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Space

FCC approval of Europe’s Galileo satellite signals may give your phone’s GPS a boost

By | FCC, Gadgets, galileo, Government, gps, Mobile, Satellites, Space

The FCC’s space-focused meeting today had actions taken on SpaceX satellites and orbital debris reduction, but the decision most likely to affect users has to do with Galileo. No, not the astronomer — the global positioning satellite constellation put in place by the E.U. over the last few years. It’s now legal for U.S. phones to use, and a simple software update could soon give your GPS signal a major bump.

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EnduroSat CEO to talk about making satellites more affordable at Disrupt Berlin

By | Disrupt, disrupt berlin, disrupt berlin 2018, EnduroSat, Gadgets, Space

It has never been easier to launch a satellite into space. But EnduroSat wants to make it even easier by making CubeSats more affordable thanks to a unique platform. That’s why I’m excited to announce that EnduroSat CEO Raycho Raychev is coming to TechCrunch Disrupt Berlin to talk about his platform. Many industries have gone […]

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SpaceX’s Starlink aims to put over a thousand of its communications satellites in super-low orbit

By | Gadgets, Hardware, Satellites, Space, SpaceX

SpaceX’s planned communication satellite constellation, known as Starlink, will now be targeting a much lower orbit than originally planned, at least for over a thousand of the satellites, the company revealed in an FCC filing. The move should help mitigate orbital debris and provide better signal for the company’s terrestrial users as well.

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Mars Rover Curiosity is switching brains so it can fix itself

By | Gadgets, jpl, mars rover, NASA, Robotics, Science, Space, TC

When you send something to space, it’s good to have redundancy. Sometimes you want to send two whole duplicate spacecraft just in case — as was the case with Voyager — but sometimes it’s good enough to have two of critical components. Mars Rover Curiosity is no exception, and it is now in the process of switching from one main “brain” to the other so it can do digital surgery on the first.

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NASA’s Parker Solar Probe launches to ‘touch the sun’

By | Artificial Intelligence, Gadgets, Government, Hardware, NASA, parker solar probe, Science, Space, TC

NASA’s ambitious mission to go closer to the Sun than ever before is set to launch in the small hours between Friday and Saturday — at 3:33 AM Eastern from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, to be precise. The Parker Solar Probe, after a handful of gravity assists and preliminary orbits, will enter a stable orbit around the enormous nuclear fireball that gives us all life and sample its radiation from less than 4 million miles away. Believe me, you don’t want to get much closer than that.

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NASA’s Open Source Rover lets you build your own planetary exploration platform

By | DIY, Education, Gadgets, Government, jpl, mars rover, NASA, Robotics, Science, Space

Got some spare time this weekend? Why not build yourself a working rover from plans provided by NASA? The spaceniks at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory have all the plans, code, and materials for you to peruse and use — just make sure you’ve got $2,500 and a bit of engineering know-how. This thing isn’t made out of Lincoln Logs.

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NASA’s 3D-printed Mars Habitat competition doles out prizes to concept habs

By | 3d printing, Gadgets, Government, Hardware, mars, NASA, Science, Space

A multi-year NASA contest to design a 3D-printable Mars habitat using on-planet materials has just hit another milestone — and a handful of teams have taken home some cold hard cash. This more laid-back phase had contestants designing their proposed habitat using architectural tools, with the five winners set to build scale models next year.

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Virgin Galactic’s third supersonic test flight hits Mach 2.4 and 170,000 feet

By | Gadgets, Hardware, Space, space tourism, spaceshiptwo, TC, Virgin Galactic

Virgin Galactic is celebrating the third successful supersonic test flight of VSS Unity, the passenger spacecraft it intends to make available for space tourism in the near future. This flight took the craft higher and faster than ever, stressing the system and providing useful data for this rocket plane’s engineers.

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