The technological advancements created by the X-59 are hugely significant, given that non-military aircraft are banned from flying faster than the speed of sound over land – a rule that contributed to the early retirement of the Concorde.
Air Vice-Marshal Roberts was Australia’s first head of Space Command, establishing the department from the ground up, and now hands over to her successor, Major General Greg Novak. Roberts joined the RAAF in 1983 as a specialist in aerospace engineering at the Aircraft Research and Development Unit and held over 20 roles during her RAAF career.
In comes after Orbit’s unique satellite-launching 747 failed after taking off from Cornwall in south-west England earlier this year. A later investigation revealed a simple fuel filter dislodged mid-launch, leading to the loss of all nine payloads onboard.
A new deal will see the ACT-based Nominal Systems make a “digital twin” of the 3.5-metre-long demonstrator vehicle alongside replicating conditions outside of the aircraft.
Space Connect’s flagship event will also expand to two days and take place on Tuesday, 28 May and Wednesday, 29 May 2024 at the ICC in Sydney.
The move — revealed earlier this year as part of the Defence Strategic Review (DSR) into the military — is part of a broader shake-up that will see the newly formed No. 1 Space Surveillance Unit (1SSU) assume operation of Defence’s space domain awareness capabilities.