Space Commerce

Orbit Fab and Breaking Ground Set Space Resource Transaction Precedent with World’s First Agreement for Donation of Lunar Regolith

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
July 26, 2022
Filed under , , , , ,
Orbit Fab and Breaking Ground Set Space Resource Transaction Precedent with World’s First Agreement for Donation of Lunar Regolith
Lunar Regolith

Today, Orbit Fab, the Gas Stations In Space™ company creating an in-space propellant supply chain, and Breaking Ground Trust, a lunar resources perpetual purpose trust, announced the signing of a letter of intent for a regolith donation. Under the terms of this agreement, Orbit Fab intends to purchase a lunar sample from a third party and donate it to Breaking Ground to hold it in trust. This collaboration allows both entities to pursue their shared interest in developing and promoting a sustainable, balanced, and lawful way to manage lunar resources.

“This partnership with Breaking Ground Trust will pave the way for a sustainable future.” Said James Bultitude, CTO of Orbit Fab. “Long term, Orbit Fab will be producing commodities and feedstock for lunar missions by buying raw minerals from commercial companies in space. Orbit Fab is working towards becoming the materials supplier for the bustling in-space economy, starting with a propellant supply chain.”

“The idea came from seeing the ‘one percent for the planet’ concept at play on Earth and trying to ensure we break the cycle of exploitation with space and really use the resources to better life on Earth for all peoples.” Mr. Bultitude went on to say, “To have a bustling in-space economy we need to be able to use the resources up there, reducing our reliance on Earth, while also giving back to the space community.”

Breaking Ground and Orbit Fab both believe that it is necessary to find a sustainable way to manage lunar resources, this letter of intent provides an opportunity to develop concrete resources management approaches that are cooperative, adaptive, plural, and balanced to fit the needs of as many stakeholders as possible.This is the first time a commercial company is donating lunar regolith to a perpetual purpose trust. With this partnership, both entities aim to create a precedent that will help design innovative solutions for future transactions of lunar resources.

“Orbit Fab’s offer to purchase regolith and then donate it to the trust showed us that the trust stewardship model can be used in innovative ways that we hadn’t even thought of yet,” said Jessy Kate Schingler, one of BGT’s trustees. “We are looking forward to partnering with Orbit Fab and other companies to prototype new models of resource management while encouraging investment in this new domain.”

About Orbit Fab:

Orbit Fab is building a bustling in-space economy, beginning with a propellant supply chain. The company’s Gas Stations in Space™ services create a bridge between Earth and space, providing satellite owners with the necessary propellant to extend mission time, travel across orbits, and even return to Earth. World-firsts include the first commercially available satellite refueling port RAFTI™ (baselined on 4 DoD programs and 90+ commercial satellites), the first in-orbit fuel depot, and the first resupply of water to the International Space Station by a private company. Orbit Fab is backed by key industry leaders and major investors including Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, SpaceFund, Bolt, Munich Re Ventures, and more.


Connect with Orbit Fab on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube.

About Breaking Ground:

Founded in August 2021, Breaking Ground is a perpetual purpose trust created by the Open Lunar Foundation whose purpose is to steward and demonstrate formal and effective institutional management of lunar resources between different stakeholders. Breaking Ground’s goal is to avoid unilateral actions, overutilization, and conflicts over lunar resources by generating new policies, testing the viability of these policies, and advocating for the policies that prove to be effective.


SpaceRef co-founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.