In the first stage, a CubeSat communication system for earth orbiting missions will be developed in-house. For this, Celestial has developed a prototype as proof of principle to demonstrate the main function of transmitting and receiving signals from other satellites and/or ground stations using an SDR (Software Defined Radio) technology. To achieve this, Celestial focused on component selection and electronic circuit design. The next prototype will demonstrate functionality under deep space...
In the first stage, a CubeSat communication system for earth orbiting missions will be developed in-house. For this, Celestial has developed a prototype as proof of principle to demonstrate the main function of transmitting and receiving signals from other satellites and/or ground stations using an SDR (Software Defined Radio) technology. To achieve this, Celestial focused on component selection and electronic circuit design. The next prototype will demonstrate functionality under deep space environment conditions. The prototype then will be refined towards a satellite communication system product which will be offered to earth orbiting missions by the end of 2019.
In the second stage, a lunar data relay small satellite constellation will be developed and deployed in a lunar polar orbit by 2025. This constellation will be commercialized by providing lunar missions with a cis-lunar communication and data transfer service. This service will be targeting lunar remote areas such as polar regions and lunar far side. In addition, dedicated, miniaturized ground stations will be developed and provided to Celestial´s customers. The overall service is expected to provide a mission performance extension feature and/or enabling lunar access even to satellite such as Cube-sat.
In the third stage, because of high radiation, the mission lifetime of the lunar constellation is expected to be roughly four years. Hence, Celestial will focus its own R&D efforts to update and improve the radio frequency-based communication technology to superior technologies, e.g. laser-based or 5G. The succeeding generation of satellites will implement the developed superior technologies. This way, Celestial will continue to be able to provide a state-of-the-art communication service to its customers.
Ultimately, the Celestial’s communication infrastructure will support (cis-) lunar exploration and the growing new space economy.
As the coordinator of the Master of Space Engineering program, in which Mayank is enrolled, I can say that I know his capabilities quite well. He is for sure one of the most ambitioned, hard-working and supportive students I have ever had under my supervision.
When I first heard about the ideas of the celestial team, I admit that I was quite skeptical. Seriously planning a data relay system in space is a highly challenging undertaking for every person or entity. Of course, I tried to share encouraging and constructive feedback, always hoping for the best. But when I look at what Mayank and Johannes have achieved in the past months, I am truly astonished!
I think that the team found one of the best ways possible to successfully break down the big challenge into manageable chunks and make substantial steps forward towards reaching their big goal.
I believe that team Celestial is highly capable, technically skilled and strongly focused. I wish them the best of luck for the future.
Mayank, Tushar, and Abhirama are part of my study group on innovation and entrepreneurship at TU Berlin Space Technology - Masters of Space Engineering. They are ambitiously addressing the lack of infrastructure supporting lunar and deep space communication. They did not shy away from addressing this large issue and have developed a simple yet elegant solution concept. I got to know them as very passionate and committed. They are eager to create a sustainable business model around their vision and are making great steps in customer discovery. I’m excited to accompany them in their entrepreneurial journey towards driving the future of data communication in space.
To whom it may concern,
As a Business Innovation Manager at Airbus I met Celestial at the INNOspace Masters 2019, where they have been selected as a finalist and won the 3rd place of the OHB challenge.
Their proposal to establish a small satellite constellation for (cis-)lunar communication is convincing and I recommend to follow their idea. The business model definitely worth investigating further.
Frank Zimmermann Managing Director at cesah GmbH Centrum für Satellitennavigation Hessen
The Celestial team (Mayank and Johannes Schumacher), I have met for the first time at the ESA Investment Forum in Darmstadt, organised by cesah at the end January 2019. This event aimed at connecting start-ups and investors.
At that time, I learned about their goal to enable cis-lunar communication through a Cube-sat based lunar data relay constellation. Since then, we have been in contact through calls, in which I was providing my feedback on the concept. In addition, our paths crossed multiple times at industry relevant events and conferences.
The team is committed, coachable, and ambitious! They are not backing down from thinking big and following an ambitious vision, i.e. a long-term and large-scale project of a lunar constellation.