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Space

Addition of satellite internet to offer services by Wisper ISP

Wisper ISP Inc., which is a Wireless Internet Service Provider (WISP), has provided satellite as a substitute to their rooted wireless technology for Illinois residents since 2015. Wisper wants to expand its satellite services to its network in Indiana, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, and Kansas.

One of the major Wisper’s Satellite Internet customers is Theresa Pointon of St. Libory since the company shifted to that area in January 2020. Theresa said that she is so happy with the Satellite service, adding that it has enabled her children to learn online during the Coronavirus pandemic.

Nathan Stooke, Wisper’s CEO and Founder, said that the company is excited satellite to offer services throughout the entire network. He added that this means that more Americans in the rural areas will now access the internet, which will aid in closing the Digital Divide gap. Nathan also noted that Wisper would continue growing, and its growth will be felt in different regions.

Fixed Wireless Technology utilizes uplifted structures to reach customers’ homes. These raised structures include cell towers, water towers, and grain elevators. The current potential needs the tools on the consumer’s roof to have a sightline to the uplifted structure. This means that the optical path cannot be blocked by any terrain or trees. The consumer must be not over 3-5 miles from the consumer’s uplifted structure to get superior signals. Satellites have a significant difference with fixed wireless since their equipment hangs in orbit, which is over 100 miles above the Earth’s surface, rather than an uplifted structure.

The following are Wisper’s satellite plans:

Liberty Plans

  • Liberty 12 comes with 12GB at the cost of $60 per month for 12/3
  • Liberty 12 with 25GB at the expense of $80 per month for 12/3
  • Liberty 12 comes with 50GB costing $90 per month for 12/3

All these liberty plans offer a free zone from 3 a.m. to 6 a.m.

Standard Beams

  • Bonze 12 offering 35GB at the cost of $70 per month for 12/3
  • Silver 12 with 45GB costing $100 per month for 12/3
  • Gold 12 comes with 65GB at $150 per month for 12/3

High-Capacity Beams

  • Bronze 12 comes with 40GB at the cost of $70 per month for 12/3
  • Silver 25 with 60GB costing $100 per month for 25/3
  • Gold 30 comes with 100GB for $130 per month for 30/3
  • Gold 50 with 100GB at the cost of $150 per month for 50/3
  • Plat 100 comes with 150GB at $200 per month for 100/3

Currently, Wisper is working with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to facilitate the Lifeline Program that is providing a discount to low-income earners. Those who want to enroll in the Lifeline program can visit www.lifelinesupport.org.

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Energy

Amazon Tops The Corporate Green Energy Buyers 2020 List

Solar energy is an important source for meeting the rising electricity demand, be it at the workplace, residential, recreation, or mobility. Simultaneously, to preserve the environment, greenhouse gases, mainly CO2, must be reduced. More energy from safe, renewable energy sources needs to be accessible to resolve these two competing needs.

As the renewable electricity dynamics are shifting, the transition from fossil energy to renewable energies is growing as more nations are looking to capitalize on renewables’ advantages and energy potential. Developing and industrialized countries are investing more in renewable energies hence a big rise in renewable energy use. As investment in renewables is growing, the green energy economy is developing. As oil prices have already started to rise in 2016, renewables are becoming cheaper than oil. The move helps to strengthen the competitive aspect of renewables, which threatens the position of fossil energy derivatives.

On the other hand, Amazon bypassed Google and Facebook by 0.9% in 2020 as the biggest green energy buyers. Amazon has purchased,7.5 gigawatts and in 2020, the company entered into 35 energy purchase agreements. Given the global pandemic and the economic recession, 2020 was a turbulent year, all related to the lack of national climate change leadership. Companies should purchase more solar energy, provided that the nation will get its arms around the coronavirus and boost its financial prospects.

Renewable energy has become an American tale of progress. As per Clean Jobs America 2020, when businesses invest in renewable energy, the move will contribute to jobs: employment in the field has risen by 10.4 percent since 2015. Before COVID, more than 3.3 million individuals worked in these cleantech industries. The pandemic, however, has eaten into those possibilities. And the U.S. has maintained its speed amid the figures that advanced technology has put on the ledger.

Additionally, according to Jonas Rooze, corporations have access to affordable clean energy globally more than ever before. Also, businesses go green, and doing so leads to economic sense. It is fantastic for their labels as well. The Oxford Smith School of Business and the Environment studied the issue and found that the most successful way to nurture an economy back to life is to invest in renewable technology. Projects for clean energies and advanced power grids will provide the best medicine, and also offer a long-term return on investment for those efforts.

