Sidus Space can launch LizzieSat-1 without an engine if it doesn’t receive safety clearance in time to deploy its first satellite from the International Space Station early next year.
It’s unclear if Sidus will be able to secure all NASA approvals to equip his LizzieSat-1 with life-extending thrusters for his February cargo trip to the ISS.
“We may make a decision not to fly the engines,” Curry said at a small satellite conference here on Aug.”
“We’re not trying to get over it, but it’s going to take a long time.”
Sidus still plans to launch his LizzieSat-1 from the ISS, but the company’s flexible deployment capabilities also allow for ridesharing.
LizzieSat-1 was scheduled to launch on her mission to the ISS in October before NASA reappeared on her in February.
LizzieSat-1 is the first of his 100 satellites Sidus plans for a constellation that will provide orbital test services first.
The 100-kilogram spacecraft was scheduled for deployment to the ISS, which Sidus manages as part of an existing government contractor.
LizzieSat-1 would only function for about 130 to 200 days before losing operational altitude if deployed from the ISS without an engine, Curry said. There is still plenty of time to demonstrate core technology, but a powered satellite could last 18 months to three years, depending on mission requirements, he said. LizzieSat-1 clients include NASA and Mission Helios, a financial services startup aimed at testing NFT technology.
These and other future customers don’t care how long they spend in orbit, Curry said, and his LizzieSat without thrusters has more space for payload. I have. However, a LizzySat with thrusters is the standard design for the company’s constellations, allowing better control of the satellite’s orbit from orbit.
Rideshare’s launch will likely take place after Sidus’ current target of the ISS Cargo mission on Feb. 19, but Currie said the rocket to LEO will likely carry 30 to 60 astronauts. It is likely to put a satellite into orbit faster than the ISS where it is. It takes several days to deploy the spacecraft after arriving at the station. He said that for an ISS launch, NASA would have to deliver a “fully-equipped” satellite 10.5 weeks before launch, compared to four weeks for a rideshare. That means using rideshare his provider for future satellites gives customers time to deploy the payloads they want to test on the LizzieSat satellite. It also prevents potential delays in the supply chain.
Sidus is in talks with “a number of different providers” to launch more of his LizzieSats in late 2023.
- Sidus Space is considering a rideshare mission for its first satellite
- Check all news and articles from the latest Space news updates.