Slingshot Aerospace has its sights set on being the industry leader in space situational awareness (SSA). This morning, the company announced that it has acquired Numerica’s Space Domain Awareness (SDA) division and UK-based Seradata.
“These acquisitions bring a single, unified space intelligence platform to the market that the market needs, and hasn’t seen,” said Melanie Stricklan, 21-year US Air Force veteran and CEO of Slingshot Aerospace.
Slingshot 101: Austin-based Slingshot Aerospace is bent on creating the world’s first real-time virtualization of the space domain environment from LEO to cislunar orbit, dubbed the Digital Space Twin. The company hosts two central products on top of that twin: Slingshot Laboratory and Slingshot Beacon.
- Slingshot Laboratory is an astronautics training and simulation tool.
- Slingshot Beacon is an SSA platform currently in beta. The platform allows government, civil, and commercial users to coordinate maneuvers and share data about their on-orbit assets.
Slingshot raised a $25M Series A-1 in March. Since then, it’s been focused on hiring and building out its product offerings. These acquisitions each produce unique, high-quality data that will be used to augment the Digital Space Twin and the customer-facing products built on top.
The new acquisitions
With a boom in launch cadence comes a need for improved space domain awareness to keep operators in the loop on every new spacecraft and maneuver. “The space industry is at an inflection point,” said Stricklan. “We saw just an incredible opportunity to bring together three real product companies, with pioneering technologies, and each of them address, honestly, the biggest challenges our customers face on orbit today.”
The top priority for these acquisitions was always operational value for the customer, Stricklan said. By bringing Numerica SDA and Seradata in-house, Slingshot is able to leverage their proprietary data on its platforms for customers who otherwise would not have that access.
Numerica SDA: Numerica’s Space Domain Awareness arm is the only commercial provider of 24-hour optical satellite tracking from LEO to GEO. The company operates more than 150 sensors and 30 telescopes in 20 locations spanning the globe, and builds in-house data processing software for government customers.
“Numerica has been singularly focused on national security,” Stricklan said. “This gives us an opportunity to bring our capital forward to really expand their capabilities to the many, many commercial customers who have been knocking on their door for their exquisite data.”
Seradata: UK-based Seradata’s seven employees and suite of launch and satellite data are all joining the Slingshot team. Seradata’s primary product is SpaceTrak, a database of every satellite launch since 1957. The company will retain its UK headquarters, granting Slingshot greater access to the UK space industry and European customers.