A sampling of news about rocket launches:
[ Update: Another delay:
— Blue Origin (@blueorigin) January 21, 2019
— Blue Origin (@blueorigin) January 20, 2019
- Delta 4-Heavy rocket launches U.S. spy satellite into unusual orbit – Spaceflight Now
- ULA Delta IV-Heavy launches NROL-71 following lengthy delay – NASASpaceFlight.com
- United Launch Alliance Successfully Launches NROL-71 in Support of National Security – ULA
- This massive rocket creates a fireball as it launches, and that’s by design | Ars Technica
** A Chinese Long March-11 launched two remote sensing satellites and two test satellites today:
China sent four satellites into the preset orbit via the Long March-11 (Y6) on Monday, marking the second successful orbital launch of 2019. The four satellites including Jilin 1-01 and Jilin 1-02, Lingque-1A, and Xiaoxiang 1-03 were blasted off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China at 13:42BJT.
- China launches two satellites for multispectral imaging – Xinhua | English.news.cn
- Long March 11 launches with three satellites – NASASpaceFlight.com
** A Japanese Epislon rocket on Jan. 17th launched the Rapid Innovation Payload Demonstration Satellite (RAPIS-1) plus six other science and technology research satellites.
- Live coverage: Epsilon rocket lifts off with seven satellites – Spaceflight Now
- Japan’s Epsilon conducts RAPIS-1 launch – NASASpaceFlight.com
** Iran launched a Simorgh rocket on Jan. 15th but the Payam-e Amirkabir satellite failed to reach orbit due to a problem with the third stage:
** Stratolaunch has canceled plans to develop its own rockets for air launch from the giant aircraft the company has built in Mojave:
- Stratolaunch space venture cuts back sharply on operations – GeekWire
- Stratolaunch abandons launch vehicle program – SpaceNews.com
Perhaps Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic/Virgin Orbit enterprises, which use air launch for the SpaceShipTwo and LauncherOne rocket vehicles, will buy Stratolaunch and use the aircraft for its own operations.
*** The DM-1 crew systems demonstration mission is set to launch during February. This first Dragon-2 vehicle, which will have no one on-board, will dock with the ISS using its own automated systems rather than attaching to the station via the berthing procedure used for the cargo Dragon in which the vehicle is grabbed by a robotic arm, under the control of a ISS crew member, that brings the vehicle up to the airlock attachment mechanism.
*** Latest views of developments with the Boca Chica Beach launch facility in South Texas and the StarHopper low altitude test vehicle: