Australia


2012 – Ground Observatories, Astronomy

Astronomers are laying the groundwork for a new generation of extraordinarily large observatories. The Square Kilometer Array (SKA) Telescope will be the world’s largest and most sensitive radio telescope ever built. The SKA takes its name from the combined size of the collecting area of the thousands of individual dishes that comprise it, making it far more sensitive than any existing radio telescope.

Read More


2012 – Additional Country Space Budgets

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.

Read More


What’s Black, Brown, and White and Can be Seen From Space?

Earth observation satellites can facilitate wildlife surveys over large remote areas. A group of researchers from the University of Minnesota’s Polar Geospatial Center, the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and the Australian Antarctic Division applied advanced image processing techniques to high-resolution satellite images taken of emperor penguin colonies to estimate their total population.

Read More


Satellite Pictures of Volcano Keeps Aircraft Safe

In June 2011, the eruption of the Puyehue-Cordón volcano in Chile led to the evacuation of 3,500 people. Satellites were able to capture images of the eruption and provide details on the associated ash plume, monitoring its path for many days.

Read More


2011 – Ground Observatories, Astronomy – Snapshot

To improve the resolution from ground-based observatories and to capture light from distant, dim objects, telescopes are growing larger. Due to the correspondingly large cost of construction and operation, these massive telescopes are often supported financially by multinational consortia.

Read More


2011 – BeiDou – Snapshot

Since 2000, China has also been building its own national PNT system, known as Beidou (the Mandarin name for the constellation otherwise known as the Big Dipper). China launched ## satellites in 2011 to join the ## currently in orbit. These satellites will later become part of a global constellation, Compass, which is planned to consist of ## MEO satellites for global coverage and ## GEO satellites that will focus on regional coverage over China. Beidou began operating in December 2011, providing initial PNT services to a swath of the Asia-Pacific region from Australia in the south to Russia in the north with an accuracy of 25 meters (82 feet).

Read More


2011 – South African Government Space Budget – Snapshot

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).

Read More


2011 – Space Policy: Programs and Progress Snapshot

As space activities across the globe become more dynamic—blending commercial, government, and cross-border activities—governments increasingly see a need for a formal space policy to provide a framework for coordination and integration of activities. Effective space policy can foster public interest… This article is for subscribers. Please sign up for a subscription or login below. Username…

Read More


2011 – U.S. Space Surveillance Network – Snapshot

A series of SSN upgrades are underway. In 2011, a DARPA-funded space surveillance telescope underwent testing. After nine years of development, the new telescope, located at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, is capable of capturing wide-field views of objects in GEO orbit. While the SSN uses radar signals to track objects in LEO, distant objects in GEO orbits are tracked by optical systems such as the DARPA telescope at White Sands and other telescopes in Hawaii; Socorro, New Mexico; and the island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean.

Read More


2010 – Trends That Are Shaping Space Activity

This Dragon spacecraft orbited the Earth before reentering the atmosphere and landing less than one mile from the center of the landing zone in the Pacific Ocean. This achievement made SpaceX the first commercial company in history to safely return a spacecraft from orbit. Credit: SpaceX/ Mike Alten… This article is for subscribers. Please sign…

Read More