18 March 2024Spain
  • Startical will test the communication and air traffic surveillance systems of the future constellation
  • The mission is taking place after the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has given the green light to the use of aeronautical communications from space
  • Startical will be the first company to provide communication and surveillance services from space to control air traffic in oceanic and remote areas
Traffic control space

Startical, a company created by ENAIRE and Indra, will use two satellite produced by Kongsberg NanoAvionics and GOMspace to test the communication and surveillance systems of its future constellation of over 270 satellites set to provide air traffic services from space. 

Startical has chosen a GOMspace microsatellite, of 20 kg, and NanoAvionics microsatellite, weighing approximately 110 kg, for a series of tests to assess performance of its VHF radio communication and ADS-B surveillance systems. 

The first satellite to enter into operation will be the one from GOMspace, which will be launched by Startical in the first term of 2025. NanoAvionics, on its side, will provide its bus, integrate the payload supplied by Indra and launch its platform in mid-year 2025, executing the first mission operations and allowing Startical to take control of the ATM systems onboard. 

Startical will carry out these tests in the wake of the International Telecommunication Union’s approval on December 15th, 2023, of the use of the aeronautical communications band from space, an historic milestone and a definitive boost for this pioneering project.

J. Enrique González Laguna, CEO of Startical, stated that: “Our goal is to become the main global provider of air traffic management technology in the space segment and a market leader in satellite surveillance and voice and data communications services. Our constellation will call on highly innovative and distinctive technological solutions, including the incorporation of pioneering links between satellites and the use of artificial intelligence to make controlling them easier”.

“NanoAvionics’s and GOMspace satellites technology and market-leading experience will provide us a partner to test our new technology, which in turn will open new markets and services. They understand our requirements and have the skills to perfectly address the task.” 

GomSpace CEO, Carsten Drachmann, comments: “I am very excited that Startical has chosen GomSpace as a key supplier of the satellite and payload technology for their groundbreaking satellite constellation to enhance the global air traffic safety and efficiency. The journey that our two companies began a few years ago, is now moving towards completion, and I am delighted to be part of enabling the vision and ambition of J. Enrique González Laguna and his team”.  

NanoAvionics CEO Žilvinas Kvedaravičius stated that: “This is an excellent opportunity for us at NanoAvionics to become Startical’s partner. We’ll bring our leadership and expertise in small satellite technology, which will be ideally complemented by Startical’s advanced vision of air traffic management. We’re committed to this mission and we’ll strive to demonstrate the capabilities and ongoing reliability of our small platform and mission services geared towards the customer”.

“We’re striving to speed up the deployment and lifespan of our systems in space so as to move New Space initiatives such as Startical on to their next phase of development. Bringing performance standards to the industry requires the robust quality and procedural assurance to which we’re dedicated”.

About GomSpace Group AB

The company’s business operations are mainly conducted through the wholly owned Danish subsidiary, GomSpace A/S, with operational office in Aalborg, Denmark. GomSpace is a space company with a mission to be engaged in the global market for space systems and services by introducing new products, i.e. components, platforms and systems based on innovation within professional nanosatellites. The company is listed on the Nasdaq First North Premier exchange under the ticker GOMX. FNCA Sweden AB is the Company’s Certified Adviser. For more information, please visit our website on www.gomspace.com

About Kongsberg NanoAvionics (NanoAvionics)

Kongsberg NanoAvionics is reshaping the space economy with our standardized small satellite platforms. We offer efficient, cost-effective satellite products and services that help organizations launch their space missions swiftly. Since 2014, over 120 projects in 50 countries have trusted us for our experience, technology and higher return on their satellite investment. We're a globally local team of close to 300 international professionals with dedicated facilities in Lithuania, the United States, and the United Kingdom. As part of Kongsberg Defense and Aerospace since 2022, we're further strengthening our commitment to robust, innovative, secure and reliable space solutions. NanoAvionics is proudly accelerating the pace of space-based connectivity or remote sensing, one satellite constellation at a time. http://www.nanoavionics.com

About Startical

Startical (startical.com) is a public-private initiative for satellite technological innovation created by ENAIRE (the national air navigation manager in Spain, www.enaire.es) and Indra (a global technology and consulting company, www.indracompany.com).

The goal of Startical is to develop and deploy a constellation of small satellites at low altitude to enhance air traffic management with a global service vision across the entire planet. Startical aims to build and launch a satellite platform that will expand surveillance and communication coverage with aircraft, especially over vast oceanic or remote areas without coverage from ground-based air navigation infrastructure systems.

Startical will be the first satellite platform for air navigation that includes, alongside aircraft position surveillance services (ADS-B), a VHF radio communication system between the controller and the pilot compliant with aeronautical standards. This represents a differentiating factor compared to similar initiatives. These new services will enhance safety, capacity, efficiency, and punctuality of flights, providing clear benefits for both airlines and passengers.


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