TOP STORIES: December 2018

2 January 2019

Each month we round up some of the top stories in space, entrepreneurship, innovation, finance and technology.

Here’s our round-up for December:

VALISPACE AMONG The 100 Most Innovative Startups Of Germany In 2018

Berlin-based startup project and print magazine The Hundert features the top 100 outstanding companies and their founders in Germany, listing space startup Valispace Among them. Read more here.

Cover of The Hundert magazine Vol. 11: Startups of Germany – THOMAS EICHHORN, THE HUNDERT

IoT smallsats: Ready for launch?

In recent years, there has been a boom of announcements for satellite constellations comprising satellites weighing as little as 3 kilograms to address a growing market of machine-to-machine (M2M) and Internet of Things (IoT) via satellite. SpaceNews reports how NSR (Northern Sky Research) expects smallsat IoT to primarily become the network of last resort and will therefore take many years to begin turning a profit. Read more here.

North America is expected to generate 40 percent of satellite machine-to-machine (M2M) and Internet of Things (IoT) revenue by 2027. *Includes both GEO-based and smallsat constellations. Credit: NSR


On November 29, NASA announced it is planning to buy space on board commercial landers for future scientific missions. NASA is also offering to use the LRO to assist those landers — and other international missions to the Moon as well. See more at Futurism.

Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter illustration. Credit; NASA

Space debris: how to clean up space?

Why are space debris and their accumulation a major concern for the global space community? What are the initiatives to limit their creation and actively remove them? Discover PwC’s views in its latest position paper here [.PDF].

Planet to acquire software specialist Boundless Spatial

Earth observation company Planet plans to acquire Boundless Spatial Inc., a geospatial software specialist, “to accelerate the adoption by government and enterprise customers of commercial geospatial information services,” said Robbie Schingler, Planet co-founder and chief strategy officer. The terms of the deal announced Dec. 18 were not disclosed. Read more at SpaceNews.

In April 2017, arms control experts said these Planet images showed where the United States, United Kingdom and France fired missiles on suspected chemical weapons facilities in Damascus, Syria. Credit: Planet

SpaceX Smashed the Record for Commercial Space Launches in 2018

As humankind ventures farther up the Earth’s gravity well, 2018 was a banner year for Elon Musk’s commercial spaceflight venture SpaceX. Read more in Futurism.

Credit: SpaceX

Severn Trent Water enlists Earth-i to identify water leaks using sophisticated data analytics from satellite imagery

As part of its ongoing strategy to use new technologies to help identify and fix water leaks, Severn Trent has recently completed a successful trial with Earth-i, a New Space pioneer specialising in data analytics and insights. Read more by Earth-i here.

Credit: Earth-i