PHOTOS: Atlas-V Delivers Lightsail and Air Force X-37B to Orbit Packed With Cubesats and Experiments

The Air Force AFSPC-5 mission launched into clear blue skies from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station today. Onboard is the secretive X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (its fourth mission) and a variety of cubists and experiments for the NAVY, NRO, USAF and NASA, including the Lightsail test article from The Planetary Society. Photo Credit: Alan Walters / AmericaSpace

The Air Force AFSPC-5 mission launched into clear blue skies from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station today. Onboard is the secretive X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (its fourth mission) and a variety of cubists and experiments for the NAVY, NRO, USAF and NASA, including the Lightsail test article from The Planetary Society. Photo Credit: Alan […]

Next Air Force X-37B Flight To Launch May 20 Carrying NASA Materials Science Experiment

Recovery crew members process the X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle at Vandenberg Air Force Base after completing 674 days in space. A total of three X-37B missions have been completed, totaling 1,367 days on orbit. The X-37B will be equipped with a NASA materials exposure experiment with nearly 100 samples focusing on polymers, composites, and […]

First GPS III Satellite Fully Integrated, Being Readied for Testing

An artist’s rendering of Lockheed Martin’s GPS III satellite in operation. Image Credit: Lockheed Martin

The development of the most advanced Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite ever built reached an important milestone within the last month. Lockheed Martin announced that the system module of its first next-generation GPS III satellite (Space Vehicle One, or […]

US Warns China to Halt ASAT Threats as Defense Dept. Reorganizes for Improved Space Warfare Capability

China’s first solid propellant launcher, the Long March-11 rocket, is a likely ASAT booster. Photo Credit: CALT

Significant changes are underway in U.S. military space operations due to the growing threat from Chinese anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons and the exponential growth in lightsats and CubeSats that threaten to “darken the sky,” consuming huge bandwidth while […]

Fourth ULA Launch in Three Months Boosts Latest GPS Block IIF to Medium Earth Orbit

Rising into a gloomy ball of low-lying fog, the first Delta-IV of 2015 took flight at 2:36 p.m. EDT Wednesday, 25 March, delivering the ninth Global Positioning System (GPS) Block IIF satellite into orbit. Photo Credit: Mike Killian / AmericaSpace

United Launch Alliance (ULA)—the Centennial, Colo.-based launch services operator of Atlas V, Delta IV […]

First Delta IV of 2015 to Deliver GPS IIF-9 Satellite to Orbit on Wednesday

A Delta IV Medium+ (4,2) booster launches the GPS IIF-6 mission in May 2014. A similar vehicle will deliver GPS IIF-9, later this week. Photo Credit: Alan Walters/AmericaSpace

After three successful flights in as many months—the Mobile User Objective System (MUOS)-3 and Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellites, both in January, and most recently […]

Air Force Weather Satellite Space Debris Hazard a Concern

DMSP Air Force weather satellite is depicted in polar orbit near Alaska. Photo Credit: Lockheed Martin

The U.S. Strategic Command’s Joint Space Operations Center (JSpOC) at Vandenberg AFB, Calif., is monitoring a cloud of new space debris in polar orbit to notify operational satellite controllers about potential collision hazards for critical military and civilian […]

Like Superman: ESA's IXV Spaceplane Makes Successful Research Flight

AND IT’S OFF: A Vega launch vehicle lofts ESA’s IXV spaceplane to its suborbital mission. Photo Credit: ESA–S. Corvaja

It wasn’t Superman, but a spaceplane; however, it sure appeared to travel “faster than a speeding bullet,” as it cleared the pad in four seconds.

At 13:40 GMT (8:40 EST) today, the flight of the […]

'Ready to Fly': Europe's IXV Spaceplane Geared Up for Feb. 11 Launch

Fueling IXV: “The IXV Intermediate eXperimental Vehicle is being prepared for launch at Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. IXV will be launched 320 km into space on top of a Vega rocket, climbing up to 420 km before beginning a long glide back through the atmosphere. In the process, IXV will gather data […]

'A Woman in the Driver's Seat': Remembering STS-93, First Flight Helmed by a Female Shuttle Commander

The STS-93 crew poses with a model of the Chandra X-Ray Observatory. This shuttle mission also entered into the history books for having the first female commander (Eileen Collins, here joined by Steven Hawley, Jerry Ashby, Michel Tognini, and Cady Coleman). Photo Credit: NASA

The 2009 book Almost Astronauts: 13 Women Who Dared to […]