TechCrunch House: Reusable rockets, reusable satellites

Good day and welcome again to TechCrunch House. I hope everybody had a restful Easter, for many who have fun.

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This week, I sat down with Orbit Fab CEO Daniel Faber to speak in regards to the firm’s first refueling port formally hitting the market. The value tag? Simply $30,000.

“SpaceX has made rockets reusable, Orbit Fab makes satellites reusable,” he mentioned. “In this world today, if you’re running a rocket company, and you’re not working towards reusable rockets, you’re working to a dead end. The same is true of satellites: If you’re not making your satellites reusable, you’re just putting preordained junk into orbit.”

I realized quite a bit from this deep dive into China’s struggles to convey on worldwide companions to its Worldwide Lunar Analysis Station initiative. It may be a battle to grasp China’s area program as a non-Chinese language-speaking Westerner, so I all the time admire Andrew Jones’ reporting.

A Lengthy March-5 Y7 rocket lifted off from China’s Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Web site on February 23, 2024. Picture Credit: Getty Photographs/VCG/VCG

On April 1, 1960, THE VERY FIRST climate satellite tv for pc was launched by NASA. It’s odd to consider, as a result of low Earth orbit is quickly filling out with spacecraft that present tons of helpful knowledge on climate… however we needed to begin someplace. And we began with TIROS 1 (Tv and InfraRed Commentary Satellite tv for pc). Here’s NASA:

The TIROS Program (Tv Infrared Commentary Satellite tv for pc) was NASA’s first experimental step to find out if satellites might be helpful within the research of the Earth. At the moment, the effectiveness of satellite tv for pc observations was nonetheless unproven. Since satellites had been a brand new know-how, the TIROS Program additionally examined varied design points for spacecraft: devices, knowledge and operational parameters. The purpose was to enhance satellite tv for pc functions for Earth-bound choices, comparable to ‘should we evacuate the coast because of the hurricane?’


NASA’s TIROS 1 climate satellite tv for pc. Picture Credit: Nasa