March 7th, 2011 by David
The US Air Force (USAF) has launched its second X-37B orbital test vehicle (OTV).
The Boeing-built X-37B was launched via an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral in Florida, reaching a low-Earth orbit on March 5 at 17:46 Eastern time.
The first X-37B OTV launched in April 2010, orbiting for eight months, before successfully landing at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
In December, it successfully de-orbited and landed at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., where it continues to undergo post-flight evaluation.
February 17th, 2011 by David
The US Defense Department’s National Security Space Strategy, issued in January, highlights the growing importance of space within overall defence planning, according to deputy defense secretary William Lynn.
Lynn underlined that more than 60 years after Sputnik triggered the US-Soviet space race, at least sixty nations have now deployed satellites into space, speaking at the Center for Strategic and International Security.
The US controls “less than 40% of the space market” today, added Lynn.
Thirty-seven US senators signed a letter of concern to secretary of state Hillary Clinton on Feb 2 stating concerns that the European Union is developing a space “code of conduct”, which they think could undermine US space strategy and harm security.
Lynn countered that proposals for the code are consistent with US space strategy to promote freedom of access and introduce more timely notifications of problems in space.
“We think this kind of voluntary code of conduct that promotes responsible behavior…should be viewed positively,” said Lynn.
February 9th, 2011 by David
The US and French governments have signed a space agreement, with defence ministers agreeing mutual interests and a deal on situational awareness.
The deal, signed at the Pentagon, also included talks about Nato, Afghanistan, terrorist threats, Iranian nuclear ambitions, and current unrest in Egypt and the Middle East.
February 7th, 2011 by David
The US Navy has exercised a contract option for Lockheed Martin to construct a fifth satellite for its mobile user objective system (MUOS).
The contract option is worth $339.6m, says Lockheed.
The satellites provide voice, video and data communications for frontline US troops.
February 7th, 2011 by David
Raytheon and Lockheed Martin have both been awarded US Air Force contracts worth $107m each for a Space Fence radar system.
Raytheon says it will deliver a preliminary design and test a prototype radar, ensuring cost and schedule certainty for a final design.
Lockheed describes its deal is an 18-month follow-on contract to develop and produce a prototype for its ground-based radar design in preparation for proposed construction in 2012.