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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

Relativity, the 3D-printed-rocket manufacturer, inks multi-year contract with Telesat

Relativity, the Los Angeles-based manufacturer of 3D-printed rockets, has signed its first public commercial contract with Telesat, the longtime vendor of satellite services for telecommunications and business information. 

The deal marks the first agreement between a major satellite operator and an entirely venture-backed company in the “New Space” industry and is a huge win for Relativity’s low-cost rocket manufacturing platform.

Relativity’s first launch of its Terran 1 rocket, the first fully 3D-printed rocket built using Relativity’s proprietary printing technology, is slated for the end of 2020.

The company already has a launch site at Cape Canaveral in Florida and a test facility at NASA’s Stennis Space Center right on the Mississippi-Louisiana border. It’s currently in the process of acquiring a launch site in California that will expand its launch capabilities for customers, according to Relativity chief executive, Tim Ellis.

Relativity’s launch services come in at around $10 million for a 1,250 kilogram payload to low Earth orbit, Ellis said. That’s about $10 million to $20 million less than it would cost to launch a similar payload on the Indian PSLV rocket or European Ariane rocket.

The company keeps costs low by relying heavily on automation and metal 3D printing technology at almost every step of the design and manufacturing process for its launch vehicles. Instead of taking 18 months to build, Relativity claims that it can make its rockets in 60 days with hundreds of components instead of the hundreds of thousands of parts that comprise a traditionally manufactured launch vehicle.

Telesat was certainly convinced by the company’s pitch.

“Early in our LEO program we decided that, in addition to working with outstanding leaders in satellite manufacturing and launch services who we know well, Telesat should also include New Space companies whose technologies and manufacturing methods offer lower costs and greater flexibility for deploying our constellation,” said Dave Wendling, Telesat’s chief technology officer. “Relativity is just such a company with their metal 3D printing, use of robotics and other advances. Telesat continues to establish a world-class supplier team to construct, deploy and operate our global LEO network and we are very pleased to welcome Relativity to the Telesat LEO program.”

With the revelation yesterday of Amazon’s plans to create a satellite network of its own, Telesat may be relying on Relativity’s services for more launches — since Blue Origin, Bezos’ own rocket company, may have its hands full launching satellites for its sister company.

“It’s comparable in magnitude to when SES first signed with SpaceX back in early Falcon 9 days,” says Ellis of his company’s first public contract. “We’ve been working with their team for a very long time vetting our capabilities and our progress.”

The company has done 136 engine tests and has received its avionics systems, which are currently being tested now.

As for the overall industry, Ellis says it’s still the earliest days for New Space companies.

“We’re still in the phase of laying fiber in the ground,” Ellis says. “As far as space infrastructure and network…it’ll follow the path of the internet… the application layers will get built on top of that.”


Source: TechCrunch

Facebook Let Dozens of Cybercrime Groups Operate in Plain Sight

Who needs the dark web? Researchers found 74 groups offering stolen credit cards and hacking tools with simple Facebook searches.
Source: Wired

Prince Harry Has a Very Important Message About 'Fortnite'

As in, he doesn’t think kids should play it. Oh, and Snapchat is getting mobile games now, apparently.
Source: Wired

How Google Is Cramming More Data Into Its New Atlantic Cable

Google says its planned Dunant cable from Virginia to France will transmit 250 terabits per second, enough to zap the Library of Congress through it three times a second.
Source: Wired

Nintendo is bringing Zelda and Mario into virtual reality

Nintendo’s Labo VR kit may just be a little cardboard experiment, but Nintendo is taking a chance on throwing its most beloved titles into the headset. Today, the company announced that they will be adding support to play two of the Switch’s flagship titles.

Though Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild seems to just be gaining VR viewer support, Super Mario Odyssey is actually getting some new content alongside the updates which adds a trio of new mini-games. Both games are getting this update for free later this month on 4/25.

This is a very strange choice for Nintendo to make, given what an assuredly cruddy experience this will surely be. It made enough sense with the Labo experiences, because those are designed to be fast and fun, tech specs be damned. But when Nintendo suggests tossing yourself into a 50-hour epic like Breath of the Wild, they’re offering you a tacit endorsement that you’ll be able to play these games in VR for a while.

I doubt this will be the case. That being said, I haven’t tested out virtual reality Breath of the Wild but something tells me that Mario or Zelda in glorious 360p per eye resolution doesn’t make for the game of a lifetime.

There’s also no evidence that you’re going to have any sort of different point-of-view perspective that they’ve enabled gameplay for so you’ll still be playing in third-person which is likely going to be a bit uncomfortable if the camera is automatically shifting while your head remains stationary.

It’s hard to rake Nintendo over the coals for giving users this experience for free, but I hope people don’t rush out to buy the Labo VR kits just for this, because I’ve got some doubts they’ll like what they get.


Source: TechCrunch

This 32-inch Insignia Fire TV is a steal at $100 – CNET

Today only at Best Buy, this smart TV includes Amazon’s Alexa-enabled remote.
Source: CNET

Students' iPhone scam reportedly takes Apple for $900K – CNET

Two students allegedly tricked Apple into replacing more than 1,000 fake iPhones with real ones, then sold them.
Source: CNET

The 5 best things about the new iPad Mini – CNET

Should you consider the smallest, newest iPad?
Source: CNET

Vizio SB36512-F6 review: Finally, an affordable Dolby Atmos sound bar worth buying – CNET

The excellent-sounding Vizio SB36512-F6 is the only Dolby Atmos sound bar we can currently recommend, and it doesn’t cost a king’s ransom.
Source: CNET

Is It OK to Make Your Dog Vegan?

When the ethos of eating meets the pathos of puppies, so many tears flow. What there’s considerably less of, though, is science.
Source: Wired

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