Arrow Platform Provides Reliable, Affordable Performance
Loft Orbital has contracted Airbus to supply more than 15 satellite platforms derived from the Arrow – the foundational satellite platform of the OneWeb constellation, of which 395 are in orbit and a further 254 being manufactured. The company has also contracted Airbus to modify the Arrow platform to make it suitable for a wider range of longer lifetime missions and applications. Loft Orbital offers customers an end-to-end service, enabling rapid deployment and operation of payloads on reliable, high-performance satellites with unprecedented simplicity and affordability.
“This ground-breaking contract [is] very good news. It demonstrates the uptake of New Space companies in France and the synergy across the space ecosystem for developing industry-wide innovation. It also testifies [to the speed at which the French space ecosystem is growing, with start-ups, SMEs, and large groups working together to provide world-class solutions, and fully validates the ongoing government strategy and initiatives to develop a vibrant and growing next space innovation ecosystem,” commented Bruno Le Maire, French minister for the Economy, Finances and the Recovery.
Pierre-Damien Vaujour, CEO of Loft Orbital, stated “This procurement agreement with Airbus […] is an industry first. Leveraging Airbus engineering experience and Airbus OneWeb Satellites production capabilities is enabling us to truly bring Loft’s vision to life. While we are using this initial procurement to deliver to our customers who have ordered services based on a few tens of satellites, we see this as an opportunity to offer much larger constellation services to governments and companies worldwide. In addition, the level of support we have received in France, and the quality of the engineering talent, is simply unmatched.”
The improvements to the Arrow platform, including all the engineering, qualification, test, and production of the first few spacecraft. will be conducted by Airbus in Toulouse. The production at scale of the remaining Arrow-derived platforms will be performed by Airbus OneWeb Satellites (AOS).
Airbus Space’s strategy of Next Space will seek further engagement with new players in the space ecosystem to ensure that sustainability and reliability in the LEO space environment is guaranteed for the future.