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Space


February 2006 Space News

  • ATK Orbus 1A Transition Program Completes Final Qualification Testing ATK 28 Feb 2006 -- Alliant Techsystems (NYSE: ATK) has completed the final phase of qualification testing of the Orbus 1A solid rocket motor used as the second- and third-stage for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s Boost Vehicle-Plus (BV+) interceptor on contract to Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LM).
  • LOCKHEED MARTIN AND ATK ACHIEVE FINAL QUALIFICATION OF ORBUS 1A MOTOR FOR BOOST VEHICLE-PLUS PROGRAM Lockheed Martin 28 Feb 2006 -- Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) announced today that the ORBUS 1A second- and third-stage solid rocket motor has completed qualification testing for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s (MDA’s) Boost Vehicle-Plus (BV+) program. Alliant Techsystems (NYSE: ATK) supplies the ORBUS 1A motor.
  • USS Hopper Supports Ballistic Missile Defense in “Sky Hunter” Navy NewsStand 28 Feb 2006 -- USS Hopper (DDG 70), an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer homeported at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, participated in the successful “Sky Hunter” Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) test event off the coast of southern California Feb. 15.
  • NASA Working Toward May Shuttle Launch VOA 28 Feb 2006 -- The U.S. space agency NASA says it sees no technical problems preventing a resumption of space shuttle flights in May
  • Boeing Awarded $3.5 Million Follow-on Award to Process Radar Data from Space Shuttle Endeavour Boeing 27 Feb 2006 -- Boeing [NYSE:BA] has received a $3.5 million follow-on task order from the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) to enhance the digital topographic data collected by the space shuttle Endeavour.
  • LOCKHEED MARTIN-BUILT GPS SATELLITES MARK 50 YEARS ON ORBIT Lockheed Martin 27 Feb 2006 -- The fleet of Global Positioning System (GPS) Block IIR satellites designed and built by Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] to significantly enhance the overall performance of the GPS constellation has now accumulated 50 years of successful in-orbit operations.
  • Romania becomes third ESA European Cooperating State ESA 27 Feb 2006 -- Romania strengthened its relations with ESA by signing the European Cooperating State Agreement, becoming the third European country to join this status.
  • ESA confirms CryoSat recovery mission ESA 24 Feb 2006 -- ESA received the green light from its Member States to build and launch a CryoSat recovery mission, CryoSat-2.
  • LOCKHEED MARTIN DELIVERS NEXT FLIGHT TANK TO NASA Lockheed Martin 24 Feb 2006 -- Lockheed Martin Space Systems – Michoud Operations today delivered External Tank-119, the tank that is scheduled to propel the next Space Shuttle mission into orbit, to NASA.
  • Orbiter Nears Red Planet Rendezvous NASA 24 Feb 2006 -- NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is nearing a milestone, as the spacecraft prepares to slow to allow the Red Planet's gravity to grab it into orbit on March 10.
  • NASA Ships External Fuel Tank for Next Space Shuttle Mission NASA 24 Feb 2006 -- The tank that will help launch Space Shuttle Discovery on its next mission will head to NASA's Kennedy Space Center, Fla., this weekend.
  • NASA Awards Contract to Enterprise Advisory Services NASA 24 Feb 2006 -- NASA has awarded a three-year, $182.6 million contract to Enterprise Advisory Services Inc., Houston for facility operations and support of the Johnson Space Center White Sands Test Facility, Las Cruces, N.M.
  • Boeing GMD Team Launches Target, Tests Upgraded Radar Boeing 23 Feb 2006 -- A Boeing-led [NYSE: BA] industry team and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA) have successfully completed a test of key parts of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system.
  • Alcatel Alenia Space to build & deliver in-orbit Turksat 3A telecommunication satellite for Turksat Thales 23 Feb 2006 -- Alcatel Alenia Space announced today that it has signed a turnkey contract with Turkish operator Turksat AS, for the construction and the in-orbit delivery of a new powerful telecommunication satellite, Turksat 3A. Alcatel Alenia Space has been Turksat's sole satellite provider with five satellites* awarded in more than 10 years.
  • First long-duration mission for an ESA astronaut onboard the ISS ESA 23 Feb 2006 -- ESA astronaut Thomas Reiter from Germany will soon become the first European to undertake a long-duration mission onboard the International Space Station following his dispatch on the next Shuttle mission.
