DebrisGEOLEOStartups

Slingshot Doubles Sensing Capabilities

Image: Slingshot

Slingshot Aerospace announced this morning that it will add 80 new sensors by the end of the year, doubling its tracking capabilities and getting closer to its goal of building the most comprehensive space tracking network on the planet. 

The story so far: CEO Melanie Stricklan founded Slingshot in 2017 to tackle the growing need for space situational awareness (SSA) and space traffic management (STM) services. The Austin-based company has been heads-down building out its capabilities on both the sensing and software side to form a one-stop shop for satellite operators to communicate about and manage their on-orbit assets.

Slingshot currently provides several products:

  1. Slingshot Vantage, a day-to-night, LEO-to-GEO tracking service powered by the Global Sensor Network
  2. A Space Digital Twin, which provides near-real-time tracking of satellites and debris in orbit and provides the foundation for the company’s other products
  3. Slingshot Beacon, a SSA and communication platform for operators
  4. Slingshot Laboratory, an astronautics training tool

The company has raised more than $80M to date, most recently closing its $40M+ Series A-2 in December. It’s also been beefing up its sensing and analytics capabilities, including acquiring Numerica’s Space Domain Awareness arm and UK-based Seradata back in August 2022.

Double, double: Slingshot unveiled plans today to add 80 new optical sensors by the end of the year, bringing the grand total to 200 sensors across 20 sites globally. Data from these sensors will supplement Slingshot Vantage, the Space Digital Twin, and, downstream, the company’s other products.

  • A few of these sensors will cover the sky over the southern hemisphere, a notoriously underserved region with respect to SSA tracking capabilities.

+ While we’re here: Last week, the company announced two major hires to its executive team. Leslie Hildebrand, former Lockheed exec, joined as SVP of government biz dev and strategy, and Pieter Kreuk joined as CFO.

Related Stories
BusinessLEO

Vast to Bid on Private Astronaut Missions to the ISS

Vast announced its intention to compete for NASA contracts to organize private astronaut missions to the ISS—a role that has been filled exclusively by Axiom Space since the flights commenced in 2022. 

StartupsVC/PE

Inside Booz Allen Hamilton’s Hunt for the Right Space Startup 

The two-year-old fund has invested in Albedo Space, which aims to make very low flying satellites, and Synthetaic, an AI start-up most famous for finding the origin of a Chinese spy balloon buried in satellite data. 

Debris

Astroscale’s ADRAS-J To Rendezvous With Orbital Debris 

The company’s inspection satellite will approach the abandoned upper stage of a H-2A rocket that’s been floating aimlessly in space since 2009

BusinessLEO

China Could Fill Potential Post-ISS Gap in LEO, Industry Says

The US is at risk of losing leadership in LEO to China if commercial space stations do not come to fruition before the ISS plunges into the sea, two industry officials told lawmakers on Wednesday.