Launch of Progress MS-28 spacecraft to ISS scheduled for August 15 —#Roscosmos
The Progress-MS is a Russian automatic spacecraft, designed specifically for orbital space stations.

The Progress MS-28 cargo spacecraft is scheduled for launch to the International Space Station on August 15, Roscosmos press office said.

"The launched of the Soyuz 2.1a carrier rocket with the Progress MS-28 cargo spacecraft from the Baikonur Cosmodrome has been planned for August 15," the state corporation said on its weekly digest.

The Progress-MS is a #Russian automatic #spacecraft, designed specifically for orbital space stations. It is used for delivery of various cargo (fuel, scientific equipment, oxygen, water, food, etc.) to the ISS. It is also being used for correction of the ISS’ orbit.

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#Russia to launch five Earth imaging satellites by yearend — #Roscosmos. The space vehicles slated for launch include two Aist-2T stereoscopic imaging satellites, a Kondor-FKA remote sensing satellite, a Resurs-P observation satellite and an Obzor-R multipurpose observation #satellite

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#India to build first phase of its own space station by 2028
We have completed or rather engineered the detailed #design, which is capable of being launched by the LVM3, Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) Chairman Sreedhara Panicker Somanath said

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On several occasions, debris from trunk sections of Dragon spacecraft, which are jettisoned from the capsule before the capsule performs a deorbit burn, have been found on land. They include debris from the Crew-1 Crew Dragon trunk, found in Australia in 2022; the Ax-3 Crew Dragon, which fell in Saskatchewan in February; and the Crew-7 trunk, fragments of which were found in May in North Carolina.

In August 2022, shortly after the Crew-1 debris was found in Australia, a SpaceX official downplayed the incident as an isolated case. “This was all within the expected analyzed space of what can happen,” said Benji Reed, senior director of human spaceflight programs at SpaceX, at a NASA briefing. “Nonetheless, just like we do for launches and any return, we look very closely at the data, we learn everything that we can and we always look for ways we can improve things.”

After the more recent debris sightings, NASA and SpaceX now acknowledge that improvements are needed. The agency recently stated that initial studies expected the trunk to burn up fully upon reentry. “NASA and SpaceX will continue exploring additional solutions as we learn from the discovered debris,” NASA stated.

“We did analysis back before Demo-2 and clearly the models don’t deal with the trunk very well,” Steve Stich, NASA commercial crew program manager, said in an interview after a Starliner briefing ahead of that mission’s June 6 launch. He said it’s likely because of the composite materials used in the trunk. “It’s almost like a thermal protection system.”

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HELSINKI — China’s main space contractor has carried out a successful static fire test of a rocket first stage designed to take astronauts to the moon.

A Long March 10 first stage test article was fired in Fengtai district of Beijing, Friday, June 14. The stage started normally, operated steadily, and shut down on schedule, the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology (CALT) stated via its WeChat channel.

The test was conducted by the Institute 101 of the Sixth Academy of the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC), the country’s main space contractor.

The successful test is a step towards China’s goal of putting astronauts on the moon before 2030. NASA currently aims to land humans on the moon once more with Artemis III no earlier than 2026.

The test article had three YF-100K kerosene-liquid oxygen engines installed across its 5.0-meter diameter. The full Long March 10 first stage will be powered by seven such engines. The rocket’s center stage will have two similar stages attached to it.

The engines may have been limited to three due to the capacity of the test stand. The static fire was however deemed a complete success, with simultaneous firing of the three engines.

“The test is basically a comprehensive verification of our first-stage,” Xu Hongping, an engineer with CASC, told CCTV. “It was a complete success, laying a solid foundation for our subsequent research and development and the realization of our entire manned lunar exploration program,”

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LOS ANGELES — Redwire announced a contract June 17 to serve as prime mission integrator for a DARPA satellite with a novel propulsion system for very low Earth orbit (VLEO).

SabreSat, Redwire’s VLEO satellite for government intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions, will house “air-breathing” electric propulsion systems being developed through DARPA’s Otter program.

Phantom, another VLEO platform, is being developed by Redwire’s European office for the European Space Agency’s Skimsat mission.

“We are taking an innovative approach to developing a new breed of spacecraft that bridge the gap between air and space,” Spence Wise, Redwire senior vice president for missions and platforms, told SpaceNews by email. “DARPA Otter is the first major win for our SabreSat VLEO platform, and it extends our leadership as a prime integrator and international pioneer in VLEO.”

Redwire did not disclose the value of the multi-year DARPA Otter contract, which includes pricing for design through on-orbit operations.

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TAMPA, Fla. — Amazon Web Services is busy positioning its cloud infrastructure business to capitalize on the promise of generative artificial intelligence for transforming space and other industries.

More than 60% of the company’s space and aerospace customers are already using some form of AI in their businesses, according to AWS director of aerospace and satellite Clint Crosier, up from single digits around three years ago.

Crosier predicts similar growth over the next few years in space for generative AI, which uses deep-learning models to answer questions or create content based on patterns detected in massive datasets, marking a major step up from traditional machine-learning algorithms.

Mathematical advances, an explosion in the amount of available data and cheaper and more efficient chips for processing it are a “perfect storm” for the rise of generative AI, he told SpaceNews in an interview, helping drive greater adoption of cloud-based applications.

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TAMPA, Fla. — Regulatory delays in India have knocked #Eutelsat off course for reaching 90% of the world with its OneWeb low Earth orbit (LEO) broadband constellation by summer, the French satellite operator said May 14.

The company said last year it was the first to get permission to provide commercial satellite broadband services from IN-SPACe, India’s newly created space regulator, but radio waves from the country’s government still needed to be allocated.

Eutelsat is “on track in terms of landing rights and operating permits with the exception of India” for reaching its mid-2024 coverage goal, chief financial officer Christophe Caudrelier told investors during the operator’s May 14 earnings call.

With 633 satellites in LEO, the operator had planned to start worldwide services in early 2024, before falling behind on regulatory approvals and rolling out gateways for the network.

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#WASHINGTON — A Falcon 9 successfully placed into orbit a pair of Galileo navigation satellites April 27 in a launch that was unusual in several aspects.

The Falcon 9 lifted off from the Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39A at 8:34 p.m. Eastern, carrying the Galileo GM25 and FM27 satellites. The European Union Agency for the Space Programme, or EUSPA, the EU agency that handles Galileo operations, confirmed the satellites were in orbit and operating several hours later.

The launch took place with a degree of secrecy usually reserved for classified national security launches. SpaceX provided no video from the launch after stage separation and ended its webcast after confirmation of payload fairing separation. The company deferred to the customer for further updates on the mission.

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#WASHINGTON — Gravitics, a startup developing modules for commercial space stations, will use its technologies for tactically responsive space applications for the U.S. Space Force.

The company announced April 25 it won a $1.7 million Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract from SpaceWERX, the innovation arm of the Space Force. The contract, a “direct to phase 2” SBIR award, is in partnership with Space Systems Command’s Space Safari Program Office.

Gravitics, based near Seattle, is developing modules for use on future commercial space stations. One concept, called StarMax, is a cylindrical module with an aluminum full 7.6 meters in diameter and offers 400 cubic meters of volume, about 40% of the volume of the entire International Space Station

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