At this year’s International Astronautical Congress in Paris, Gilmour Space Technologies announced new plans to launch a dedicated rideshare mission to low-Earth orbit (LEO) in late 2024.
Aptly named Caravan-1, the mission will be carried aboard Gilmour’s upgraded Eris Block 2 rocket, which will take the payloads to LEO from its Bowen Orbital Spaceport (BOS) in Abbott Point Port in northern Queensland. With a lift capacity of 1000 kilograms, the upgraded rocket boasts a significant increase in launch capability for customers compared to the original Eris Block 1 rocket which can carry up to 215 kilograms and will make its maiden launch early next year.
Customers of the mission can use the standard 15-inch adaptor port to attach their payloads. They also have the option of utilising Gilmour Space’s modular satellite platform, called the G-Class Satellite Bus (G-Sat), for individual payloads. The G-Sat is a large CubeSat measuring 60cm, which is designed to fit into both Eris and other commercial launch vehicles. Its purpose is to provide the same scalability as a 1U CubeSat (10cm) while also allowing for larger payloads with more capabilities such as power and instrumentation. As a result, it gives scientists, engineers and satellite manufacturers more room to move and greater scope to deliver higher quality results for end-users.