By December 10, 2019 Read More →

Grappling tech for OneWeb satellites

OneWeb is to implement an advanced-technology grappling fixture, developed by Altius Space Machines, on its satellites.

“Space has never been more accessible than it is today, and there are tremendous benefits for humanity to be gained through Space applications,” said Tim Maclay, OneWeb director of mission systems engineering.

“It is critical we do all we can to employ responsible design and operational practices to ensure a sustainable environment for future generations. OneWeb is proud to be leading in this effort and hope our actions can be a model for others in the industry.”

By partnering with Altius Space Machines, whose team includes RUAG Space USA, and Astroscale, OneWeb Satellites says it is helping to implement a low-cost, advanced grappling fixture across the OneWeb constellation that can support a variety of capture techniques for satellite servicing and disposal. This design is consistent with the CONFERS Recommended Design and Operational Practices for satellite servicing, including working to minimise the probability of releasing secondary debris in the course of servicing operations.

OneWeb Satellites CEO Tony Gingiss added: “OneWeb Satellites has dramatically reduced the cost and speed of satellite manufacturing, making space far more accessible. As a result, thousands of new satellites – both our own and our competitors’ – will be launched in the coming years. From its inception, OneWeb Satellites has also committed to doing its part to ensure we help keep space clean. Our partnership with Altius and RUAG for the grappling interface is one more concrete step in fulfilment of that commitment.”

Altius Space Machines CEO Jonathan Goff said: “Altius’ goal in developing our DogTags grappling fixture has been to create an interface that enables safe and reliable capture of our customer’s satellites by the broadest range of capture methodologies possible.

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