Space Commerce

Astra Announces Spacecraft Engine Contract with Apex

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
April 27, 2023
Filed under ,
Astra Announces Spacecraft Engine Contract with Apex

Astra Space, Inc. (“Astra”) (Nasdaq: ASTR) and Apex Technology, Inc. (“Apex”) today announced a contract for Astra to initially provide 5 Spacecraft Propulsion Kits for Apex’s satellite bus platform. Astra is expected to begin delivering the Spacecraft Propulsion Kits in 2023.

The Spacecraft Propulsion Kit disaggregates the four subsystems of the Astra Spacecraft Engine™ module: (1) thruster, (2) power processing unit, (3) feed system, and (4) tank. This disaggregation enables satellite builders to take advantage of shorter lead times to access key components of their propulsion system that they can customize for their unique missions. Astra is adopting the way development kits have transformed the software industry and applying it to hardware by providing the tools and support to accelerate spacecraft development at scale.

Apex’s satellite buses are configured by customers to meet specific mission needs. Apex’s 100 kg bus model, Aries, will use the Astra Spacecraft Engine™ to support its electric propulsion package. Apex customers are able receive their spacecraft in a matter of months thanks to Apex’s design-for-manufacturing approach, interoperable software, and product-first mentality.

“The Astra Spacecraft Engine has the flight heritage and the performance we need to deliver our satellite platforms to customers on schedule,” said Max Benassi, Chief Technology Officer of Apex. “As Apex scales production, we look forward to continuing to work with suppliers like Astra who can meet our production ramp rates.”

“Astra and Apex share the common value of producing space products at scale,” said Margo de Naray, General Manager of Astra Spacecraft Engines™ at Astra. “Astra’s Spacecraft Propulsion Kits are expected to allow customers like Apex to shorten lead times to deliver on customer programs.”

About Astra Space, Inc.

Astra’s mission is to improve life on Earth from space by creating a healthier and more connected planet. Today, Astra offers one of the lowest cost-per-launch dedicated orbital launch services of any operational launch provider in the world, and one of the industry’s first flight-proven electric propulsion systems for satellites, Astra Spacecraft Engine™. Astra delivered its first commercial launch to low Earth orbit in 2021, making it the fastest company in history to reach this milestone, just five years after it was founded in 2016. Astra (NASDAQ: ASTR) was the first space launch company to be publicly traded on Nasdaq. Visit to learn more about Astra.

About Apex Space, Inc.

Apex solves the largest bottleneck in the space industry with the fastest delivery of transparently priced and reliable satellite buses. Apex’s productized, configurable bus platforms are delivered in months and enable the industry to keep up with the accelerating demand for small spacecraft. The first production run of the Aries satellite bus, Apex’s flagship model, is underway for multiple customers, with six spacecraft being delivered by the end of 2024.

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