space mission to the asteroid belt could take place within 50 years, say rocket engineers, provided humans reach Mars by 2038. Their prediction is based on an economic analysis of the rate at which space budgets increase over time and how humans have increased their sphere of operations since the dawn of the space age.

NASA-supported solar sail could take science to new heights

The Diffractive Solar Sailing project was selected for Phase III study under the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) program. Like a sailboat using wind to cross the ocean, solar sails use the pressure exerted by sunlight to propel a craft through space. Existing reflective solar sail designs are typically very large and very thin, and they are limited by the direction of the sunlight, forcing tradeoffs between power and navigation. Diffractive lightsails would use small gratings embedded in thin films to take advantage of a property of light called diffraction, which causes light to spread out when it passes through a narrow opening. This would allow the spacecraft to make more efficient use of sunlight without sacrificing maneuverability.

Ten years to the first Dragon flight to the ISS (article)

On May 25, 2012, the Canadarm2 manipulator installed on the ISS successfully picked up and docked the Dragon spacecraft to the station. It became the first private spacecraft in history to deliver cargo into orbit. On the occasion of the tenth anniversary of this event, we would like to tell you about the history of the creation and the main achievements of Dragon.

Blue Origin could land a futuristic telescope on the Moon in one go

After the roaring success of SpaceX in launching private space missions, Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin might have its big moment when it lands a futuristic radio telescope on the side of the Moon, probably by 2030. Farside is an array of low-frequency telescopes that astronomers want to place on the far side of the Moon. Jeff Bezos’s space firm has expressed a strong interest in ferrying this telescope to the Moon. Its Blue Moon lander, designed to be flexible to carry payloads large and small to the lunar surface, is ideal for the FARSIDE mission. In a single landing, Blue Moon could put all the components needed to set up a telescope. Lunar rovers could then work, roll out the dipole antenna, and connect the array to get it working. 

Rogozin Chronicles: Roscosmos announced a list of Ukrainian enterprises that it wants to appropriate for itself

The head of the Russian space agency Dmitry Rogozin is again encroaching on someone else’s property. This time he dreams of Ukrainian enterprises of the space industry. On his wish list are cities that are under the control of Ukraine. Apparently, Rogozin is confident that Russia will seize the Dnipropetrovsk, Kyiv and Kharkiv regions – the factories of these regions appear on the list for “establishing work”. Traditionally for Rushists (russian nazis) with incurable mental ailments, he calls it “liberation”.

Read also: Soyuz rocket launched a spy satellite into orbit, and Maxar caught Russia stealing Ukrainian grain: News Digest

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