Boeing Acquires Millennium Space Systems

ARLINGTON, Va., Aug. 16, 2018 (Boeing PR) — Boeing [NYSE: BA] will acquire Millennium Space Systems, a provider of agile, flight-proven small-satellite solutions, under an acquisition agreement that will expand Boeing’s satellite and space portfolio, talent and capabilities.

“Millennium Space Systems’ expertise in vertically-integrated small-satellite solutions perfectly complements Boeing’s existing satellite portfolio, and will allow us to meet the needs of a diverse customer set,” said Leanne Caret, president and CEO of Boeing Defense, Space & Security. “We look forward to incorporating Millennium Space Systems’ end-to-end mission solution capabilities into our service offerings in satellite operations and data solutions.”

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Meet Russia’s New Cosmonaut Candidates

Russia’s newest class of cosmonaut candidates. (Credit; Roscosmos)

Roscosmos has selected eight candidates to begin training at the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center. Below are their biographies.

Borisov Konstantin Sergeevich (Credit; Roscosmos)

Borisov Konstantin Sergeevich
He was born on 14.08.1984 in the city of Smolensk.
Marital status: married, no children.

Education:

  • June 27, 2005 graduated from the Russian Academy of Economics. Plekhanov with the qualification “Bachelor of Economics” in the direction of “Economics”.
  • From September 27, 2006 to December 3, 2007, he studied at Warwick University (Cowen-three, UK). After graduation, he was awarded the “Master of Science” qualification in the direction “Operations Research and Systems Analysis”.
  • In June 2018, I completed my studies at the MAI on the Master Program “Life Support Systems for Aircraft” (2016-2018), with the qualification “Master” in the direction of “Aircraft Building”.

Experience:

  • 01.07.2005-04.08.2006 – assistant to the business controller in CJSC “Volvo Vostok”, Khimki;
  • 01.12.2007-20.07.2011 – an analyst in the Moscow office of the company “A. T. Kar-ni GmbH, Moscow;
  • 10.01.2012-11.03.2013 – Consultant in the Moscow representative office of the company “Booston Consulting Group Limited”, Moscow;
  • 01/09/2014-n. at. – the head on introduction of innovations in LLC “Ferronordic Mashiny”, Khimki.

Military service in the army did not pass.
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Russia Selects 8 New Cosmonaut Candidates

Russia’s newest class of cosmonaut candidates. (Credit; Roscosmos)

MOSCOW (Roscosmos PR) — By results of the meeting of the interdepartmental commission (MVK) announced the results of the selection of candidates for the cosmonaut detachment in 2017-2018. Named eight new candidates who will continue training in the Yuri A. Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center for further support of the Russian space manned program.

The results of MVK’s work were announced by Dmitry Rogozin, Director General of the Roskosmos State Corporation, Sergey Krikalev, Executive Director for Manned Space Programs at Yuri Gagarin Pavel Vlasov, and the director of the Institute of Medical and Biological Problems (IBMP) RAS Oleg Orlov.

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New Space Commerce Center Executive Director is Teleportation Marketing Consultant

Aaron Pagel
Executive Director
Center for Space Commerce and Finance

Aaron’s diverse background in leadership, arts, operations, marketing, and business strategy makes him an ideal leader for the Center. After 10 years as an actor and filmmaker, Aaron earned his MBA in Marketing, Applied Economics, and Business Strategy and Decision Making from DePaul University in Chicago with distinction. He serves as a Marketing Consultant for Envobius (an early stage teleportation research company) and is an Adjunct Professor of Business Strategy at DePaul.

U.S. Expresses Concerns About Russian “Inspector” Satellite, Space Lasers & ASATs

Soyuz-2.1v on launch pad (Credit: Russian Ministry of Defence)

The United States said this week that a Russian satellite launched last year is exhibiting “very abnormal behavior” in orbit, suggesting that it is a weapons system rather than a “space apparatus inspector” as claimed by the Russian Ministry of Defense.

