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Swedish Space Corporation Wins US Lunar Business

By Mark Holmes | June 25, 2024

SSC’s Santiago Satellite Station in Chile. Photo: SSC

Swedish Space Corporation (SSC Space US) will work with ispace-US on their upcoming Mission 3 with the APEX 1.0 lunar lander, thanks to a new collaboration agreement. SSC will provide critical communication links to the mission through its advanced SSC Connect lunar ground station network capabilities. The two companies announced the collaboration, June 25.

ispace-U.S.’s Mission 3 will provide lunar lander services to Schrodinger Basin on the far side of the Moon as part of the Draper-led NASA Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) initiative. For the mission, scheduled for 2026, ispace-U.S. will transport and operate government and commercial payload instruments for lunar surface science. While the lander communicates directly with Earth during transit, ispace-U.S. will later use relay satellites for communication during surface operations. SSC will be the sole provider of the commercial communication system that the APEX 1.0 lunar lander will use during its transit to the lunar surface – for all commanding, telemetry, ranging, and doppler. To complete this advanced moon mission support, SSC will leverage four SSC Connect deep space ground station sites.

“We are excited to embark on this journey together with ispace-U.S. While this collaboration underscores SSC’s long heritage and commitment to the global lunar market, we are continuously making new investments to support the technical requirements for today’s modern lunar missions. The Misson 3 lunar mission is crucially important for SSC, the U.S. space market, and the world – pushing the boundaries of space exploration,” Erwin Mercado, president of SSC Space US, said in a statement.