Milestone for Fleet as nano satellite constellations grow

Stephen Kuper

Australia-based nano satellite company Fleet has successfully launched the third of its satellites into orbit in a matter of weeks.

In the third major launch for the Australian space start-up, the successful payload delivery of the Centauri I satellite marks a major milestone for both Fleet and the Australian space industry as a whole.

As part of the testing programs, Centauri I will be conducting a series of tests of the payloads as part of delivering the company's plan of global internet connectivity as part of the internet of things (IoT). 

Centauri I is a 3U (10x10-centimetre) nanosatellite, designed by Fleet Space Technologies and manufactured by Pumpkin Space Systems. Centauri I will form part of a low-Earth orbit (LEO) constellation of satellites, powering a global network of connected sensors and devices.

The Centauri I satellite is larger larger than the company's Proxima I and II nano 'cube' satellites by a factor of two. The Proxima satellites were successfully launched from New Zealand's Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1, the world's first private orbital launch range.



The Proxima I and II satellites are a pair of identical 1.5U CubeSats designed and built within six weeks by Fleet.

The satellites will mark the first commercial tests of Fleet’s software-defined radios, enabling it to transmit data efficiently across both S-band and L-band frequencies in space. The satellites will ultimately help form the beginning of a constellation of more than 100 nanosatellites that, together, will act as a dedicated IoT space network for enterprises across the world.

Nanosatellite technology provides unprecedented connectivity at a fraction of the cost of large scale, multinational space exploration projects, with lean manufacturing capabilities, simpler technologies and smaller payloads.

Fleet Space was founded in 2015 and is based in Adelaide, South Australia. The company aims to revolutionise the way space IoT systems are delivered through the Portal solutions and the company's nano cube satellites.

When combined with Fleet's ground terminal, the Portal, Fleet’s constellation will enable satellite connectivity in remote industries where cellular networks are not present.

The Portal enables businesses to connect up to a thousand devices to private, secure, low-power wide area networks anywhere around the world at a fraction of the cost of traditional satellite systems.

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