“In October of last year the Russian Ministry of Defense deployed a space object they claimed was a ‘space apparatus inspector,'” said Yleem D.S. Poblete, assistant secretary at the U.S. Bureau of Arms Control, Verification and Compliance. “But its behavior on-orbit was inconsistent with anything seen before from on-orbit inspection or space situational awareness capabilities, including other Russian inspection satellite activities.”

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Indian Prime Minister Says Country Will Launch Astronauts into Space By 2022

Escape tower fires for crew vehicle. (Credit: ISRO)

Speaking 0n the 72nd anniversary of Indian independence, Prime Minister Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the nation would launch astronauts into space within four years.

“India has always advanced in space science but we have decided that by 2022 when India completes 75 years of Independence, or before that, a son or daughter of India will go to space with a tricolor in their hands,” Modi said.

Indian news outlets are reporting the country is planning to send three astronauts, known as vyomnauts (spacenauts), into Earth orbit on a mission lasting five to seven days.

ISRO would spend 90 billion rupees ($1.28 billion) on the initial program, which would two uncrewed flight tests before the vyomnauts fly in a spacecraft launched by a GSLV Mk. 3 booster.

On July 5, ISRO successfully tested a crew escape system that blasted away a simulated crew module with a mass of 12.6 metric tons.

 

Landing on Ryugu – A Surface with a View of Boulders

The boulder-strewn surface of asteroid Ryugu. (Credit: JAXA, University of Tokyo, Kochi University, Rikkyo University, Nagoya University, Chiba Institute of Technology, Meiji University, University of Aizu, AIST.)

COLOGNE, Germany (DLR PR) — In early October 2018, the Mobile Asteroid Surface Scout (MASCOT) lander is expected to be in operation for approximately 16 hours on the Ryugu asteroid. The selection of the landing site will take place this August. The ideal site must firstly offer the MASCOT team engineers excellent conditions for a safe landing and stable operation on the asteroid, while providing the researchers with a wealth of new and productive measurements.

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Stratolaunch Aircraft Strolls Outside for a Little California Sun

Stratolaunch aircraft rolls out of its hangar in Mojave, Calif. (Credit: Stratolaunch)

Stratolaunch emerged from its hangar over the weekend to soak up some California sun. Engineers took the giant, twin fuselage carrier aircraft outside for some tests.

Stratolaunch carrier aircraft has a wingspan of 385 ft. (Credit: Stratolaunch)

The announced plan was to conduct some taxi tests on Runway 12/30. The plane didn’t make it that far. Engineers put the airplane through a series of fueling, fueling, full-power engine and communication tests.

Stratolaunch carrier aircraft outside for tests. (Credit: Stratolaunch)

The aircraft will begin by launching Pegasus XL boosters, which are produced by Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems.

Stratolaunch carrier plane is a dual fuselage aircraft. (Credit: Stratolaunch)

The company is also working on a medium launcher that expected to debut in 2021. There are not a lot of details about the project, which is under the direction of Vice President of Propulsion Jeff Thornburg.

Stratolaunch aircraft outside for testing. (Credit: Stratolaunch)

I caught a glimpse of the aircraft from Highway 14 during my return from the Small Satellite Conference in Utah. I was probably five miles away at the time, but the thing still looked massive sitting there next to the hangar.

SpaceX Could Play Crucial Role in Taking Tesla Private

Elon Musk (Credit: SpaceX)

CNBC has an update on Elon Musk’s pursuit of making Tesla Motors a private company once again.

Morgan Stanley is telling its clients Elon Musk’s stake in SpaceX may be leveraged as a source of funding for his plan to take Tesla private….

“Elon Musk’s desire to potentially take Tesla private may require large amounts of new equity capital. We see scope for SpaceX to play a potentially crucial role in facilitating the required financing as well as the strategic narrative going forward,” analyst Adam Jonas said in a note entitled “How SpaceX Can Potentially Help Tesla Go Private” to clients Monday. “We believe investors should consider the potential role of SpaceX in the near-term financial options confronting Tesla and its shareholders.”

….In a blog post later that day, Musk said “the intention is not to merge SpaceX and Tesla.”

