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Sherpa-FX [Spaceflight Inc.]

The Sherpa-FX, developed by Spaceflight Inc., is a free flying satellite deployer.

Sherpa-FX is the base free-flyer vehicle upon which all other models are based. Sherpa-FX is primarily used for grouping more customer spacecraft into the volume limitations of a launch vehicle as a “port expander,” thereby reducing launch costs for those customers. Sherpa-FX includes a sequencer and 1-way communication system, but has no propulsion, attitude control, or ability to actively service hosted payloads. It can deploy up to 16 customer spacecraft, monitor the deployments, and relay mission telemetry to Spaceflight.

  • The first mission is Sherpa-FX 1, which deployed following satellites: Hawk 2A, 2B, 2C, Astrocast 0101, ..., 0105, PTD 1, ARCE 1A, 1B, 1C, Prometheus-2 10. The Umbra-SAR 2001 satellite, which was also to be deployed, has been replaced by a non-seperable mass model. In addition to the separable payloads, there will be up to four, approximately 1U-sized, hosted payloads. These hosted payloads were non-separating and deorbited with the Sherpa-FX1 structure. The hosted payloads consist of the following:
    • ELROI (Extremely Low-Resource Optical Identifier), a payload to be provided by Space Domain Awareness Inc. This payload does not have RF transmission but has LED lights. This payload is designed to provide for improved orbital identification and debris mitigation and is being flown for demonstration purposes.
    • EyeStar-Tag, a payload to be provided by NearSpace Launch, separate from the EyeStar S3 Radio baselined on R2A, that consists of an L-band transmitter that communicates with the Globalstar constellationand an S-band uplink to receive the kill command from the ground if necessary.
    • Celestis 17, a passive payload provided by Celestis that will consist of a container of capsules containing cremated human remains.
    SOARS (Space Object Automated Reporting Systems), a payload to be provided by Keplerian Technologies that consists of a UHF transponder to communicate with that company’s ground stations. It had originally been planned to be launched as SOARS on the maiden Astra Rocket-3.0 launch, but it has also been removed from the Sherpa-FX 1 mission.
  • Sherpa-FX 2 carried following satellites: Lynk 06,Hawk 3A-3C, Astrocast 0201-0205, Lemur-2 142-144, Painani 2, SpaceBEE 88-99. It also carried the hosted TagSat-2 experiment.
  • Sherpa-FX 3 carries the hosted TagSat-3 experiment.
Nation: USA
Type / Application: Satellite deployment
Operator: Spaceflight Inc.
Contractors: Spaceflight Inc.
Equipment: CubeSat deployers
Propulsion: None
Power: Solar cells, batteries
Mass: 150 kg
Orbit: 500 km SSO
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
Sherpa-FX 1 2021-006CB 24.01.2021 CC SLC-40 Falcon-9 v1.2 (Block 5) with Starlink v1.0 R1-1, ..., R1-10, QPS-SAR 2, Capella 3, 4, ICEYE X8, X9, XR 1, GHGSat C2, Hawk 2A, 2B, 2C, ION-SCV 002, AII-Charlie, Hiber 4, ASELSAT, PIXL 1, SOMP 2b, IDEASSat, YUSAT 1, UVSQ-SAT, V-R3x 1, 2, 3, Flock-4s 1, ..., 48, Kepler 8, ..., 15, Astrocast 0101, ..., 0105, SpaceBEE 40, ..., 75, Lemur-2 130, ..., 137, PTD 1, Prometheus-2 10, ARCE 1A, 1B, 1C
Sherpa-FX 2 2021-059CH 30.06.2021 CC SLC-40 Falcon-9 v1.2 (Block 5) with Starlink v1.5 R1-1, ..., R1-3, Umbra-SAR 2001, YAM 2, YAM 3, ŃuSat 19, ..., 22, ICEYE X11, X12, X13, X15, TUBIN, Mandrake 2A, 2B, Capella 5, GNOMES 2, LINCS 1, 2, PACE 1, TROPICS 01, D2/AtlaCom 1, EG 3, Centauri 4, Lemur-2 140, ..., 145, SpaceBEE 88, ..., 111, SpaceBEENZ 7, ..., 10, Lynk 06, Hawk 3A, 3B, 3C, Astrocast 0201, ..., 0205, Painani 2, Sherpa-LTE 1, Tenzing, Aurora, Arthur 1, Faraday Phoenix, KSF 1A, ..., 1D, Tiger 2, ION-SCV 003, NAPA 2, Spartan, Neptuno, W-Cube, Ghalib, QMR-KWT
Sherpa-FX 3 - 202x CC SLC-40 Falcon-9 v1.2 (Block 5) with (Transporter x)
Sherpa-FX 4 - 202x CC SLC-40 Falcon-9 v1.2 (Block 5) with (Transporter x)
Sherpa-FX 5 - 202x CC SLC-40 Falcon-9 v1.2 (Block 5) with (Transporter x)


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