Space Economy

Debris sweeper

March 1, 2020

The large constellation builders are starting to launch their satellites now, despite a lack of consensus about how best to clear away worn-out or malfunctioning satellites. Enter Astroscale, a startup headquartered in Tokyo with offices in the United Kingdom, the United States and Singapore. The company is about to conduct an orbital demonstration of a magnetic cleanup technique. Astroscale’s Jason Forshaw explains how the mission will work.

Sparking the space economy

By Debra Werner

January 1, 2020

Those who want to expand society into space have long dreamed of a space-made product that will prove to be uniquely lucrative. A stunning return on investment, the thinking goes, would induce others to flock to orbit with their own dreams, just as Americans headed west in the 19th century. This year, a fiber optic material called ZBLAN is receiving its moment in the limelight for its potential to ignite the space economy. Debra Werner tells the story.