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News briefs: April 3
Posted: Thu, Apr 4, 2002, 10:11 AM ET (1511 GMT)
  • The Federal Aviation Administration announced Wednesday that it had approved launch licenses for the two newest U.S. launch vehicles, the Atlas 5 and the Delta 4. The licenses from the FAA's Office of Commercial Space Transportation apply to Delta 4 Medium boosters launched to low-inclination orbits from Cape Canaveral, and to the Atlas 5 401 version; other versions of the Atlas 5 and Delta 4, as well as launches from Vandenberg, will be licensed separately. The maiden flights of both the Atlas 5 and Delta 4 are tentatively scheduled for July.
  • The British government decided Wednesday to contribute funds to the development of Galileo, a European version of the GPS navigation system, Space News reported. The UK's Department of Trade and Industry will allocate up to 86 million pounds (US$123 million) to the European Space Agency for Galileo, about one quarter of ESA's overall contribution to the development phase. The UK had been one of the last holdouts opposing Galileo, citing concerns about the commercial viability of the system.
  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) successfully tested a solid-propellant motor for the third stage of its Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV). The test took place March 30 at ISRO's Sriharikota center. The motor will be used for the next PSLV launch later this year to place a weather satellite into geostationary orbit, the first time the PSLV will be used to launch a GEO payload.
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news links
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