ISRO Looks to Double Launch Rate, Turn Over Work to Private Sector

PSLV C38 mission launches (Credit: ISRO)

ISRO is looking to double its launch rate and turn over more responsibility to the private sector in the coming years.

Currently, the space agency launches 9 to 10 spacecraft built by it every year. Dr K Sivan, director of Thiruvananthapuram-based Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, said, “Isro is targeting to double the number of launches from 9-10 to 18-19 launches per year.”

On outsourcing of jobs to the private industry, Isro chairman A S Kiran Kumar said the space agency does as much activity as possible with the industry. “Wherever it’s possible to get things done through the industry, we are doing and it will only increase in the coming days because we need to do more frequent activities,” he told a news agency.

Dr Sivan said, “Currently, 80-90 per cent of work relating to launch vehicles are being done by the industry, including private and public sector companies. Only, critical components are manufactured by Isro. After we purchase 90 per cent of vehicle components, propellant casting and vehicle integration are done at the Sriharikota launch centre.” He said, “The space agency currently focuses on vehicle integration, vehicle engineering, mission design (marking trajectory), launch and quality assurance.”

“But gradually Isro wants vehicle parts vendors to become part of the system through joint ventures. Therefore in this direction, Isro is preparing the ground work to involve such companies directly into launch projects,” Dr Sivan said.

The Isro chairman, too, said the space agency is looking at the possibility of building a PSLV in a joint venture with a set of industry partners by 2020-21. The role of industry in the making of satellites, however, is restricted to 30-35 per cent as the spacecraft is the key part of any space mission.

Meanwhile, ISRO is looking to return to flight in December following the failure of a PSLV booster on Aug. 30.  The IRNSS-1 navigation satellite was lost after the rocket’s payload shroud failed to separate.

The Cartosat-2 remote sensing satellite is the primary payload for the PSLV flight next month. Along for the ride will be 25 nanosats, three microsats and possibility a university-built spacecraft.

D-Orbit, Sky & Space Global to Collaborate on SAS Nanosat Constellation

  • Sky and Space Global (SAS) has signed a binding agreement with Italian space system company, D-Orbit, to provide launch and deployment services for the upcoming roll-out of the SAS nanosatellite constellation
  • The partnership will allow SAS to maximize the operational capabilities and potential revenue generation for their upcoming nanosatellite constellation
  • The agreement follows the recent announcement of the Pearls, the next generation of SAS nanosatellites, which will be launched into space and were unveiled at the International
    Astronautical Congress in Adelaide in September
  • This partnership demonstrates SAS’ strong commitment to the success of its constellation launch plans and delivering on its promises to investors and shareholders

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$30 Billion/Year Over Next Decade to Manufacture & Launch ~300 Satellites Annually

Paris, Washington D.C., Montreal, Yokohama, October 11, 2017 – According to the 20th edition of the report Satellites to be Built & Launched, Euroconsult anticipates that 300 satellites with a mass over 50 kg will be launched on average each year by 2026 for government agencies and commercial organizations worldwide. This is a threefold increase over the past decade as the satellite market experiences a paradigm shift with the rise of small satellites and mega constellations, such as that of OneWeb.

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Lockheed Martin Introduces New Satellite Lineup

Lockheed Martin’s family of solutions all now featuring common components include four series of satellites from nanosatellites to powerful geostationary platforms. (Credit: Lockheed Martin)

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md., Sept. 19, 2017 (Lockheed Martin PR) — Today Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) debuted a new family of satellite buses that form the core of nearly every space mission. From nanosats to high-powered satellites, the versatile lineup incorporates dozens of major enhancements and hundreds of common components that speed production and reduce cost. The company announced the lineup at the Air Force Association Air, Space & Cyber Conference.

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Sky and Space Global Announces Breakthroughs in Nanosat Utilization

LONDON (Sky and Space Global PR) — Sky and Space Global Ltd (ASX: SAS, “Sky and Space Global” or the “Company”) today announces a world first for the aerospace, satellite and telecommunications industries, as the first ever voice call has been successfully conducted using its 3 Diamonds nano-satellite technology, a standard smartphone and SAS proprietary hardware and application.

