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HomeTechMax Q: A lawsuit? About starship? I am shocked

Max Q: A lawsuit? About starship? I am shocked


Hello and welcome back to Max Q! There was a lot of Starship news this week, thanks in part to an informative Twitter Spaces with SpaceX CEO Elon Musk. Read on for all the juicy details.

In this issue:

  • Environmentalists are suing Starship
  • Nuview’s plan to create a 3D map of the world
  • News from Maxar and more

A coalition of advocacy groups has filed a lawsuit against the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) over its handling of the environmental assessment of SpaceX’s launch plans in southeastern Texas.

The FAA gave the green light to SpaceX’s Starship launch program last summer, with the condition that the company take a series of measures to reduce environmental impacts on the surrounding area. But according to the lawsuit, this analysis and the required mitigations are not enough to offset or even fully understand the full effects of repeated Starship launches.

While the FAA has grounded Starship pending an investigation into the April 20 flight test that ended in a mid-air explosion, the lawsuit is asking the court to grant SpaceX’s launch permit to fly the rocket all the way in. until a full environmental assessment has been completed.

Image Credits: PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images

Dozens of established players and newer entrants compete to bring the most advanced remote sensing data to customers. These companies may use hyperspectral, thermal, radar or optical instruments, but none so far use light detection and ranging (lidar), a technology best known for its use in self-driving cars. nuviewa geospatial technology company that grew out of stealth wants to change that.

The company aims to build out a constellation of 20 commercial satellites equipped with its own lidar system. The “end game,” as Nuview founder and CEO Clint Graumann put it, is to map the entire land surface of the Earth with lidar — on a yearly basis.

Global satellite communications.  Conceptual representation of a global network of communications satellites, such as the Starlink satellites.

Global satellite communications. Conceptual representation of a global network of communications satellites, such as the Starlink satellites. Image Credits: Getty Images

More news from TC and beyond

  • Astrobot confirmed that the May 4 first mission has been postponed as the launch provider, United Launch Alliance, continues to investigate an anomaly involving the Vulcan Centaur rocket. (Astrobot)
  • The European Space Agency embarks on a feasibility study to explore what it takes to develop a reusable heavy rocket for Europe. (ESA)
  • Evolution Space, a company developing a very small launch pad, passed through the Kármán line for the first time last month. (Evolution)
  • Generation Space, the American branch of Seraphim Space, has announced the eight startups participating in the accelerator. (ADS Progress)
  • Lockheed Martin reorganizes its space activities into three key sectors: commercial civil; national security; and strategic and missile. (SpaceNews)
  • Maxar completed the sale of $6.4 billion in private equity, with the company announcing last Wednesday that it was no longer listed on the New York Stock Exchange. (TechCrunch)
  • Orbex said construction has begun at the Sutherland Spaceport in Scotland, which will be the first vertical launch spaceport on the British mainland when completed. (Orbex)
  • Phase four, a plasma-based satellite propulsion system developer, has received an undisclosed amount from Veteran Ventures Capital. (Veteran companies)
  • Rocket Lab launched two satellites for NASA’s TROPICS mission. Plus, CEO Peter Beck has a great new profile in Bloomberg Businessweek. (Rocket Lab/Bloomberg)
  • SpaceX spend one lot of money for the development of Starship – about $2 billion this year alone. How long can the company operate before needing additional financing? (Quartz)
  • Starship self-destruct command didn’t work right away during this most recent launch test, with 40 seconds before the missile self-blew up. (TechCrunch)
  • Virgin The job the bankruptcy sale will go ahead, with the final asset (or business) sale closing on June 2, according to filings with the Delaware Bankruptcy Court. (Parabolic arc)

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