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Energy

Edmunds have reasons to believe that Electric Vehicles Sales in the U.S. will skyrocket in 2021

In the past, electric vehicle sales have been setting new records, and it is likely to be the same case in 2021. It is worth one’s attention, given that it is coming from Edmunds’ car-shopping experts. Last year, electric cars contributed to 1.9% of all vehicle sales in the United States. According to Edmunds, the percentage is likely to increase to 2.5% by the end of 2021.

According to Jessica Caldwell, the executive director in charge of Edmunds insights, the change has several drivers. One of them is the number of electric vehicles that will be in the market, which is going to increase. The upcoming models will also be impressive since most of them will fill the gap between electric vehicles and the traditional ones. There are a lot of classy models out there are far as conventional cars are concerned. That’s not something you can say about their electric counterparts, but there are high chances it is about to change in 2021. The proposal by President Joe Biden’s administration in support of electric vehicles might also be a game-changer.

Brands and models entering the market this year might also increase. Last year, there were 12 brands and 17 models. However, in 2021, manufacturers could increase by 21, whereas the vehicles may go up to 30. Out of the 30 models, all sectors seem covered with six trucks, 13 SUVs, and 11 cars. Therefore, it will be a first for trucks because in 2020, out of the 17, 7 were SUVs, and 10 were cars.

The demand for large cars keeps increasing each day. If 2021 fills the gap that electric vehicles have had due to the lack of such alternatives, the market will change beyond reasonable doubt. After all, the rate at which EV owners exchange their cars with trucks or SUVs keeps rising. It was 34% in 2015 but had increased to 60% by 2019. As for 2020, the rate went up to 71%. It might reduce in 2021 with the possibility of trading an EV car with an EV SUV or truck.

The trend at which people are searching for electric trucks and SUV have been rising. Consequently, an introduction of the former into the market might change it to some extent. As people search for electric vehicles to buy, they stumble upon new models that they never thought existed. With such information, Tesla will have to share its vast market or potential buyers with other manufacturers.

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Space

The Satellite Operations Contract between MDA and the Canadian Space Agency

In an announcement, MDA declared that it won a contract from the Canadian Space Agency (CSA). The terms of this agreement include the provision of satellite flight operations. CSA will also expect data management services from MDA. Another expectation by the agency is satellite missions that create awareness of space and also facilitates Earth observation.

The main focus of MDA will be NEOSSat, SCISAT, and the RADARSAT Constellation Mission (RCM). It will offer various services, including controlling and monitoring the spacecraft’s health, analyzing operations, maintaining the basic system, and handling data order. Others are managing image quality, processing data, and archiving data. Its area of jurisdiction will be in Longueuil, where the agency’s Multi-Mission Control Centre lies.

Nevertheless, one must acknowledge that MDA will not be doing all that alone. On the contrary, it will achieve it throw the collaboration of two giant space companies. Its other Canadian counterparts are Mission Control Space Services and Calian Advanced Technologies. The contract is three years long, and its worth is CAD$ 36.6 million minus taxes. If a need arises, the deal might be extended but not for more than two more years.

It is important to note that it is not the first time MDA and CSA worked together. During the construction of the RADARSAT Constellation Mission, the former was also at the heart of it. It is a third-generation radar satellite system, and its importance in Canada is indispensable. The country launched it in June 2019, and the launch was a success. Its commission happened later that same year. Ever since the launch, MDA offers all its necessary satellite operations services. As a result of this contract, it is only right to say that MDA’s mandate over RCM just got even more substantial. As a matter of fact, its stand in satellite operations is also at another level.

MDA will also be in charge of SCISAT. It is also crucial, and it has been helping Canada and the rest of the world understand ozone layer depletion since 2003. A decade later, the idea of Near-Earth Object Surveillance Satellite (NEOSSat) saw the light of the day. The space services firm will also be managing this space telescope. Although other similar missions exist now, it was the first one on satellites and asteroids detection and tracking.

MDA also has a contract with the country’s Department of National Defense. This agreement obliges it to operate Sapphire. The launch vehicle for this surveillance satellite is the same one that lifted NEOSSat off. It is also the same case with MDA’s RADARSAT-2, which is an Earth observation satellite.

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Space

Upcoming commercial crew mission of SpaceX to deploy in April

The second operating SpaceX commercial crew flight to the International Space Station, transporting astronauts from Japan, Europe, and the United States, will be launched in the mid-April. NASA announced on January 29 that it had set a start date of April 20 for the station’s Crew-2 mission. NASA astronauts Megan McArthur and Shane Kimbrough, as well as Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency space-explorer Akihiko Hoshide and Thomas Pesquet of European Space Agency on board as mission experts will be the Commander as well as Pilot, respectively. The four would substitute the Crew-1 space-explorers who traveled on the first operating Crew Dragon flight to the station in November.

