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DoD Swats Away Blue Origin Launch Protest

Posted by Theresa Hitchens on


One space expert, with no skin in the NSSL game, opined that for the most part Blue Origin’s protest is “simply whining,” and characterized SpaceX’s lawsuit as “sour grapes.”

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SMC Issues Final RFP For Five EELV Launches; SBIRS & 4 Classified Payloads

Posted by Colin Clark on


CLARIFIED: Adds SMC Comment On Launch Providers WASHINGTON: Last night the Air Force released the final Request For Proposals for five launch contracts for NRO and Air Force Space Command. The most intriguing payload is a code-word program, shared by the NRO and Air Force Space Command, known as SILENTBARKER, which has been described as… Keep reading →

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Space Council Should Tackle Air Force Weather Sats: Rep. Babins

Posted by Colin Clark on


                CORRECTED: Raytheon Builds VIIRS WASHINGTON: The Trump Administration’s new Space Council should tackle the thorny interagency problem of how much the Air Force will do to provide weather data to the US government, says the chairman of the House subcommittee that deals with space policy. More than… Keep reading →

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Microsoft Co-Founder Rolls Out Satellite Launch Plane: ORS Plus?

Posted by Colin Clark on


You may want to read the headline a few times just to make sure you’re not missing the point. Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft and another one of those billionaires who’ve gotten very excited about the space launch business, wants to fly a really huge plane — built of composites, powered by six 747 engines,… Keep reading →

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Wynne Mulled For DepSecDef; Trumpers Reject Ayotte

Posted by Colin Clark on


WASHINGTON: A top candidate for the Pentagon’s No. 2 position is Mike Wynne, the former Air Force Secretary who has been an advisor to Donald Trump for some time. We only have one source on this and can’t identify the source in any way, so put this one in the good rumor basket. Wynne was… Keep reading →

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SMC: ‘High Confidence’ In SpaceX, But Watching Closely

Posted by Colin Clark on


Although the world is awfully excited about Elon Musk’s announcement this week that he’ll be selling tickets to Mars, there are other pressing issues facing SpaceX, such as the cause of the Sept. 1 explosion that destroyed a Falcon 9 rocket and much of its launch pad. The day that SpaceX’s Falcon 9 exploded on the… Keep reading →

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It’s Preliminary: ULA Won’t Be Sanctioned

Posted by Colin Clark on


WASHINGTON: It’s not officially official, but the head of Pentagon acquisition, Frank Kendall, says the Treasury Department has not found any reason for sanctions to be applied against the United Launch Alliance. “The preliminary indications from Treasury (Department) are that they do not apply,” Kendall told reporters after a lunch address to the Washington Space… Keep reading →

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Shelby, Air Force Press Case To Keep RD-180; McCain Not So Much

Posted by Colin Clark on


CAPITOL HILL: The war ground on today between San. John McCain, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, and his colleague Sen. Richard Shelby on the Senate Appropriations defense subcommittee. Shelby, knowing he had a policy friend in Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James, asked her about the Russian-made RD-180 rocket engine essential to US satellite launches… Keep reading →

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McCain Loses To Appropriators, Threatens Russian RD-180 Ban

Posted by Colin Clark on


DoD photo

WASHINGTON: John McCain, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, believes fervently in the importance of the authorizing committees, those bodies charged with making congressional policy and placing restrictions on weapons program spending. Today, McCain lost a battle against the appropriators, that small group of powerful legislative leaders who decide how much money the executive branch… Keep reading →

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CR Will Stall New Black Counterspace, RD-180 Replacement

Posted by Colin Clark on


AFA CONFERENCE: One of the rules that goes with a Continuing Resolution is that no new weapon programs can be started — unless Congress comes up with money and provides a waiver. And it looks as if Congress is likely to adopt a CR at the end of the month unless we all get very lucky.… Keep reading →

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