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Optus Is Fixing Its Mobile Black Spots In The NT

Optus owns and maintains the largest fleet of satellites across Australia, but at the same time the number-two telco can’t rival its larger competitor Telstra for mobile network coverage in rural and remote parts of Australia. It makes sense, then, for Optus to boost its coverage in black spots using a series of small cells — lower-powered portable radio nodes that are much easier to install than a full mobile tower — that connect to its satellite network. And that’s exactly what the company is doing.


Good Job Humanity, NASA Has Accepted Sad Levels Of Sea Ice As A 'New Normal' 

The Arctic Ocean is seeing a rapid amount of ice loss this season, but NASA scientists aren’t too alarmed.


A Single Bad Fire Season Sent Smoke Halfway Around The Planet

For several months last spring, Indonesia choked under a blanket of smog fuelled by one of the worst fire seasons in its history. But smouldering peatlands didn’t limit their pollution to the island nation: They sent smoke halfway across the world.


The World's Fastest Rocket Just Launched A Secret Spy Satellite

A secret satellite was launched into space today. We don’t know just what it’s doing in space. But! We can see in these pictures exactly how it got there: aAboard an incredibly fast rocket.


For Sale: 158kg Soviet Spy Satellite Camera Lens, A Bargain At $24,000

So, you thought Canon had some ridiculously large lenses. The truth is, it ain’t got nothing on the former Soviet Union, which came up with this fearsome beast — a 158kg, 1.3m lens for its spy satellites. Oh yeah, it’s also for sale.


The LA Gas Leak Was So Bad You Could See It From Space

The natural gas leak at Aliso Canyon earlier this year was already one of the worst environmental disasters in US history. Several months later, however, it has now gained the additional distinction of being the first industrial methane point-source visible from outer space.


These Tiny Spacecraft Could Lead Us To Alpha Centauri

Earlier this autumn, Russian billionaire Yuri Milner casually announced his intention to develop spacecraft that can travel at up to 20 per cent the speed of light and reach Alpha Centauri within 20 years. From the outset, it was clear that no humans would be making the warp jump — the mission will involve extremely lightweight robotic spacecraft. A new fleet of tiny satellites hints at what those future interstellar voyagers will look like and be capable of.


NBN Has Launched Its Sky Muster Broadband Service For Regional Areas

NBN’s broadband satellite service, Sky Muster, is now being sold to customers via ISPs, and boasts an average end user speed of 25/5Mbps as part of its goal to bring high speed internet to regional Australia. The satellite launched in October last year, and has since been trialled by over 200 households in regional and remote areas — who now have access to better connection speeds than many Australian city-dwellers.


That Mysterious Radio Burst From Space Isn't So Mysterious After All

Two months ago, astronomers picked up and then pinpointed the location of a weird burst of radio waves from space, prompting heated debate about the possible source of the signals. Now, new data has finally revealed that source — and it’s not such a big mystery after all. Move along, nothing to see here: Just a star-gobbling supermassive black hole burping out some excess radio waves.


Slowing Down In Space Is Easier With Yo-Yos

Video: Any number of forces can mess up a spacecraft’s flight path on its way to where it needs to go, however spinning helps average those torques to add stability to the trajectory. But when a satellite does successfully reaches orbit, how does it stop spinning?


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