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All posts tagged "Satellite"

  • South Africa’s nSight1 nanosatellite makes history 300km above the Earth

    South Africa's first privately-owned nanosatellite dubbed the nSight1 has been successfully launched into orbit from the International Space Station (ISS). The nSight1 began its journey to the space station on 18 April 2017 from Florida, aboard a Cygnus cargo spacecraft powered by an Atlus-5 rocket. It joined 28 other nanosatellites from 23 countries on its journey. South Africa's government news agency suggests that the satellite weighs in at just 2.5kg, and is the first privately-owned nanosatellite launched by the country. "The satellite is an important milestone, demonstrating the outcome of the capability established through the Department of Science and Technology's ongoing investment...

  • Snow in Sahara: satellite image shows beautiful landscape

    The last time it snowed in the Sahara Desert was in 1979, but the desert has seen another rare dusting this week. The snow fell on the Algerian town of Aïn Séfra, sitting on the edges of the desert and with a population of over 30 000 people. It only lasted a day before melting though, so tourists wanting to see it in person are out of luck. Fortunately, the Landsat-7 satellite acquired a rather striking image of the snow, showing dunes covered in the stuff. The snow was even captured by local citizen Karim Bouchetata, being uploaded to his Facebook account. Featured image: Landsat-7/NASA...

  • Half-a-billion-dollar satellite launches to beam broadband to Australia’s most remote areas

    A rocket carrying a satellite worth an estimated half-a-billion Australian dollars (around US$350-million) has successfully launched from French Guiana today. The aim? To bring high-speed broadband access to around 400 000 homes and businesses in remote areas of Australia. ABC reports that the organisation behind this expensive initiative, the National Broadband Network (NBN), expects to connect 200 000 premises by the second half of next year, including Norfolk, Christmas, Macquarie and Cocos islands. NBN spokeswoman Frances Kearey told ABC that "It's one of the world's largest communication satellites and is purpose-built to deliver broadband to Australia -- an incredibly vast country". Kearey...

  • Elon Musk’s SpaceX finally launches DSCOVR satellite into deep orbit

    Scanning through Elon Musk's Twitter feed seems like something out of Interstellar's transcript with Matthew Mcconaughey rocketing through space, giving status updates as he goes along. "Can't delay any longer. Must proceed with primary mission to launch the Deep Space Climate Observatory spacecraft," Musk tweeted recently. This tweet came just before space exploration company Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (or just SpaceX) successfully launched an unmanned rocket, Falcon 9, at the Cape Canaveral enabling it to deploy a weather satellite. This is SpaceX's third attempt to carry the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) satellite 1.5 million kilometers from the Earth to the...

  • Satellites spot Siding Spring comet race past Mars in a rare celestial event

    A recently discovered comet zoomed past Mars on Sunday afternoon giving scientists a unique chance to study it. The public also got a chance to watch the event on a live stream by Slooh, an organisation that connects telescopes to the internet, and the Virtual Telescope Project. Siding Spring swung past Mars in a retrograde direction, the opposite in which the planets revolve around the sun. According to Carey Lisse, a senior astrophysicist at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, this means that any dust that comes off the comet will be moving at about 119 000mph (190,000 km/h)...

  • Google sets it sights on the stratosphere by investing in satellite internet access

    Google is looking to make the world a better place by providing worldwide internet access, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday. According to sources working on the project, Google plans to spend more than US$1-billion on a fleet of satellites that would extend internet access to the remote corners of the world. Although there are no concrete details on the project yet, the WSJ reported that the fleet would start with 180 low-orbiting, lightweight, high-capacity satellites. Google, of course, is hardly the first company to invest in global internet access. Recently, Facebook announced that it would be using high-altitude drones...

  • Russian satellite shows off Earth’s beauty in highest res ever

    Wow. Just wow. There's nothing quite like a view of our humble little planet taken from space to give you a sense of perspective. You can't get much clearer perspective than this stunning 121 Megapixel shot of the Earth taken by a Russian weather satellite. The image, which is the clearest shot of the planet to date, was taken with a single shot, unlike NASA's updated 'Blue Marble' image which is a...