Astroscale, the ELSA-d satellite creator, is proceeding with its operations in Area 92 of the Baikonur launch site to process its spacecraft for the launch in March.

Software testing has been successfully completed, onboard batteries have been charged, solar arrays and their deployment mechanisms have been checked and electrical tests have been completed. ELSA-d’s mission is the first to demonstrate the core technologies necessary for space debris docking and removal and is a major step towards expanding on-orbit services and achieving Astroscale’s vision of safe and sustainable space for the benefit of future generations.

The launch preparation team took an important step on February 23rd by completing propellent loading for ELSA-d using environmentally friendly “green” propellants. ELSA-d will now be moved to Area 31 to undergo final verifications and be integrated as part of the Soyuz 2 LV ascent unit.

ELSA-d Key Features:

●      End-to-end rendezvous solution including far-range and short-range approaches

●      Client search and approach from far-range with relative navigation sensors

●      Fly-around inspections of client with operator assessment

●      Docking plate to enable ease of removal

●      At-night magnetic capture of non-tumbling and tumbling clients

●      Re-orbit, de-orbit and passivation capabilities

●      Safety evacuations and passively safe trajectories in mission design

●      Full ground segment, custom-designed for on-orbit servicing


Astroscale is the first private company with a vision to secure the safe and sustainable development of space for the benefit of future generations, and the only company solely dedicated to on-orbit servicing across all orbits. Founded in 2013, Astroscale is developing innovative and scalable solutions across the spectrum of on-orbit servicing missions, including life extension, in-situ space situational awareness, end-of-life services, and active debris removal, to create sustainable space systems and mitigate the growing and hazardous buildup of debris in space. Astroscale is also defining business cases and working with government and commercial stakeholders to develop norms, regulations, and incentives for the responsible use of space. Headquartered in Japan, Astroscale has an international presence with subsidiaries in the United Kingdom, the United States, Israel, and Singapore. Astroscale is a rapidly expanding venture company, working to advance safe and stable growth in space and solve a growing environmental concern.

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