Performing the first ever phone call facilitated by nano-satellites marks a major milestone for the telecoms and satellite communications industries. This technology will enable the delivery of low cost satellite connectivity in remote locations and emerging markets that have no access to a communications network infrastructure. It is an important step towards realizing the SAS vision.

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Sky and Space Global Signs First Binding Commercial Offtake Contract

Highlights

  • Sky and Space Global and Sat -Space Africa have signed a binding commercial contract for provision of narrow -band services, following the initial binding Letter of Intent from 2016
  • Sat-Space Africa is the Company’s first contracted wholesale customer for services from the 3 Diamonds and the Equatorial Constellation once deployed from 2018
  • This binding contract defines the full commercial terms for purchasing services from Sky and Space Global, along with Sat-Space Africa’s role with other customers
  • Once the full Sky and Space Global Equatorial Constellation is deployed, potential revenues from customers via Sat- Space Africa will be between US$10 million to US$35 million annually
  • This binding commercial contract provides further confidence in Sky and Space Global’s nano-satellite constellation and technical capability

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ELSE Raises $3 Million Seed Round for Internet of Things Constellation

Lausanne, Switzerland (August 10th, 2017) – ELSE SA, the Swiss new space start-up, today announced the funding of a $3 million seed round. The successful capital raise was enabled by a group of investors including Airbus Ventures, a Geneva-based Independent Assets Manager and Multi Family Office, as well as numerous additional Swiss- and internationally-based private investors. The seed round follows $3 million previously raised by the company in public support.

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Vector & Citrix to Bring Virtualization Software Technology to Micro Satellites

NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) additive manufactured injector by was successfully hot fire tested by Vector Space System on Dec. 8, 2016 using Liquid Oxygen/Propylene propellant (LOX/LC3H6). This work was performed under a 2015 STMD ACO Space Act Agreement. (Credit: Vector Space System)

TUCSON, Ariz., May 1, 2017 (Vector Space Systems PR) — Vector, a micro satellite space launch company comprised of new-space and enterprise software industry veterans from SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, McDonnell Douglas, Sea Launch and VMware, today announced that it will join forces with Citrix to bring advanced datacenter and cloud virtualization technology into space for the first time through the development of a software defined satellite platform with Vector’s GalacticSky solution.  Citrix and Vector will work together to enhance Citrix XenServer for space use and validate Vector’s GalacticOS, a purpose built satellite app operating system that enables entrepreneurs to easily develop space based applications.

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NASA’s Exo-Brake ‘Parachute’ to Enable Safe Return for Small Spacecraft

Engineers pack the Technology Education Satellite (TechEdSat-5) with the Exo-Brake payload. At almost 4 square feet in cross section (0.35 square meters), the Exo-Brake is made of Mylar and is controlled by a hybrid system of mechanic struts and flexible cord. (Credit: NASA Ames/Dominic Hart)
Engineers pack the Technology Education Satellite (TechEdSat-5) with the Exo-Brake payload. At almost 4 square feet in cross section (0.35 square meters), the Exo-Brake is made of Mylar and is controlled by a hybrid system of mechanic struts and flexible cord. (Credit: NASA Ames/Dominic Hart)

MOFFETT FIELD, Calif. (NASA PR) — NASA’s “Exo-Brake” will demonstrate a critical technology leading to the potential return of science payloads to Earth from the International Space Station through the deployment of small spacecraft in early 2017.

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Vector Space Systems Receives $1.25 Million From Space Angels Network

P20 sub-scale test vehicle launch (Credit: Vector Space Systems)
P20 sub-scale test vehicle launch (Credit: Vector Space Systems)

TUCSON, Ariz., Nov. 18, 2016  (Vector Space Systems PR) — Vector Space Systems, a micro satellite space launch company comprised of new-space and enterprise software industry veterans from SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, McDonnell Douglas, Sea Launch and VMware, today announced that it has received an additional $1.25M in angel funding led by Space Angels Network, a New York City-based investor in early-stage space companies. As one of the largest communities of space investors and entrepreneurs in the world, Space Angels Network will be contributing to the rise and success of the micro satellite industry through its investment in Vector.

