Two Australian space companies, Queensland rocket manufacturer Gilmour Space Technologies, and South Australian nanosatellite manufacturer for the Internet of Things (IoT) Fleet Space Technologies, are joining forces to launch small satellites to orbit. “We have signed a contract to launch six Fleet Space Centauri nanosatellites on our Eris rockets in 2023,” said Gilmour Space CEO, Adam Gilmour. “This is a great example of how Australian space companies are scaling and partnering to compete in the global space market.”
“This launch is going to involve an Australian-built payload in an Australian-built satellite, on an Australian-built rocket,” said Flavia Tata Nardini, CEO of Fleet Space, an Australian satellite company building a global digital nervous system to power the next industrial revolution.
Fleet Space launched Australia’s first commercial nanosatellites in 2018 – and its fifth just last week – with their technology already transforming critical industries from energy and utilities to mining. “Today’s announcement is the beginning of an ongoing launch service relationship as we work towards our planned constellation of 140 satellites,” Nardini added. “We are building a strong portfolio of launch service partners, and we are very excited to have Gilmour Space as one of them.”
Today’s news follows the release of the federal government’s Modern Manufacturing Strategy and Space National Manufacturing Priority Roadmap, which seeks to develop sovereign capabilities in space manufacturing, including satellites and launch vehicles.
Gilmour Space and Fleet Space were the first two Australian space start-ups to raise venture capital funding in Australia. Formed before the Australian Space Agency, the companies were seeded by Sydney-based venture capital firm Blackbird Ventures.
According to Blackbird partner, Rick Baker: “Gilmour and Fleet are leading the way forward through great technology and big ambitions. We’ve been impressed with both companies’ traction and see this partnership as a milestone for the maturing space industry in Australia. It’s fantastic to see leaders like Adam and Flavia joining forces to scale further and raise our collective ambition.”