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Xplore wins $2M contract from Pentagon initiative to speed up satellite development

21 Sep 2021, 15:35 UTC
Xplore wins $2M contract from Pentagon initiative to speed up satellite development
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An artist’s conception shows the Xcraft spacecraft platform in orbit. (Xplore Illustration)
Redmond, Wash.-based Xplore says it has received a $2 million contract from National Security Innovation Capital, a hardware development accelerator within the Pentagon’s Defense Innovation Unit, to speed up work on Xplore’s Xcraft platform.
The payload-hosting spacecraft is due for its first launch to low Earth orbit in 2023.
“The significant funding NSIC has provided ensures U.S. government and commercial customers will have speedy access to our affordable Xcraft platform,” Lisa Rich, Xplore’s co-founder and chief operating officer, said today in a news release. “The $2 million award will expedite component acquisitions and accelerate our flight program.”
Xcraft is designed to provide hosting and other services for a variety of customers and payloads, with the capability to reach destinations ranging from low Earth orbit to the moon, Mars, Venus and asteroids. Xplore says it already has a memorandum of understanding with Accion Systems to host Accion’s next-generation ion thruster, known as TILE, for a mission to low Earth orbit.
Xplore is working with the W.M. Keck Observatory on a line of space telescopes. (Xplore Illustration)
The funding should also accelerate the timeline for development of an Xplore Space ...

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