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Loft Orbital fills first condosat, preps for quarterly launches

2 May 2019, 16:57 UTC
Loft Orbital fills first condosat, preps for quarterly launches
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WASHINGTON — Loft Orbital, a company preparing a constellation to carry payloads for customers who don’t want to operate their own satellites, has filled up its first satellite and booked a January 2020 launch through Spaceflight Industries.
San Francisco-based Loft Orbital will carry five customer payloads on its first mission, designated YAM-2, Alex Greenberg, Loft Orbital co-founder and head of operations, told SpaceNews. Greenberg said the satellite will launch aboard an Indian Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle to low Earth orbit.
Greenberg said the YAM-2 satellite will use a chassis from Blue Canyon Technologies, and has a mass slightly under 100 kilograms. Customers on the mission include hyperspectral imaging startup Orbital Sidekick, blockchain startup SpaceChain, and a UAE government agency, he said. Greenberg declined to identify the other two customers for YAM-2, but said one is an established geostationary satellite operator.
Pierre-Damien Vaujour, Loft Orbital co-founder and head of product, said a second “condosat” is 85 percent filled with customers, and a third is 15 percent booked.
Greenberg said YAM stands for “Yet Another Mission,” and represents what the company hopes will be the start of an escalating launch cadence. Loft Orbital is aiming for three or four ...

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