BlackSky’s Newest Satellites Have Completed Commissioning and Entered Into Commercial Operations

HERNDON, Va., October 5, 2020 (BlackSky PR) – BlackSky, a leading provider of global monitoring services, geospatial intelligence and satellite imagery, announced its fifth and sixth global satellites have completed commissioning and are in commercial operations. The addition of these two satellites to the BlackSky constellation brings higher resolution and increased revisits for key customer markets around the world.

These latest two satellites launched in August 2020 and successfully achieved first images within 58 hours of operation. The satellites have been delivering customer collections since that time while concurrently completing the commissioning process.

(more…)

BlackSky Announces Next Generation Dual Payload Satellite Architecture to Deliver High Resolution and Nighttime Imaging Capabilities

HERNDON, Va. , September 24, 2020 (BlackSky PR) – BlackSky, a leading provider of global monitoring services, geospatial intelligence and satellite imagery, announced today the next phase of expansion of its high-revisit commercial satellite constellation with the unveiling of its next generation, Gen-3, satellite architecture.

In addition, the company also announced it has conducted the preliminary design review of its Gen-3 satellite design for the U.S. Army Tactical GEOINT (TACGEO) prototype program as part of a multi-year contract with the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU). 

(more…)

New BlackSky Satellites Deliver First Images Within 58 Hours of Launch

Images Immediately Provide Customers Actionable Insights

HERNDON, Va., August 17, 2020 (BlackSky PR) – BlackSky, a leading provider of global monitoring services, geospatial intelligence and satellite imagery, announced it has completed initial system checkouts and has begun delivering imagery from its fifth and sixth satellites 58 hours after launch.

Taking full advantage of the advanced analytics offered by its Spectra AI platform, BlackSky is now providing customers high velocity insights that were previously unattainable.

(more…)

SpaceX Launches 57 Starlink Satellites

Falcon 9 lifts off on the Starlink 10 mission. (Credit: SpaceX webcast)

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (SpaceX PR) — On Friday, August 7 at 1:12 a.m. EDT (0512 UTC), SpaceX launched its 10th Starlink mission, which included 57 Starlink satellites and 2 satellites from BlackSky, a Spaceflight customer.

Falcon 9’s first stage previously supported Crew Dragon’s first demonstration mission to the International Space Station, launch of the RADARSAT Constellation Mission, and the fourth and seventh Starlink missions.Following stage separation, Falcon 9’s first stage landed on the “Of Course I Still Love You” droneship stationed in the Atlantic Ocean.

The BlackSky Global spacecraft deployed sequentially beginning 1 hour and 1 minute after liftoff, and the Starlink satellites deployed approximately 1 hour and 33 minutes after liftoff.

All Starlink satellites on this flight are equipped with a deployable visor to block sunlight from hitting the brightest spots of the spacecraft – a measure SpaceX has taken as part of our work with leading astronomical groups to mitigate satellite reflectivity.

SpaceX Plans Early Morning Starlink Launch on Friday

Credit: SpaceX

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (SpaceX PR) — SpaceX is targeting Friday, August 7 at 1:12 a.m. EDT, 5:12 UTC, for launch of its tenth Starlink mission which will include 57 Starlink satellites and 2 satellites from BlackSky, a Spaceflight customer.

Falcon 9 will lift off from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at Kennedy Space Center in Florida. A backup opportunity is available on Saturday, August 8 at 12:50 a.m. EDT, 4:50 UTC.

You can watch the launch webcast here, starting about 15 minutes before liftoff.

(more…)

BlackSky to Track COVID-19 Impact on Military Readiness

U.S. Air Force to utilize BlackSky’s artificial intelligence and machine learning analytics platform to maintain force readiness and secure the supply chain.

HERNDON, Va. – July 21, 2020 – BlackSky, a leading provider of global monitoring services powered by geospatial intelligence and advanced AI/ML analysis, has been awarded a U.S. Air Force contract through AFWERX and the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) to monitor the efficacy of COVID-19 mitigation efforts worldwide.

The contract calls for BlackSky to monitor overseas U.S. military bases and help maintain secure supply chains using its Spectra artificial intelligence and machine learning platform. Near-real time global monitoring capabilities will track the spread of COVID-19 to ensure the protection of deployed personnel, and secure critical nodes of the supply chain.

(more…)

Orbite to Develop Unique Spaceflight Gateway Complex for Future Space Explorers

Orbite co-founders Jason Andrews, Nicolas Gaume and CFO Sophie Stabile. (Credit: Orbite Corporation)

Orbite will provide exclusive luxury hospitality and best in class astronauts training ahead of their space journey.

SEATTLE, JULY 14, 2020 (Orbite Corporation PR) — Orbite Corporation, formed by entrepreneurs Jason Andrews and Nicolas Gaume, announced today plans to develop the first “Spaceflight Gateway and Astronaut Training Complex” for commercial astronaut training. Orbite provides state-of-the-art astronaut preparation across all types of vehicles as well as luxury accommodations, dining, and recreation for future commercial astronauts, their friends and families, and other Orbite customers.

(more…)

SpaceX Starlink Launch Set for Saturday Morning

Falcon 9 payload shroud. (Credit: SpaceX)

UPDATE: Launch scrubbed again. SpaceX tweeted: “Standing down from today’s launch of the tenth Starlink mission to allow more time for checkouts; team is working to identify the next launch opportunity. Will announce a new target date once confirmed with the Range”

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (NASA PR) — SpaceX is targeting Saturday, July 11 at 10:54 a.m. EDT, 14:54 UTC, for launch of its tenth Starlink mission, which will include 57 Starlink satellites and 2 satellites from BlackSky, a Spaceflight customer. Falcon 9 will lift off from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Falcon 9’s first stage previously supported Crew Dragon’s first demonstration mission to the International Space Station, launch of the RADARSAT Constellation Mission, and the fourth and seventh Starlink missions. Following stage separation, SpaceX will land Falcon 9’s first stage on the “Of Course I Still Love You” droneship, which will be stationed in the Atlantic Ocean.