  • New Map of Milky Way Reveals Millions of Unseen Objects NASA 22 Feb 2006 -- Nearly 400 years after Galileo determined the wispy Milky Way actually comprises myriad individual stars, scientists using NASA's Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer have done the same for the 'X-ray Milky Way.'
  • Hubble Space Telescope Confirms New Pluto Moons Washington File 22 Feb 2006 -- Follow-up observations with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have confirmed the presence of two new moons orbiting the distant planet Pluto, according to a February 22 press release from the Space Telescope Institute in Maryland.
  • MND TO RESUBMIT REQUEST TO PURCHASE PATRIOT BATTERIES IN 2007 CNA 22 Feb 2006 -- National Defense Minister Lee Jye said Wednesday that the Defense Ministry's plan to purchase Patriot PAC III anti-missile batteries as part of a major arms procurement package from the United States will be resubmitted to the Legislative Yuan next March.
  • Astronomers Discover Two Moons Orbiting Pluto VOA 22 Feb 2006 -- U.S. astronomers have discovered two moons orbiting Pluto, an icy planet smaller than our moon.
  • Lockheed Martin Announces Partnership With the State of Florida To Pursue NASA's New Crew Exploration Vehicle Lockheed Martin 22 Feb 2006 -- Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] announced today, in partnership with the State of Florida, its plans to locate final assembly and testing of the Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) in Florida if the corporation is successful in its bid to provide the next generation crew transportation system for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
  • LOCKHEED MARTIN AWARDED CONTRACT FOR GOES-R GEOSTATIONARY LIGHTNING MAPPER FORMULATION PHASE Lockheed Martin 22 Feb 2006 -- The Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) Advanced Technology Center (ATC) has been awarded a $2 million, 12-month contract by the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center to proceed to the formulation phase for the Geostationary Lightning Mapper (GLM) instrument that will fly on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) GOES-R Series environmental satellites. GLM's ability to monitor convection on a global scale via lightning will provide new insight into the formation, distribution, morphology and evolution of storms, and allows investigation into the mechanisms at the core of the global water and energy cycle.
  • ESA Joins Forces With Japan On New Infrared Sky Surveyor ESA 22 Feb 2006 -- A high-capability new infrared satellite, ASTRO-F, was successfully launched last night by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).
  • Raytheon Awarded $49 Million Project Hercules Follow-On Contract for Next- Generation Ballistic Missile Defense Technology Raytheon 21 Feb 2006 -- Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) has been awarded a follow-on Missile Defense Agency contract valued at $49 million over the five-year period of performance for Project Hercules.
  • PATRIOT PAC III MISSILES OFF SHOPPING LIST: DEFENSE MINISTER CNA 21 Feb 2006 -- The Ministry of National Defense (MND) is willing to remove Patriot PAC III missiles from a controversial weapons package from the United States "out of respect" for the opposition parties, National Defense Minister Lee Jye said Tuesday.
  • Boeing to Begin Work on Fourth Wideband Gapfiller Satellite Boeing 20 Feb 2006 -- Boeing [NYSE:BA] has received a $148 million contract from the U.S. Air Force to begin work on the fourth satellite in the Wideband Gapfiller Satellite (WGS) system, a 13-kilowatt spacecraft based upon Boeing's 702 satellite model.
  • EADS Astrium-ISRO alliance sealed. First contract with Eutelsat for W2M satellite EADS 20 Feb 2006 -- The aim of the alliance between EADS Astrium and ANTRIX/ISRO which builds on the proven expertise of both Indian and European companies, is to jointly offer communications satellites in the market segment around 4kW of payload power and with a launch mass of 2 to 3 tons. This cooperation combining Indian platforms along with European payloads is designed to offer optimal, flexible and cost effective solutions to telecommunications operators.
  • Successful Venus Express Main Engine Test ESA 17 Feb 2006 -- One hundred days after beginning its cruise to Venus, ESA's Venus Express spacecraft successfully tested its main engine for the first time in space.
  • Land Launch Receives Contract Award from Israel Aircraft Industries Boeing 17 Feb 2006 -- Space International Services and Sea Launch Company are pleased to announce the award of a firm launch contract with Israel Aircraft Industries, Ltd., utilizing the Land Launch system.