In late April or even early May, NASA astronauts Victor Glover, Michael Hopkins, and Shannon Walker, as well as the JAXA astronaut Soichi Noguchi would return to the spacecraft, predicting that Crew-2 will deploy on its current timeline. NASA previously reported a no-earlier-than-launch period of March 30 for the Crew-2. However, it did postpone the project to enable Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner commercial crew spacecraft to deploy uncrewed Orbital Flight Test 2 flight for an estimated one-week mission no sooner than March 25. The Starliner as well as Crew Dragon dock at one of the station’s two ports, including one that is used by Crew-1 Crew Dragon spacecraft.

A Soyuz spaceship, Soyuz MS-18, planned for launch about April 10, is also included in the pause to April 20. Three Russian cosmonauts will be taken to the station, with the Soyuz MS-17 returning to the Earth a week later, with the Russian cosmonauts Sergey Kud-Sverchkov and Sergey Ryzhikov on board, as well as NASA astronaut Kate Rubins. “We will really begin to increase our plans for doing some touring vehicle operations across the mid-March period,” Kenny Todd, NASA’s deputy manager of the International Space Station program, stated during a January 22 conference on a forthcoming series of the station spacewalks.

He didn’t provide a timetable for certain missions during the briefing. In a January 27 comment to SpaceNews, utilizing the NASA designation for the Soyuz MS-18, he stated, “We are still collaborating with our Russian colleagues as well as the Commercial Crew Program to solidify the schedules for the Crew-2 and Soyuz 64S flights.” “At present, both flights are targeted for spring 2021; however, specific launch schedules have yet to be confirmed.” The first in a sequence of spacewalks was conducted by two of the Crew-1 explorers; Hopkins and Glover, on January 27, operating on the exterior of Columbus module to aid the Bartolomeo external payload system mount a new contact antenna there.

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Space

Albedo Startup concentrates on the 10-centimeter Earth imagery

Albedo, the newest space corporation to enter the popular Y Combinator start-up accelerator, intends to set up a 10 centimeter per pixel resolution satellite constellation providing Earth imagery. That is the same resolution that created a stir when, in August 2019, former President Trump tweeted pictures of a badly destroyed Iranian launchpad. At the time, geospatial mapping analysts indicated that the imagery was actually captured by secret NRO surveillance satellites costing more than $1 billion. (Prices and capacities of NRO satellites are classified.)

Albedo aims to minimize the expense of capturing 10-centimeter resolution electro-optical imagery as well as two-meter resolution thermal imagery by operating refrigerator-sized satellites at the low altitudes with the large-aperture cameras. “To accomplish this resolution effectually, there are technological advances we are using today to operate super low,” Topher Haddad, co-founder as well as Chief executive of Albedo, informed SpaceNews. For instance, Denver-based Albedo intends to empower satellites with the electric propulsion and develop them for the on-orbit refueling. Haddad stated he is sure that refueling will be possible in the low Earth orbit until Albedo requires approximately two years refilling the first generation of the satellites after the deployment.

“By rendering imagery accessible and incorporating the tremendous value of the high resolution, our aim is to increase the demand,” Haddad added. Although 10-centimeter imagery is not available for sale commercially without a special authorization in the United States, Haddad is adamant that by the moment it starts deploying satellites in the year 2024 and develops a constellation of 24 satellites in the year 2027, Albedo will encounter few constraints. Haddad, who served at the Lockheed Martin as a senior systems engineer, worked on confidential remote sensing projects, co-founded Albedo with Winston Tri, who used to work at Facebook as a software engineer, as well as AJ Lasater, a former employee of Lockheed Martin systems, who served as an architecture manager, in the year 2020.

When they entered Y Combinator, a venture start-up accelerator located in Mountain View in California, whose space sector alumni include Astranis, Momentus as well as Relativity Space, the trio started working on Albedo full time. In the startups that it picks, Y Combinator spends. Eric Migicovsky, who is a partner at Y Combinator, stated Albedo “has a huge amount of work it is supposed to do.” “I could see this as being a no-brainer for the customers if they can develop at the pace they are preparing and get to the level of quality.” Albedo founders have held detailed interviews with potential clients while engaging in Y Combinator and received letters of intent priced at $56 million, Haddad stated.

