Israeli company Ramon.Space, a provider of space computing solutions, announced on Tuesday that it has been selected by the Israel Space Agency to provide a space computing payload for a mission to launch in early 2022.
The Ramon.Space digital payload will perform space computing while in orbit, including software updates and upgrades as part of the mission, using the company’s programmable space computing systems.
Powered by AI and machine learning processors, Ramon.Space builds space-resilient super-computing systems that bring earth-like computing capabilities to space.
The company says it aims to transform the way software and hardware are used in space “so applications can be developed and adapted in real-time,” the Yokneam and Palo Alto-based firm has said.
The company’s high-performance computing systems are based on in-house Manycore Rad-Hard DSP space processor IC’s with machine learning and AI technologies, storage, and a virtual radiation shield designed to operate reliably in an outdoor space environment.
Ramon.Space has said that it uses virtual radiation-hardened technology that “doesn’t just withstand the harsh conditions of space, it thrives in it.” Its technology transforms satellites into smart and autonomous objects, drastically extending their lifetime by providing service agility and in-orbit upgrades that adapt to services and applications. Ramon.Space’s high performance, power-efficient, SW-defined systems are paving the way for smart, autonomous satellites for LEO (Low Earth Orbit), MEO (Medium Earth Orbit), and GEO (Geocentric Orbit) missions, boosting their in-orbit capabilities.
The company’s systems serve as computing infrastructure for next-generation space applications such as communication, remote sensing, and data networking.
“We are proud to collaborate with the Israel Space Agency and look forward to the launch which will further validate our advanced computing capabilities in space,” said Avi Shabtai, CEO of Ramon.Space. “We continue to develop and make advancements to our digital computing payloads which are targeted for many more missions to come.”
“Space missions call for earth-like flexibility and reliable computing infrastructure,” added Avi Blasberger, Director General of the Israel Space Agency. “We have been very impressed with the computing capabilities that Ramon.Space offers. Ramon.Space is a trusted partner and we are confident that their cutting edge space technology will set the direction for the future of computing in space and revolutionize digital payloads.”
Ramon.Space’s technologies have already been deployed in over 50 space and deep space missions and satellites, boasting of zero failures so far. Earlier this year, the company deployed its AI/ML processors aboard three nanosatellites built by the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology as part of the Israeli Adelis-SAMSON mission to perform high-accuracy geolocation of target signals on Earth for improved emergency response.
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Ramon.Space is on its way to revolutionizing orbital services with its technology and has won over investors to in doing so. In May, Ramon.Space raised $17.5 million to lead a digital transformation of computing in outer space,” said Avi Shabtai. The Series A funding was led by StageOne Ventures, Deep Insight, WorldQuant Ventures, UMC Capital, and existing investor Grove Ventures.
“Since our first seed investment, Ramon.Space’s growth has made monumental headway in the space ecosystem,” said, Dov Moran, Ramon.Space’s Chairman of the Board and Managing Partner at Grove Ventures. “Within our lifetime, we’ll experience the impact and extraordinary benefits of human technological advances in space. Ramon.Space is at the forefront of these unique innovations.”
Israel in space
According to the Israel Space Agency, Israel is known for specializing in the development of technologies for miniature satellites and methods for launching them, such as the trio of nanosatellites built and developed by the Technion and sent out in March equipped with advanced tech including AI/ML processors by Ramon. Space.
Based on this technological expertise, a number of other Israeli groups are also currently developing microsatellites and nanosatellites in order to demonstrate how various technologies and applications work.
Israel’s space industry focuses on high-resolution photographic satellites that are positioned in the LEO and communication satellites positioned in the GEO. Israel’s imaging satellites are considered the leaders in the global arena in terms of being cost-effective and high performance in relation to low weight.
Israel’s satellites in space include the Amos – a series of five communication satellites, Eros – two photography satellites and the Techsat 2 research satellite.
Israeli satellite Amos-17 was successfully launched into space overnight in August 2019 from Cape Canaveral in Florida three years after an explosion on the launchpad of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket destroyed the Amos-6 in September 2016.
Built by Boeing, the Amos-17 satellite is considered Israel’s most advanced satellite after the Amos-6. The satellite provides satellite communication services including broadband and high-speed data services to Africa as well as the Middle East and Europe.
The $250 million Amos-17, expected to operate for at least 20 years, is produced by Spacecom, the Ramat-Gan based satellite communications operator, which is the owner of the AMOS satellite fleet, providing advanced satellite services to millions of users across Africa, Europe, India, parts of Asia, and The Middle East.