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      Rocket Report: Multi-day delay for the final Delta launch; Orbex patents landing tech

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Friday, 29 March - 11:00 · 1 minute

    The final Delta IV Heavy rocket is seen on the launch pad in Florida.

    Enlarge / The final Delta IV Heavy rocket is seen on the launch pad in Florida. (credit: United Launch Alliance)

    Welcome to Edition 6.37 of the Rocket Report! The big story this week is the final launch of the Delta IV Heavy rocket, which is one of the biggest spectacles to enjoy lifting away from the planet. Because of a scrub on Thursday, there is still time to clear your calendar for a second attempt on Friday at 1:37 pm ET in Florida.

    As always, we welcome reader submissions , and if you don't want to miss an issue, please subscribe using the box below (the form will not appear on AMP-enabled versions of the site). Each report will include information on small-, medium-, and heavy-lift rockets as well as a quick look ahead at the next three launches on the calendar.

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    Orbex patents reusable rocket tech . The British launch company said this week it has patented a "REFLIGHT" technology that enables the recovery of the first stage of its small Prime rocket. Essentially, Orbex designed an interstage that will function somewhat like grid fins on the Falcon 9 rocket's first stage. "After Stage 1 detaches from Stage 2, the interstage on top of Stage 1 reconfigures into four ‘petals’ which fold out and create drag forces that passively reorients and slows the spent rocket stage’s descent to Earth," the company stated.

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      Rocket Report: Japan launches Moon mission; Ariane 6 fires up in Kourou

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Friday, 8 September, 2023 - 11:00 · 1 minute

    A Japanese H-IIA rocket lifts off from the Tanegashima Space Center with an X-ray astronomy satellite and a robotic Moon lander.

    Enlarge / A Japanese H-IIA rocket lifts off from the Tanegashima Space Center with an X-ray astronomy satellite and a robotic Moon lander. (credit: Photo by STR/JIJI Press/AFP via Getty Images )

    Welcome to Edition 6.10 of the Rocket Report! A Japanese spacecraft has joined the international flock of missions traveling to the Moon this year, but you'll need to practice patience on this one. It will take about four months for Japan's small lander to get into lunar orbit, then more weeks to align with the mission's target landing site. We're crossing our fingers this lander will see the same success as India's Chandrayaan 3 mission.

    As always, we welcome reader submissions , and if you don't want to miss an issue, please subscribe using the box below (the form will not appear on AMP-enabled versions of the site). Each report will include information on small-, medium-, and heavy-lift rockets, as well as a quick look ahead at the next three launches on the calendar.

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    India launches its first solar research satellite . Less than two weeks after landing its first mission on the Moon, India launched a solar observatory on September 2 toward an orbit nearly a million miles (1.5 million kilometers) from Earth around the L1 Lagrange point. This mission, named Aditya-L1, lifted off on India's workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle and entered orbit around the Earth, where the spacecraft is expected to perform five maneuvers to escape Earth's gravity and head to its distant observation post.

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      Rocket Report: Starbase comes alive again; China launches four times

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Friday, 28 July, 2023 - 11:00 · 1 minute

    The Super Heavy booster for SpaceX's next Starship test flight is raised onto its launch mount at the Starbase facility in South Texas.

    Enlarge / The Super Heavy booster for SpaceX's next Starship test flight is raised onto its launch mount at the Starbase facility in South Texas. (credit: SpaceX )

    Welcome to Edition 6.04 of the Rocket Report! SpaceX has a Super Heavy booster on the launch pad in Texas a lot sooner than many thought. There was some pretty extensive damage at the launch site in the aftermath of the Starship test launch in April, SpaceX made quick work with repairs and upgrades to beef up the pad. Meanwhile, SpaceX's Falcon 9 launcher, Rocket Lab's Electron, and China's rocket fleet show no signs of slowing down.

    As always, we welcome reader submissions , and if you don't want to miss an issue, please subscribe using the box below (the form will not appear on AMP-enabled versions of the site). Each report will include information on small-, medium-, and heavy-lift rockets as well as a quick look ahead at the next three launches on the calendar.

