Australian satellite company NewSat has been placed into court-appointed administration in a bid to save its $600 million flailing Jabiru-1 satellite project. NewSat’s secured creditors today appointed PPB Advisory as administrators and McGrathNicol as receivers. Both have been tasked with taking control of NewSat’s assets, urgently assessing its financial position and progressing recently commenced capital raising activities as an immediate priority.
Over the past few years, China’s largest tech companies – Tencent, Alibaba, etc. – have been on a massive investment kick. For example, in 2014 Alibaba invested in everything from maps to apps to soccer teams, and Tencent bought into a litany of new industries including virtual reality and film production. And individually, China’s wealthiest tech CEOs – guys like Lei Jun and Jack Ma – have also been splashing a lot of cash over the past few years. But there’s one area they haven’t really touched: space.
NewSat’s Jabiru-1 satellite project is facing potential collapse after one of the company’s lenders pulled its financial support. The company has been battling to get the project off the ground for the past year after it revealed that financing had been put on hold over “alleged technical or documentary breaches of financial facilities” related to the drawdown of its loan from Ever Tycoon. Debt funding from its US and French financiers was to recommence after NewSat met a number of conditions for a waiver of the breaches.
NewSat has been forced to halt trading on the Australian Stock Exchange as it continues to battle to have funding for its Jabiru-1 satellite project reinstated. The company revealed mid-last year that financing for the satellite project had been put on hold over “alleged technical or documentary breaches of financial facilities” related to the drawdown of its loan from Ever Tycoon.
The United States and Russia announced a joint effort to construct a new space station to replace the International Space Station (ISS), but festering geopolitical tensions might yet undo this plan. The announcement made March 28 in Moscow by the Russian Federal Space Agency or Roscosmos is being hailed as a welcome move despite stubborn tensions between Russia and the U.S., especially over the war in Ukraine.
The Australian Government has signed off on $180 million to pay for a fleet of new satellite receiver terminals for the nation’s Defence Force, with Raytheon and subcontractor L-3 Communications set to take the lion’s share of earnings. The Raytheon/L-3 partnership will deliver ground-based transportable satellite receiver terminals throughout Defence’s Australian sites. The large terminals will have the transmission capacity to support deployed ADF headquarters.
Australia’s aviation services body Airservices Australia has partnered with mobile satellite comms provider Inmarsat and two local airlines to trial improved flight tracking services on commercial flights. Airservices started working with Inmarsat, Qantas and Virgin last month to develop the operational concept for the trial, which uses Inmarsat’s automatic dependant surveillance – contract (ADS-C) satellite-based positioning and messaging technology on flights within Australia’s oceanic regions.
Experts said that Vietnam has learned from countries with developed aerospace technology to choose its own suitable direction for the national aerospace development. It resulted from the Party and State’s decision to invest in the key project for the VAC establishment, aiming to fulfil the national aerospace development strategy towards 2020.
Defence’s satellite communications overhaul has been formally added to its project blacklist, with the expected completion now an anticipated five years behind schedule. The Defence Materiel Organisation yesterday revealed phase 3F of the satellite upgrade, known as joint project 2008, had been added to its ‘project of concern’ list as a result of “significant technical, schedule and cost risks”.
Astroscale, a Singapore-based startup developing satellites to remove space debris from Earth’s orbit, has raised a US$7.7 million series A round, it announced last week. Founded by Japanese entrepreneur Mitsunobu Okada, the company’s new round also consists of investors who are heavyweights in the Japanese tech industry.
NBN Co has ordered all retail service providers on the interim satellite service to enforce a 50GB four-week usage threshold for customers to combat ongoing congestion on the service. In communications sent to RSPs late last month, sighted by iTnews, NBN Co warned any customer who breaches the 50GB limit during any four-week period will have their speed slowed to 128Kbps for two weeks from when they first exceeded the limit.
Vietnam plans to send a nano-satellite weighing 10kg to orbit in 2016, Associate Prof. Dr. Pham Anh Tuan, Director of the Vietnam National Satellite Centre (VNSC) has revealed. The NanoDragon satellite will be entirely designed and manufactured by Vietnamese experts, said Tuan. Last year, VNSC also successfully launched a micro satellite called Pico Dragon weighing 1kg.
The software industry is nurtured by a stream of shared knowledge. The snazziest apps rely on open-source programming languages and frameworks. There’s an unspoken credo in Silicon Valley about giving back to the community. This distribution of free intellectual property led to the growth of the internet industry, and we’re seeing the same movement (embodied through Arduino) starting to impact hardware creation.
Lockheed Martin has issued NewSat with a termination notice over a failure to make US$21 million (A$26.5 million) in payments for the construction of NewSat’s Jabiru-1 satellite. NewSat has struggled to get the project off the ground since mid-last year, when it revealed funding for the satellite had been put on hold over “alleged technical or documentary breaches of financial facilities” related to the drawdown of a loan from Ever Tycoon.
Accordingly, the two sides are making joint efforts to ensure the progress of infrastructure development and high-quality human resources training in Vietnam to produce one of the leading space centres in Southeast Asia. The pair will make full use of their respective skills and resources for future collaboration in remote sensing, small satellite production, global satellite positioning system application, and ensuring the construction progress of the Vietnam Space Centre project in Hoa Lac hi-tech park in Hanoi, which began in September 2012.
India successfully launched its biggest ever rocket on Thursday, including an unmanned capsule which could one day send astronauts into space, as the country ramps up its ambitious space programme. The rocket, designed to carry heavier communication and other satellites into higher orbit, blasted off from Sriharikota in the southeast state of Andhra Pradesh.
The academy’s Center for Small Satellite Control and Exploitation, made changes to the orbit on August 15 after it received a warning from the U.S. Joint Space Operations Center (JSPOC) that the VNREDSat-1 might collide with an object that was flying at a speed of 14,000 meters per second. According to JSPOC, a collision could occur at 8:26 pm on August 15 (Vietnam time) with a probability of 0.279 percent, the center said, adding that this rate is much higher than the international threshold of 0.1 percent at which the orbits of any satellites involved are required to be adjusted for safety reasons.
HERNDON, Va. — VT iDirect, Inc. (iDirect), a company of Vision Technologies Systems, Inc. (VT Systems), today announced that leading Philippine telecommunications service provider, Globe Telecom will leverage iDirect’s Evolution platform coupled with its X3 remote to offer corporate clients robust, flexible, and high speed connectivity that can meet their critical business needs and allow them to widen their reach in the Philippines.
The Viet Nam Academy of Science and Technology (VAST) thought of establishing the VNSC in 2007 after the Prime Minister approved a national research and development for space technology. Work on the centre is underway at the Lang Hoa Lac Hi-Tech Park, some 40km from Ha Noi. Funds for the centre’s construction comes from two main sources: Japanese ODA (over US$600 million) and government’s counterpart contribution. We expect the centre to open in 2020 as scheduled.
Jane Poynter, co-founder and chief executive officer of World View Enterprises, revealed that the company recently gained a new round of investments and its investors included the Chinese Internet technology giant Tencent. Focusing on the research and development of space travel business, World View operates high-altitude balloons that offer an accessible and affordable way to access near space. The company plans to launch a near space travel service in 2016.