The BlackSky Global spacecraft will deploy sequentially beginning 1 hour and 1 minute after liftoff, and the Starlink satellites will deploy approximately 1 hour and 32 minutes after liftoff. Starlink satellites will be deployed in a circular orbit, as was done on the first through fourth Starlink missions. Additionally, all Starlink satellites on this flight are equipped with a deployable visor to block sunlight from hitting the brightest spots of the spacecraft – a measure SpaceX has taken as part of our work with leading astronomical groups to mitigate satellite reflectivity.

You can watch the launch webcast here, starting about 15 minutes before liftoff. If you would like to receive updates on Starlink news and service availability in your area, please visit starlink.com.

SpaceX Plans Friday Launch of Starlink Satellites

Sixty Starlink satellites separate from a Falcon 9 second stage on April 22, 2020. (Credit: SpaceX website)

Update: The launch has been scrubbed for Friday. SpaceX tweeted that engineers needed additional time for pre-launch checks. The company has not announced a new launch date and time.

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (SpaceX PR) — SpaceX is targeting Friday, June 26 at 4:18 p.m. EDT, 20:18 UTC, for launch of its tenth Starlink mission, which will include 57 Starlink satellites and 2 satellites from BlackSky, a Spaceflight customer. Falcon 9 will lift off from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

You can watch the launch webcast here, starting about 15 minutes before liftoff.

(more…)

LeoStella Delivers First BlackSky Satellites from its New Production Line

TUKWILA, Wa., June 22, 2020 – LeoStella, a specialized satellite constellation design and manufacturer, announced today the delivery of the first two satellites fully manufactured from its state-of-the-art production line. The satellites are the fifth and sixth of an ongoing Earth observation constellation program for the global monitoring company, BlackSky.

LeoStella’s intelligent manufacturing facility is the first of its kind and opened in 2019. The satellites were delivered to the launch facility on June 1, 2020 and have been prepared for an upcoming SpaceX launch from Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

LeoStella’s ability to minimize costs and reduce development and manufacturing time helps meet the increasing demand for satellite constellations in a time sensitive ecosystem. 

(more…)

BlackSky Launches Spectra On-Demand Secure Bundle for Intelligence Analysts

Image from BlackSky Spectra, displaying visible, SAR, and IR data over Panama City and the Miraflores Locks. (Images from Airbus Pléiades, Airbus TerraSAR-X, and USGS Landsat; some of the bans are IR, some are visible), respectively. (Credit: Spaceflight Industries)

For the first time, BlackSky offers remote access for intelligence analystsdue to COVID-19 pandemic

HERNDON, VA – BlackSky, a leading provider of geospatial intelligence, global monitoring services and satellite imaging, announced today its new Spectra On-Demand Secure Bundle to support remote work options for intelligence analysts. The new Spectra solution allows analysts to securely share unclassified information. The Spectra On-Demand Secure Bundle includes the ability to review multi-source data feeds, obtain timely access to satellite imagery and gain resources for event analysis.

(more…)

BlackSky Secures $50 Million in Funding From Intelsat

Herndon, Va., November 12, 2019 (BlackSky PR) — BlackSky, a leading provider of geospatial intelligence, satellite imaging and global monitoring services, announced it has secured a $50 million senior secured loan from global satellite communications leader, Intelsat (NYSE: I). The transaction results in an industry first, creating a strategic relationship that pairs Earth observation with a global communications infrastructure.

The new capital will allow BlackSky to augment existing assets and alliances, ensuring BlackSky remains a leader in delivering actionable Earth intelligence faster, with greater accuracy and more affordably than anyone else in the industry.  Over time, BlackSky could incorporate access to Intelsat’s robust global communications infrastructure, delivering first-to-know insights to customers no matter where in the world they are.

(more…)

Rocket Lab Launch Reset for Tuesday New Zealand Time

Electron lifts off with U.S. Air Force satellites. (Credit: Rocket Lab)

After a scrub due to high winds, Rocket Lab has rescheduled its latest Electron Look Ma, No Hands launch for no earlier than Tuesday, Aug. 20 at 12:12 am NZST (12:12 UTC/8:12 am EDT).

Rocket Lab’s eighth mission will carry four satellites, including: a Cubesat for French maritime surveillance company UNSEENLABS ; BlackSky’s Global-4 Earth-imaging satellite; and two U.S. Air Force Space Command experimental satellites designed to test new propulsion, power, communications, and drag technologies.

Rocket Lab will webcast the launch at www.rocketlabusa.com.

Rocket Lab to Launch 4 Satellites in Look Ma, No Hands Mission

Electron lifts off with U.S. Air Force satellites. (Credit: Rocket Lab)

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. (Rocket Lab PR) — Rocket Lab’s eighth mission will lift-off in August from Launch Complex 1 in New Zealand, carrying a total of four satellites aboard an Electron launch vehicle.

The mission is manifested with satellites destined to begin a new constellation for UNSEENLABS, as well as more rideshare payloads for Spaceflight, consisting of a spacecraft for BlackSky and the United States Air Force Space Command.

The first launch opportunity is no earlier than Friday, Aug. 16 at 12:57 UTC (8:57 EDT). The launch window is open until Aug. 30.

(more…)