TOP STORIES: December 2022
Every month we recap some of the top stories in space, entrepreneurship, innovation, business, and technology.
With many exciting advancements in the international space sector, here is our recap for December 2022.
On 13 December, the European Union launched its next generation weather monitoring satellite, Meteosat Third Generation (MTG). This new satellite will carry new technologies and advanced tools to help meteorologists and climate scientists keep up to date on unpredictable and severe weather. Read more here.
Artist rendering of the MTG satellite system. (Image credit: EUMETSAT)
On Sunday 11 December, the uncrewed Artemis I Orion capsule successfully returned to Earth, landing off the coast of the Mexican Baja Peninsula. The safe landing of the capsule marked the completion of the first of three missions to return humans to the Moon. Read more here.
Retrieval of the Artemis I Orion capsule. (Image credit: NASA)
China’s Tiangong space station recently completed construction and is now fully operational. The completion of the station has marked China as one of the leading space players, alongside the United States and Russia, and provides a secondary location to the ISS were humans can live and work in space. Read more here.
The completed Chinese Tiangong space station. (Image credit: China Manned Space Engineering Office)
On 16 December, NASA launched the new Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT) satellite – the first satellite to monitor and map Earth’s water to help with climate change mitigation and responsible water management worldwide. Read more here.
Artist rendering of the SWOT satellite in orbit. (Image credit: CNES)
On 14 December, the German Aerospace Center, DLR, announced that concentrating solar thermal technology could have potential for use in Germany and Central Europe. A response to growing energy concerns, solar thermal energy could be a possible low-cost alternative at a price around 10 cents per kilowatt hour. Read more here.
A parabolic through system collector for solar thermal energy in Evora, Portugal. (Image credit: Universidade de Évora/Hugo Faria)
On 13 December, the first day of the U.S.-Africa World Leaders Summit, Nigeria and Rwanda became the first African nations to sign the Artemis Accords, the non-binding framework for responsible and peaceful and international lunar exploration. Read more here.
Colonel Francis Ngabo and Professor Pantami Signing the Artemis Accords. (Image credit: Rwandan Space Agency)
On 18 December, global defense and aerospace firm L3Harris Technologies announced its agreed acquisition of Aerojet Rocketdyne. The acquisition would give L3Harris greater involvement in civic space ventures, including the previously signed contract between Aerojet and NASA for the creation of the RS-25 engines for the Space Launch System heavy-lift rocket. Read more here.
The RS-25 engines developed by Aerojet Rocketdyne for the NASA SLS heavy rocket. (Image credit: Aerojet Rocketdyne)
Stay tuned for more next month!