Israeli communications tech startup NSLComm, which launched its first nano-satellite (NSLSat-1) into space in July fitted with an innovative, expandable antenna that offers high-performance, announced that it was launching a second satellite in the next six months.
NSLComm’s technology permits antennas to be stowed during launch in a compact volume and deploy while in orbit, saving mass, volume, and supporting structures. NSLcomm says that with operators hyper-focused on launch size, weight and cost, as well as on constantly improving performance, its solution “represents one of the largest leaps forward in satellite antenna performance-to-weight/volume ratios.”
The company’s second satellite, NSLSat-2, will present improved capabilities, and implement modifications from lessons learned from the first mission, it said.
NSLcomm also announced that it signed a new multi-million dollar contract with a major multinational corporation, without elaborating. The company says its current customer base includes satellite and spacecraft developers and manufacturers, satellite owners, and service providers.
“The launch of NSLSat-1 represented the culmination of many years of hard work,” said Raz Itzhaki, co-founder and CEO of NSLComm, in a statement. “The knowledge we have been able to gather from NSLSat-1 has provided our team with insights that will allow us to build even more efficient nano-satellites with better manufacturability.”
“We believe that as a new-space company, we need to launch every few months and the new contract demonstrates this approach, and by 2022, we will already have multiple satellites in space. The natural next step would be teaming up to launch a constellation,” he added.
NSLComm’s investors include Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP), OurCrowd, Cockpit Innovation and Liberty Technology Venture Capital II. The company is also supported by the Israel Space Agency at the Ministry of Science and Technology, and Kodem Growth Partners in New York City.
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NSLComm says it expects to launch multiple satellites in the coming five years, “enabling its network of nano-satellites to provide a high-speed worldwide communications for its customers’ network via an orbiting constellation, allowing for a full array of applications around IoT and sensors, in areas such as agriculture, mining, oil and gas, shipping, government and more.”
The technology can also support large pipes of data for internet and video at costs that are “significantly lower than what current satellite communication technology offers,” says NSLComm.
“The cutting edge technology of NSLComm is an excellent example of new technologies and services supported by the Israel Space Agency at the Ministry of Science and Technology,” said Avi Blasberger, Director of the Israel Space Agency. “We are very excited about the possibilities this technology will provide for the entire communications industry, and we are fully committed to helping NSLComm achieve its lofty goals.”
Yoav Tzruya, General Partner at JVP said, “With the launch of a second satellite that will further enhance the company’s unique ‘expandable’ reflector technology, NSLComm is now well-positioned to offer a paradigm shift in satellite communications, allowing them to define and offer new applications. Industries including governmental, agriculture, medicine, travel, communications and others will be able to enjoy high bandwidth satellite communication at a fraction of the price, with the possibility for global coverage.”
“NSLComm is proving that in space, size matters,” added OurCrowd CEO, Jon Medved. “NSL is providing the highest performance and highest bandwidth in the smallest satellite package, which will forever transform the way we look at satellite communications.”