SAS’s Pearl nano-satellites go into production in Denmark
A Scandinavian company has started making 200 nano-satellites for a planned global network that is due to be launched in 2019-20.
Sky and Space Global (SAS), a UK-based, Australian-funded company, says it has commissioned GomSpace to build the fleet of satellites, which it calls Pearls.
“We have successfully completed the CDR [critical design review] with GomSpace, reaching another milestone and remaining on track for next year’s planned launch,” said Meir Moalem, CEO of SAS. The “positive results from the CDR validate the company’s technology”, he added, supporting its strategy aimed at achieving the goal of providing connectivity to remote geographical locations.
SAS’s Pearl satellites are planned to go into low earth orbit in the equatorial belt, potentially providing communications to areas that have little or no internet access.
The company said that it has “multiple binding” agreements with “strategic international telecom partners” that it expects to convert “into commercial revenue generating agreements in due course”.
SAS added: “First launch of the Pearls remains on track for 2019, with successive launches to proceed in the following quarters until the entire constellation of 200 nano-satellites are in orbit in 2020.”
GomSpace is a Swedish-listed satellite company with a factory in Aalborg, northern Denmark. SAS said: “The review concluded that the design presented by GomSpace to SAS complies with the requirements, and the Pearls can now progress to assembly and integration, which will also be undertaken by GomSpace.”
It added: “Assembly and integration are scheduled to commence immediately and construction of the first batch of Pearls is expected to be completed on time for the planned launch.”
SAS said it “will deploy a constellation of 200 highly sophisticated nano-satellites over the equatorial belt”.
Earlier in October the company announced a research and development grant of 1.25 million Polish zloty (€290,000) by the government of Poland to start a project on machine-to-machine (M2M) and smart grid technology. The project will be established in collaboration with the faculty of electronics at the Wrocław University of Technology, said SAS.