SpaceTalks 4.0 - 2024

North America

GHGSat Completes Funding to Accelerate Commercialization

GHGSat-C3, GHGSat-C4, GHGSat-C5 after completing testing. Credit Space Flight Laboratory

GHGSat has completed its Series C1 funding round for a total of US$44 million in equity and debt, which consequently puts the Company's total raised funds to more than US$126 million since its inception in 2011. Equity participants in the funding round included Fonds de solidarité FTQ, BDC Capital, the investment arm of the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC), the Government of Québec through Investissement Québec, Climate Investment, and the Japan Energy Fund.

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Terran Orbital Launches Responsive Space Initiative

Terran Orbital

Terran Orbital have announced the launch of its Responsive Space Initiative. Under this initiative, the company aims to provide customers with satellite buses within 30 days and complete satellite systems with integrated payloads within 60 days. In addition, seven new satellite buses will be participating in the Responsive Space Initiative program.

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NorthStar awarded contract by LuxIMPULSE

LuxIMPULSE and NorthStar Image. Credit LuxIMPULSE

LuxIMPULSE has awarded NorthStar Earth & Space a contract to accelerate Space Situational Awareness (SSA) services launching later in 2023. LuxIMPULSE is the national space program in Luxembourg for the promotion of research, development, and innovation. It is managed by the Luxembourg Space Agency (LSA) with the European Space Agency (ESA) to support companies established in Luxembourg. The contract has been funded by the Government of Luxembourg through an ESA contract.   

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Space Flight Laboratory announces GHG microsatellite milestone

GHGSat constellation graphic. Credit GHGSat

Space Flight Laboratory (SFL) announced on the 7th of September that the SFL-built GHGSat greenhouse gas monitoring microsatellites have achieved sustained detection and measurement of methane emissions at double the design capacity of the satellite. SFL developed all nine operational 15 kg GHGSat spacecraft on its NEMO microsatellite bus. 

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Astrobotic Commences Two NASA Contracts

Astrobotic

Astrobotic have begun work on two NASA Small Business Innovation Research contracts that will further research on lunar plume-surface interactions (PSI), a key area of risk and uncertainty for lunar landing. This testing will generate valuable new data about how lunar dust stirred up by a lander's rocket plumes will affect landing systems, onboard payloads, landing sites, and nearby surface infrastructure on upcoming missions. The first project, 'Floatinator,' aims to control and eliminate a significant testing variable – namely, Earth gravity – that has limited ground-based lunar PSI tests.

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Firefly Aerospace Awarded Multi-Launch Agreement with L3Harris

Firefly Aerospace

Firefly Aerospace, Inc. announced it signed a multi-launch agreement with L3Harris Technologies [NYSE: LHX] for three dedicated launches on Firefly's Alpha vehicle in 2026. The agreement further encourages Firefly, a small-lift launch services company, to ramp up production of its Alpha vehicle to support the growing needs of both Government and commercial customers. Firefly will provide rapid launch capabilities for L3Harris to achieve direct access to low Earth orbit at a lower cost and support the responsive space needs of the U.S. Government. The three missions will launch from Firefly's SLC-2 launch site at the Vandenberg Space Force Base.

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UK Space Agency Announces US/UK Partnership

Hall Effect Space Thruster, built in the UK by Pulsar Fusion undergoing testing at the University of Southampton. Credit Pulsar Fusion

UK space agency announces vital US/UK partnership in electric space propulsion between Britain’s Pulsar Fusion and the University of Michigan. Pulsar is seeking ways to leverage the unique test capabilities of the University of Michigan for Hall thrusters. Therefore, the focus of this preliminary Phase I effort is to identify export-compliant paths for allowing this.

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Space Tango appoints Sita Sonty as CEO

Space Tango, a provider of automated microgravity solutions for research and manufacturing, announces the appointment of S. Sita Sonty as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO), effective September 1, 2023. Sonty succeeds Co-Founder and current President, Twyman Clements. Prior to joining Space Tango, Sonty led the space industry practice for the Boston Consulting Group. She was also the Head of Human Spaceflight Sales at SpaceX, where she executed the first private spaceflight sale on the Crew Dragon on a Lower Earth Orbit Free Flyer and to the International Space Station.

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Lockheed Martin Satellites Launch as Part of T0TL Mission

JP91 Satellite. Credit Lockheed Martin

Lockheed Martin has successfully deployed ten of its satellites into low-Earth orbit (LEO) in support of the Space Development Agency's (SDA) Tranche 0 Transport Layer (T0TL) mission. SDA's T0TL is a proliferated LEO constellation that will demonstrate low-latency communication and provide a resilient network of integrated capabilities. The company's 10 small satellites successfully separated from the launch vehicle and are now in orbit.

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#SpaceWatchGL Summer Listening Series: Week Five – Women in the Space Sector

September is upon us, and as our gaze shifts towards the stars during those warm, clear nights, SpaceWatch.Global brings you its fifth and final collection of the Summer Listening Series. Based on the vote by our newsroom, we have mapped out an interstellar journey across five categories. After "Moon and Exploration," "Climate - Space - Earth," "Trendsetters," and "Space Debris and Regulations", this week is the turn of  "Women in the Space Sector"

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