With this additional seed financing, Vector will accelerate development efforts towards the goal of being one of the first commercial dedicated micro satellite launch vehicles to achieve low earth orbit. Vector continues to strive to connect space startups and innovators with affordable and reliable access to space. Its mission to reshape the multi-billion-dollar launch market has never been more critical. This need for dedicated low-cost micro satellite launches and software defined satellites to democratize space access and the speed to orbit has increased significantly since the company’s founding earlier this year.

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Smallsat Market Projected to Grow Nearly 21 Percent

Spacecraft specialists prepare spacecraft to perform the Edison Demonstration of Smallsat Networks (EDSN) mission. (Credit: NASA Ames Research Center)
Spacecraft specialists prepare spacecraft to perform the Edison Demonstration of Smallsat Networks (EDSN) mission. (Credit: NASA Ames Research Center)

PUNE, India  (ReportsnReports.com PR) — According to research report, “Global Small Satellite Market (By Type, By Application, By End-Use): Trends, Opportunities and Forecasts (2016-2021)” the industry is projected to exhibit a CAGR of over ~19.54% during 2016 – 2021, driven by the increasing number of launches and, design and development of low cost satellites. On the basis of market segment, the market has been segmented on basis of type (Nano Satellite, Micro Satellite and Mini Satellite).

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Moraliss-Nerva Nano-satellite Launcher Development Project Commences

polytechnic_bucharestBUCHAREST (UPB PR) — Through the National Agency for Scientific Research (NASR), the Romanian government has commenced sponsorship of NERVA, a Romanian orbital nanosatellite launcher currently in development by a team of professors and students from University “Politehnica” of Bucharest and ADDA – The Association Dedicated to Development in Astronautics, through a new 3-year grant funded by the European Union.

Project co-founded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF 2014-2020) through the Competitiveness Operational Program.

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SSC Looks to Sell NanoSpace Shares to GomSpace

ssc_logoSOLNA, Sweden, August 19, 2016 (SSC PR) — Swedish Space Corporation (SSC) has entered into a non-binding letter of intent with GomSpace, parent company of GomSpace ApS, regarding the potential sale of 100% of SSC’s shares in its Swedish subsidiary NanoSpace AB.

The LOI contains broad terms of a potential transaction with the right for GomSpace to conduct a due diligence investigation and the acquisition is conditional upon both parties entering into a definite agreement containing specific signing and closing terms and conditions yet to be negotiated.

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How to Dock CubeSats

The ability to autonomously rendezvous and dock CubeSats could enable in-orbit assembly of larger structures that simply would not be possible in any other way. (Credit: EPFL/Jamani Caillet)
The ability to autonomously rendezvous and dock CubeSats could enable in-orbit assembly of larger structures that simply would not be possible in any other way. (Credit: EPFL/Jamani Caillet)

PARIS (ESA PR) — The miniature satellites known as CubeSats already play a variety of roles in space. In future they could also serve as the building blocks of other, larger missions by being docked together in orbit.

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Links to Parabolic Arc’s Coverage of Small Satellite 2016 Conference

SkyFire’s new infrared technology will help NASA enhance its knowledge of the lunar surface. (Credit: Lockheed Martin)
SkyFire’s new infrared technology will help NASA enhance its knowledge of the lunar surface. (Credit: Lockheed Martin)

The Small Satellite 2016 Conference is now over. Below are links to Parabolic Arc’s coverage of the conference and the CubeSat Workshop that preceded it last weekend. There are also links to announcements made during the conference and in recent weeks.

Small Satellite Conference Coverage

Recent Smallsat News & Announcements

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