Categories
Energy

Israeli plans to purchase solar power from Jordan

Israeli plans to purchase power from Jordan, its former enemy and neighbor, in a remarkable way that can aid the country with its new renewable energy goals and in a letter signed by Yuval Steinitz, the Guardian energy minister, he confirmed to environmental activists that the ministry backed a pilot proposal in which Jordan was to convey megawatts to Israel’s national grid, sufficient to energize some thousands of homesteads.

EcoPeace, which is an organization of environmentalists from Jordan, Palestine, and Israel, has been advocating for the project for a while, stating that the access of Jordan to ample land and sunshine amounts signifies that it could trade electricity to Israel less expensive compared to what the country would generate. Gidon Bromberg, EcoPeace director, stated that electricity has never had access to Israel’s border from any bordering nation. He added that they are requesting for a Middle East green contract.

The backing group had distributed the letter with the government of Jordan in anticipation of a contract. By now, the kingdom purchases natural gas from Israel regardless of domestic opposition against contracts with a previous competitor. EcoPeace confirmed that the renewable businesses of Jordan had also shown interests. Nevertheless, the environmentalists caution that the latest Israel threats of seizing parts of the Palestinian lands have stopped progress, and would interfere with their plans if they materialize. However, the Guardian talked to foreign and energy ministries of Jordan for a response got no feedback.

In June, Israel’s energy ministry revealed a proposal of 80bn Shekel to enhance its renewable energy percentage to 30 percent before the year 2030, an aim perceived as demanding, putting into consideration the nation’s lack of accessible free land. Notwithstanding all year sunshine and a worldwide reputation for hi-tech green modernism, Israel continues solely at the back of other developed nations to clean energy.

During the end of the last year, the nation had generated about 5 percent of its power from solar energy, with the more significant part gotten from coal and cleaner natural gas. Regardless of its weaker financial system, Portugal generates close to 30 percent of its energy from renewables. Achiam Tigger, who is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at Negev Energy Operation and Maintenance, and also operates a solar power factory from Israel, stated that for them to reach the government’s renewable power goals would require a considerable struggle.

Categories
Space

The NAPA report pioneers the assignment of Space Traffic Management responsibility to the Department of Commerce 

Congress is championing a report that gives the Commerce Department the authority to solve the growing traffic challenge in space, also known as STM. The formulation of this research report by NAPA (the National Academy of Public Administration) by August this year is per the Congress’s demands before the allocation of funds to various units. Some leaders expressed their concern over the space traffic management, outlining that the suitable agency to handle this task is the OSC (the Office of Space Commerce) following the SPD 3 regulations stipulated by the legislature.

The NAPA committee evaluated both OSC and the Defense Department to determine their capability to handle space crises and outline a mechanism that cancels the collision problem among the space utilities. To mention but a few, the committee members included Michael Dominguez – the retired Space Force associate secretary, NASA’s director Sean O’Keefe and NRO’s retired executive – Marty Faga.

This study comes amid speculations that the Defense Department, which is currently managing this crucial task, will be delegating this task to four agencies: NASA, OCST, and AST. The research report evaluated the four agencies in terms of technological prowess, leadership skills, and their capability to connect with space stakeholders. OSC outshined the other three because of its admirable leadership and collaboration with various space stakeholders. The NAPA committee members settled on OSC since it can handle this mega responsibility with the government’s explicit support.

Additionally, the report recommended OSC for agreeing to integrate the STM responsibility into its system through its collaboration with other firms. The report outlines OSC’s strategy of taking STM duties as the facilitators of data unification systems. This concept is different from the expected direct control by the agency of space traffic to maintain sanity and prevent collisions. OSC views STM responsibilities as a method of appreciating technological advancements by various space companies and fostering innovative commercial space firms’ survival. This move will enhance the country’s success in becoming a space leader and create unity in the global space industry.

Commerce Department’s secretary Wilbur Ross expressed his happiness after the government and the space industry movers considering the Commerce Department’s suitability in handling the STM responsibilities. He added that the agency is expectant to collaborate with Congress to fulfill the objectives of the tasks assigned to it. One of the Commerce Department’s leaders stated that they anticipate the report to clear doubts about the agency’s capacity to deliver space traffic control duties.

In conclusion, the leader assured Congress that its trust in the Commerce Department to perform the STM duties is all under control and appreciated. The Commerce Department hopes that it can procure more funds from Congress’s finance bill to initiate more operations to support the realization of the STM duties as per the law.

