Singapore, 15 Aug 2023 – SpeQtral, a leading quantum communication technology company, is thrilled to unveil the collaboration with Kongsberg NanoAvionics (NanoAvionics) and Mbryonics for the upcoming SpeQtral-1 mission. NanoAvionics has been chosen as the satellite platform provider, while Mbryonics will take on the crucial role of the satellite optical terminal provider.
NanoAvionics, a prominent player in the new-space industry, has been chosen as CubeSat satellite platform provider for the mission. With their consistent track record of building and successfully launching satellite missions, NanoAvionics brings invaluable expertise and an impressive portfolio of accomplishments.
Mbryonics has been selected to develop the optical terminal that transmits the QKD photons from the SpeQtral quantum hardware to optical ground stations. Mbryonics demonstrates remarkable potential with their ever growing capabilities in space photonics. Their past contract win from Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) showcases their abilities and commitment to pushing boundaries.
The SpeQtral-1 mission will be SpeQtral’s second quantum key distribution (QKD) satellite. The mission follows the SpeQtre technology demonstrator mission, itself built on technologies demonstrated on the 2019 SpooQy-1 CubeSat. Leveraging the technical expertise of NanoAvionics and Mbryonics’ state-of-the-art optical terminal hardware, SpeQtral-1 will serve as a pathfinder commercial demonstrator, defining future QKD services. It is also slated to be used alongside SpeQtre as the space segment for the ESA INT-UQKD programme, which will explore international use cases for QKD. This endeavour showcases the ability of industry leaders to join forces across continents, transcending geographical boundaries, and fostering an environment of global cooperation.
Rob Bedington, CTO of SpeQtral, expressed his enthusiasm for the partnerships: “We are thrilled that NanoAvionics and Mbryonics have taken up the challenge of collaborating on this groundbreaking, state-of-the-art mission. Making a laser comms mission is no easy feat, and integrating QKD takes the challenge to a whole new level! Our partners’ expertise and capabilities tesselate perfectly with our own and our vision of Quantum-safe keys delivered by CubeSats; we look forward to building the future of global secure connectivity together.”
Co-Founder and CEO, Lum Chune Yang, conveyed his anticipation for the SpeQtral-1 mission: “The SpeQtral-1 mission offers promising business prospects, enabling SpeQtral-delivered QKD services and serving as a reference for future QKD satellite products. The Quantum-Optical Terminal, a joint effort of SpeQtral and Mbryonics, presents a compact QKD and laser communications transmitter product ready for integration into satellites of all sizes. This will pave the way for organisations or sovereign nations with quantum security requirements to incorporate this cutting edge product into their bespoke satellite missions.”
The mission has made steady progress with key milestones already achieved. The Optical Terminal & Quantum Payload Preliminary Design Reviews (PDR) were completed in 2022. SpeQtral-1’s payload and mission CDR were also completed earlier this year. The team is moving ahead with EM tests and integration to conduct spacecraft level functional tests.
“We at NanoAvionics are proud to be part of the SpeQtral-1 mission alongside SpeQtral and Mbryonics,” said Vytenis J. Buzas, CEO of NanoAvionics. “This collaboration signifies a critical step into the quantum era, promising revolutionary enhancements to secure communications. Leveraging our experience in swiftly delivering in-orbit demonstration missions with our modular smallsat platforms, we’re prepared to navigate the future of quantum communications. Our partnership transcends borders, echoing the power of global cooperation in pioneering technological advancements.”
“We are deeply honoured that SpeQtral has chosen Mbryonics as their optical communications technology partner for this groundbreaking SpeQtral-1 mission,” said John Mackey, CEO at Mbryonics. “This project represents a significant step towards building a more secure world, and we are excited to contribute our expertise and advanced solutions to make it a reality. With a shared vision of pushing the boundaries of quantum communication, Mbryonics, NanoAvionics and SpeQtral have embarked on a remarkable journey to revolutionize secure communication channels through quantum key distribution (QKD). SpeQtral’s trust in our expertise and technology is a testament to the relentless pursuit of innovation and excellence that drives both our organizations. Our team of dedicated engineers and experts have poured their passion and knowledge into developing a cutting-edge solution that promises to set new benchmarks in secure and unbreakable communication.”
SpeQtral remains committed to driving advancements in the quantum communication industry through strategic collaborations. By leveraging the expertise and strengths of their partners, SpeQtral continues to pioneer the development of secure and scalable quantum solutions that will shape the future of secure communication.
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SpeQtral is a pioneer in quantum communications, with a vision to build and deploy global quantum networks. SpeQtral develops quantum-secure products and services designed to protect sovereign and enterprise telecommunication networks against classical, as well as future quantum based cyber-attacks. Combining both terrestrial and space-based solutions, SpeQtral aims to secure the world’s networks against the threats posed by the imminent quantum revolution and drive innovation in quantum communications that will serve as the building blocks for the future quantum internet.
For more information, visit: https://speqtral.space/
About Kongsberg NanoAvionics:
Kongsberg NanoAvionics (NanoAvionics) is reshaping the space economy with our standardized small satellite platforms. We offer efficient, cost-effective satellite products and services that help organizations launch their space missions swiftly. Since 2014, over 120 projects in 50 countries have trusted us for our experience, technology and higher return on their satellite investment.
We’re a globally local team of close to 300 international professionals with dedicated facilities in Lithuania, the United States, and the United Kingdom. As part of Kongsberg Defense and Aerospace since 2022, we’re further strengthening our commitment to robust, innovative, secure and reliable space solutions.
NanoAvionics is proudly accelerating the pace of space-based connectivity or remote sensing, one satellite constellation at a time.
For more information, visit: https://nanoavionics.com/
Mbryonics is a trailblazing vertically integrated photonic communications technology company. With a distinctive focus on satellite optical transport solutions, we stand at the forefront of innovation, serving both the space and ground segments of the industry. Our headquarters in Ireland serve as the nucleus of our operations, where we conceptualize, design, and manufacture cutting-edge products that redefine the boundaries of what is possible. At the heart of our success lies our pioneering use of advanced materials and innovative manufacturing methodologies which have revolutionized the mass production of optical communications systems.
At Mbryonics, we don’t just illuminate the path to innovation; we bring innovation to light.
For more information, visit: https://mbryonics.com/