The ground station confirmed that it received a signal from the delfi-n3ct, they could confirm that it was the satellite, but the signal was not clear enough to decipher. Probably on the next pass it will.
Apparently this dnepr launched 33 satellites into orbit, a record!
Delfi-n3xt launch event
I am at the Delfi-n3xt launch event at the TU Delft. The sat will launch in a bit with a Dnepr rocket
Today I was at Dutch Space in Leiden. Got to see some awesome space hardware like the solar panels of the Sentinel and launch adapters of the Vega rocket. Did you know solar panels can light up when you put 120 Volts across them? They do it for testing.
I wanted to share some photo’s, but that was not allowed.
So William Gerstenmaier gave a presentation today about the NASA asteroid retrieval mission. It was interesting. I asked at the end whether there were concern if the bag would contaminate or influence the asteroid. He answered that that should be taken into account when the material is analyzed, but that the primary goal of the mission would be technology demonstration. Basically, science is a second for this mission. At the moment it seems that NASA is primarily building capabilities.
So the plenary of the heads of space agencies was mostly the exchange of political correct standpoints of the agencies, until the head of the Chinese agency answered “We would join, if the organizers sent us an invitation” on the question whether they would be joining the international roadmap for human space exploration. He added that the invitation should also not be untimely sent. Since it was translated, it could be a matter of lost in translation, but it sounded like a big burn to NASA.
So basically, it is an generally known, but unspoken, that NASA does not want to cooperate with the Chinese, while the Chinese would like to cooperate with NASA and the other agencies, specially on human spaceflight. I think this is one of those things (the other thing being the ITAR) that can bite NASA in the end, since China is actively cooperating in space with other countries, Brazil for example. China has also offered human spaceflight opportunities to other countries.