Astroscale to Establish UK In-Orbit Servicing Control Facility
Japanese space debris-removal company Astroscale is leading a 4 million euros ($4.69 million) grant from the U.K. government to help establish a National In-Orbit Servicing Control Facility at Satellite Applications Catapult in Harwell, Oxfordshire. The grant has been awarded through the government’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, which supports innovative businesses that address important industrial and societal challenges.
The National In-Orbit Servicing Control Facility will support advanced robotics activities in space, specifically enabling the provision of a commercial service for de-orbiting small satellites. The new facility will initially control Astroscale’s pioneering ELSA-d mission.
“The new facility will provide a national capability, enabling U.K. companies to unlock opportunities in space debris removal, in-orbit satellite servicing, and other autonomous robotic applications,” Satellite Applications Catapult Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Stuart Martin said.