Sultanate of Oman and SatRevolution Announce International Consortium for Country’s first Satellite Launch and First Mission to Deep Space

REC satellite (Credit: SatRevolution)

MUSCAT, Oman (SatRevolution PR) — The Sultanate of Oman has selected Poland’s SatRevolution S.A. (“SatRev”) to deliver and operate its proprietary nanosatellite technologies alongside partners Virgin Orbit, a leading US-based launch company, Polish capital group and AI data analytics specialists TUATARA, and Omani-based emerging technology innovator ETCO, under a framework agreement for collaboration on Oman’s first mission to deep space and for delivering small satellites to Low Earth Orbit, the first in the country’s history. The framework agreement was signed today in Muscat by the five consortium members.

As part of the historic deep space mission, the group plans to launch a SatRev CubeSat satellite aboard a Virgin Orbit rocket that will conduct ground-breaking scientific research and capture imagery of deep space. 

SatRev CEO Grzegorz Zwoliński, said: “We are honoured and delighted to have been selected by the Sultanate of Oman to provide our nanosatellite technologies for both the Low Earth Orbit and deep space projects. These space projects will contribute to the near-term goals of the Sultanate, which include the modernisation of the educational ecosystem, support for scientific research and innovation, and the enhancement of in-country development of cutting-edge technologies. SatRev is proud to be part of that.” 

All collected data and images, both from the Low Earth Orbit and deep space missions, will be further analysed digitally using computer vision, machine learning, and AI solutions developed by TUATARA in strategic partnership with ETCO. It will be possible, for example, to detect hidden patterns, identify trends and predict changes caused, among others, by the climate or natural disasters. 

The final mission parameters and scientific objectives will be determined in a study that is part of the agreement signed today.

The mission to deep space is the follow-on to the Memorandum of Understanding signed during International Astronautical Congress held in Dubai last October, which established the cooperation of the parties to design and manufacture the first Omani satellite, manufactured by SatRev, and launched aboard Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne rocket, on the first ever launch from the United Kingdom out of Spaceport Cornwall in 2022.  

The launch from Cornwall and subsequent missions to deep space will be enabled through Virgin Orbit’s versatile air launched system. The Cornwall mission providing the first Oman Satellite in Space sets the foundation for allowing previously non-space faring nations the ability to launch satellites from their own soil, which is a key element of the Oman strategy for Space.

As an emerging space-faring nation with plans to launch small satellites into Low Earth Orbit and foster a local, sustainable space ecosystem and industrial base, the Sultanate of Oman further plans on expanding its ambitious space endeavours and engaging the Omani public and students through STEM activities. 

Both missions are in line with the Royal Directives of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said and will directly correspond with the “Oman Vision 2040”, being part of a broader educational outreach initiative with the goal of stimulating long-term growth in the sector. The activities specified in the Agreements are intended to generate and seize opportunities to foster economic competitiveness and social well-being, stimulate growth, and build confidence in economic, social and developmental relations nationwide. 

“Despite many technical advances, to date, only a few organizations have been bold enough to successfully launch missions to deep space,” said Virgin Orbit’s CEO Dan Hart. “We are proud to have been entrusted by the Sultanate of Oman as their launch partner in helping to fulfil their ambitious goals to help bring sustainable space solutions to their country and we’re excited to begin our partnership with the launch of their first satellites out of the UK this year.”

“The future of the Sultanate of Oman is one of innovation, and it’s through partnerships with pioneering organizations like Virgin Orbit that we will make active contributions to those sectors and technologies that are driving progress on a global scale,” Tariq Al Belushi, ETCO Vice President said. “This partnership is a major step in helping us to enrich the Sultanate’s Space industry with the latest technologies and know-how, while adding overall economic value according to Oman’s 2040 Vision.”

“Our mission is to deliver enchanting experiences in the digital space and we are thrilled we were invited to help translate outer space data into digital. We believe that the Oman Mission to deep space will not only be providing vital scientific data and boosting the growth of STEM industry  in the Sultanate but will also inspire the world in the further democratization of the space research.” TUATARA’s Chief Innovation Officer Krzysztof Goworek concluded.

In recognition of the great importance of the Agreement to the Sultanate of Oman, his excellency Dr. Ali Al Shidani – Undersecretary for Communications and Information Technology at the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Information Technology, Sultanate of Oman witnessed the signing of this MoU by the consortium partners at a signing ceremony in Muscat. 

ABOUT SATREVOLUTION   

SatRevolution was founded in Poland in 2016 to focus on the emerging space market. With a vertically-integrated business, the company specializes in the design, manufacture and operation of satellites. It is building a real-time Earth Observation constellation planned to contain over 1,000 satellites by 2026. In October 2019, the company established a consortium with Virgin Orbit and nearly a dozen Polish universities to design and carry out the world’s first dedicated commercial small satellite mission to Mars. In June 2021, SatRev placed two satellites, STORK-4 and STORK-5 Marta, into Low Earth Orbit and in January 2022 another six. SatRev’s satellites can be used to solve the challenges of resource utilisation and optimisation across a wide range of issues such as precision agriculture, energy asset assessment and transportation infrastructure monitoring. Current investors include Polish VC funds such as Infini, Newberg, Tech Invest Group, JR HOLDING and Kvarko (part of the Polish NCBiR R&D scientific start-up funding programme). Learn more at satrevolution.com

ABOUT VIRGIN ORBIT 

Virgin Orbit (Nasdaq: VORB) operates one of the most flexible and responsive space launch systems ever built. Founded by Sir Richard Branson in 2017, the company began commercial service in 2021, and has already delivered commercial, civil, national security, and international satellites into orbit. Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne rockets are designed and manufactured in Long Beach, California, and are air-launched from a modified 747- 400 carrier aircraft that allows Virgin Orbit to operate from locations all over the world in order to best serve each customer’s needs. Learn more at www.virginorbit.com and visit us on LinkedIn, on Twitter @virginorbit, and on Instagram @virgin.orbit

ABOUT TUATARA

TUATARA combines consulting and technology to create enchanting experiences in the digital space. From process digitalization through data analysis to innovative business models, TUATARA exceeds customers’ expectations with artful solutions based on artificial intelligence, machine learning and cognitive technologies. TUATARA has been delivering ground-breaking projects in the telecommunications, financial and marketing industries in Oman and other GCC countries since 2015. Learn more at https://tuatara.pl

ABOUT ETCO

Driven by a forward-thinking approach, ETCO has developed a portfolio of successful partnerships in line with Oman’s digitization strategy for 2040. With a range of compelling solutions, products and world-class customer service, the company is helping to support the Sultanate of Oman’s development, while cementing its position as an integrated technology partner.