Constellations, Launch, New Space and more…

Space SPAC Index: Rocket Lab – – Transporter 7 and More

By Doug Messier
Parabolic Arc
April 19, 2023
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Space SPAC Index: Rocket Lab – – Transporter 7 and More
Hypersonic Accelerator Suborbital Test Electron (Credit: Rocket Lab)

Welcome to this week’s S-SPACi. Rocket Lab has entered the hypersonic market, stockholders resells shares, and three space SPACs had payloads aboard SpaceX Transporter-7 rideshare mission.

Rocket Lab (NAS: RKLB) has introduced a suborbital version of its Electron launch vehicle that has been modified to serve as a testbed for hypersonic technologies. Hypersonic speeds are defined as being in excess of Mach 5.

The Hypersonic Accelerator Suborbital Test Electron (HASTE) rocket will launch during the first half of this year for a confidential customer from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport in Virginia.

“Rocket Lab has a strong track record of delivering tailored and reliable space capabilities for the civil space and national security communities across launch and space systems and HASTE is an extension of this,” said Brian Rogers, senior director of global launch services. “Hypersonic and suborbital test capabilities are key priorities for the nation, yet the DoD’s ability to test these systems has been limited.

Rocket Lab said it is working with Dynetics to provide launch services under the U.S. Navy’s Multiservice Advanced Capability Test Bed (MACH-TB) project. The company is also working with the Defense Innovation Unit under the agency’s hypersonic and high-cadence testing capabilities program.

Rocket Lab also completed a study of payloads that could be tested on HASTE for the Missile Defense Agency. dashboard
Dashboard (Credit: Stock Offering

Shares of (NYS: BBAI) rose 15% about last week after the company filed to allow existing shareholders to resell 113.25 million shares of common stock.

The shares were part of the merger of’s merger with GigCapital4 in December 2021. The business combination allowed to go public on the New York Stock Exchange (NYS) the following day. will not receive proceeds from the resale.

Space SPAC Index
April 18, 2023

CompanyFirst Trading DayOpening Share PriceHighClosing Price
Astra Space (NAS: ASTR)July 1, 2021$12.30$16.95 (7/2/21)$0.40
AST SpaceMobile (NAS: ASTS)April 7, 2021$11.63$15.48 (6/30/21)$4.44 (NYS: BBAI)Dec. 8, 2021$9.84$16.12 (4/6/22)$3.41
BlackSky (NYS: BKSY)Sept. 10, 2021$11.80$13.20 (9/16/21)$1.49
Intuitive Machines (NAS: LUNR)Feb. 14, 2023$10.00$10.58 (2/14/23)$10.40
Momentus (NAS: MNTS)Aug. 13, 2021$10.8512.87 (9/7/21)$0.47
Planet Labs (NYS: PL)Dec. 8, 2021$11.25$11.65 (12/8/21)$4.32
Redwire (NYS: RDW)Sept. 3, 2021$10.70$16.98 (10/25/21)$2.94
Rocket Lab (NAS: RKLB)
Aug. 25, 2021$11.58$21.34 (9/9/21) $4.08
Satellogic (NAS: SATL)Jan. 26, 2022$9.19$10.92 (5/4/22) $2.14
Satixfy (NYS: SATX)Oct. 28, 2022$8.29$51.70
Spire (NYS: SPIR)Aug. 17, 2021$10.25 $19.50 (9/22/21)$0.72
Terran Orbital (NYS: LLAP)March 28, 2022$12.69$12.69 (3/28/22) $1.99
Virgin Galactic (NYS: SPCE)Oct. 28, 2019$11.79$62.80 (2/4/21)$3.53
Virgin Orbit (NAS: VORB)Dec. 30, 2021$8.525$11.28 (1/11/22)SUSPENDED
Stock Price Source: Google Finance

Space SPACs on Transporter-7

Three companies — Momentus, Satellogic and Spire Global — had payloads aboard SpaceX’s Transporter-7 mission, which was launched by a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California on April 14, 2023.

Momentus’ (NAS: MNTS) Vigoride-6 Orbital Service Vehicle carried the following satellites:

  • LLITED-A & B: NASA, ionospheric research
  • DISCO-1: Aarhus University (Denmark), technology demonstration
  • IRIS-C: National Cheng Kung University (Taiwan), technology demonstration
  • REVELA: ARCA Dynamics (Italy), technology demonstration
  • VIREO: C3S LLC (Hungary), technology demonstration.

Vigoride-6 mission will use its water-based Microwave Electrothermal Thruster (MET) propulsion technology to change the orbital inclination in order to deliver the LLITED-A and LLITED-B CubeSats to a custom orbit.

Vigoride-6 is also testing Momentus’ Tape Spring Solar Array (TASSA) technology. TASSA consists of features large sheets of flexible solar cells bonded to tape springs and tightly coiled around a mandrel before deployment.

Spire Global (NYS: SPIR) had three satellites aboard Transporter-7, including one for its own data collection constellation and two for customers.

Spire developed an Earth observation satellite for the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) of Saudi Arabia.

“The 6U satellite hosts a hyperspectral camera with advanced on-board processing capabilities in combination with Spire’s Global Navigation Satellite System-Reflectometry (GNSS-R) sensor payload that will collect intelligence on soil moisture,” Spire said. “The data collected will allow KAUST researchers to compile and analyze high-resolution imagery that can be used for mapping terrestrial habitats, monitoring vegetation health and condition, exploring coastal ecosystems and coral reefs, and advancing agro-ecological research, as well as many other Earth and environmental science applications.”

The ADLER-2 satellite is designed to categorize orbital debris and study clouds and aerosols in the Earth’s atmosphere. Spire developed the spacecraft in collaboration with the Austrian Space Forum (OeWF) and Findus Venture GmbH.

Satellogic (NAS: SATL) said all four NewSat Mark-IV Earth observation satellites are in good health after being deployed during the Transporter-7 mission. The satellites have multispectral cameras designed to collect high-resolution imagery from sun-synchronous Earth orbit. 

“Each of our 14 launches has enabled us to continuously expand and improve the Earth Observation capabilities our customers rely on,” said Chief Customer Officer Matt Tirman. “We are proud of our 100% successful deployment rate, and as with our launch in January and those planned for later this year, these additional satellites bring Satellogic one giant leap closer to fulfilling our aim of daily global remaps.”


Space SPACs on the Edge

Four space SPACs — Virgin Orbit, Astra Space, Momentus and Spire Global — are struggling to maintain their listings on their respective stock exchanges.

Space SPACs Facing Possible Delisting

CompanyNoticeReason(s)StatusClosing Price (4/18/23)
Virgin Orbit (NAS: VORB)SuspendedBankruptcy, failure to file annual reportCompany appealingN/A
Astra Space (NAS: ASTR)Delisting warningPrice under $1Granted additional 180 days )(October 2, 2023)$0.40
Momentus (NAS: MNTS)Delisting warningPrice under $1First 180 days (September 18, 2023)$0.47
Spire Global (NYS: SPIR)Delisting warningPrice under $1First 180 days (September 22, 2023)$0.72

Bankrupt Virgin Orbit is in the most danger, with Nasdaq suspending trading of the company’s stock last Thursday. The company has appealed the move, which is the first step to delisting the stock.

Astra Space was recently given an additional 180 days to get its stock price above $1. The company appealed for more time after the first 180-day period expired earlier this month.

Momentus and Spire Global have also received delisting warnings. The companies have a right to ask for more time if they can’t raise their stocks up to $1 by the September deadlines.

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