Category: Spaceport

  • Launching the first satellites from Norwegian soil

    Andøya Spaceport was officially opened on Thursday 2nd of November 2023. The first rocket to be launched from Andøya Spaceport is from Isar Aerospace and carries several small satellites developed by students at several European universities, including NTNU in Norway.

    But who will be leading the launch from the control room at Andøya Spaceport? And what are their tasks?

    Director of Launch Operations

    The launch team is headed by the Director of Launch Operations Fredrik Pedersen.

    – My job is to lead the operational team that carries out the customer’s launch with us. During the launch itself our main tasks are to ensure safety and capture the data from the rocket, says Pedersen. – This includes making certain that all the checkpoints leading up to the countdown have been met, that the launch area has been cleared of traffic, and to carry out the final countdown.

    – On launch day there will be approximately 12 people in the control room, but the entire launch team at Andøya Spaceport includes more than 30 people. In addition, there are the customer’s personnel, who help prepare and carry out the launch.

    However, the main part of the Director of Launch Operations’ job begins several months prior. – The Director of Launch Operations’ task is to ensure that all the resources needed to carry out the launch are in place, that all the systems to be used are up and running, and that everything is working as it should, says Pedersen.

    His professional background comes from the aviation industry. At Andøya Space, Pedersen has worked with the defense segment, and has been Director of Launch Operations for several launches at Andøya Space Defence.

    Groundbreaking work in Norway

    – Since this is the first launch of a small satellite, not only at Andøya Spaceport, but at any launch base in Norway, many of the preparations leading up to this first launch are groundbreaking work, says Eskild Kristiansen. He is the second Director of Launch Operations at Andøya Spaceport.

    The team has worked with setting up the control room and the equipment to be used at the first launch, in parallel with training of personnel and the various roles and positions of the team.

    Kristiansen’s background from the Norwegian Air Force, where he has worked both as a fighter pilot and with training new fighter pilots, comes in handy as Director of Launch Operations.

    – The Air Force has a lot to contribute within this build-up phase at Andøya Spaceport, where we do a lot of transfer of operational management and control, and use our experience in developing a solid launch team, says Kristiansen.

    He has additional personnel from the Air Force with him on the launch team. Andøya Spaceport has an intentional agreement of cooperation with the Royal Norwegian Air Force to provide support for operational launch capacity, also in times of crisis.

    Launch experience with large rockets

    As part of the preparations and development towards the very first launch of small satellites from Norwegian and European soil, Andøya Spaceport has worked closely with the Norwegian Civil Aviation Authority, which is the supervisory authority for launch activities in Norway.

    – The Norwegian Civil Aviation Authority requires that we document our procedures, plans and routines for how we will carry out the launches in a safe and secure manner, says Jon Harr.

    He is Operations Director at Andøya Spaceport and is responsible for the entire department, with the launch team and the additional groups preparing the operational activity of the first launch at Andøya Spaceport. This includes the overall responsibility for safety.

    – We are also preparing to carry out firing tests of the rocket from Isar Aerospace, which will take place prior to the launch and are part of the preparations, says Harr.

    In order to be ready, the team will first carry out a large number of training sessions, both internally and together with the customer and their personnel.

    – As Operations Director I now have a more executive role, but if needed I can step into the control room both before and during the launch, says Harr.
    He has worked as Director of Launch Operations for several launches at the European Spaceport in Kourou in French Guiana. This is where the space probes and satellites of the European space organization ESA are launched, with large rockers such as Ariane 5, Ariane 6, Vega and previously Soyuz.

    More information?

    Please contact Andøya Spaceport.

  • Andøya Spaceport officially opened

    Andøya Spaceport, future launch site of Isar Aerospace, was officially opened by H.R.H. Crown Prince Haakon of Norway on Thursday November 2nd, 2023. 

    • Andøya Spaceport to become the first operational orbital spaceport in continental Europe to finalize the construction of the launch site.
    • This is the beginning of many satellite launches from European commercial space company Isar Aerospace from European soil.
    • The opening of the spaceport marks a crucial milestone on Isar Aerospace’s path to the first test flight.

    Andøya, Norway 02 November 2023 – Today, the launch site operator Andøya Spaceport celebrated the opening of the first operational spaceport in continental Europe, which will become the first launch site of the European launch service company Isar Aerospace. The spaceport is located at Nordmela on the Norwegian island of Andøya and is in the final stages towards operating capability. In an official ceremony, H.R.H. Crown Prince Haakon inaugurated the spaceport, an event which also marks a crucial milestone on Isar Aerospace’s path to its first test flight.

