1 topic, 2 key figures, 3 startups to draw inspiration from
The space industry is changing. After long being dominated by governments and billion-dollar corporations, access to space is becoming increasingly affordable, allowing smaller companies to enter the market. This is due in part to advances in satellite miniaturization over the past decade, which have drastically reduced the cost of access with the mass production of satellites. While nanosatellites (satellites weighing between 1 and 10kg) have been in use since the late 1990s, the number of launches has exploded in recent years: twice as many nanosatellites have been launched in the last 3 years as in the previous 15 years. This is because their production cost is a fraction of that of their heavier counterparts and they are much faster to build.
2 Key Figures
500 NewSpace startups
The space industry market is expected to reach $558bn by 2026
3 startups to draw inspiration from
This week, we identified three startups that we can draw inspiration from: Equatorial Space Systems, Picosats, and Starfish Space.
Founded in 2014 in Italy, Picosats developed telecommunication systems for CubeSats. The company engages in the research and development of telecommunication systems allowing space-based communication services. Picosat also builds 3D printed CubeSats, lowering the amount of debris left at the end of their mission.
The Washington-based startup was founded in 2018 and developed an orbital transportation infrastructure designed to provide in-space transportation and maintenance service. The company’s proximity operations software uses a combination of breakthrough orbital mechanics and a low-thrust electric propulsion system, enabling satellite companies to relocate, deorbit and extend the life of satellites.