Home Geospatial Applications Miscellaneous US is not losing foothold in EO sats, just shifting role: Report

US is not losing foothold in EO sats, just shifting role: Report

US: As speculations are emerging that the US may be losing its foothold in earth observing satellites technology, a report published on RedOrbit.com observed that a shift in command is nearing. It explained that as NASA begins to rely on private companies for its space travel, the science community will be finding new alternatives as well.

The report claimed that the future of space industry resides in the US and its path is bright, despite the fact that a lull will be inevitable. There may be some years that US scientists have to rely on satellites being placed into orbit by the European Space Agency (ESA), but it will not be a long dependence.

Scientists will not have to rely solely on government for future Earth observing satellites. As businesses like SpaceX see the need for new earth-observing satellites, their research and development crew will surely be the first among many to try and fulfil it.

SpaceX is just one of many space industry businesses that reside in the US, and with its successful Dragon launch, the company has shown it is more than capable of picking up the slack where NASA left off.

Another US company known as Planetary Resources recently announced plans to start mining Near-Earth Asteroids (NEAs). The company said it plans to start tapping some of Earth’s celestial neighbours for precious resources like gold and platinum.  It even announced plans to build spacecraft that help analyze NEAs, a feat that so far has only been taken on by government space agencies.

Although Planetary Resources has not specially talked about plans to supply the demands of the science community for earth observing satellites, it is just one example of a company that has seen the fertile grounds which the commercial space industry offers, and plans to cash in on it.

NASA currently relies on Russia to take its astronauts to and from the International Space Station, but in the next few years it will instead be counting on private industries to ferry its space sailors. Even the recently successful SpaceX Dragon capsule is designed to be transformed into a spacecraft that takes astronauts beyond low-Earth orbit.

So there could be gap for a while as the change of power switches from the government space agency to private companies, but it will be met with new industry that the US is the pioneer behind.

Source: Red Orbit