NanoRacks Forms International Business Development Partnership with ALTEC, Thales Alenia Space

NanoRacks Opening European Office in Italy

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., April 18, 2018 (NanoRacks PR) – NanoRacks is pleased to announce that the Company will be pursuing International Space Station opportunities in cooperation with ALTEC and Thales Alenia Space, joint venture between Thales 67% and Leonardo 33%. To pursue these opportunities, NanoRacks will be staffing its first formal European-based office at ALTEC’s facilities in Torino, Italy.

The office will serve as a business development hub for European and Asian customers. International customers will enjoy NanoRacks end-to-end turnkey services and technical advice, now in a more accommodating time zone.

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NanoRacks’ Commercial ISS Airlock Completes CDR, Moves to Fabrication

Commercial airlock on International Space Station. (Credit: NanoRacks)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (NanoRacks PR) – The NanoRacks Space Station Airlock Module “Bishop” met another major milestone with completion of the Critical Design Review (CDR) on March 20 and 21, 2018 in Houston, Texas.  This milestone begins the transition from the engineering design phase to the fabrication phase.  Detailed design drawings such as those for the critical pressure shell will be signed and released to NanoRacks fabrication partner, Thales Alenia Space, in order for them to continue their fabrication efforts.

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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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ESA Tests Largest Mars Parachute

KIRUNA, Sweden (ESA PR) — The largest parachute ever to fly on a Mars mission has been deployed in the first of a series of tests to prepare for the upcoming ExoMars mission that will deliver a rover and a surface science platform to the Red Planet.

The spacecraft that will carry them is due for launch in July 2020, with arrival at Mars in March 2021. The rover will be the first of its kind to drill below the surface and determine if evidence of life is buried underground, protected from the destructive radiation that impinges the surface today.

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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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NanoRacks Adds Thales Alenia Space to ISS Airlock Module Team

Airlock (Credit: NanoRacks)

TURIN, Italy (NanoRacks PR) – NanoRacks announced today that Thales Alenia Space, the joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), has been chosen as the latest partner in its commercial airlock program.

Thales Alenia Space will produce and test the critical pressure shell for NanoRacks’ Airlock Module, which is targeting to be launched to the International Space Station late 2019, and will be used to deploy commercial and government payloads. Thales Alenia Space will also manufacture various secondary structures, including the Micrometeoroid Orbital Debris (MMOD) shields with Multi-Layer Isolation (MLI) panels, the power and video grapple fixture support structure and other structural components.

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Thales Alenia Space Partners with NextSTEP-2 Companies

Habitat in lunar orbit. (Credit: Orbital ATK)

ROME, 14 December 2017 (Thales Alenia Space PR) — Thales Alenia Space has signed three contracts in the frame of Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships (NextSTEP-2) activities with Boeing, Lockheed Martin and Orbital–ATK, to develop capabilities that can meet NASA human space exploration objectives while also supporting industry commercialization plans.

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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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SKY Perfect JSAT and LeoSat Sign Strategic Partnership & Investment Agreement

LeoSat Data Network Constellation (Credit: LeoSat)

WASHINGTON, DC (LeoSat PR)–LeoSat Enterprises, which is launching a constellation of up to 108 low-earth-orbit communications satellites that will provide the fastest, most secure and widest coverage data network in the world, has announced that SKY Perfect JSAT Corporation (SJC), Asia’s largest satellite operator and Japan’s only provider of both multi-channel pay TV broadcasting and satellite communications services has entered into an agreement to invest in LeoSat. With this agreement, SJC will be the first Asian satellite operator to pursue the development of low earth orbit capabilities.

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It’s Showtime for Revamped Antares Booster

Antares vertical on the launch pad on Wallops Island. (Credit: Orbital ATK)
Antares vertical on the launch pad on Wallops Island. (Credit: Orbital ATK)

The Antares booster set to lift off on Sunday evening is a re-engineered version of a launch vehicle that exploded spectacularly after launch nearly two years ago.

The key change is the replacement of two Aerojet Rocketdyne AJ-26 engines in the first stage with RD-181 engines produced by NPO Energomash of Russia. The new engines are powered by liquid oxygen (LOX) and kerosene.

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Orbital ATK Purchases Additional Cygnus Modules

Cygnus approaches ISS (Credit: NASA)
Cygnus approaches ISS (Credit: NASA)

Farnborough, UK, 11 July 2016 (Thales Alenia PR) – Thales Alenia Space, a joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo-Finmeccanica (33%), today announced the signing of a new contract with Orbital ATK, Inc. (NYSE: OA) a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies. The announcement was made at the Farnborough International Airshow in Farnborough, UK.

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Thales Alenia Space Launches Stratobus Program

Stratobus vehicle (Credit: Thales Alenia Space)
Stratobus vehicle (Credit: Thales Alenia Space)

CANNES, April 26, 2016 (Thales Alenia Space PR) –  Thales Alenia Space announced today the official kickoff of its Stratobus research & development project. Stratobus is an autonomous stratospheric airship that was just approved by the French government’s “investment in the future” program, with funding of 17 million euros. These funds cover a 24-month development phase for key enabling technologies, culminating in the construction of a demonstrator. Since the project has also won support from four different French regions, additional funding of about 3 million euros is expected.
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European Space Propulsion Completes Testing of Five-Kilowatt Hall Thruster with Thales Alenia Space

European Space Propulsion successfully completed testing of a five-kilowatt Hall Thruster with a Power Processing Unit supplied by Thales Alenia Space Belgium. (Credit: European Space Propulsion)
European Space Propulsion successfully completed testing of a five-kilowatt Hall Thruster with a Power Processing Unit supplied by Thales Alenia Space Belgium. (Credit: European Space Propulsion)

BELFAST, Northern Ireland, Dec 23, 2015 – European Space Propulsion (ESP), a subsidiary of Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: AJRD), successfully completed testing of a five-kilowatt Hall Thruster with a Power Processing Unit (PPU) supplied by Thales Alenia Space (TAS) Belgium. The test programme was successfully conducted in the UK, and marks the first time a flight-proven five-kilowatt class Hall Thruster has been tested with a European-manufactured PPU. The achievement of this test being completed in less time than allocated was a reflection on the robustness of the design and the understanding and expertise of the team.

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ESA Signs Agreement With Venture Capital Fund

ESA logoPARIS (ESA PR) — ESA will give the most promising European space applications, services and technologies the chance to access a substantial new source of venture capital finance.

ESA has signed an agreement with the £83 million (€116 million) Seraphim Space & Special Situations Fund to work alongside ESA’s Advanced Research in Telecommunications Systems (ARTES) Applications programme. The Fund will also back other space-related investment opportunities beyond ESA.

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