Rocket Lab announced the Photon bus last year, leveraging technology developed for the kick stage of the company’s Electron rocket
FREMONT, CA: Rocket Lab announced that it is acquiring a Canadian smallsat component company as it seeks to build up its satellite division. The company will use Sinclair systems on its Photon line of smallsat buses and will provide resources for Sinclair to scale up production of those components for sale to others.
“Doug Sinclair and his team at Sinclair Interplanetary are recognized as industry leaders and, like Rocket Lab, they produce best-in-class solutions that satellite operators know they can count on,” Peter Beck, chief executive of Rocket Lab, said. “We’re thrilled to welcome Doug and the entire Sinclair team to the Rocket Lab family, and we look forward to working with them on Sinclair’s continued growth and success.”
Toronto-based Sinclair Interplanetary, founded in 2001 by Doug Sinclair, builds components such as reaction wheels and star trackers for small satellites. The company’s hardware has now flown on approximately 100 satellites.
“Rocket Lab has played a pivotal role in making it easy for small satellites to access space. By operating as one company, we now have the opportunity to do the same for satellite manufacturing and make our hardware available to more customers globally,” Doug Sinclair said. “We will be able to supply larger constellations than before, and take our hardware out to the moon and beyond.”
Beck has previously emphasized the importance of Rocket Lab’s smallsat business this year as the company seeks to move beyond just launch services.
The first Photon would launch sometime in the second quarter of this year as a demonstration mission. It will also play a role in the company’s first lunar mission. The bus will be used to help send NASA’s CAPSTONE cubesat mission to the moon after launch on an Electron rocket next year, under a contract awarded to the company by NASA last month.
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