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    China's Galactic Energy launches sixth successful mission . Galactic Energy, one of several new Chinese startup launch companies, launched its sixth consecutive successful satellite delivery mission on July 22, Space News reports . The company's solid-fueled Ceres 1 rocket lifted off from the Jiuquan launch base in the Gobi Desert with two small satellites on board. Galactic Energy is also developing a medium-lift rocket named Pallas 1 that is designed to eventually be recoverable and reusable.

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      Rocket Report: Big dreams in Sin City; SpaceX and FAA seek to halt lawsuit

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Friday, 7 July, 2023 - 10:37 · 1 minute

    The final Ariane 5 launch vehicle liftoff for flight VA261 as seen from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana on Wednesday.

    Enlarge / The final Ariane 5 launch vehicle liftoff for flight VA261 as seen from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana on Wednesday. (credit: ESA/S. Corvaja)

    Welcome to Edition 6.01 of the Rocket Report! Due to the fact that we are up to Edition 6, it means that Ars has been publishing this newsletter for five years. I genuinely want to thank everyone for their contributions over the years, whether you've submitted a story (Ken the Bin for MVP?) or just passed the newsletter along to a friend to subscribe. Also, starting next week our new space hire, Stephen Clark, will alternate publication of the newsletter with me. Hopefully, there will be no missed issues going forward.

    As always, we welcome reader submissions , and if you don't want to miss an issue, please subscribe using the box below (the form will not appear on AMP-enabled versions of the site). Each report will include information on small-, medium-, and heavy-lift rockets as well as a quick look ahead at the next three launches on the calendar.

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    Virgin Galactic flies commercial mission . The space tourism company founded by Richard Branson launched three Italian researchers and three company employees on the suborbital operator’s first commercial flight to the edge of space on June 29, Ars reports . The spacecraft rocketed to an altitude of more than 279,000 feet, higher than the 50-mile height recognized as the boundary of space by NASA and the Federal Aviation Administration.

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      Rocket Report: SpaceX hits success milestone, Vulcan to resume testing

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Friday, 12 May, 2023 - 11:00 · 1 minute

    ULA's Vulcan rocket rolls to the launch pad on Thursday morning.

    Enlarge / ULA's Vulcan rocket rolls to the launch pad on Thursday morning. (credit: United Launch Alliance)

    Welcome to Edition 5.37 of the Rocket Report! I am happy to share some good news this week, with the Vulcan rocket rolling back to the launch site for a new round of tests, and India making progress on its next-generation engine. It's great to see all of the progress in this industry.

    As always, we welcome reader submissions , and if you don't want to miss an issue, please subscribe using the box below (the form will not appear on AMP-enabled versions of the site). Each report will include information on small-, medium-, and heavy-lift rockets as well as a quick look ahead at the next three launches on the calendar.

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    Virgin Galactic burns through more money . The space tourism company reported a net loss of $159 million in the first quarter of 2023, compared to $93 million in the first quarter of 2022. The company said it needed the extra spending as it prepares for its first commercial flight later this year and invests heavily in its next-gen Delta spacecrafts, Payload reports . Virgin Galactic announced it will perform a final test flight in late May, sending two pilots and four Virgin Galactic employees to suborbital space.

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      Rocket Report: Starship gets a tentative launch date; China tests ocean landing

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Friday, 7 April, 2023 - 11:15 · 1 minute

    Starship is seen stacked on top of the Super Heavy rocket on April 5, 2023.

    Enlarge / Starship is seen stacked on top of the Super Heavy rocket on April 5, 2023. (credit: SpaceX)

    Welcome to Edition 5.32 of the Rocket Report! We have plenty to discuss this week, including the surprising success of a quasi-private Chinese company that reached orbit on its first launch attempt. I don't think this achievement has quite gotten the attention it deserves.

    As always, we welcome reader submissions , and if you don't want to miss an issue, please subscribe using the box below (the form will not appear on AMP-enabled versions of the site). Each report will include information on small-, medium-, and heavy-lift rockets as well as a quick look ahead at the next three launches on the calendar.

