The Indian Space Research Organisation is to fly an exclusively commercial satellite launch mission for the first time. It will use a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) to launch a 350kg (770lb) Italian Space Agency astrophysics research satellite, Agile.

The first Space Exploration Technologies SpaceX Falcon booster will undergo a 5s static firing test at Space Launch Complex 3 West at Vandenberg AFB, California in November in preparation for its maiden flight in January 2005, carrying a small US Naval Research Laboratory experimental satellite.

A $27 million budget cut by the US Congress will delay the launch of the first satellite in the US Air Force's Space Based Surveillance System series by several months from the planned June 2007 launch date. The $189 million craft is being built by a Northrop Grumman-led consortium, which includes Boeing, Ball Aerospace and Harris.

Source: Flight International