Skykraft launches second batch of air traffic management satellites


Australian space-services company Skykraft prototype Air Traffic Management satellite has lifted off Vandenberg Space Force Base in California at 1435 PDT on board a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket on Monday, marking its second launch scheduled for this year. 

In a news release, the Canberra-based company revealed that the launch is one of several scheduled ones to support Skykraft’s partnership with Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs) on a space-based solution.

Skykraft said a satellite constellation is being developed to not only track aircraft but also to offer global communications between pilots and air traffic controllers irrespective of aircraft location.

According to the space services provider, its Air Traffic Management system ushers in a new era of services that will alter how the aviation industry runs, enhancing safety, lowering fuel costs, and drastically reducing the environmental effect of air travel.

“Today’s launch again showcases Skykraft’s in-house advanced manufacturing capabilities, which have passed the rigorous quality requirements for integration onto the SpaceX Transporter-8 Mission,” the company said in a statement. 

Skykraft also said that its in-house advanced manufacturing is part of the company’s aim to lowering capital costs while increasing performance in order to deliver competitive pricing in space-based services like Air Traffic Management.

Moving forward, Skykraft’s Air Traffic Management Constellation said it will expand steadily over the next few years to provide redundant global coverage, with an average of more than seven satellites within range of an aircraft at all time, anywhere in the world.  

Established in 2017, Skykraft is an Australian space services company that specialises in the design, manufacture and operations of satellite constellations for the delivery of global services.