Summary: 18 May 2015 - 22 May 2015


Proton crash: I-5 F3 launch delayed; Centenario fully insured
18 May 2015 - Inmarsat provided an initial update on the launch schedule for Inmarsat-5 F3 (I-5 F3) following the failure of the preceding Proton Briz M launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on 16 May. In related news, Mexico said that its Centenario satellite, which was lost in the crash, was fully insured. >>>


New Ariane 5 for MSG-4/Star One C4 launch assembled
22 May 2015 - Another Ariane 5 has completed its initial build-up at the Spaceport in French Guiana, marking a major milestone in preparations for Arianespace's third heavy-lift mission of 2015 - which will orbit the European MSG-4 meteorological satellite and Brazilian Star One C4 telecommunications relay platform during July. >>>

New 15 more PSLV flights approved
22 May 2015 - The Indian cabinet gave its approval for the continuation of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) programme for 15 operational flights (PSLV-C36 to PSLV-C50). >>>

New Three new Soyuz launch pads at Plesetsk by 2019
22 May 2015 - The launch area the Plesetsk cosmodrome is being refurbished with the purpose of guaranteed reliable and safe launches of defence satellites, the Russian Defense Ministry said. >>>

New Japan to redesign Kounotori cargo spacecraft
22 May 2015 - Japan's unmanned cargo spacecraft HTV "Kounotori", which delivers supplies to the International Space Station (ISS), may be redesigned to save cost and for multipurpose use. >>>

Dragon returned to Earth
21 May 2015 - SpaceX's Dragon cargo craft splashed down in the Pacific Ocean at 1642 UTC, about 250 km southwest of Long Beach, California, marking the end of the company's sixth contracted cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station. >>>

ULA launches X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle for the U.S. Air Force
20 May 2015 - Rocket: Atlas V 501; Payload: AFSPC-5 (X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle and 10 cubesats); Date: 20 May 2015, 1505 UTC; Launch site: Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, USA. >>>


New U.S. Navy space-based orbital debris sensor receives U.S. patent
22 May 2015 - The U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), Geospace Science and Technology Branch, received U.S. patent (#8976245) for the Optical Orbital Debris Spotter - a compact, low power, low cost, local space debris detection concept that can be integrated into larger satellite designs, or flown independently on-board nano-satellite platforms. >>>

DiecTV 15/SkyM-1 pre-launch details
21 May 2015 - On its fourth launch of the year and second with the Ariane 5 heavy launcher, Arianespace will orbit two direct-to-home (DTH) TV broadcast satellites: DirecTV 15, the most powerful direct TV broadcast satellite in the United States For DirecTV; and SkyM-1 for Sky Mexico. Lift-off is planned between 2116 and 2240 UTC on 27 May. >>>

NOAA's GOES-R satellite begins environmental testing
21 May 2015 - The GOES-R weather satellite, slated to launch in 2016, is ready for environmental testing. >>>

ASTROSAT fully assembled and tests initiated
19 May 2015 - ASTROSAT, the first dedicated Indian astronomy satellite aimed at studying distant celestial objects, has been fully assembled and entered testing. >>>

SMAP begins science operations
19 May 2015 - NASA's new Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission to map global soil moisture and detect whether soils are frozen or thawed has begun science operations. >>>

Ikonos retired after 15 years of on-orbit operation
19 May 2015 - DigitalGlobe's Ikonos commercial imaging satellite, built by Lockheed Martin, was retired on 31 March after a more than 15-year service life. The satellite was owned and operated by DigitalGlobe, Inc., and performed on-orbit for more than double its original design life. >>>


Russian deputy PM attacks space industry, slams Khrunichev
19 May 2015 - Speaking several days after the botched launch of a Proton rocket, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said the industry was plagued by "morally decayed" officials and underpaid personnel. >>>


ViaSat Inc. results FY 2015
20 May 2015 - ViaSat Inc. announced fiscal fourth quarter financial results. >>>

Arianespace increases revenue
18 May 2015 - Arianespace reported 2014 revenue of €1.399 billion, a 41% increase over 2013 revenue of €989 million. >>>


Government spending in space programmes at US$66.5 billion in 2014
20 May 2015 - According to Euroconsult's newly released research report, Profiles of Government Space Programs, world government expenditures for space programmes decreased by 4% to US$66.5 billion in 2014. >>>


Four decades of tracking European spacecraft
19 May 2015 - Forty years ago this week, a satellite ground station in Spain became the first to be assigned to what would become ESA. Since then, the network - Estrack - has expanded world-wide and today employs cutting-edge technology to link mission controllers with spacecraft. >>>


Space industry collapse?
20 May 2015 - "You can compare it to the fall of the Roman Empire. The Russian space industry is collapsing." - Space industry analyst Pavel Luzin according to the Moscow Times. >>>





Flightglobal.com >>>

IANS via NDTV >>>

SPACE.com >>>

Spaceflight Now >>>

Reuters >>>