A Falcon missile will launch a Starlink mission in October 2020.
Private investments in space companies in the third quarter of 2020 recovered after a significant decline in the previous quarter a report Thursday from NYC-based Space Capital.
“After the slowest quarter in existence [space infrastructure] Investments since 2009, investments in this layer of the stack bounced back to pre-COVID levels in the third quarter, “wrote Chad Anderson, managing partner of Space Capital, in the report.” With only three booked quarters, 2020 is already the biggest year in which infrastructure investments were recorded with 5.5 billion dollars invested [this year]. “
The quarterly Space Capital report breaks down investment in the industry into three tiers of technology, with space infrastructure encompassing what many normally consider space companies: those that build rockets, satellites, spacecraft, space exploration projects, and more. The report found that space infrastructure companies raised $ 3.6 billion in the third quarter, the largest single quarter of registered investments. More than half of that investment came through SpaceX raises around $ 2 billion in August.
One An investment freeze due to the coronavirus pandemic was seen as a serious risk from space companies earlier this year. But company executives like Sierra Nevada Corporation, Virgo Galactic, Relativity space and Virgin Orbit recently briefed CNBC on the progress everyone has made despite the pandemic, while corporations like this Kymeta, ICE and Astroscale have successfully completed new fundraising drives.
The space application and distribution layers also raised $ 1.2 billion and $ 102 million, respectively. This corresponds to slower growth than in the previous quarters, when both layers brought in the majority of this year’s space investments. Despite the slower growth, even the largest US tech companies have joined the distribution layer – such as Microsoft Azure Orbital Satellite Servicewho wants to compete with Amazon AWS Ground Station Service.
“The increased involvement of these technology companies will be another catalyst for growth in this sector,” wrote Anderson. “Just as any company today is a technology company, tomorrow’s companies will be space companies.”
An electron rocket is getting ready to go.
Space Capital’s last quarterly report appears a day later NASA awarded fixed-price contracts for $ 140 million to 14 companies to develop various space technologies. Although the NASA contracts technically close in the fourth quarter and would not fall under Space Capital’s investment criteria, the awards represent the continued support of the US space agency for a growing business field.
The Starship SpaceX prototype is launched in a brief first flight test at the company’s facility in Boca Chica, Texas.
The awards were presented as part of NASA’s Tipping Point program, which aims to fund new technologies. Lockheed Martin, SpaceX and United Launch Alliance have received orders worth $ 89.7 million, $ 53.2 million and $ 86.2 million, respectively, to demonstrate new cryogenic fuel transfer and storage. Small rocket builder Rocket Lab will launch a demonstration mission for Eta Space, which won $ 27 million for a small orbital flight demo of a cryogenic liquid management system. Multiple awards have been made for lunar landing technologies, including $ 41.6 million for intuitive machines, $ 10 million for Masten Space Systems, and $ 5.8 million for astrobotic.
“Tipping Point is a fantastic program designed to significantly mature a technology for use in commercial space applications. These are not R&D projects that are dumped in a basement and collect dust. These awards give next-generation technologies that The Capital You Need To reach your next milestones and get one step closer to commercial exploitation, “Anderson told CNBC.
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