While things on Earth weren’t so great, the conquest of space proceeded full speed ahead this year, led by SpaceX, which sent its first manned vessel to the International Space Station and added nearly 1,000 satellites to its Starlink constellation. Its commercial launch business could face increasing competition from up-and-comers Rocket Lab and Relativity Space. Rounding out our list are companies that identify and clean up space junk, and that offer an orbital view of wide range of human activity.

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