Astroport Europe is the latest addition to the list of space enterprises making their way to Luxembourg. The new European subsidiary of Astroport Space Technologies is based on a partnership with Interflight Global Europe, the European arm of another prominent American air and space company also headquartered in Luxembourg.
We see Luxembourg and its thriving space entrepreneurial ecosystem as the perfect place for developing new uses and new regolith based products.
Astroport Space Technologies was founded in 2020 in San Antonio Texas with the objective of designing, deploying, and operating interplanetary landing ports to enable safe, dependable, and efficient spaceflights to the Moon, Mars, and beyond. Last year, the company was among five companies selected in the first Startup Support Programme by the European Space Resources Innovation Centre (ESRIC) aimed at early-stage space startups.
Focus on lunar construction
Both Astroport and Fourpoint, another graduate of the ESRIC programme had since hinted at their intentions to establish a subsidiary in Luxembourg.
“We are thrilled to be officially part of the Luxemburg space community, and look forward to forging new relationships and continuing building on collaborations we established with local space companies during our participation in the European Space Resources Innovation Centre (ESRIC) Startup Support Programme (SSP),” explained Emilio de la Guardia, Astroport Europe Partner and General Manager.
Astroport Europe will serve as the central hub for all its European operations and investment activities. It will specifically focus on developing lunar construction and operations technologies to meet the company’s overarching goals of deploying lunar surface infrastructure, such as roads and landing pads, in support of the NASA Artemis programme, commercial mining missions, and ambitions to establish a permanent presence on the Moon.
“Luxembourg is the perfect place”
NASA’s Artemis programme seeks to return astronauts to the moon by 2024. Astroport is already developing lunar in-situ construction materials sourced from regolith (Moon soil), as well as geotechnical engineering techniques needed to prepare the site’s surface for landing and launch pads, one of the first infrastructure required for permanent presence on the Moon.
“With a focus on ‘regolith works’ for bulk regolith excavation and conveyance, we see Luxembourg and its thriving space entrepreneurial ecosystem as the perfect place for developing new uses and new regolith based products from stockpile accumulations of feedstock during excavation phases in our site preparation construction,” said Sam Ximenes, Astroport Founder, CEO and Space Architect.
“Our relationship with Astroport Space Technologies both in the USA and now in Europe continues to solidify with this new partnership,” said Chairman and CEO of InterFlight Global Corporation, Oscar Garcia.
Luxembourg is a founding member of the Artemis Accords, alongside the USA, Australia, Canada, Italy, Japan, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom. On a national scale, the country’s ambitious goal to establish two operational space campuses by 2026 makes it a critical player that cannot be ignored in the space scene. The country already counts over 70 companies and research laboratories employing more than 1,000 people.
Photo credit: Astroport