Kepler Communications wins European Space Agency contract

As part of the contract, Kepler will provide hardware terminals to ESA and other third parties participating in the program.

Kepler Communications has won a European Space Agency (ESA) contract worth € 500 million ($ 581,000).

As part of the deal, the company will provide hardware terminals capable of connecting other space assets to Kepler’s LEO communications network through Kepler’s recently unveiled Aether space connectivity service.

Earlier this year, ESA released an Opportunity Announcement (AO) focusing on Telemetry and satellite control using space IoT networks for small satellites, AO / 1-10220. In response, Kepler proposed the use of the Kepler Low Earth Orbit satellite network as a communications infrastructure that would provide connectivity to other space assets in nearby orbits. To facilitate connectivity with the Kepler network, a Kepler terminal will be installed on other objects in space to communicate to and from the network, and through that network to command centers here on Earth.

Kepler’s Aether service is designed to address a central challenge with low land operations; limited connectivity to these space-based mission assets from the ground.

Wen Cheng Chong, CTO and Co-Founder of Kepler, said, “The response to Aether since our announcement at Satellite2021 has been overwhelmingly positive. The contract with ESA to provide the hardware and service is an important validation for the Kepler team and underscores the value of our core mission of providing internet-like connectivity in space. And just as important, this victory strengthens the solution as we continue conversations with other users in the space community. “

Prior to the completion of the contract with ESA, Kepler will perform in-orbit tests of the proposed hardware terminals in the first quarter of 2022, aboard two new satellites that Kepler will add to their constellation.

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