Intuitive Machines (IM) has entered into a long-term agreement with Kongsberg Satellite Services (KSAT), where KSAT will support every stage of IM’s missions to the Moon, from launch and early operations, through transit, including lunar operations — IM will use KSAT services for its 2022 IM-1 mission to the Moon as well as future missions.
KSAT has expanded its existing ground network of more than 200 antennas across more than 25 geographically distributed sites, to include large-diameter (15 meter+) antennas. Through a single point of integration, KSAT offers direct-to-Earth communications coverage during every stage of a lunar mission.
“Our first mission has a very unique orbit for the first 24 hours,” said Troy LeBlanc, Ph.D., Intuitive Machines’ vice president of control centers. “We’re going to make a highly elliptical orbit around the Earth, that’s going to require fast-moving satellite dishes, and KSAT has that capability and the expertise to establish first contact on IM-1. KSAT continues to improve their dish network for lunar distance communications. They are a long-term partner of ours and we expect to work with them on every one of our missions.”
“KSAT is pleased to support Intuitive Machines in their endeavor to carry out the first Houston-commanded lunar landing since the end of the Apollo program,” said Rolf Skatteboe, CEO of KSAT. “Exploratory missions going to the Moon and beyond are challenging and we are looking forward to providing services from our Lunar network to these two challenging missions as a start. Going back to the Moon is long overdue and IM is paving the way.”
Intuitive Machines is a premier provider and supplier of space products and services that enable sustained robotic and human exploration to the Moon, Mars and beyond. We drive markets with competitive world-class offerings synonymous with innovation, high quality, and precision. Whether leveraging state-of-the-art engineering tools and practices or integrating research and advanced technologies, our solutions are insightful and have a positive impact on the world.
KSAT, Kongsberg Satellite Services, is the market leader in providing ground communication services for spacecraft and launch vehicles. Supporting more than of 52,000 satellite ground communication links a month, their extensive network of more than 200 antennas across the globe is constantly expanding. KSAT has developed and deployed a modern software-defined ground station architecture and is positioned to support any mission in LEO, MEO, GEO and HEO, as well as Lunar missions.