Categories
Energy

Budget friendly driving cars demand, states Jato

Coronavirus’s outcome on the economy is not reducing interest in electric cars, with record-breaking listings in Europe around July. A recent study by Jato Dynamics displays that electric listings, comprising hybrids as well as fully electric vehicles, were upward by 131% year on year to 230,700- the foremost time it surpassed 200,00 components. As an outcome, electric vehicles justified for 18% of the entire listings in July, far higher than their market share of 7.5% in 2019 in July and 5.7% in 2018 in July.

Felipe Munoz, an international expert at Jato Dynamics, stated that an increase in demand for the electric vehicle was robustly associated with a broader offer that eventually included more inexpensive options. The great competition within brands is also taking down prices. Half of the electric vehicles were powered by hybrid engines, with demand escalating by 89%, alongside the slight hybrid types of the Ford Puma and Fiat 500 partaking to this outcome.

The plug-in hybrid electric vehicles tagged along by 55,800 components, upward by 365% from 2019 July, aided by latest models such as the Ford-Kuga, Mercedes A-class, BMW XC40, and BMW 3-Series. Listings for zero-releases battery electric vehicles topped from 23,400 components in 2019 July to 53, 200 in 2020, and the offer topped from 28 dissimilar models present to 38

The latest models, such as the Peugeot 209, Skoda Citigo, Mini Electric, MG ZS, and Porsche Taycan, assisted in driving demand. Nonetheless, Tesla posted a 76% decrease to 1,050 components ensuing from shipping delays to Europe, as an outcome of production hitches in its Fremont in California. Munoz stated that indifference to the overall fashion of rising demands for electric cars, Tesla was defeated this year around the European region. Some of those could be clarified by matters related to the production persistency in California, conversely by great competition from brands that play like locals all over Europe.

Jato’s information for 27 markets displays observed the most significant monthly volume numbers this year, similarly being the greatest since September in the preceding year, with the industry listing 1,278,521 fresh passenger vehicles, down by solely 4% month-on-month from 2019.

Munoz clarified that both businesses consumers, as well as private, are reacting to better market circumstances; hence if the present situation persisted to improve, they could commence speaking about a ‘V’ regaining in the European automobile industry.

Nonetheless, there are great indecisions concerning how and when the crisis shall eventually come to a halt. Hence caution stays. The levels in volume from January went down by 35% to 6.3 million vehicles. Nevertheless, demand evidenced healthy numbers in nations like the UK, France, and Denmark.

Categories
Energy

Increased Range in Locomotives Expected in the Future from Advanced Batter Technology

Scientists have sought to substitute the graphite anodes presently used in electric car batteries with lithium anodes in search of a rechargeable battery that can power electric vehicles for long.

Conversely, although lithium metal increases the range of an EV, it reduces the battery’s functional viability due to dendrites built upon the anode over several charging cycles. The dendrites also short-circuit the battery cells when they meet the cathode. Scientists have always presumed that solid electrolytes, for instance, those fabricated from ceramics, would aid in reducing dendrites’ formation. However, the issue with that, according to further research, the use of hard electrolytes would not prevent the emergence of dendrites.

 

Currently, experts at the energy department, published in a journal, a new category of soft-solid electrolytes – nanopolymers and graphite – that inhibit the formation of dendrites in the initial stages before they severely destroy the battery. The innovation is part of Berkeley’s partnership across its facilities in generating ideas for assembling and designing solid-state batteries and other gadgets. The solid-state technique, which incorporates different phases and forms of the electrolyte and the electrode, display excellent stability. Despite the increased performance, developing the batteries gets faced with massive difficulties in the production process.

 

A staff researcher at the lab expressed the multiple benefits that would get incurred from the breakthrough of solid-state technology. It would lead to maximum satisfaction by both the production firms and the consumers of the battery. Also, there would be increased performance and minimal concern by the masses concerning the range of the battery. He further added the advantage that the aircraft industry would acclaim from the battery as it would be possible to power planes with assured sustainability and performance. The new cutting-edge technology would not affect the disruption of the existing assembly-line structures. The soft-solid electrolytes manufactured would be the same size as the traditional graphite electrolytes hence the ease in transforming the production to lithium graphite, which will be integrated with soft micro polymers to suppress the building of harmful dendrites.

 

A demonstration was performed on the efficacy of the newly developed battery to indicate its obstruction. In the absence of nanoparticles of the soft polymer in the electrolyte, there were dendrites. In the presence of the polymer, there was no detection of the harmful build-ups. These results confirmed findings from a new physical system for lithium metal, which accounts for the electrolytes’ chemical and mechanical properties. In conclusion, an increased range will be possible by advancing the newly acquired battery technology to enhance battery life and improve performance in powering the EV cars.