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by Sofia Villegas
01 March 2024
Alba Orbital to launch satellites using Elon Musk’s Space X rocket

Scottish satellite firm reaches agreement with Space-x contract | Alamy

Alba Orbital to launch satellites using Elon Musk’s Space X rocket

A Scottish firm has secured a contract to launch satellites via Elon Musk’s SpaceX rockets.

Alba Orbital has reached an agreement with Turkish firm Hello Space to launch four rubic-cube-sized satellites from the tech magnate’s rocket Falcon 9.

Expected to start orbiting earth later this year, the satellites, named PocketQubes, aim to enhance global connectivity through expanding Hello Space’s Internet of Things network.

Tom Walkinshaw, chief executive of Alba Orbital, said: “PocketQubes offer unparalleled advantages in terms of cost-effectiveness, versatility, and scalability, making them an ideal platform for driving innovation in satellite technology."

Each satellite weighs less than 250 grams, measures 5x5x15cm, and costs €25k to launch.

This new endeavour follows a previous successful mission, known as 'Istanbul', between Hello Space and Alba Orbital in 2023. 

Lord Offord, UK exports minister, said: “This is more encouraging news for Scotland’s thriving space industry.

“Alba Orbital are leading the way in the production of miniature satellites and this agreement will see their technology being used in many more missions.

“It once again shows the demand around the globe that exists for the amazing products we make here in Scotland."

The Glasgow-based firm already has experience with PocketQube satellite launch services, having delivered more than 40 satellites with partners including SpaceX and the Rocket Lab.

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