A Scottish company has secured a major deal to launch satellites from Elon Musk’s SpaceX rocket.

Glasgow-based satellite company Alba Orbital said it has closed a large multi-launch contract with Turkish space start-up Hello Space to launch four “Rubik's-Cube-sized” satellites via the SpaceX rocket.

It is claimed the satellites, called PocketQubes, will be used to enhance global connectivity through the Internet of Things following the success of Hello Space’s previous demonstration satellite mission with Alba Orbital named Istanbul in 2023.

Under this new contract, Alba Orbital will deploy four PocketQubes into space using SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket starting later this year on behalf of Hello Space.

It said the satellites will orbit the earth in a "sun-synchronous orbit, contributing to Hello Space's efforts to expand their commercial IoT network.

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They are five centimeters per side in size, weigh less than 250 grams each, and cost €25,000 per launch.

It is claimed that, by working with Alba Orbital, Hello Space is leveraging the advantages of PocketQubes to enhance its satellite technology at a reasonable cost.

The satellites will help bridge connectivity gaps and improve data transmission worldwide, enabling applications such as environmental monitoring, asset tracking, and communication network improvement through the IoT, the firm said.

Tom Walkinshaw, chief executive of Alba Orbital, said: "We are thrilled to work alongside Hello Space again and to continue to help them achieve their orbital ambitions. PocketQubes offer unparalleled advantages in terms of cost-effectiveness, versatility, and scalability, making them an ideal platform for driving innovation in satellite technology."

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Muzaffer Duysal, Hello Space Systems chief executive, said: “From the initial consultation to the flawless execution during the Istanbul mission campaign, Alba Orbital showcased exceptional technical competence and efficiency.” 

“We are delighted to have chosen Alba Orbital as our launch service provider once again, and we look forward to embarking on these new and exciting missions together”.

Lord Offord, UK Minster for Exports, said: “This is more encouraging news for Scotland’s thriving space industry.

“Alba Orbital are leading the way in the production of miniature satellites and this agreement will see their technology being used in many more missions.

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“It once again shows the demand around the globe that exists for the amazing products we make here in Scotland.

Alba Orbital is the major provider of PocketQube satellite launch services, having delivered 41 satellites to orbit to date with launch partners such as SpaceX and Rocket Lab.

With a focus on accessibility and reliability, Alba Orbital said it “empowers organisations worldwide to realise their space exploration goals”.

Alba Orbital describes itself as is a vertically integrated NewSpace company “democratising access to space”, providing turnkey solutions from advanced pico-satellite platforms, low-cost launch opportunities, and ground station services. It has worked with over 30 customers across three continents, including Stanford University, Carnegie Mellon University and TU Delft.