This European company, Hiber, has successfully launched it’s second generation satellite developed inhouse. The new on-board propulsion system allows Hiber’s ground engineers to adjust the satellite’s orbit, safeguarding against collisions and, enabling de-orbit at the end-of-life, making Hiber one of the most responsible CubeSat constellation operators in the world.
Hiber Four is a second generation satellite developed and assembled by Hiber’s engineers in its Amsterdam office. Hiber Four, and its sister satellite Hiber Three (launching in March), are half the volume (3U) of the previous generation, which reduces the mass and decreases the launch costs by up to 50 percent. The newest generation of satellites also have an on-board propulsion system allowing Hiber’s ground engineers to adjust the satellite’s orbit. This ensures that Hiber Four, and its future descendants, avoid collisions and, importantly, de-orbit themselves at the end-of-life, making Hiber one of the most responsible CubeSat constellation operators in the world.
“This is just the start of what’s coming,” says Maarten Engelen, MD Technology and Co-founder at Hiber. “We moved all of our integration and operations for satellites and end-to-end solutions in-house last year, which gives us greater control over cost, functionality, and speed of improvement. By controlling the full solution, we can innovate faster and respond quickly to customer needs.”
Unlike the previous generation of satellites, which relied on external development and assembly, Hiber Four was developed in-house by Hiber’s satellite team. The satellites and Hiber’s end-to-end IoT solutions demonstrate the company’s ability to develop technically complex systems and operate them in the most harsh conditions. An example of this technical innovation is Hiber’s most recent product, HiberHilo, a complete end-to-end wellhead pressure and temperature monitoring system for oil and gas companies. By moving development in-house, Hiber is able to develop innovative and secure solutions on demand at a faster and more affordable rate, benefitting both its customers and the industry as a whole.
“Hiber Four is the start of a new era at Hiber,” says Erik Wienk, COO, Hiber. “Not only does Hiber Four mean we can give better service levels to our customers, but it also shows what we’re capable of as a team.”
Hiber Four is the first of two new satellites that Hiber plans to launch this quarter. The next satellite, called Hiber Three, will launch in a Soyuz rocket in March 2021. Hiber Four was launched before Hiber Three because of a delay of the Soyuz launch vehicle.