Latest News

Rivada Space Networks Orders 300 Satellites from Terran Orbital in $2.4B Deal 

By Rachel Jewett | February 22, 2023

Photo: PRNewsfoto/Rivada Space Networks

Rivada Space Networks selected Terran Orbital to design and manufacture its constellation in a 300-satellite, deal worth $2.4 billion announced Wednesday. 

Terran Orbital, through its subsidiary Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems, will act as the prime contractor to design and manufacture the constellation with 288 satellites and 12 spares. Terran Orbital said the satellites weigh approximately 500 kg and the company will integrate the communications payload and perform satellite assembly, integration, and testing. It will also develop portions of the ground segment and be responsible for mission operations. 

The first four satellites are set to launch in 2025, according to Terran Orbital. Rivada Space Networks said this procurement plan will fulfill the requirements associated with its International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Ka-band filings. 

The Low-Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites are designed to provide “fiber-like low latency and gigabit per second data delivery which is ultra-secure and extremely resilient,” Rivada said in the announcement. The satellites will combine inter-satellite links with advanced onboard data routers to create an optical backbone in space. Target customer markets are telecom, enterprise, maritime, energy, and government services. 

“We have completed another major milestone in the development of our unique constellations to enable secure, global connectivity for governments and enterprises,” said Rivada Space Networks Chief Program Officer Clemens Kaiser. “This demonstrates that we have the right technology in place to sustainably move RSN from concept to reality and that our chosen satellite manufacturer has the required combination of experience, agility and innovation to deliver these cutting-edge global satellite constellations.” 

Rivada Space Networks, established in 2022, first released an RFP for 600 satellites. The company looks to wholesale capacity to customers at a lower price point to unlock more IoT and 5G applications, execs told Via Satellite in an interview last year

The contract is a large commercial win for Terran Orbital. The company is also a Lockheed Martin subcontractor for the Space Development Agency’s (SDA) Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture, supplying dozens of satellite buses for the program

Last year, Terran Orbital received a $100 million investment from Lockheed Martin, and decided not to pursue its own synthetic aperture radar (SAR) constellation, but rather hone in on being a manufacturer of choice for commercial and government customers. 

“Terran Orbital is thrilled to form this new partnership with Rivada Space Networks,” said Marc Bell, co-founder, chairman, and CEO of Terran Orbital. “Our partnership will show why Terran Orbital continues to be a satellite manufacturer of choice for aerospace and defense companies worldwide. We are ecstatic to work alongside Rivada and look forward to building out their LEO constellation.”