Spire Global Awarded $1.7 Million NOAA Contract to Deliver Space Weather Data

Spire’s data will be used to demonstrate the quality and impact of commercial data on NOAA’s space weather forecast models

VIENNA, Va. (Spire Global, Inc.)Spire Global, Inc. (NYSE: SPIR) (“Spire” or “the Company”), a leading global provider of space-based data, analytics and space services, today announced that it has been awarded a Commercial Weather Data Pilot (CWDP) space weather contract as part of the Commercial Data Program (CDP) issued by the National Oceanographic and Oceanic Administration (NOAA). Spire will provide near real-time radio occultation (RO) data for NOAA’s space weather forecast models to measure ionospheric conditions that impact activities such as aviation, satellite operations, navigation, and communications.

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Spire Global Awarded $6 Million NASA Contract Extension for Earth Observation Data

Spire has provided reflectometry, radio occultation and other Earth observation data to NASA’s Commercial Smallsat Data Acquisition (CSDA) Program since 2018

VIENNA, Va. (Spire Global, Inc. PR)Spire Global, Inc. (NYSE: SPIR) (“Spire” or “the Company”), a leading global provider of space-based data, analytics and space services, today announced it was awarded a $6 million, 12-month contract extension from NASA to continue its participation in the agency’s Commercial Smallsat Data Acquisition (CSDA) Program.

Spire will continue to deliver a comprehensive catalog of Earth observation data, associated metadata, and ancillary information from its constellation of 100+ multipurpose satellites. The data provided will include:

  • Surface data, Spire’s GNSS Grazing Angle Reflectometry data (GNSS-R), to measure sea ice extent, classification and altimetry, soil moisture, and ocean surface wind speed;
  • Atmospheric data, Spire’s GNSS radio occultation (GNSS-RO) soundings, for weather forecast models to improve global weather forecasting accuracy;
  • Space weather offering measurements of electron density and scintillation that allow researchers to monitor the ionosphere as well as prepare for and react to weather events in space; and
  • Domain awareness including satellite state vector, altitude and precise orbit determination (POD) data to correct errors in orbital drag models.
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Rocket Lab selected by Ball Aerospace to Power NASA’s GLIDE Spacecraft

Rocket Lab will supply the Solar Array Panel (SAP) for the GLIDE Heliophysics mission.

Electron launches on May 3, 2022. (Credit: Rocket Lab)

LONG BEACH, Calif. (Rocket Lab PR) — Rocket Lab (Nasdaq: RKLB) (“Rocket Lab” or “the Company”), a leading launch and space systems company, has been selected by Ball Aerospace to manufacture the Solar Array Panel (SAP) to power NASA’s Global Lyman-Alpha Imager of Dynamic Exosphere (GLIDE) mission spacecraft planned to launch in 2025. GLIDE is a heliophysics mission intended to study variability in Earth’s atmosphere.

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CIRCE Space Weather Suite Announced for First UK Satellite Launch

CIRCE CAD models courtesy of Blue Canyon Technologies.

Dstl’s miniaturised space weather instrumentation suite will be aboard Virgin Orbit which is aiming to launch from Spaceport Cornwall later in 2022.

LONDON (Dstl PR) — The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory’s (Dstl) miniaturised space weather instrumentation suite will be one of the payloads aboard Virgin Orbit which is targeting the first UK satellite launch this summer from Spaceport Cornwall in Newquay. Virgin Orbit’s Launcher One rocket takes off horizontally, carried aloft by a modified Boeing 747 jet, named Cosmic Girl.

The Coordinated Ionospheric Reconstruction Cubesat Experiment (CIRCE) satellite mission comprises two 6U cube-satellites that will be launched into a near-polar low Earth orbit in a string-of-pearls configuration (targeting 555 kilometres altitude). Each 6U satellite bus measures 10cm by 20cm by 30cm (the size of a cereal box), and will fly almost identical instrument capability on both satellites. Dstl is partnering with the US Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) on the joint mission.

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UK and US to Launch Joint Mission Aboard United Kingdom’s First Orbital Launch Supported by Virgin Orbit

LONG BEACH, Calif. (Virgin Orbit PR) — Satellite launch company Virgin Orbit (Nasdaq: VORB) announces today that a joint mission between the United Kingdom’s Defense Science and Technology Laboratory and the United States Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) is expected to be lofted on the first space launch out of Spaceport Cornwall later this year.

