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  • A Global Approach to Small Satellite Launch Services for Auxiliary Payloads

    Paper number



    Mr. Abe Bonnema, ISIS - Innovative Solutions In Space B.V., The Netherlands


    Mr. Jeroen Rotteveel, ISIS - Innovative Solutions In Space BV, The Netherlands


    Mr. Wouter Jan Ubbels, ISIS - Innovative Solutions In Space BV, The Netherlands


    Mr. Eddie van Breukelen, ISIS - Innovative Solutions In Space B.V., The Netherlands




    The paper will describe a single interface launch brokering services approach for small satellites worldwide that is made possible through international cooperation. The paper will discuss market developments, operational obstacles and benefits, as well as technical and legal aspects of generating business from excess payload capacity on launchers.
    The number of small satellites that are being developed worldwide has increased considerably over the past few years, with mission objectives varying from technology demonstration to high-end scientific missions and commercial applications. Consequently, the demand for small satellite launches to –mainly- Low Earth Orbits has equally increased, with orbit requirements varying according to their mission requirements.
    An increasing number of organizations worldwide are expanding their launch capabilities, which results in the number of opportunities for small satellites to be launched as auxiliary or even primary payloads to increase as well.

    Nonetheless, a variety of challenges and obstacles often seem to hinder satellites developers and launch service providers in finding each other. This may simply be due to unfamiliarity with one another, but often international relations, customs clearance paperwork, and other regulations and policies are perceived as impenetrable barriers.

    The increased accessibility to space makes satellite development possible for groups and organizations that are relatively inexperienced with regard to launching satellites as well. However, launch service providers can only assist their customers up to a certain point in solving issues such as customs clearance and export regulations.

    Now that launch opportunities are becoming more abundant rather than scarce, satellite developers have higher demands with regard to e.g. expected efforts, schedule flexibility and interfaces. At the same time, the current high demand for launch opportunities allows launch service providers to pay more and more attention to the cost-effectiveness of their launch services, as they can afford to exclude certain customers for more profitable ones.

    Acting as a single interface for launch brokering services, ISIS and her international partners offer both satellite developers and launch service providers worldwide a means to mutually benefit from the changes in launch opportunities and demand.

    The paper will describe how the objectives and demands of both sides can be satisfied, while the time- cost-effectiveness is increased. Such a single interface for launch services is only possible through a strong international cooperation between ISIS, her partners for e.g. launch adaptor interfaces, export interfaces, test services, and the launch service providers.


    Abstract document


    Manuscript document

    IAC-08.D2.2.4.pdf (🔒 authorized access only).

    To get the manuscript, please contact IAF Secretariat.