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Momentus Identifies Cause of Vigoride-3 Anomaly, Deploys 4 More Satellites

By Jeffrey Hill | August 2, 2022

A rendering of Momentus’ Vigoride in-space shuttle. Photo: Momentus

Commercial in-space transportation services company Momentus has identified the root cause of anomalies that created power and communications issues for its Vigoride-3 orbital transfer vehicle (OTV) during its May 27 demonstration mission. The company did not provide detail on the specific cause, but said that its findings were confirmed by an independent review board.

Momentus’ update also included confirmation that it deployed four additional customer satellites from Vigoride-3 vehicle since initially deploying two customer satellites in May. The company also deployed another satellite for a third-party deployer that flew on a second port of the launch vehicle. This brings Vigoride-3’s total deployment count to seven satellites.

The Vigoride-3 demo mission flew to orbit on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rideshare mission on May 25. The launch was critical for Momentus after it was delayed for regulatory concerns.

Momentus CEO John Rood said the company has made good progress in implementing corrective actions on its upcoming Vigoride-5 vehicle that will launch on SpaceX’s Transporter-6 mission in November and that it remains on schedule for future launches in 2023.

“We have completed our own internal reviews and welcomed an independent review team that conducted a comprehensive assessment of our first mission,” said Rood. “We learned a lot from our first Vigoride demonstration mission already and intend to learn everything we can before the mission is over. Albert Einstein famously remarked, ‘The only source of knowledge is experience,’ and we are intently focused on implementing the knowledge and lessons learned from the experience of our first demonstration mission on our second Vigoride demonstration flight this fall.”