Despite the comment, Jonas said SpaceX could invest directly in Tesla as part of a strategic partnership.

“While we are in no position to dispute this statement on a merging of the two entities, we do not expect Elon Musk to rule out the potential for the involvement of SpaceX as a capital-providing strategic partner or the potential for the value of SpaceX equity held within Mr. Musk’s trust to be considered in the financing of a potential Tesla buyout,” Jonas said. “We see increasingly compelling areas of industrial and strategic cooperation between SpaceX and Tesla in telecommunications / satellite broadband which we see as potentially advantageous for shared and automated transport networks.”

Show of hands if all this sounds a bit familiar. Tesla Motors took over SolarCity in what Musk called a “no-brainer” of synergies and which critics charged was a conflict of interest riddled bailout of a failing company about to go under that benefited Musk and two cousins. The deal added to Tesla’s already enormous debt load.

Some critics are predicting Tesla will go bankrupt this year; Musk disputes that. SpaceX is also in better shape than Tesla was when it absorbed SolarCity.

OneSpace Raises $43.6 Million

OS-M rocket (Credit: OneSpace)

SpaceNews reports on another fund-raising round by the Chinese  launch company.

Chinese private launch vehicle maker OneSpace has secured $43.6 million in Series B financing as the company looks to its first orbital launch near the end of 2018.

The financing was led by CICC Jiatai Equity Fund, followed by FinTrek Capital, with China Merchants Venture Capital, Qianhai Wande Fund and Qianhai Wutong M&A Fund also increasing their investment in the company.

This fourth round of financing takes the total raised since the founding of OneSpace in August 2015 to $116 million.

In May, OneSpace successfully tested its first OS-X suborbital rocket, with the 265-second flight reaching an altitude of around 40 kilometers, which OneSpace describes the as the first launch of a privately designed Chinese commercial rocket. That launch came after iSpace, another Chinese company, lofted a test Hyperbola-1S rocket from Hainan in April.

Review: The Space Barons Try to Save Humanity From Itself

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

The Space Barons: Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and the Quest to Colonize the Cosmos
by Christian Davenport
Hardcover: 320 pages, illus.
Publisher: PublicAffairs (March 20, 2018)
ISBN-10: 1610398297

On the final day of the International Space Development Conference in May, I attended a fascinating session titled, “Space Entrepreneur ‘War Stories.’” It was a rather sobering hour of panelists recounting how various commercial ventures they had been involved in over the years had crashed and burned.

The common thread that ran through many of the stories was this: commercial space follows a boom-and-bust cycle where a long period of economic growth see space geeks who had made fortunes in other industries pour their money into various cosmic ventures. Two prominent examples include BlastOff!, a commercial venture to land a rover on the moon, and MirCorp, an effort to commercialize the Russian space station Mir.

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HawkEye 360 Raises $9.6 million in Series A-3 Financing Round

Boston, Mass.- August 13, 2018 (HawkEye 360 PR) — Allied Minds portfolio company, HawkEye 360, has announced it has raised proceeds of $9.6 million in the first closing of a Series A-3 financing round (“the transaction”). The round included Razor’s Edge Ventures, a U.S Aerospace and Defense Company and Allied Minds, as well as Shield Capital. Additional investors are expected to subscribe further capital to a second closing of the transaction to be concluded in due course.

Proceeds from the transaction will be applied to fund the development, build and launch costs of the company’s first commercial satellite cluster and for general commercial purposes.

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Flometrics Demonstrates More Reliable Rocket Fuel Pump

Hot-fire test (Credit: Flometrics)

SAN DIEGO, CA, August 10th, 2018 (Flometrics PR) — Flometrics, a Carlsbad, CA company, demonstrated an innovative, low-cost, high reliability rocket fuel pump which will improve access to space, particularly for manned and reusable missions. Flometrics successfully hot-fire tested their pistonless pump technology with a LOX Methane rocket thruster. The full duration test worked exactly as expected, with smooth combustion. The hot-fire test was performed under a Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) SBIR Phase II project.

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