  • NASA'S Lunar Orbiter Team Passes Preliminary Design Review NASA 17 Feb 2006 -- NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter team recently passed its Preliminary Design Review heralding the start of the mission confirmation process.
  • Boeing and Israel Aircraft Industries Team to Capture Short Range Ballistic Missile Defense Contract Boeing 16 Feb 2006 -- Boeing [NYSE: BA] and Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) agreed today to pursue the new Israeli Short Range Ballistic Missile Defense (SRBMD) Program.
  • U.S. Army Awards Raytheon $65 Million Patriot Engineering Services Contract Raytheon 16 Feb 2006 -- Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) has been awarded a $65 million contract from the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command to provide engineering services support to the Patriot Air and Missile Defense program.
  • Cassini Cameras Spot Powerful Lightning Storm on Saturn Washington File 16 Feb 2006 -- After NASA's Cassini spacecraft detected radio bursts from Saturn in January indicating a rare, powerful atmospheric storm, Cassini imaging scientists spotted the storm by looking for it in the dark.
  • Minuteman III launches from Vandenberg AFPN 16 Feb 2006 -- An unarmed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile, or ICBM, was launched from Launch Facility-10 on North Vandenberg at 12:01 a.m. today.
  • Sea Launch Delivers EchoStar X Satellite to Orbit Boeing 15 Feb 2006 -- Sea Launch Company today successfully delivered the EchoStar X communications satellite to geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO). Early data indicate the spacecraft is in excellent condition.
  • LOCKHEED MARTIN-BUILT ECHOSTAR X SATELLITE LAUNCHED SUCCESSFULLY Lockheed Martin 15 Feb 2006 -- The EchoStar X telecommunications satellite, designed and built by Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] for EchoStar Communications Corporation of Englewood, Colo., was successfully launched today aboard a Sea Launch Zenit-3SL launch vehicle from the Equator. Lift-off occurred at 6:35 p.m. ET and initial contact with the satellite, called acquisition of signal, was confirmed at 8:19 p.m. ET from the Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems (LMCSS) satellite tracking station in Uralla, Australia.
  • Indonesia, Russia To Build Space Launch Site VOA 15 Feb 2006 -- Indonesian officials say they have signed an initial agreement with Russia to build a space launch center on the remote island of Biak off the coast of Papua New Guinea.
  • NASA Satellite Technology Helps Fight Invasive Plant Species NASA 15 Feb 2006 -- Products based on NASA Earth observations and a new Internet-based decision tool are providing information to help land and water managers combat tamarisk (saltcedar), an invasive plant species damaging precious water supplies in the western United States.
  • NASA's Exploration Systems Progress Report NASA 14 Feb 2006 -- Testing is under way by engineers at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala., to lay the foundation for developing the Crew Launch Vehicle, the agency's future launch vehicle system.
  • Sea Launch Re-Starts Countdown for EchoStar X Launch Boeing 10 Feb 2006 -- After a halt in the countdown for launch on February 8, Sea Launch is now preparing for a second launch attempt on Sunday, February 12, with liftoff planned for 3:35pm PST (23:35 GMT).
  • Space takes centre-stage in crisis scenario exercise in Poland EADS 09 Feb 2006 -- ASTRO+, part of the preparatory phase for the European Commission’s Seventh Research and Development Framework Programme which will identify R&D focus for the period 2007–2012, is being co-ordinated by EADS SPACE, via its subsidiary EADS Astrium.
  • NASA Preparing Oxygen Generation System for Space Station NASA 09 Feb 2006 -- NASA is preparing to launch an oxygen generation system to the International Space Station. The system uses water to generate breathable oxygen for crew members.
  • Opening of media accreditation for next Shuttle mission at NASA ESA 09 Feb 2006 -- ESA astronaut Thomas Reiter from Germany will be one of the crew members launched on this mission.
  • EchoStar X Launch Countdown Halted Boeing 08 Feb 2006 -- Sea Launch Company today halted the launch countdown of the EchoStar X mission due to an off-nominal indication from the Ground Support System.
