Scroll down to read this post.


Please consider supporting my work here at Behind the Black. I keep the website clean from pop-ups and annoying demands. Instead, I depend entirely on my readers to support me. Though this means I am sacrificing some income, it also means that I remain entirely independent from outside pressure. By depending solely on donations and subscriptions from my readers, no one can threaten me with censorship. You don't like what I write, you can simply go elsewhere.


You can support me either by giving a one-time contribution or a regular subscription. There are five ways of doing so:


1. Zelle: This is the only internet method that charges no fees. All you have to do is use the Zelle link at your internet bank and give my name and email address (zimmerman at nasw dot org). What you donate is what I get.


2. Patreon: Go to my website there and pick one of five monthly subscription amounts, or by making a one-time donation.

3. A Paypal Donation:

4. A Paypal subscription:

5. Donate by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman and mailed to
Behind The Black
c/o Robert Zimmerman
P.O.Box 1262
Cortaro, AZ 85652


You can also support me by buying one of my books, as noted in the boxes interspersed throughout the webpage or shown in the menu above. And if you buy the books through the ebookit links, I get a larger cut and I get it sooner.

Rocket Lab successfully launches Japanese commercial space junk demo satellite

Rocket Lab today successfully launched a commercial test mission of commercial space junk removal satellite, dubbed ADRAS-J and built by the Japanese company Astroscale, in partner with Japan’s space agency JAXA. It is designed to demonstrate the ability to make a close rendezvous of a large piece of space junk and then photograph and inspect it closely to determing it precise condition to facilitate later removal efforts.

The leaders in the 2024 launch race:

15 SpaceX
8 China
2 Iran
2 Russia
2 Japan
2 India
2 Rocket Lab

A lot of launch entities grouped at 2. Expect Iran and Japan to fall away as Russia, India, and Rocket Lab continue to launch regularly this year, with Russia and Rocket Lab eventually outpacing India.

American private enterprise now leads the entire world combined in successful launches 18 to 16, with SpaceX still trailing the entire world combined (excluding American companies) 15 to 16.

Genesis cover

On Christmas Eve 1968 three Americans became the first humans to visit another world. What they did to celebrate was unexpected and profound, and will be remembered throughout all human history. Genesis: the Story of Apollo 8, Robert Zimmerman's classic history of humanity's first journey to another world, tells that story, and it is now available as both an ebook and an audiobook, both with a foreword by Valerie Anders and a new introduction by Robert Zimmerman.

The ebook is available everywhere for $5.99 (before discount) at amazon, or direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit. If you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and the author gets a bigger cut much sooner.

The audiobook is also available at all these vendors, and is also free with a 30-day trial membership to Audible.

"Not simply about one mission, [Genesis] is also the history of America's quest for the moon... Zimmerman has done a masterful job of tying disparate events together into a solid account of one of America's greatest human triumphs."--San Antonio Express-News


  • Col Beausabre

    Had to grin. “Space junk demo satellite” sounds like it is a demo for piece of garbage – “We make the best space junk in the Solar System and can prove it!”

    “Space junk removal demo satellite” is what I think you mean.

  • Col Beausabre: I originally had the word “removal” in the headline, but removed it when I reviewed this mission’s goals. It is removing nothing, only proving its rendezvous and inspection capabilities.

    I admit the present language could be improved, but it ain’t worth it to make any changes.

Readers: the rules for commenting!


No registration is required. I welcome all opinions, even those that strongly criticize my commentary.


However, name-calling and obscenities will not be tolerated. First time offenders who are new to the site will be warned. Second time offenders or first time offenders who have been here awhile will be suspended for a week. After that, I will ban you. Period.


Note also that first time commenters as well as any comment with more than one link will be placed in moderation for my approval. Be patient, I will get to it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *