Originally launched in 2006, GOES-13 was a geostationary satellite designed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to track hurricanes approaching the United States. On September 1, the US military repurposed the satellite to monitor weather conditions in the Middle East.
It turns out that Titan, one of Saturn’s many moons, is a relatively optimal place to fly a drone. This is due to the fact that Titan’s atmosphere is four times denser than the Earth’s. So when NASA chose Titan as the next location to “search for the building blocks of life,” they decided to take advantage of that by using a drone instead of a typical rover.
At Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center on Friday, China successfully launched an experimental spacecraft using a Long March-2F rocket. Unfortunately, not much is currently known about the mission that the spacecraft will fulfill. However, Chinese state-affiliated media has stated that it “will test reusable technologies during its flight.”
Launch provider Rocket Lab has made a significant move towards becoming an end-to-end space solutions company with its ‘First Light’ proton satellite. What makes ‘First Light’ so important is that it will demonstrate much-improved subsystems that will enable long-duration operations. These subsystems include new power management, thermal control, and attitude control.