Spire to scale constellation for Hancom InSpace

Posted on 2 April, 2024 by Advance 

Spire Global has announced an agreement with Hancom InSpace - initially a spin-off by Korea Aerospace Research Institute and now a part of HANCOM Group - for two additional satellites (Sejong-2 and Sejong-3) with Spire Space Services.

Above: Hancom satellite image capture of Berna, Argentina.
Courtesy Spire

Under this agreement, Spire will build and operate the satellites, expanding the capabilities of HANCOM-1 (Sejong-1). Together, these satellites will form a constellation for Korea’s first three-satellite remote sensing image data service.

Hancom specialises in commercial and government applications of image analysis, including detection of vehicles, aircraft and ships, changes in roads and buildings and pine tree death detection. The missions are focused on collecting optical imagery for applications in the agriculture sector, including landscaping applications and the expansion of its existing image analysis portfolio offerings. Hancom plans to launch and operate a constellation of up to 50 satellites.

Sejong-1, a Spire satellite carrying an optical payload for Hancom, launched in May 2022 on the SpaceX Transporter-5 Mission from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. It was the first commercial satellite deployed for a private South Korean company.

“Collaborating with Hancom on the expansion of their satellite constellation is a testament to the innovative spirit driving advancements in the South Korean space industry,” said Frank Frulio, general manager of Space Services at Spire. “As a pioneer in deploying satellites, Hancom continues to demonstrate their leadership in the space industry and we are thrilled to contribute to the growth of their constellation. Our Space Services team’s dedication and ingenuity shine through, ensuring an unparalleled experience for customers like Hancom and reinforcing our commitment to delivering cutting-edge solutions in Earth Observation and beyond.”

“Collaborating with Spire Global underscores our commitment to advancing the capabilities of our satellite constellation. Sejong-2 and Sejong-3, alongside Sejong-1, mark a significant step forward in our mission to provide cutting-edge image analysis solutions. Sejong-2 will serve as an extension of Sejong-1, focusing on maritime, agricultural monitoring and change detection, especially in urban areas, while Sejong-3, equipped with a hyperspectral imager, will leverage its spectral range advantages for applications such as calculating wildfire damage area, analysing air pollution levels, and assessing river water quality,” said Dr Myungjin Choi, the CEO of HANCOM InSpace. “With the integration of images from our own multispectral and hyperspectral imagers, drones, and high-performance ground cameras, we are poised to expand our image utilisation portfolio even further. We anticipate that the image quality of both Sejong-2 and Sejong-3 will be as exceptional as that of Sejong-1."

Spire builds, owns and operates a fully deployed satellite constellation that observes the Earth in real time using radio frequency technology. The data acquired by Spire’s satellites provides global weather intelligence, ship and plane movements and spoofing and jamming detection to better predict how their patterns impact economies, global security, business operations and the environment. Spire also offers Space as a Service solutions that empower customers to leverage its established infrastructure to put their business in space. Spire has nine offices across the US, Canada, UK, Luxembourg, Germany and Singapore.