Hexbyte Glen Cove Russian rocket launches UK telecom satellites after delay thumbnail

Hexbyte Glen Cove Russian rocket launches UK telecom satellites after delay

Hexbyte Glen Cove

A Russian Soyuz rocket carrying 36 UK telecommunication and internet satellites blasted off from the Vostochny cosmodrome in Russia’s Far East on Friday, the space agency said.

During the , which was carried out by Arianespace, the world’s leading satellite launch company, the Soyuz rocket took off at 1738 GMT.

“The launch went according to plan,” Dmitry Rogozin, the head of the Roscosmos , said on messaging app Telegram.

The launch was originally scheduled for Thursday but was postponed for technical reasons.

OneWeb, a London-headquartered company, is working to complete the construction of a constellation of low earth orbit satellites providing enhanced broadband and other services to countries around the world.

The company is competing against billionaires Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos in the race to provide fast internet via satellites for the world’s .

The UK company plans for its global commercial internet service to be operational by next year, supported by some 650 satellites.

Earlier launches of 36 satellites each took place in April and March.

“The satellites arrive pre-assembled from Florida in containers. Our team takes them over in Russia and accompanies them from their arrival at the airport until the launch,” Arianespace launch campaign manager, Jean-Claude Garreau, told AFP.

The satellites are then launched in clusters of 36 and they separate into groups of four when in orbit, he added.

Arianespace, which has worked with Russia for close to two decades, is contracted to make 16 Soyuz launches between December 2020 and the end of 2022.

The Vostochny launch site is one of Russia’s most important space projects, designed to reduce reliance on the Baikonur cosmodrome Moscow currently rents from Kazakhstan.

The project has been consistently behind schedule, with its construction marred for years by multiple controversies including corruption.



© 2021 AFP

Citation:
Russian rocket launches UK telecom satellites after delay (2021, May 28)
retrieved 29 May 202

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Hexbyte Glen Cove Bill Nelson, head of NASA, hails 'new day in space' thumbnail

Hexbyte Glen Cove Bill Nelson, head of NASA, hails ‘new day in space’

Hexbyte Glen Cove

New NASA head Bill Nelson takes over as the US looks to return to the Moon

Former Florida senator Bill Nelson was sworn in Monday as head of NASA, hailing a “new day” for space exploration as the United States seeks to return to the Moon.

With his hand on a Bible, Nelson took the oath of office from Vice President Kamala Harris as he officially took up the role of NASA administrator.

“It’s a new day in space,” he said, after bringing a Moon rock to the event.

Nelson, 78, who traveled into space in 1986, takes over the agency with the United States hoping to put astronauts back on the Moon by 2024.

Humans last set foot on the Moon in 1972 during the Apollo program.

Under the Artemis program, NASA wants to establish a sustainable presence, complete with a lunar space station, to test new technologies that would pave the way for a crewed mission to Mars.

In 2019, then vice president Mike Pence challenged NASA to land the first woman and the next man on the Moon by 2024, and President Joe Biden’s government has backed the same timetable.

Charlie Bolden, administrator under Barack Obama, attended Monday’s ceremony, while former administrator Jim Bridenstine, who served under Donald Trump, joined by video call.

Nelson said their presence was “to show the continuity and the bipartisanship, with which you run the nation’s space program, particularly NASA.”

In 1986, Nelson, a sitting lawmaker, was a crew member on the Space Shuttle Columbia during a six-day mission in space, and has since sat on many congressional committees on space and science.

“NASA is critical to US national and economic security,” Harris said on Twitter.

“With decades of experience and as a former astronaut, Bill Nelson will advance NASA’s science, aviation, and technology missions as Administrator.”



© 2021 AFP

Citation:
Bill Nelson, head of NASA, hails ‘new day in space’ (2021, May 3)
retrieved 4 May 2021
from https://phys.org/news/2021-05-bill-nelson-nasa-hails-day.html

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