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Slingshot Aerospace Reports Increasing Risks of Space Operations

Slingshot Aerospace
Credit: Slingshot Aerospace

Ibadan 3 May 2024. – Slingshot Aerospace, Inc. has released its inaugural State of Satellite Deployments & Orbital Operations report which examines the evolution of the satellite market through the lens of the satellite lifecycles from launch to end of life. The Company compiled the report based on data from the Slingshot Seradata satellite and launch database, with the Slingshot Seradata analysts and the Slingshot Aerospace science team conducting the analysis.

Among the key trends that the report highlights, it noted record losses for the space insurance market, as there were $995 million in total losses paid out across the space industry in 2023. Meanwhile, space insurers only collected approximately $557 million in premiums in the same year. Furthermore, the GEO orbit continues to become more crowded as the average distance between satellites in the GEO orbit decreased by 33% since 2010.

As a result of the insurance losses, insurers have adjusted underwriting practices and markedly increased premium rates. Melissa Quinn, General Manager, Slingshot Aerospace, explained that “The losses in the space insurance market are unsustainable. Some insurers are exiting the space industry, while the ones who remain are substantially increasing premiums to hedge against the record losses in the industry. While anomalies in the early part of a satellite’s life account for most of the major losses, the increased cost of insurance for overall operations is also meaningful.”

Likewise, the General Manager explained, “Among the increased number of objects in GEO are satellites that maneuver more regularly than is traditionally common in this more stable regime. This anomalous behavior clearly demonstrates an increasing need for precise space domain awareness in GEO to ensure operators have insights to both their satellites and neighboring satellites.”

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