A flurry of military and intelligence satellite launches by rival powers this month came as the United States and two dozen partner nations wrapped up the largest global space defense wargame in history.
Russia launched what some leaders have described as a spy satellite for Iran and its own on-orbit snooping satellite Cosmos-2558, which is circling Earth in an orbit conspicuously close to a recently launched U.S. National Reconnaissance Office satellite, a Netherlands researcher confirmed.
The science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) workforce is at the core of the space industry—from the mathematicians and astronomers who analyze space to the engineers who design and build the launch vehicles that get us there. This workforce is enabled . . .
In 2011, China became the third nation to declare a PNT system operational, with the announcement that its BeiDou system was able to provide location data and SMS messaging for users within China. In late 2012, The China Satellite Navigation Office published the complete interface control document for the system, enabling international manufacturers to build BeiDou-compatible receivers. Basic services to surrounding regions in Asia were enabled in 2012, and by mid-2013, Chinese efforts to aggressively promote BeiDou as a viable alternative to GPS and GLONASS were well underway.
Around the globe, many smaller nations—in economy or population size—are investing in space projects or programs. These emerging space states generally feature relatively small-scale investments in space applications linked to specific national socioeconomic development objectives. The exhibit for additional/emerging countries shows the most recent available yearly budget for civil space activities in selected emerging space states. Each country tends to feature a different focus in its space investment portfolio, so care must be taken in making generalizations.
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Space activities in South Africa are funded through the Department of Science and Technology (DST). In FY 2011, which ran from April 2011 to March 2012, the DST planned to spend ## million rand (US$## million) on space activities executed through two programs: the South African National Space Agency (SANSA) and the Space Science Research, Development and Innovation subprogram. SANSA, established in 2008, planned an FY 2011 budget of ## million rand (US$## million).
Data communications services include very small aperture terminal (VSAT) services, Internet backhaul, direct-to-home broadband, and mobile data.