    Fully constructed, the spaceport will host several launch pads. Isar Aerospace has exclusive access to the first launch site, which was built to Isar’s specifications, including a launch pad, payload integration facilities as well as a mission control center. This set-up guarantees greatest flexibility and planning security for Isar Aerospace and its clients in bringing small- and medium-sized satellites to space. The launch site will support the two-stage launch vehicle Spectrum, which is set to carry out final stage testing.

    Daniel Metzler, CEO and Co-Founder of Isar Aerospace said: “Today, Norway, the Andøya region and Isar Aerospace take a big step towards space. Over the last five years, we have built a rocket that will help to solve the most crucial bottleneck in the European space industry – sovereign and competitive access to space. Together with Andøya Spaceport, our team has created an excellent piece of engineering, the first orbital launch site in continental Europe which will bring this access to space to Norway, and back to Europe. For Isar Aerospace, this step equals entering the final stages of our path to first flight. For Europe, it means being able to harness the power of the space platform.”

    Andøya Spaceport to become first operational orbital spaceport in Europe

    Andøya Space has a long history in providing infrastructure for suborbital launches. Since 1962, around 1,200 launches of sounding rockets and long duration balloons have taken place at Andøya. With Isar Aerospace to perform Spectrum’s first test flight, Andøya Spaceport will become the first operational orbital spaceport in continental Europa. Given its location far north at a coastline, Andøya Spaceport can offer launches to highly retrograde orbit inclinations. These are favorable for sun synchronous as well as polar orbits which the market has a strong demand for as launch sites for these orbits are limited globally. Andøya Spaceport is a fully-owned subsidiary of Andøya Space.

    The satellite industry is not only a critical factor in addressing national and international challenges but also a catalyst for innovation and economic growth. With a spaceport, Norway becomes one of the very few countries capable of launching satellites from its own territory. This opens the door for an entire new ecosystem of stakeholders, generating more job opportunities and fostering innovative thinking.

    Ingun Berget, President of Andøya Spaceport said: “The opening of the spaceport on Andøya island marks an important milestone for Norway, European New Space industry and our partnership with Isar
    Aerospace: This enables us to have the first satellite launches ever from European soil to take place from Andøya. The attendance of today’s opening by Crown Prince Haakon underlines the importance of our endeavor and puts us on the New Space map in Europe.”

    Isar Aerospace well on track towards the first test flight

    Isar Aerospace is in the final stages of preparation towards its first test flight of Spectrum: After having completed the system designs of its launch vehicle Spectrum, it currently is in the production phase of all parts of the rocket, including the flight engines. The rocket stages will then have to undergo acceptance testing, a series of tests that will verify that the systems meet all necessary requirements for flight.

    Isar Aerospace will offer the first fully privately funded European launch solution to meet the growing demand for transporting small and medium-sized satellites into space. The founder-led company carries out almost the entire value creation in-house, including proprietary propulsion systems, avionics, software and structures. The Spectrum rocket will also have an entirely new propellant set, which will reduce emissions substantially compared to classical rockets. With a pragmatic engineering approach, highly automated in-house manufacturing and a simple design, Isar Aerospace will reduce the costs of each rocket launch drastically. By providing the first competitive launch solution in and out of Europe, Isar Aerospace will be a crucial player in Europe’s vital space push in the years to come.

    About Andøya Spaceport

    Andøya Spaceport is a fully owned subsidiary of Andøya Space, which have over sixty years of experience in the space industry. Andøya Spaceport is focusing on providing launch sites and related services for companies who wish to launch small to medium satellites into polar and sun-synchronous orbits. Andøya Spaceport operates a complete toolbox, including tracking radar, telemetry, and ground-based flight termination systems. The location at Andøya is ideal with easy logistics and direct orbit insertion. More information at:

    Press contact Andøya Spaceport
    Trond Abrahamsen
    M +47 907 43 911

    About Isar Aerospace

    Isar Aerospace, based in Ottobrunn/Munich, develops and builds launch vehicles for transporting small and medium-sized satellites as well as satellite constellations into Earth’s orbit. The company was founded in 2018 as a spin-off of Technical University Munich. Since then, it has grown to more than 300 employees from more than 40 nations with many years of hands-on rocket know-how and experience within other high-tech industries. More information via:

    Press contact Isar Aerospace
    Tina Schmitt
    M +49-170-8584834

    Press photos

    Press kit of the event can be found here incl. photo and video footage.

