Space Taxi for Your Satellite – Part II

Interview with Negar Feher, VP of Product and Business Development of Momentus

At the beginning of the summer, we have had an amazing tour to Momentus facilities, a space tug factory in Silicon Valley. We continue our #knowyouroptions series to feature NewSpace entrepreneurs and inspire more people to join the space race with an interesting conversation with Negar Feher, VP of Product and Business Development of Momentus. She has taken us on a tour, has introduced the team, and has given us a big #knowyouroptions interview.

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Space Taxi for Your Satellite – Part I

Visiting Momentus factory in Silicon Valley

In early June our partners, California-based startup Momentus, invited Precious Payload team to their factory. Momentus is a developing in-space shuttle service, using safe water-plasma propulsion technology, for taking satellites from where the rockets drop them off to a custom orbit. Negar Feher, VP of Product and Business Development of Momentus, has taken us on a tour, has introduced the team, and has given us a big #knowyouroptions interview.

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20+ ways to get to space and beam the data for your business

Why so many entrepreneurs are secretly dreaming about starting a business in space and so few are ending up with building a company? Our guess – wrong thinking ruins many of the great ideas: those who never tried to launch anything to space tend to think that industry barriers are still enormous, launch options are limited to direct injections and a few American, Indian and Russian launch vehicles exist. While the reality is blooming with options and opportunities. 

A little outdated for the year 2019 “Rockets of the world” poster by Tyler Skrabek
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Taking your business into Space. Why 2019?

Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos are the names that come to mind when words like ‘business’ and ‘space’ appear in the same sentence. Indeed, true space enthusiasts, and billionaires to that matter, have put their fortunes on the line to pursue their space dreams. Before them, only governments and established corporations could associate themselves with space industry. 

What about now? Are hundreds of millions still required to cross the high entry barrier? Do you still need your government to support you in building a satellite? Is it still as hard as rocket science is?

Seraphim Space Tech Map by Seraphim Capital
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Launch Price Calculator from GK Launch Services

Last month, GK Launch Services, a commercial launch service provider for a Russian Souyz-2 rocket, announced a new service – a launch price calculator for smallsats. The interface available for the users is not exactly new: for the past two years, most of the launch providers started accepting incoming requests online using the forms to collect the basic mission information like size of a satellite, orbit to reach, timeframe, etc. 

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Finding a launch is getting easier even with special orbital requirements

Problem: They say you have to wait up to two years to get the right flight for your specific orbit 🤷‍♀️ 🤷‍♂️.

Solution: ION Carrier is a free-flying CubeSat dispenser capable of delivering satellites to higher altitudes, different orbits, and orbital planes. It is compatible with all the existing launch vehicles and extends current launchers capabilities. Hence you have a wider variety of launches to choose from!

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Smallsat Insurance 101

A satellite is a very valuable asset. It is made to order, extremely fragile and a complex piece of engineering. It must endure the stresses of the launch and then must operate in an alien environment and cannot be fixed if something goes wrong. Therefore, obtaining specialist insurance cover from an insurer that has a deep understanding of the industry is essential for any commercial smallsat operator who is aiming to bring revenue in from its small satellites.

Source: XL Insurance

In a nutshell, there are two principal types of satellite insurance. The first is pre-launch and launch, which covers loss, damage or failure before, during or in the first year if the satellite’s operations – the most critical phases of the satellite’s life. If something does go wrong, it would be most likely to occur during these phases. During post-in-orbit testing, the chances of the satellite failing tend to fall significantly.
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