Commercial service in the lunar orbit, re-entry spacecraft business model, and Astra reaches space
Precious Payload Market Update: November 15, 2021 — November 21, 2021
Private companies are taking advantage of the decreased cost of access to space. First, Plus Ultra Space Outposts, which pitches and gets funding for commercial service in the lunar orbit concerning communication and navigation. Also check out Outpost and Inversion Space, joining a family of Varda in trying to leverage an idea of re-entry capsules and spacecraft.
Returning stuff back to Earth is not a new concept, but today it is becoming a thing. We are currently considering adding a return destination to our launch schedule as well 😉.
And finally, it’s exciting to see our partner, Astra, get into space with payloads. The news has made the Astra stocks soar to their highest point within the year.
Find more news in our latest market update and sign up for our newsletter.
Plus Ultra Space Outposts plans to build a lunar constellation of 8 satellites for enhanced communications and navigation to Earth. Rocket Factory Augsburg will launch its first satellite by Q4 2023. (Source)
Nanoracks becomes the first payload services provider for Maritime Launch Services aboard their Cyclone-4M rocket, scheduled to launch from Spaceport Nova Scotia when it goes operational in 2023. (Source)
Astra joins Virgin Orbit, SpaceX, and Rocket Lab as one of the few private US companies that have achieved orbit after its LV 0007 carrying a US military payload, STP-27AD2 successfully reaches 500km. (Source)
Rocket Lab launches the eighth and ninth high-resolution, multispectral Gen-2 satellites for BlackSky’s planned constellation aboard an Electron KS rocket from North Island’s Mahia Peninsula, NZ. (Source)
Rocket Lab acquires spacecraft separation systems company Planetary Systems Corporation (PSC) and will leverage PSC’s product line to integrate its Photon satellite buses and spacecraft components. (Source)
NanoAvionics will launch its fifth satellite rideshare mission with a new MP42 microsatellite bus carrying payloads for OQ Technology and Veoware aboard the Exolaunch brokered Transporter-4 mission in 2022. (Source)
Insurance company Aon partners with ICEYE to leverage their synthetic-aperture radar data and offer insights to insurers on flood hazards in Japan. (Source)
SpaceX targets January 2022 for Starship’s first orbital launch attempt and is waiting for FAA to wrap up its environmental assessment by December 31. (Source)
Exolaunch reserves additional capacities and slots from SpaceX for their customers aboard future Transporter missions for the next 2 years. (Source)
China launches the high-resolution remote sensing satellite Gaofen 11-03 aboard a Long March-4B from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center, making it the 44th orbital mission of 2021. (Source)
Orbit Fab collabs with Dawn Aerospace to enable ‘green’ in-orbit refuleling for spacecraft utilizing nitrous oxide and propylene. (Source)
Arianespace launches three Airbus-built CERÉS satellites for the French space agency Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES) aboard a Vega rocket, making it Vega’s 20th overall and Arianespace’s 12th flight of 2021. (Source)
Arianespace will launch Australian operator SingTel Optus’ communications satellite, Optus-11, aboard Ariane 6 to GTO in H2 2023. (Source)
Astroscale plans to deorbit one of OneWeb‘s 358 broadband satellites that recently failed in its operating orbit due to a software glitch, using an ELSA-M spacecraft’s planned mission in 2024. (Source)
SES orders two replacement of GEO Ku-band satellites, ASTRA 1P and ASTRA 1Q, from Thales Alenia Space which will launch in 2024 for continued services to HD broadcast markets. (Source)
New space startup Outpost plans to return satellites/orbital payloads by building reusable satellites with an inflatable heat shield and guided landings for its customers. (Source)
Los Angeles startup Inversion raises $10M in seed funding led by Spark Capital with participation from Y Combinator to develop a re-entry capsule to bring cargo from space back to Earth starting 2023. (Source)
OQ Technology plans to launch its second ‘cell tower inside the satellite’ Tiger-3 to ramp up its global satellite constellation for 5G IoT applications expected in 2022. (Source)
Zimbabwe plans to launch its first satellite, ZIMSAT-1, developed in partnership with Kyushu Institute of Technology from the JAXA’s Kibo module in Q1 2022. (Source)
As part of the BIRDS project, Australia’s Fleet Space Technologies secures $26.4M in Series B funding and plans to advance its current fleet of 6 IoT nanosatellites to 140 small satellites in LEO starting 2022. (Source)
Ball Aerospace selects Blue Canyon Technologies LLC to develop a standardized X-SAT Venus ESPA-class microsatellite bus and several custom components for NASA‘s Solar Cruiser mission to demonstrate a solar sail propulsion system in 2025. (Source)
United Launch Alliance will launch the Space Test Program-3 (STP-3) mission for the U.S. Space Force’s Space Systems Command aboard an Atlas V 551 rocket on December 4. (Source)