The government agencies’ joint Coordinated Ionospheric Reconstruction CubeSat Experiment (CIRCE) is supported by the U.S. Department of Defense’s Space Test Program (STP), which is organized under the U.S. Space Force’s Space Systems Command (SSC). CIRCE will utilize two 6U CubeSats flying in tandem formation to measure the ionosphere and radiation environment from multiple vantage points. The mission will support the two countries’ joint development of a wide range of civil and defense applications, including GPS, radar, communication systems, and sensing technology.

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UH Manoa Receives $2.5M Grant to Monitor Space Weather, Making Space Travel Safer

The Sun sends out a constant stream of particles and energy, which drives a complex space weather system near Earth and can affect spacecraft and astronauts. NASA has chosen five new mission concept studies for further development to study various aspects of this dynamic system. (Credits: NASA)

MANOA, Hawaii (University of Hawaii at Manoa PR) — A University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa-led project to better predict and understand weather in space earned a major boost from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The four-year, $2.5 million grant will fund a project to construct a space weather station center on the UH Mānoa campus and deploy a neutron monitor on Maui, which researchers say will greatly improve their research in this critical field.

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AWS Announces 10 Startups Selected for the 2022 AWS Space Accelerator

SEATTLE (Amazon Web Services PR) — Amazon Web Services (AWS) is pleased to officially announce the selection of the 10 participants for the 2022 AWS Space Accelerator. This year’s finalists brought forward pioneering ideas that will draw valuable insights from the depths of the ocean floor to the surface of the moon, and nearly everything in between.

This global group of emerging startups from across the United States, Asia, and Europe was selected from among hundreds of applications by a panel from AWS and AlchemistX. The selected startups each have an inspiring and innovative vision for how to transform the growing global space industry across a diverse set of mission areas, including Earth observation (EO), space situational awareness, launch and propulsion, and space exploration:

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NOAA Releases RFP for Commercial Space Weather Data Pilot

SILVER SPRING, Md., May 19, 2022 (NOAA PR) — Today, NOAA released a Request for Proposal (RFP) to conduct a Commercial Weather Data Pilot (CWDP) Study of commercial space weather data sources and related capabilities that may help NOAA meet its space weather mission objectives. For this pilot study, NOAA is seeking measurements from Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receivers that will enable NOAA to derive ionospheric products that meet the current and anticipated needs of operational space weather models and applications.  

NOAA’s Commercial Data Program (CDP) supports CWDP studies to demonstrate the quality and impact of commercial data on NOAA’s weather forecast models. Successful CWDP studies subsequently may lead to sustained commercial data purchases by CDP to support NOAA’s operational forecasting endeavors. 

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Introducing ESA Vigil: Earth’s Devoted Solar Defender

The Vigil space weather monitoring mission. (Credit: ESA)

PARIS (ESA PR) — It’s the first mission of its kind, set to monitor our active and unpredictable Sun and help protect us from its violent outbursts – and it has a new name.

Once known as “Lagrange,” ESA’s upcoming space weather mission needed a new name that would reflect its vital role: helping to protect Earth’s infrastructure, satellites, inhabitants and space explorers from unpredictable but violent solar events like solar flares and ‘coronal mass ejections’.

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EnduroSat & Mission Space Redefine Space Weather Data Infrastructure

LUXEMBOURG & SOFIA, Bulgaria (Mission Space/EnduroSat PR) — Mission Space, leading enabler and provider of satellite-based space weather monitoring and EnduroSat, leading provider of software-defined NanoSats and space services for business and academia sign a commercial agreement to launch Mission Space’s first space weather payload on EnduroSat CubeSat platform.

The planned launch is scheduled for Q4 2022 and will carry Mission Space’s set of high energy particle detectors to monitor the conditions of the sun. The new level of data and intelligence will enhance Mission Space proprietary space weather cloud platform and help satellite operators detect solar storms early, quantify risks and monitor increased levels of radiation for better asset protection.

