In November 2023 Thorium Space S.A. joined HummingSAT project of the European Space Agency (ESA) to develop the first Polish telecommunications satellite SmallGEO expected to be put in orbit in 5 years. Thorium is a Polish company that designs and constructs innovative telecom systems. It was established in 2017 and operates in Wrocław and Warsaw. Its interdisciplinary team includes nearly 50 specialists in space technology and related fields.
‘We have been waiting for this moment for six years since the launch of Thorium Space. These were years of hard work to enable us to build telecommunications satellites based entirely on Polish technological thought. We wanted it to be done by Polish engineers in cooperation with the Polish Space Agency,’ said Paweł Rymaszewski, Thorium Space Founder and CEO.
Thorium Space is responsible for defining the entire mission, designing the satellite and developing its data payload. The initial value of the project is estimated at EUR 75 million. SmallGEO will weigh about one ton, much less than older generations of satellites. It will operate for 15 years and may be used for military or government applications, though Thorium Space assumes it will be commercial.
‘The satellite will have the full range of frequencies, including those used by NATO. The idea of this project is that we can change the configuration depending on the needs. We can do this many times, also when one client discontinues the use of the satellite and another client appears. We want to reset the market, change the approach to how customers order satellites. Until now, while building a satellite you had to know about 18 years in advance what would happen at the end. Our technology will probably not only make satellites several times cheaper, but also increase the flexibility of their use. We have managed to do it, and thanks to the European Space Agency we have found a small platform that will launch our product into geostationary orbit. We can now say that Poland and Polish companies are strongly entering space’ said Rymaszewski.