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Gilmour Space announces rideshare mission, Spinlaunch raises millions, and more updates from #IAC2022Paris

Precious Payload Weekly Smallsat News: September 19 — 25


Here’s what you need to know about the recent smallsat headlines. Let us know if we missed anything!


Launch Updates

🇺🇸Rocket Lab is set to launch the GAzelle satellite by 🇺🇸General Atomics (GA-EMS) with the Advanced Data Collection System (A-DCS) hosted payload Argos-4 (instrument provided by 🇫🇷CNES, program supported by 🇺🇸NOAA) and ⚛️CERN’s RadMon payload, a miniaturized version of the Large Hadron Collider’s radiation monitoring device. “It Argos Up From Here” mission is planned to be launched on October 5. [SmallsatNews


🇦🇺Gilmour Space intends to launch its first rideshare mission, Caravan-1 (capacity of 1000 kg), aboard Eris Block 2 rocket to LEO from the 🇦🇺Bowen Orbital Spaceport in Australia in 2024. [SmallsatNews]


🇨🇦Maritime Launch Services and 🇨🇦Reaction Dynamics partner to launch Canadian hybrid rockets from 🇨🇦Spaceport Nova Scotia. A first suborbital launch of Reaction Dynamic’s small class launch vehicle Aurora is planned for the summer of 2023. [Press Release]


🇬🇧Skyrora signs an LOI with 🇨🇦Maritime Launch to enable Skyrora XL rocket launches from 🇨🇦Spaceport Nova Scotia. [Press Release]




🇺🇸Spinlaunch raises $71M in funding to develop its centrifugal launch system and continue working on its satellite line. [ParabolicArc]


🇺🇸Sedaro, developing a unified simulation platform for spacecraft, closes $750K SAFE investment from Stellar Ventures. [LinkedIn]


🇮🇹Apogeo Space got a €262,000 grant from 🇮🇹Agenzia Spaziale Italiana to validate their PiCo-IoT 0.3U constellation just after the major capital increase from Primo Ventures. The company aims to enter the service by mid-2023. [LinkedIn]


🇺🇸Intuitive Machines will go public via a SPAC in a deal that values the venture at about $1B. One primary line of Intuitive’s business is three NASA contracts won under the Commercial Lunar Payload Services program. [CNBC]



🇺🇸Spaceflight signed an MoU with 🇩🇪Rocket Factory Augsburg to fly Sherpa OTV and other rideshare payloads on future RFA missions starting mid-2024. [Press Release]


🇺🇸Kayhan Space and 🇺🇸/🇦🇪/🇩🇪Precious Payload team up to boost access to space traffic management. [SatelliteEvolution]


🇮🇹SAB-LS to co-operate as a partner of 🇫🇷Arianespace for the provision of end-to-end services for nanosatellites wishing to fly on Arianespace missions. [SmallsatNews]


🇦🇺Virgin Orbit could be launching satellites into space using Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne System from Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport in Australia as soon as 2024, teaming up with 🇦🇺Wagner Corporation. [Press Release]


🇮🇳Digantara and 🇩🇪Rocket Factory Augsburg signed an MoU to launch two Digantara satellites from its 40-satellite constellation into LEO aboard the RFA ONE launch system in 2024. [Payload Space]


🇺🇸Planet will launch two new hyperspectral satellites of the ‘Tanager’ constellation in 2023. They can provide 30 m resolution and a full spectral range of shortwave infrared and high-precision 5-nanometer wide bands. [SpaceNews]


🇱🇺SES-led consortium (> 20 companies) was contracted by ESA to develop a 300 kg Eagle-1 satellite to be launched in 2024. A tech-demo could be a prototype of a constellation providing quantum-encrypted communications as part of the European Quantum Communication Initiative (EuroQCI). [SpaceNews]


🇬🇧Open Cosmos revealed its OpenConstellation, a project to help partners access satellite data in return for adding their satellites to the infrastructure. [SatelliteEvolution]


🇨🇭EPFL Spacecraft Team signs a hosted payload agreement with 🇮🇹D-Orbit for a tech demo of the HOBC onboard computer. Testing and validation will be performed on MEO. The launch is scheduled for Q1 2023.  [Press Release]


🇺🇸Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) partners with 🇬🇧Rogue Space Systems to help develop two of Rogue’s fleet of ‘Orbital Robots’ cubesats for a launch in 2023. [SpaceNews]


🇫🇷Exotrail and Airbus signed an agreement to incorporate Exotrail’s electric thruster onto Airbus’ Earth Observation satellite platform, which will be completed by 2024. [SpaceWatchGlobal]


🇸🇬SpeQtral and 🇫🇷Thales Alenia Space signed an MoU to carry out joint experiments, including the development of SpeQtral-1 quantum satellite and Thales’ quantum ground receiver, which are to be completed by 2025. [SpaceWatchGlobal]


🇺🇸Loft Orbital made the first public presentation of Cockpit, a Mission Control System created to autonomously operate Loft’s fleet of satellites while providing end-users with operational flexibility, at #IAC2022Paris. [LinkedIn]


🇺🇸LeoLabs announces the beta launch of their space insurance tool that enables space insurance underwriters to assess the orbital debris collision hazard in LEO by leveraging the troves of data created by LeoLab’s global radar network. [Press Release]


🌎UNOOSA and 🇦🇪MBRSC selected two winners for the Payload Hosting Initiative to be on board the PHI-1 mission. The “AMAN” payload by a team from 🇧🇭Bahrain will test an optimized Advanced Encryption Standard for securing communication between the satellite and the ground station/IoT terminals. The “Danfe Space Mission” of 🇳🇵Nepal will study the operation of PX4 Autopilot, a middleware for drones in space. [Press Release]


Uresat-1 pocketqube by 🇪🇸URE (Spanish Amateur Radio Union) will be launched aboard Falcon 9 in 2023, enabling radio amateurs to play… chess. Сheckmate! [Press Release]


Check out Precious Payload Weekly Smallsat News: September 12 — 18