LUXEMBOURG (Luxembourg Government PR – To promote Luxembourg as a European hub for the exploration and commercial use of space resources, the Ministry of the Economy conducted from April 9th to April 13th an economic mission headed by Luxembourg’s Crown Prince to the U.S. West Coast. The mission aimed to identify and develop new business opportunities and to promote the governmental SpaceResources.lu initiative that offers an attractive overall framework for space resource utilization related activities, including but not limited to the legal regime to provide private companies and investors with a secure legal environment as of the ownership of resources gathered in space.
NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) program recently awarded five grants for the development of new technologies for analyzing asteroids, extracting resources from them, and using the materials for new space products.
Massively Expanded NEA Accessibility via Microwave-Sintered Aerobrakes
John Lewis Deep Space Industries, Inc. Moffett Field, Calif.
Value: Approximately $125,000 Length of Study: 9 months
The two fundamental prerequisites for large-scale economic use of space resources are: in-space manufacture of propellants from nonterrestrial bodies, and in-space manufacture of heat shields for low-cost capture of materials into Earth orbit.
The former has been the subject of recent NIAC investigations. The latter would expand by a factor of 30 to 100 time the number of asteroids from which resources could be returned cost-effectively to Earth orbit.
With vastly larger populations from which to choose, return opportunities will be much more frequent and targets can be selected where operations would be highly productive, not merely sufficient.
The feedstocks for manufacture of life-support materials and propellants are found on C-type near-Earth asteroids, which have high concentrations of hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen and sulfur. The total abundance of readily extractable (HCNOS) volatiles in the CI chondritic meteorite parent bodies (C asteroids) is roughly 40% of the total meteorite mass. Further, the residue from extraction of volatiles includes a mix of metallic iron (10% of total mass), iron oxide and iron sulphides (20% as Fe) plus 1% Ni and ~0.1% Co.
We propose to use microwave heating to 1) expedite selective release of H2O vapor from heated C asteroid solids, and 2) sinter highly outgassed refractory asteroidal material to make heat shields for aerocapture at Earth return.
We will study both processes experimentally using C-type asteroid simulant made by Deep Space Industries under contract with NASA, and study the logistics of retrieval of asteroid materials to Earth orbit using these aerobrakes.
The result will be a uniquely propellant-rich deep space exploration architecture with faster timetables enabled by the greater engineering and safety margins allowed by abundant propellant.
LITTLETON, Colo., March 27, 2017 (Exoterra PR) — NASA has awarded ExoTerra Corporation a $2.5M contract to demonstrate a novel solar electric propulsion system for CubeSats that will enable the shoebox-sized spacecraft to triple their available power and produce over 2.5 km/s of propulsion.
MOFFETT FIELD, Calif. (NASA PR) — Deep Space Industries is excited to announce that Bill Miller will be joining the company as chief executive officer to position DSI for rapid growth in the coming years. With an impeccable track record of growing technology companies, Bill brings game-changing approaches, solutions, and perspectives to DSI through his experience in defining, developing, and delivering results for dynamic organizations.
“Bill is a proven difference-maker and change agent who knows how to deliver solutions by crafting a vision and executing strategy that leads to concrete results,” said Rick Tumlinson, DSI’s chair of the board of DSI. “He brings the exact type of leadership and experience that will be instrumental to the growth of DSI in the coming years.”
GUADALAJARA, Mexico. September 28, 2016 (Mx Space/DSI PR) — On September 29, at 11:00 a.m. local time, Deep Space Industries (DSI) and MxSpace will sign an historic agreement that marks the beginning of an international partnership between the companies to promote the development of new commercial space technologies and business ventures. Dr. Francisco Mendieta from Agencia Espacial Mexicana (AEM), as well as executives from both MxSpace and Deep Space Industries, will take part in the signing ceremony at the MxSpace booth (booth #24) on the trade show floor of the 67th International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara.
The Small Satellite 2016 Conference is now over. Below are links to Parabolic Arc’s coverage of the conference and the CubeSat Workshop that preceded it last weekend. There are also links to announcements made during the conference and in recent weeks.
First in an irregular series on entrepreneurial buzz words
Come on let’s pivot again, Like we did last quarter! Yeaaah, let’s pivot again, Like we did last year!
Do you remember when, ROI was really hummin’, Yeaaaah, let’s pivot again, Pivotin’ time is here!
Heeee, and round and round til IPO we go! Oh, baby, make those investors love us so!
Let’s pivot again, Like we did last quarter! Yeaaah, let’s pivot again, Like we did last year!
There comes a time in the existence of many startups when there an urgent need to change direction. You set up the company to pursue a goal, but for one reason or several — a lack of a market, shortage of investment, regulatory hurdles, a flawed concept — you have to direct all that talent, technology and enthusiasm toward a new objective that will keep the company in operation.
Luxembourg will make an initial investment of 200 million euros ($227 million) to become the “Silicon Valley of space resources” under an initiative that will primarily benefit two American asteroid mining companies.
LUXEMBOURG CITY (Luxembourg Government PR) — The Luxembourg Government forges ahead with the SpaceResources.lu initiative by presenting an overall strategy to be implemented progressively for the exploration and commercial utilization of resources from Near Earth Objects (NEOs), such as asteroids. Amongst the key actions undertaken is the establishment of an appropriate legal and regulatory framework for space resource utilization activities to provide private companies and investors with a secure legal environment.
MOFFETT FIELD, Calif. (DSI PR) — Deep Space Industries, Inc. has been selected by HawkEye 360 as the satellite provider for its Pathfinder small satellite mini-constellation. This is the first step towards the launch of the full commercial constellation of HawkEye 360’s space-based radio frequency mapping and analytics system.
Deep Space Industries (DSI) is the prime contractor for the development and manufacturing of the satellites that will host HawkEye 360’s proprietary data processing technology. The system will use space-based detection of radio signals to locate and characterize wireless spectrum information from Earth.
MOFFETT FIELD, Calif. (DSI PR) — Asteroid mining company Deep Space Industries, together with the Luxembourg Government and the Société Nationale de Crédit et d’Investissement (SNCI), the national banking institution in Luxembourg, have signed an agreement formalizing their partnership to explore, use, and commercialize space resources as part of Luxembourg’s spaceresources.lu initiative.
NASA has selected asteroid mining company Deep Space Industries for a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II award to continue work on developing and testing of asteroid soil simulants.
The project is aimed at producing “at least four asteroid simulants at high fidelity for mineral content and particle size, created through standardized inputs and documented processes” for use by terrestrial researchers in a variety of programs.