Rocket flies as Aerospace Technology lists the top five terms tweeted on commercial aerospace in May 2020, based on data from GlobalData’s Influencer Platform. The top tweeted terms are the trending industry discussions happening on Twitter by key individuals (influencers) as tracked by the platform.

1. Rocket – 541 mentions

The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket by SpaceX set new mark in rocket use after its debut of the first launch 10 years ago. Exercises and launches were popularly discussed topics in May 2020. According to an article shared by NASA Commercial Crew, the official Twitter account of the NASA commercial crew program, a new era of human spaceflight was set to begin as Bob Behnken and Douglas Hurley readied to be lifted off the Crew Dragon spacecraft on the Falcon 9 rocket on 27 May headed to the International Space Station. Apart from validating the company’s transportation system, it will also be the first time the Demo-2 mission will test the aircraft systems in orbit, the article noted.

The US Marines, the official Twitter account of the United States Marine Corps, meanwhile tweeted on marines having fired the M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) as part of an exercise in the San Clemente Island. HIMARS destroy artillery, light armour and fortified stationary targets, and air defense concentrations.

In other news, Hubble, the official Twitter account for the NASA Hubble Space Telescope, tweeted on the “Worm” logo returning on the Falcon 9 rocket that will launch NASA astronauts from the NASA Kennedy Space Center.

2. Aviation – 284 mentions

New guidance on Covid-19 aviation safety risks, securing the global aviation network with coordinated measures to boost safety and confidence, reactivation of airports with safety protocols for staff and passengers, and the termination of flights, were popularly discussed topics during the month. For instance, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), a specialised agency of the UN, tweeted that it was World Aeronautical Information Services (AIS) Day. AIS’s response to the virus crisis is crucial to the flow of data that determines the safety, security and operation of the entire global aviation network, ICAO added.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA), the global trade of associations, called for the need for harmonised measures by all European states to fight the coronavirus pandemic. The association shared an article on the release of the Covid-19 aviation health safety protocol guidelines by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) to resume aviation in Europe. The effort was directed towards protecting public health, as well restarting air services to help drive economic recovery, the article detailed.

In other news, SpeedBird, providing commercial aviation news, described the epic occasion for aviation enthusiasts, the big retirement ceremonies and the exit of an airplane type from the fleet. This time it was a tribute to the noisiest jets in the Delta Air Lines fleet, the McDonnell Douglas jets 88 and 90 referred to as the Mad Dog, and known for their climbing performance and noise that caused Delta to cease operations.

3. Astronaut – 257 mentions

US astronauts going back to space since 2011, and technologies being used to ease routine work for astronauts, were some popularly discussed topics during the month of May. According to an article shared by NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, covering the latest images, videos and news from the US space agency, the Falcon 9 rocket was set for liftoff at the Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39A sending NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley to the International Space Station.

The mission will serve an end-to-end test of SpaceX’s crew transportation system, certifying it to send regular, crewed flights to the orbiting laboratory as a part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.

Johnson Space Center, the lead center for the International Space Station and the Orion spacecraft, further tweeted on signing up and becoming a part of the action of the launch of Falcon 9 rocket carrying US astronauts to space. The virtual tour to guests was offered via a Facebook group, Launch America NASA Social, where users could connect virtually with people and also tour the NASA facilities and witness the launch of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

In other news, NASA Technology, building transformative tech and providing solutions on Earth and in space, shared an article on NASA having developed three new robotic teammates to work alongside astronauts on the International Space Station. Astrobee, a NASA built new free-flying robotic system, for example, helps astronauts reduce time they spend on routine duties, the article noted.

4. Covid-19 – 171 mentions

The Covid-19 crisis has had a severe impact on the aviation industry, with coordinated measures being taken to boost air travel and confidence. New health safety guidelines to keep air travel safe, and the need for governments and supply chain partners to extend more support to airlines, were popularly discussed during the month. According to an article shared by the US Marines, the official Twitter account of the United States Marine Corps, drill instructors at the Oscar Company, fourth recruit training battalion conduct uniform inspections to mitigate Covid-19 risks.

The IATA, on the other hand, tweeted on many airlines going through a cash crunch during the Covid-19 crisis. Chief economist, Brian Pearce, is of the opinion that governments or supply chain partners can support the aviation staff with lower fees and deferred payments. Furthermore, government grants and loan guarantees will allow more airlines to compete and provide consumers with better deals, he added.

In other news, the UK Space Agency, the official Twitter account of the agency, tweeted on the US space sector rising up to the challenge of the Covid-19 crisis. Airbus Space at Portsmouth, for instance, is working along with local companies to manufacture as many as 40,000 personal protective equipment face shields to support NHS workers.

5. Spacecraft – 143 mentions

How spacecraft fuel tanks work, launch of the Falcon 9 rocket atop the Crew Dragon spacecraft on pad 39A, and space servicing, were some popular topics discussed in May. According to the Intl. Space Station, which provides updates from the International Space Station, fluids behave differently in space. The station studies various ways in which fluids act in space to understand the working of spacecraft fuel tanks, plumbing systems, and growing plants.

Hubble, the official Twitter account for the NASA Hubble Space Telescope, tweeted on how spacecraft need repairs too. He added that when astronauts work on spacecraft in orbit, it is called space servicing.

In other news, NASA JPL, which manages NASA’s robotic missions, shared an article on NASA’s Perseverance Mars Rover that is attached to its rocket-powered descent stage. These spacecraft elements are first to assemble during launch and the last to detach while landing on Mars. This stage helps in safe landing on the surface, the article noted.