Following its request for proposals from satellite manufacturers for the build of a communications satellite, Thailand’s mu Space has announced that it is working with U.S. satellite manufacturer Space Systems Loral (SSL), a subsidiary of Maxar Technologies, to develop concepts for communications and Earth observation satellites.
mu Space has previously announced its plans to launch a satellite, intended for earth observation applications including remote sensing technology, into Low Earth Orbit (LEO) in the early 2020s.
SSL will contribute its depth of technical expertise and agile approach to help with this project, working with mu Space to tailor designs to meet its market demand. A mu Space low-orbit satellite could also be used for agricultural observation, national security purposes, and satellite-enabled broadband applications using advanced phased-array antennas.
“At mu Space, our mission is to enable Internet of Things (IoT) and smart solutions via satellite to improve the quality of life of people,” said James Yenbamroong, founder and CEO at mu Space. “As such, we’ve been searching for an ideal partner who can develop our satellite on schedule and at the right price point. With SSL’s strong track record in manufacturing satellites, we’re confident we can achieve that,”.
SSL is confident in its ability to assist mu Space in meeting its goals, according to Mark Sarojak, vice president, Commercial Earth Observation at SSL. “SSL is the leader in commercial communications satellites and we have built 11 small Earth Observation satellites that were launched over the past two years. SSL has the technical expertise, agile mindset, and years of experience needed to help mu Space succeed,” he said.
“Low-orbit satellites are capable of delivering these services. That is made possible with LEO satellites’ lower launch costs, reduced power requirements and a significantly reduced roundtrip transmission delay,” James concluded.
mu Space, founded in 2017, develops satellite communication technologies to accelerate the adoption of Internet of Things devices and smart cities. It plans to launch its own satellite in 2020 using Blue Origin’s New Glenn space vehicle and to lead space technology development in Asia-Pacific.