CesiumAstro, Inc. Partners With the U.S. Department of Defense to Launch On-Orbit Active Phased Array Satellite Testbed for Global Users

Figure 1: (a) Final preparation of one of Cesium Mission 1's spacecraft and (b) installation into a CubeSat dispenser on the secondary payload ring. (Source: CesiumAstro)

AUSTIN, Texas--()--CesiumAstro Inc. today announces a key milestone in its collaboration with the U.S. Department of Defense’s Defense Innovation Unit; CesiumAstro’s first two spacecraft have been successfully integrated as secondary payloads onto the Atlas V rocket which will deliver NASA’s Landsat 9 to orbit next month.

CesiumAstro is set to launch Cesium Mission 1 (CM1), a two-satellite on-orbit testbed that allows both commercial and defense customers to run experiments using its active electronically steerable array (AESA) communications and crosslink communications payloads. Consisting of two 6U CubeSats, this mission will enable Low Earth Orbit (LEO) experimentation from September 2021 through 2026. CM1 is the first of several planned technology demonstration missions showcasing CesiumAstro’s leading-edge communications payloads.

CesiumAstro is partnering with the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) to demonstrate a reduced-latency direct downlink to tactical ground terminals as one of several planned commercial and defense experiments. DIU, a US Department of Defense (DoD) organization, partners with leading commercial enterprises across the country to adopt and scale technologies that help solve critically important challenges. DIU selected CesiumAstro as one of the latest additions to its distinguished cohort of companies demonstrating excellence and creating rich, inventive solutions in a variety of critical areas from autonomy and AI to human systems, cyber, space, and connectivity.

“DIU is cultivating a rich environment for innovation and partnership,” said Shey Sabripour, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of CesiumAstro. “This collaboration allows CesiumAstro to showcase the benefits of our scalable software-defined AESA technology in support of future DoD missions.”

Multiple experiments are planned on CM1 with partners across both commercial and government sectors. The communications payloads featured on CM1 are available for sale as standard and customizable products for both satellite and airborne missions.

Interested in partnering? Learn more about CesiumAstro’s product solutions: https://www.cesiumastro.com/products

Join the countdown to Cesium Mission 1 (CM1) and track the company’s journey here.

About CesiumAstro

Headquartered in Austin, Texas, CesiumAstro builds high-throughput, software-defined phased array communication payloads for airborne and in-orbit platforms. Cesium’s full-stack, multi-mission hardware and software products enable a range of commercial and defense objectives. For more information, visit: https://www.cesiumastro.com.


Alexandra Johnson

Release Summary

CesiumAstro Inc. announces partnership with the U.S. Department of Defense’s DIU to conduct on-orbit experimentation on their Cesium Mission 1.

Social Media Profiles


Alexandra Johnson