First Quarter Commercial Space Investment Reached Nearly $1 Billion

SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts off with a Dragon resupply ship on April 2, 2018. (Credit: NASA)

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

SpaceX received $500 million of the nearly $1 billion in investment raised by commercial space companies during the first quarter of 2018, according to the Space Investment Quarterly report from Space Angels.

“SpaceX shows no signs of slowing down—after the inaugural flight of the Falcon Heavy, the company secured $500 million from Fidelity Investments to drive development of their satellite communications network, Starlink,” the report added.

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Deep Space Industries to Provide Comet Satellite Propulsion for BlackSky, LeoStella

SAN JOSE, Calif. (DSI PR) — Deep Space Industries (DSI) announced today that it has signed a contract to provide its Comet water-based satellite propulsion systems for the BlackSky Earth observation constellation of smallsats. DSI will provide an initial block of 20 water thrusters for the BlackSky satellites which are scheduled to start launching later this year.

This announcement comes on the heels of Spaceflight Industries’ recent $150 million funding and the development of LeoStella LLC, a joint venture between Spaceflight Industries and Thales Alenia Space. LeoStella is developing a Seattle-based facility to manufacture the low-cost, high-performance BlackSky satellites and is tasked with building the next 20 spacecraft with the Comet propulsion technology between now and 2020.

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Thales Alenia Space, Telespazio & Spaceflight Industries Finalize Alliance to Manufacture Smallsats at Scale

Global-1 satellite (Credit: BlackSky)

Parties will deliver innovative geospatial services using the high revisit rate BlackSky constellation

WASHINGTON, March 13, 2018 (Spaceflight Industries PR)  At the Satellite 2018 conference, The Space Alliance formed by Thales Alenia Space (Thales 67%, Leonardo 33%) and Telespazio (Leonardo 67%, Thales 33%) announced today it has officially taken a minority stake in Seattle-based Spaceflight Industries, having received all government approvals for the transaction.

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BlackSky Completes 1st Next-Gen Earth Imaging Smallsat

Global-1 satellite (Credit: Spaceflight Industries)

Readies for launch and commercial availability

SEATTLE, March 6, 2018 (Spaceflight Industries PR)BlackSky, the geospatial intelligence service of Spaceflight Industries, today announced the first of its next generation of small Earth observation satellites is complete, qualified, and awaiting launch. This spacecraft, called Global-1, is the first of four smallsats that are scheduled to launch in in the next year on both US and foreign launch vehicles.

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Spaceflight Industries Forges Strategic Partnership to Fully Fund BlackSky Constellation

Paris, September 15, 2017 – The Space Alliance, formed by Thales Alenia Space (Thales 67%, Leonardo 33%) and Telespazio (Leonardo 67%, Thales 33%), today signed a partnership with the U.S.-based company Spaceflight Industries which includes the following elements:

  • A minority investment in Spaceflight Industries, which through its BlackSky business, has developed a geospatial platform and plans to build and operate a constellation of 60 small high-resolution observation satellites featuring very short revisit times;
  • The creation of an industrial Joint Venture in the United States between Thales Alenia Space and Spaceflight Industries specialized in the production of small satellites;
  • The implementation of a Joint Cooperation and Marketing Agreement between Telespazio and BlackSky enhancing their respective product and analytics portfolios on the market.

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BlackSky Awarded $16.4 Million Contract by Air Force Research Lab

SEATTLE, August 29, 2017 (Spaceflight Industries PR) – Spaceflight Industries today announced that BlackSky has been awarded a two-year $16.4 million cost-plus-prime contract with the Air Force Research Lab to develop and deliver a cloud-based geospatial intelligence broker platform. The brokering platform will provide on-demand analytics, collection, and information services from global data sources.

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Spaceflight Industries Reveals BlackSky Spectra

Image from BlackSky Spectra, displaying visible, SAR, and IR data over Panama City and the Miraflores Locks. (Images from Airbus Pléiades, Airbus TerraSAR-X, and USGS Landsat; some of the bans are IR, some are visible), respectively. (Credit: Spaceflight Industries)

Airbus’s Pléiades, SPOT6/7, KazEOSat-1, and TerraSAR-X Join Growing Satellite Imagery Service

SEATTLE, April 5, 2017 (Spaceflight Industries PR) – Spaceflight Industries today revealed BlackSky Spectra, its on-demand satellite imagery service which enables customers to discover archive images and task new images from 13 high-resolution imaging spacecraft, all from one convenient web platform. BlackSky Spectra enables customers to easily look at the planet across every spectrum, from visual imagery to multi-spectral data including synthetic aperture radar (SAR), hyperspectral data, and radio frequency detection, which provides a more comprehensive view of the changing world.

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Spaceflight Industries Reveals its BlackSky Platform

The BlackSky platform helps customers observe, analyze, and act on events critical to their global operations. The picture above shows civilian evacuations in Aleppo Syria with real-time, related social media data streams from the area to provide greater context. (Credit: Spaceflight Industries)
The BlackSky platform helps customers observe, analyze, and act on events critical to their global operations. The picture above shows civilian evacuations in Aleppo Syria with real-time, related social media data streams from the area to provide greater context. (Credit: Spaceflight Industries)

SEATTLE, Dec. 14, 2016 (Spaceflight Industries PR)Spaceflight Industries today announced the availability of its BlackSky global intelligence platform, as well as its Early Adopter Program (EAP) participants, and the diverse partner ecosystem fueling the platform. The highly scalable, cloud-based platform enables organizations to observe, analyze and act on global events as they happen. Unparalleled in the industry, the BlackSky platform integrates diverse sensors and data – including satellite imagery, social media and other data feeds – to reveal timely and relevant insights around specific topics or locations.

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Spaceflight Industries Successfully Launches BlackSky Pathfinder Satellite

PSLV-C35 launch (Credit: ISRO)
PSLV-C35 launch (Credit: ISRO)

SEATTLE, Sept. 26, 2016 (Spaceflight Industries PR) – Spaceflight Industries, a next-generation space company enabling access to space and redefining global intelligence, announced the successful launch of its BlackSky Pathfinder-1 satellite into a sun synchronous orbit from India’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV). From Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota, India, liftoff occurred on Sunday Sept. 25 at 11:42 p.m. EDT with the satellite separating from the rocket’s upper stage at 1:57 a.m. EDT Monday.

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BlackSky Inks Partnership with United Nations to Enhance Global Decision-Making

Final integration of BlackSky Pathfinder spacecraft. (Credit: BlackSky Global)
Final integration of BlackSky Pathfinder spacecraft. (Credit: BlackSky Global)

BlackSky and the United Nations Plan to Utilize Data and Images
Collected from Small Satellites in Revolutionary Ways

SEATTLE – April 28, 2016BlackSky, a satellite-imaging-as-a-service company, today announced that it has established an official partnership with the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR). UNITAR, created in 1965, is an autonomous body within the United Nations that was formed to develop capacities to enhance global decision-making and support country-level action for shaping a better future.

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Spaceflight CEO Jason Andrews Recognized as a ‘Newsmaker of the Year’ by GeekWire

Jason Andrews
Jason Andrews

Andrews honored among region’s top business leaders for innovations in the commercialization of space

Seattle, December 3, 2015 Spaceflight Industries founder and CEO Jason Andrews has been recognized by GeekWire as one of the region’s most significant newsmakers this year. The selection committee commended Andrews for his active role in leading Spaceflight Industries to the front runner position in the commercialization of space, as well as for securing substantial funding for the company and its two subsidiaries, Spaceflight and BlackSky.

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