Turion Space is building spacecraft to remove orbital debris and provide services to existing satellites.
Service - Droid
- In-Space Transportation
- Active Debris Removal (ADR)
Resources - Asteroid Mining
- In-Space Satellite Servicing
- 3) Development
- First launch
Our spacecraft will rendezvous and dock with current satellites and large debris objects using vision sensors and robotic arms. Utilizing the onboard propulsion system, the spacecraft will either deorbit or change the orbit of the debris object or satellite. Our team has a proven track record of bringing ideas to orbit with over 25 years of experience from SpaceX, Skunk Works, and Electroimpact. Solving this problem is crucial to ensure a sustainable space economy, and is the first step towards our longer term vision of mining Asteroids.
Meet the Droid family…
- Droid-1 will launch ~2022. The goal is to reach a stable orbit, send over-the-air software updates, and test equipment. The subscale demo craft won’t have a docking mechanism.
- Droid-2, targeted for 2023, will be more functional. Turion plans to use Droid-2’s robo-arm to dock with Droid-1, deorbit, and demonstrate a fully functioning debris removal mechanism. Dogfooding in space!
- Droid-3, slated for 2024, will have a proprietary thruster and other bells and whistles. Turion plans to build and launch a batch of Droid-3s.
The sauce recipe: Droid-1 will have sensing payloads that Turion aims to rent out for space-to-space use cases (like situational awareness). After taking out the Droid-1 trash, Droid-2 will also be open for business. The Droid-3 generation is when volume production (relatively speaking) and scaled-up commercial services come into play.
First principles: Turion is optimizing for “Delta-V per dollar spent” on Droid design/development. Whether a Droid is deorbiting a dead satellite or shuttling a spent upper stage, all engineering and financial roads lead back to the Delta-V/$ metric, Westerdahl said.
- Turion plans to charge based on how much propellant is used for a job. Interested parties can input a space asset, select a service, and get a theoretical quote on Turion’s dashboard.
- Westerdahl places an emphasis on transparent, upfront pricing, taking a page from SpaceX, his former employer.
Turion Space aims to build the highest dV/$ #spacetransport vehicles, and is launching the DROID.001 mission in April 2023.
US company Turion Space, aiming to build spacecraft to remove orbital-debris, satellite servicing, and domain awareness, has selected NanoAvionics small satellite bus, the MP42, as the basis for its ‘Droid-1’ spacecraft designed for a reconnaissance mission in low Earth orbit (LEO). The launch of the Droid-1 satellite is planned for the first quarter of 2023.