• Satellite Evolution Group

AAC Clyde Space wins order from Astroscale


AAC Clyde Space has won an order for a Sirius computer from Astroscale Ltd., for inclusion in their End-of-Life space debris removal service, ELSA-M. The order follows on from an order for a Starbuck power system from Astroscale announced on September 22, 2022.


The Sirius computer will be delivered during the first quarter 2024. AAC Clyde Space has previously been commissioned by Astroscale to design and update its Starbuck power system to meet the requirements of the ELSA-M mission. The total order value for the Starbuck power system and the Sirius computer for the mission equates to £1.815m.


Traffic in Low Earth Orbit is increasing exponentially. To respond to the growth and vital services provided by large satellite constellations, the space industry is developing new practices to reduce space debris and clear the orbital highways. In May 2021, Astroscale UK selected AAC Clyde Space to co-engineer a satellite platform for a space debris removal service known as End-of-Live Services by Astroscale Multi-mission (ELSA-M). As part of this project, AAC Clyde Space designed and updated its Starbuck power subsystem, Sirius avionics, and other systems for inclusion on this specific mission in Low Earth Orbit (LEO).


The ELSA-M satellite servicer will be designed and optimised to remove multiple pieces of debris from LEO in a single orbital mission. The development of the ELSA-M commercial service is supported by the UK Space Agency and European Space Agency as part of the ESA Sunrise programme.


Designed to remove its first defunct LEO satellite in 2024, this latest mission will capture learning from the ELSA-d in-orbit demonstration in 2021-2022 which tested Astroscale's magnetic capture system, rendezvous and proximity operations and on-board systems successfully.