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    Virgin Orbit files for bankruptcy . The launch company announced Tuesday morning that it has filed for bankruptcy in the US District of Delaware, Ars reports . The cash-strapped company said it views bankruptcy as the best means of selling itself. "At this stage, we believe that the Chapter 11 process represents the best path forward to identify and finalize an efficient and value-maximizing sale,” said Dan Hart, CEO of Virgin Orbit. To continue the business with a skeleton crew for minimal operations, founder Richard Branson has agreed to provide $31.6 million in debtor-in-possession financing. If approved by the bankruptcy court, this financing would allow the company funding to continue these operations while seeking a buyer.

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      Rocket Report: ULA Centaur stage has an ‘anomaly,’ Virgin Orbit funding is dire

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Friday, 31 March, 2023 - 11:00

    This otherworldly photo was taken of the debut launch of the Terran 1 rocket on March 23, 2023.

    Enlarge / This otherworldly photo was taken of the debut launch of the Terran 1 rocket on March 23, 2023. (credit: Relativity Space/John Kraus)

    Welcome to Edition 5.31 of the Rocket Report! We're about to tip over into April, and all signs continue to point to the likelihood of a Starship orbital launch attempt this month. I've heard all sorts of dates, but most recently, SpaceX appears to be working internally toward April 10. That lines up with about when a launch license is expected from the Federal Aviation Administration.

    It probably won't happen that soon, but we are pretty darn close, y'all.

    As always, we welcome reader submissions , and if you don't want to miss an issue, please subscribe using the box below (the form will not appear on AMP-enabled versions of the site). Each report will include information on small-, medium-, and heavy-lift rockets and a quick look ahead at the next three launches on the calendar.

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      Rocket Report: German launch company loses backer; Soyuz-5 may be in trouble

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Friday, 24 March, 2023 - 11:15 · 1 minute

    The Terran 1 rocket sure cleans up nice.

    Enlarge / The Terran 1 rocket sure cleans up nice. (credit: Relativity Space/John Kraus)

    Welcome to Edition 5.30 of the Rocket Report! A hearty congratulations this week to both Relativity Space and Innospace, both of which got their debut missions off the launch pad this week. Making that final decision to push the button and go is never easy. As a bonus, the engine shots of Relativity's Terran 1 rocket at liftoff are some of the most beautiful rocket photos I have ever seen.

    As always, we welcome reader submissions , and if you don't want to miss an issue, please subscribe using the box below (the form will not appear on AMP-enabled versions of the site). Each report will include information on small-, medium-, and heavy-lift rockets as well as a quick look ahead at the next three launches on the calendar.

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    Relativity Space has a successful failure . The shiny white Terran 1 rocket launched on its third attempt Wednesday night, lifting off from Florida's Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. The small, methane-fueled rocket then produced some stunning views as a blueish-green flame powered it toward space against the blackness of night. The first stage, with nine engines, appeared to perform nominally as it rose smoothly through the atmosphere, firing for more than two minutes. Then the rocket's second stage successfully separated, Ars reports .

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      Rocket Report: Boeing to bid SLS for military launch; Ariane chief says all is well

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Friday, 10 March, 2023 - 12:00

    Japan's next generation "H3" rocket, carrying the advanced optical satellite "Daichi 3", leaves the launch pad at the Tanegashima Space Center in Kagoshima, southwestern Japan on March 7, 2023.

    Enlarge / Japan's next generation "H3" rocket, carrying the advanced optical satellite "Daichi 3", leaves the launch pad at the Tanegashima Space Center in Kagoshima, southwestern Japan on March 7, 2023. (credit: STR/JIJI Press/AFP via Getty Images)

    Welcome to Edition 5.29 of the Rocket Report! It was a big week for new rockets, with the failure of Japan's new H3 booster and then the near-launch of Relativity Space's Terran 1. Speaking of the H3, I guess I didn't quite realize that Japan put a satellite valued at more than a quarter of a billion dollars on the debut flight of the rocket. That was, umm, bold.

    Please note: There will no newsletter next week because I'll be enjoying a Spring Break respite with my family

    As always, we welcome reader submissions , and if you don't want to miss an issue, please subscribe using the box below (the form will not appear on AMP-enabled versions of the site). Each report will include information on small-, medium-, and heavy-lift rockets as well as a quick look ahead at the next three launches on the calendar.

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