The NanoRacks External Payload Platform (NREP), and 16 customer CubeSats, were successfully launched to the International Space Station on Wednesday, August 19 via the fifth H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV) Commercial Resupply Mission.
The External Payload Platform offers new mission opportunities for small size hosted payloads in the extreme environment of space. This commercial gateway will be ideally located for Earth and deep space observation, sensor development, and testing for advanced electronics and materials.
NREP is able to accommodate up to 9 4U CubeSat-size payloads outside of station with a standard mission duration of 15 weeks. The Platform continues to allow for NanoRacks’ end-to-end mission services that are offered across all of The Company’s space station opportunities.
“The first customers are signed and deep into development of their NREP payloads. And now, for the first time, these exposed payloads can be brought back to Earth” says NanoRacks Chief Designer Michael Johnson. “We are excited for our customers and to see the interesting science results they return.”
NREP is expected to be operational starting early spring 2016.
Also on board HTV-5 were 16 CubeSats, which include 14 Planet Labs Doves Flock- 2B, the University of Aalborg’s AAU-SatX-5 and Gomspace’s GOMX-3.
NanoRacks LLC was formed in 2009 to provide commercial hardware and services for the U.S. National Laboratory onboard the International Space Station via a Space Act Agreement with NASA. NanoRacks’ main office is in Houston, Texas, right alongside the NASA Johnson Space Center. The Business Development office is in Washington, DC., and NanoRacks’ now has a new office in Silicon Valley, California.
NanoRacks has recently signed a teaming agreement with Blue Origin to offer integration services on their New Shepard space vehicle. The Company has grown into the Operating System for Space Utilization by having the tools, the hardware and the services to allow other companies, organizations and governments to realize their own space plans.
To date over 200 payloads have been deployed by the Company on the International Space Station and our customer base includes the European Space Agency (ESA) the German Space Agency (DLR,) the American space agency (NASA,) US Government Agencies, Planet Labs, Urthecast, Space Florida, NCESSE, Virgin Galactic, pharmaceutical drug companies, and organizations in Vietnam, UK, Romania and Israel. Our customer base has propelled NanoRacks into a leadership position in understanding the emerging commercial market for low-earth orbit utilization.