Honeywell Selects Loft Orbital to Provide the Launch & Satellite Bus for Quantum Key Distribution Mission

SAN FRANCISCO, CA, August 4, 2020 — Loft Orbital Solutions Inc (Loft Orbital) has signed a contract with Honeywell to provide launch service and satellite bus for the Canadian Space Agency’s (CSA) Quantum EncrYption and Science Satellite (QEYSSat) mission, for which Honeywell is the prime contractor.

The QEYSSat mission will demonstrate Quantum Key Distribution (QKD), a groundbreaking technology that has the potential to revolutionize encrypted communications. To date, the first and only space-based QKD demonstration has been performed by the Chinese Micius spacecraft in 2017.

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Loft Orbital Selects LeoStella to Manufacture Multiple Satellites, Address Increased Demand for Space Infrastructure-as-a-Service

SAN FRANCISCO & TUKWILA, Wash., July 21, 2020 (Loft Orbital/LeoStella PR) — Loft Orbital Solutions Inc. (Loft Orbital), a Space Infrastructure-as-a-Service company, has signed a contract with LeoStella, a specialized satellite constellation design and manufacturing company, to build and integrate satellite buses for several upcoming Loft Orbital missions.

Under the contract, Seattle-area LeoStella will use its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility, which opened in 2019, to produce multiple satellites based on ESPA-class buses for use in Loft Orbital’s upcoming missions, including its YAM-3 and YAM-5 satellites. YAM stands for “Yet Another Mission.” These buses will be nearly identical in design to the LeoStella satellite bus product line it has developed for other customers.

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Spaceflight Inc. Unveils Next-Gen Orbital Transfer Vehicle to Fly Aboard Next SpaceX Rideshare Mission

Sherpa-FX transfer vehicle (Credit: Spaceflight)

SEATTLE, July 15, 2020 (Spaceflight PR) — Spaceflight Inc., the leading satellite rideshare and mission management provider, announced today that it will be flying its next generation orbital transfer vehicle, Sherpa-FX, on a fully dedicated rideshare mission with SpaceX. The mission, called SXRS-3 by Spaceflight, is scheduled to launch on a Falcon 9 no earlier than December 2020. Spaceflight has contracted 16 spacecraft for this mission from organizations including iQPS, Loft Orbital, HawkEye 360, NASA’s Small Spacecraft Technology program, Astrocast, and the University of South Florida Institute of Applied Engineering.

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Loft Orbital Awards Contract to Exolaunch to Launch YAM-3 Microsat on Falcon 9

BERLIN, June 10th, 2020 (Exolaunch PR) – Exolaunch, the leading rideshare launch and deployment solutions provider, has announced a Launch Services Agreement with Loft Orbital, a San Francisco-based company, to deliver Loft Orbital’s YAM microsatellite into sun-synchronous orbit on Falcon 9.

Under the contract, Exolaunch will deliver mission management, deployment and integration services to Loft Orbital, who operates microsatellites and flies customers’ payloads as a service. The launch is targeted for December 2020 and is part of SpaceX’s SmallSat Rideshare Program.

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Loft Orbital Raises $13 Million for “Satellite as a Service” Operation

A Loft Orbital-owned and -operated microsatellite, flying multiple customer payloads onboard as a service. (Credit: Loft Orbital Solutions Inc.)

Loft Orbital has raised a $13 million Series A round led by Foundation Capital.

The San Francisco-based company provides end-to-end service by integrating payloads onto standard microsat buses. Loft Orbital also manages the launch and operations of the satellites.

“Loft’s basic value proposition is twofold. First, for customers who don’t have space-industry expertise but want the benefits of sensing and communications from space, Loft provides white-glove service,” Foundation Capital General Partner Steve Vassallo wrote in a blog post.

“Customers in this category include new commercial players in the space industry and foreign governments that don’t have their own space programs,” he added. “Second, as Loft aggregates the sensors into one satellite and books the launches from all over the world with backup launches, not only is the cost much lower for each customer, speed to orbit is also much faster.”

Vassallo said the company is targeting the fast-growing 75-100 kg (166- 220 lb) microsat market segment. “The market for this microsatellite category is $12 billion at the moment and expected to grow to $35 billion by 2025,” he wrote.

Loft Orbital was founded by three veterans of Spire Global — Antoine De Chassy, Pierre-Damien Vaujour, and Alex Greenberg.