TOP STORIES: March 2019

1 April 2019

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

Here’s our round-up for March:

Skyrora has one incredible secret to share


“Skyrora has a stratospheric vision to go where no other UK space tech firm has gone before, and Scotland is the perfect launchpad for this business to blast off.” as reported at

Black Arrow unveiling. Credit: Skyrora

Boeing’s Starliner Preps For a Launch Of Its Own

“Hot on the heels of the SpaceX Crew Dragon’s successful maiden spaceflight, the Boeing Starliner CST-100 is getting ready for its own moment in the spotlight. Boeing is preparing to fly the spacecraft to the ISS in a mission called Orbital Flight Test (OFT). OFT will launch on a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida as early as April.” Read more in The Verge.

European Space Agency Backs Microlauncher Concepts In Bid To Boost Competitiveness


ESA intends to strengthen European industry by fostering a globally competitive European space sector with increased industry participation in launcher development. Read more at SpaceWatch Global.

Microlauncher concepts. Credit: ESA

China’s OneSpace completes rocket assembly ahead of first orbital launch

OneSpace has completed assembly and testing of its OS-M rocket in preparation for a launch at the end of March which, if successful, would make it the first Chinese private rocket firm to reach orbit.

Our interview with Exotrail from November 2018 can be accessed here.

The first OS-M series rocket in Xi’an, north China. Credit: OneSpace


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Israeli Moon Lander Captures Sunrise and Stretches Its Legs on Lunar Trip

The Israeli Beresheet lander, which launched into space in February, transmitted a video back to Earth showing the sunrise — as well as a second video showing the legs popping out of the lander in what was probably a test exercise. Read more at


How can the cost of space travel – to and from the moon and possibly to Mars – be reduced? One approach is to mine the moon for necessary resources. Read more at EarthSky.

Artist’s concept of a moon base with a view of Earth in the distance. Image via Pavel Chagochkin/

SPACE tech poised to make air travel greener and more efficient

Passengers travelling through busy airports should soon face fewer delays and have a lower environmental impact, thanks to efforts to use airspace more efficiently.

The Iris programme seeks to equip aircraft with satellite-based data communication links to help pilots and air traffic controllers to use the shortest and fastest routes, boosting productivity, saving fuel and reducing environmental pollution.