  • Alcatel Alenia Space provides the User Ground Segment for Italian Cosmo-SkyMed observation program Thales 08 Feb 2006 -- Alcatel Alenia Space today announced that it will provide the Defense User Ground Segment for the Italian Cosmo-SkyMed earth observation program to the French Ministry of Defense. The Euro 32 million contract has been awarded by the Italian Space Agency (ASI) which acts as a procurement agency for the Italian and French Ministries of Defense. This contract is part of the French and Italian inter-governmental agreement to ensure inter-operability and data exchange between Italian Cosmo-SkyMed and French Helios II systems.
  • NASA Advisory Council Meets in Washington NASA 08 Feb 2006 -- NASA officials will continue to update the council members on work to realize the Vision for Space Exploration, which calls for human missions to the moon and Mars.
  • Air Force Officer to Become First Brazilian in Space VOA 08 Feb 2006 -- A Brazilian air force officer will become his nation's first person in space when he joins a Russian and American crew bound for the International Space Station.
  • NASA's Deep Impact Mission Finds First Evidence of Ice on Comet Washington File 07 Feb 2006 -- Comet Tempel 1, the target of a collision with a probe launched by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) July 4, 2005, is covered with a small amount of surface water ice -- the first evidence of surface ice on any comet.
  • Sea Launch Initiates Countdown for EchoStar X Launch Boeing 06 Feb 2006 -- The Sea Launch team has initiated a 72-hour countdown in preparation for the launch of the EchoStar X broadcast satellite on Wednesday, February 8, at the opening of a 49-minute launch window, at 3:35 pm Pacific Time (23:35 GMT).
  • LOCKHEED MARTIN-BUILT ECHOSTAR X SATELLITE READY FOR LAUNCH FEB. 8, 2006 Lockheed Martin 06 Feb 2006 -- The EchoStar X telecommunications satellite, designed and built by Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] for EchoStar Communications Corporation of Englewood, Colo., is ready for launch Feb. 8 aboard a Sea Launch Zenit launch vehicle provided by Sea Launch Company, LLC. EchoStar X is the first in a series of seven satellite launches planned this year for Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems (LMCSS).
  • Space Station Crew Pushes Spacesuit Satellite Overboard VOA 04 Feb 2006 -- The strangest satellite ever to orbit Earth has left the International Space Station.
  • International Space Station Status Report: SS06-005 NASA 04 Feb 2006 -- Space station crewmembers released a spacesuit-turned-satellite during the second spacewalk of their mission last night.
  • United States Updates Global Positioning System Technology Washington File 03 Feb 2006 -- A major upgrade of the U.S. Global Positioning System (GPS), and a range of upcoming improvements to the system that provides positioning, navigation and timing data to U.S. military and civilian users around the world were announced by a Department of Commerce official January 25.
  • Boeing Successfully Completes Additional Milestones on GPS IIF Program Boeing 02 Feb 2006 -- Boeing [NYSE: BA] announced the successful completion of several major milestones on the Global Positioning System (GPS) IIF program.
  • Lockheed Martin Delivers First PAC-3 Stockpile Reliability Test Missiles Lockheed Martin 02 Feb 2006 -- Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] recently delivered the first Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Stockpile Reliability Test (SRT) Missiles to the U.S. Army during a ceremony at Lockheed Martin’s facility in Camden, AR. The delivery marked the first major milestone in the Operations and Support (O&S) phase of the PAC-3 Missile program.
  • BAE Systems RAD6000 pilots Stardust on Comet collection BAE Systems 01 Feb 2006 -- BAE Systems' RAD6000™ computer played a key role in the recently completed Stardust spacecraft mission, which returned to Earth with a collection of dust and carbon-based samples from Comet Wild 2.
  • EADS Astrium to supply Algeria’s ALSAT-2 optical observation system EADS 01 Feb 2006 -- The ALSAT-2 contract covers the design and development of two satellites. The first, ALSAT-2A, will be integrated and tested in France at EADS Astrium, whereas the second, ALSAT-2B, will be integrated in Algeria within the small satellite development center (UDPS) in Oran. The ALSAT-2 programme also includes the construction of two ground control segments and one image station allowing the satellites to be operated and controlled from Algerian territory.
  • Scientists Find '10th Planet' Bigger Than Pluto VOA 01 Feb 2006 -- Claims that our solar system has a 10th planet beyond Pluto are supported by a new finding by German and French astronomers



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