SpaceX and Space Machines deal for launching

Space Machines Company
Tuesday, 24 May, 2022

SpaceX and Space Machines deal for launching

Australian in-space transportation startup Space Machines Company (SMC) has secured the support of SpaceX as a launch partner to carry its Optimus orbital transfer vehicle (OTV) to space as part of its April 2023 mission. SMC’s Optimus OTV is one of the largest commercial spacecraft designed and manufactured in Australia.

Space-based technology underpins a lot of the daily conveniences Australians have come to expect such as weather forecasting, emergency management, internet access and online banking. To support and fully commercialise the potential of in-space service delivery, the right logistics infrastructure needs to be in place.

The 2023 mission will demonstrate the 270 kg Optimus OTV’s ability to deliver in-space logistics services and will reinforce SMC’s strategy as a last-mile delivery services provider. The 2023 mission will also see SMC deploy solutions for foundation customers. The Optimus spacecraft’s assembly and integration will occur at the Space Machines Company facility within the University of Technology Sydney’s (UTS) Tech Lab.

More than 6000 active and inactive satellites are currently in orbit, and by 2030, there will be more than 100,000. Space will increasingly need infrastructure and logistics services to support and manage the exponential growth in satellites and debris around the globe. SMC’s development of a local space logistics capacity is to assist ensuring Australia can meet this growing challenge and manage its satellites in space.

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