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Swarm and Cluster Get to the Bottom of Geomagnetic Storms

The magnetic field and electric currents in and around Earth generate complex forces that have immeasurable impact on every day life. The field can be thought of as a huge bubble, protecting us from cosmic radiation and charged particles that bombard Earth in solar winds. (Credit: ESA/ATG medialab)

PARIS (ESA PR) — The notion of living in a bubble is usually associated with negative connotations, but all life on Earth is dependent on the safe bubble created by our magnetic field. Understanding how the field is generated, how it protects us and how it sometimes gives way to charged particles from the solar wind is not just a matter of scientific interest, but also a matter of safety. Using information from ESA’s Cluster and Swarm missions along with measurements from the ground, scientists have, for the first time, been able to confirm that curiously named bursty bulk flows are directly connected to abrupt changes in the magnetic field near Earth’s surface, which can cause damage to pipelines and electrical power lines.

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Biden Administration Publishes Space Priorites Framework

Taken by NASA astronaut Mike Hopkins, this picture shows Earth’s limb, or horizon, from the International Space Station as it orbits above the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Chile. (Credits: NASA)

UNITED STATES SPACE PRIORITIES FRAMEWORK
The White House
December 2021

UNITED STATES SPACE PRIORITIES FRAMEWORK

Space activities are essential to our way of life. They advance our understanding of the Earth, the universe, and humanity; enable U.S. national security; create good jobs and economic opportunity; enhance our health and well-being; and inspire us to pursue our dreams. Space capabilities provide critical data, products, and services that drive innovation in the United States and around the world. Access to and use of space is a vital national interest.

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NOAA Releases RFI for Space Weather Commercial Pilot Program

SILVER SPRING, Md. (NOAA PR) — On November 10, 2021, NOAA released a Request for Information (RFI) soliciting information on existing or planned commercial space-based space weather data and related capabilities that will be available in the timeframe of 2022 through 2027. 

This solicitation is being issued pursuant to direction in the Promoting Research and Observations of Space Weather to Improve the Forecasting of Tomorrow (PROSWIFT) Act (Public Law 116-181). In addition, the NOAA Commercial Space Policy and the NESDIS Commercial Space Activities Assessment Process call for NOAA to explore and, where appropriate, pursue demonstration projects to assess the viability of assimilating commercially-provided satellite data and products to improve weather forecasting and diversify NOAA’s portfolio of data collection capabilities. 

Through this RFI, NOAA seeks information from industry on existing and planned space weather observation data sources and related capabilities that may help NOAA meet NOAA’s space weather mission objectives. The RFI will be open for 28 days with responses due no later than December 8, 2021, 4 PM [EST]. The responses received will be used to inform plans for future space-based space weather Commercial Weather Data Pilot studies and other commercial data acquisition activities.

NOAA’s Commercial Data Program continues to successfully engage with the commercial sector through pilots and acquisition of operational satellite data-as-a-service for commercial radio occultation data to help improve weather forecasts and provide risk reduction to the overall observing system. The latest updates and activities in NOAA’s Commercial Data Program are available on the “Business with NOAA” section of the Office of Space Commerce website.

UK Unveils “Bold” Strategy to Develop World Class Space Industry

  • National Space Strategy sets out long-term plans to strengthen the UK’s status as a world-class space nation
  • New vision will help grow UK’s multibillion-pound space industry, boost private investment and capitalise on UK strengths such as satellite manufacturing
  • Brings together UK government civil and defence space activities to protect UK interests at home and abroad

LONDON (UK Government PR) — New plans to strengthen the UK as a world class space nation by firing up its multibillion-pound space industry have been set out in a National Space Strategy  launched today.

From connecting people with their friends and family and monitoring climate to helping farmers to manage their crops, space plays a pivotal role in our daily lives, and is a vital part of the UK economy, worth over £16 billion per year.

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NOAA Issues RFI on Space Weather Instruments

Space weather affects the Earth’s magnetic field. (Credit: NASA)

SILVER SPRING, Md. (NOAA PR) — On September 13, 2021, NOAA released a Solar Coronagraph Development and Related Capabilities request for information (RFI) seeking industry interest and capabilities to produce space-based coronagraphs which would be deployed on satellites in near-Earth and deep space orbits on the Sun-Earth line, and off-Sun-Earth line.

This RFI supports NOAA’s continuing efforts to partner with the commercial sector in innovative ways in support of its operational space-based space weather mission.

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