Fresh off raising $70 million last month, HawkEye 360 has placed an order for 12 new satellites to expand its radio frequency (RF) collection constellation. UTIAS Space Flight Laboratory (SFL), Canadian manufacturer of HawkEye’s initial satellites, will build the next lot.
“After proving the value and accuracy of our first satellites and securing the Series B investment, we are now quickly scaling our business to support customer demand,” said John Serafini, Chief Executive Officer, HawkEye 360. “These next-generation satellites will improve our capabilities and expand our constellation for faster revisit rates, which translates into better insights for a safer world across maritime, air, and land domains.”
HawkEye 360’s first cluster of three satellites was launched in December 2018, with a second set of three currently under construction by SFL. When launched and put into service, the 12 satellites will give HawkEye an operational constellation of 18 satellites in total, enabling “routine” revisits of less than an hour for increased global awareness. The new satellites will geolocate more signals across a wider frequency range with approved accuracy and reduced data latency for timely customer delivery.
Since it started commercial operations in April, HawkEye is working with customers to test and bring multiple products to market, including RFGeo for identifying and geomapping the location of emitters and RFMosaic to provide broad surveys of RF activity across a region of interest.
HawkEye 360 has raised over $100 million in funding since company startup in 2015, with participants including Airbus and Raytheon. Other companies putting up RF sensing constellations include European firms Kleos Space and UnseenLabs. Luxembourg-based Kleos expects to launch its first four satellites onboard an Indian PSLV later this year, while UnseenLabs put up its first satellite onboard an August 2019 Rocket Lab Electron launch.