Proposing to aid in the removal of orbital debris through the provision of End of Life (EOL) and Active Debris Removal (ADR) services.
- In-Space Transportation
- Active Debris Removal (ADR)
- End of Life (EOL)
In-Space Satellite Servicing
- 3) Development
- First launch
Selected as the commercial partner for Phase I of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s (JAXA) first debris removal project, a groundbreaking step by Japan to commercialize space debris removal.
The JAXA Commercial Removal of Debris Demonstration project (CRD2) consists of two mission phases to achieve one of the world’s first debris removal missions of a large object, the first of which has been awarded to Astroscale. This first phase will be demonstrated by the end of the Japan Fiscal Year 2022 and will focus on data acquisition on an upper stage Japanese rocket body. Astroscale will be responsible for the manufacturing, launch and operations of the satellite that will characterize the rocket body, acquiring and delivering movement observational data to better understand the debris environment.
ELSA-d, or End of Life Services by Astroscale-demonstration, comprises a 175-kilogram servicer spacecraft and a 17-kilogram client satellite both set to launch March 20 as part of a GK Launch Services’ Soyuz-2 rideshare mission lifting off from Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan.
Astroscale is also working on a separate spacecraft called Elsa-m, designed to capture and de-orbit three or four objects in a single mission for a constellation customer.
Auburn said Astroscale is also bidding this year for a Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) contract to de-orbit a discarded upper stage of a rocket, without a docking plate. He said the mission will happen “probably by 2025,” with a spacecraft that will require “some kind of robotic arm.”
Orbit Fab, the Gas Stations in Space™ refueling service provider, and Astroscale U.S. Inc., the U.S. subsidiary of Astroscale Holdings Inc., have signed a commercial agreement to refuel Astroscale’s Life Extension In-Orbit (LEXI™) Servicer in GEO; LEXI is the first satellite designed to be refueled. Under the terms of this initial agreement, Orbit Fab’s GEO fuel shuttle will resupply Astroscale’s fleet of LEXI Servicers with up to 1,000 kilograms of Xenon propellant. With this purchase, Astroscale has greatly expanded LEXI’s scope and flexibility to perform on-orbit servicing missions — a benefit for every customer. Astroscale’s LEXI spacecraft is slated to launch to GEO by 2026, where it will perform life extension services for commercial operators, the U.S government and partner governments around the world. LEXI’s key services for customers include station keeping and attitude control, momentum management, inclination correction, GEO relocation and retirement to graveyard orbit.
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