Canadian space mining, Nigerian real astronaut and the Silicon Valley’s space startup boom

canadians-to-develop-space-mining-toolCanadians to develop space mining tool

A Canadian company has inked a $700,000 contract with the country’s Space Agency (CSA) contract to develop a multi-purpose device designed for space mining. Northern Ontario-based Deltion Innovations Ltd will work on the combination drill and rotary multi-use tool, or what the firm describes as a “space-age Swiss Army knife”.

The project, part of the CSA’s space technology development program, has been given the acronym “PROMPT” (Percussive and Rotary Multi-Purpose Tool). The tool, which would be installed on the end of a robotic arm, is designed to drill into rock and other materials to capture a variety of samples.

One of the device’s main goals is to be able to drill mine for water and ice on the moon, and potentially other celestial bodies. It would also be used in robotic construction, maintenance and repair tasks.

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Nigeria plans to send an astronaut to space by 2030

Nigeria has announced plans to send an astronaut into space by 2030, as part of its drive to develop a world-class space industry.”The space program is very important,” said Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, Minister of Science and Technology, during a speech in the capital city Abuja. “Space is a major asset that Nigeria must be involved in for the purpose of protecting national interests.”

A Nigerian Space Agency delegation will visit partners in China this month to discuss logistics and investment for a manned space mission, which would be the first by an African nation.

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Silicon Valley’s zero-gravity space startup boom

ASTRO DIGITALThe next big thing in space exploration might not come from a shiny NASA research facility. Instead, it may spring from an abandoned gas station or a converted McDonald’s in the heart of Silicon Valley’s growing space startup scene.

Bay Area companies are commercializing the space industry, with ambitions as lofty as the cruising altitude of the International Space Station. They range from Deep Space Industries, which plans to mine asteroids, to Made In Space, which is working on in-space manufacturing, to Planet Labs, which aims to take daily photographs of everywhere on Earth.

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A job opening for a Program Manager, Sikorsky (USA). Plans, directs, and coordinates activities of designated project to ensure that goals or objectives of projects are accomplished within prescribed time frame and funding parameters by performing the following duties. More information


Build up your space resume by participating in the project KubOS: KubOS is a small layer in the development process that will allow satellite developers to quickly create mission software for a satellite. KubOS, Open Source Software for Satellites, is built for nano satellites, pico satellites, and cubesats, and it can be scaled for small satellites. More information

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