As of December, U.S.-listed companies comprised 82.61% of the weight of the overall index, with France in second place at 10.69%, Japan at 4.09%, the Netherlands at 2.55%, and Italy at 0.06%. Canada was no longer represented due to the removal of MDA, and Italy’s share dropped by a factor of 10 due to the removal of Avio.
While the U.S. typically leads commercial satellite launches, China almost doubled its private missions in 2022—commercial payloads were 27% of the nation’s launches compared to 16% in 2021. Chang Guang Satellite Technology Co. launched five batches of high-resolution imagery satellites for its Jilin-1 constellation and has deployed approximately half of its planned 138 satellites.
The S-Network Space Index℠ tracks a global portfolio of publicly traded companies that are active in space-related businesses such as satellite-based telecommunications; transmission of television and radio content via satellite . . .
The first attempted lunar mission was the Soviet Union’s Luna 1 impactor, which launched Jan. 2, 1959, and passed within only 5,995 kilometers of the Moon at its closest point. The Space Race brought a large wave of lunar activity in the 1960s, but there have only been a few missions in the decades since.
Space launch activity continued to grow rapidly in 2022, reaching a new high of 186 orbital launch attempts. Last year was filled with successes and had three fewer failures than 2021, even with 41 more attempts.
The list of launch vehicles set for maiden flights in 2023 may sound familiar. It’s mostly the same group of launch vehicles initially slated to fly in 2022.
The U.S. space sector is composed of more than 198,500 individuals across private sector and government organizations. Private sector space employment continued a trend of growth that began in 2016, adding approximately 3,000 new workers from 2020 to 2021 to reach 151,797 individuals. Space manufacturing led this growth, offsetting a slight decrease in the size of the satellite telecommunications workforce.
The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) employed 1,583 people at the end of 2021, an increase of 1.6% from 1,558 employees at the end of 2020. Approximately 70% of JAXA employees work in engineering and research, with the remainder focused on education and administration. JAXA does not face the same demographic challenges as some other space agencies: 22.0% of its workforce is under 35 years old and 17.9% is over 54.
The Society of Japanese Aerospace Companies reports that the Japanese space sector employed 8,527 individuals in 2020, the most recent year for which data is available. This is a 2.3% decrease from the 2019 total of 8,725 employees. More than 70% of these employees work in the space vehicles sector, which includes launch vehicles, satellites, and the international space station. The remaining employees work on ground facilities and software relevant to space. Slight decreases in employment occurred across all portions of the space sector.
The space industry relies on skilled individuals from a wide variety of fields to enable the cutting-edge developments taking place in this sector. While many countries do not regularly produce metrics on the size of their workforce, these data are available for several major space actors, including the United States, Europe, Japan, and India.