  • Andøya Spaceport åpnet

    Andøya Spaceport, det fremtidige oppskytningsstedet for Isar Aerospace, ble torsdag 2. november åpnet i en offisiell seremoni med H.K.H. Kronprins Haakon til stede.

    • Andøya Spaceport er den første operative romhavnen for satellitter på det kontinentale Europa.
    • Dette er begynnelsen på mange satellittoppskytinger fra det europeiske kommersielle romselskapet Isar Aerospace fra europeisk jord.
    • ­Åpningen av romhavnen er en stor milepæl på Isar Aerospace sin vei mot første testoppskyting.

    Andøya, Norge 2. november 2023 – I dag feiret Andøya Spaceport åpningen av den første operative romhavnen på det kontinentale Europa. Dette vil bli det første oppskytningsstedet til den europeiske rakettprodusenten Isar Aerospace. Romhavnen ligger ved Nordmela på Andøya, og er snart klar til å kunne gjennomføre de første oppskytningene. I en offisiell seremoni åpnet H.K.H Kronprins Haakon torsdag romhavnen, en seremoni som også er en stor milepæl for Isar Aerospace på sin vei mot den første testoppskytingen.

    I dag står den første av flere planlagte oppskytningsramper klar ved Nordmela. Isar Aerospace har eksklusiv tilgang på den første oppskytningsrampen – som er bygget etter Isar Aerospace sine spesifikasjoner – samt monteringshall og et midlertidig kontrollsenter. Dette oppsettet garanterer stor fleksibilitet og planleggingssikkerhet for Isar Aerospace og dets kunder når det gjelder å løfte små og mellomstore satellitter ut i verdensrommet. Oppskytningsstedet er tilpasset deres to-trinns bærerakett Spectrum, som nå skal i gang med siste runde med testing.

    Daniel Metzler, administrerende direktør hos – og en av grunnleggerne av – Isar Aerospace sa: «I dag tar Norge, Andøya-regionen og Isar Aerospace et stort skritt mot verdensrommet. I løpet av de siste fem årene har vi bygget en rakett som vil bidra til å løse en flaskehals i europeisk romindustri, nemlig suveren og konkurransedyktig tilgang til verdensrommet. Sammen med Andøya Spaceport har teamet vårt utført et utmerket stykke ingeniørarbeid, nemlig det første oppskytningsstedet for satellitter på det kontinentale Europa. Det vil gi tilgang til verdensrommet fra Norge, og tilbake til Europa. For Isar Aerospace innebærer åpningen at vi nå nærmer oss første testflygning med stormskritt. For Europa betyr det at vi snart kan utnytte kraften til romplattformen fullt ut.»

    Andøya Spaceport blir den første operative romhavnen for satellitter på det kontinentale Europa

    Andøya Space har en lang historie med å tilby infrastruktur for oppskyting av forskningsraketter. Siden 1962 har det blitt skutt opp rundt 1 200 sonderaketter og ballonger fra Andøya. Andøya Spaceport ligger an til å bli den første operative romhavnen for satellitter i Europa når Isar Aerospace gjennomfører sin første oppskytning med bæreraketten Spectrum. Beliggenheten ved kysten langt mot nord gjør at Andøya Spaceport kan tilby oppskytinger av satellitter til svært gunstige baner. Herfra kan satellitteierne nå solsynkrone- og polare baner, noe det er stor etterspørsel etter i markedet. Andøya Spaceport er et heleid datterselskap av Andøya Space.

    Satellittindustrien er ikke bare en viktig faktor i møte med nasjonale og internasjonale utfordringer, men også en katalysator for innovasjon og økonomisk vekst. Med romhavnen på Andøya blir Norge et av svært få land i verden som er i stand til å skyte opp satellitter fra eget territorium. Dette åpner døren for et helt nytt økosystem av interessenter, det vil skape jobbmuligheter og fremme innovativ tenkning.

    Ingun Berget, president for Andøya Spaceport sa: «Åpningen av romhavnen på Andøya markerer en viktig milepæl for Norge, den europeiske nye romfartsindustrien og vårt partnerskap med Isar
    Aerospace: Dette setter oss på Andøya i stand til å gjennomføre de første satellittoppskytningene noensinne fra europeisk jord. Kronprins Haakons deltagelse på dagens åpning understreker viktigheten av innsatsen vår, og setter oss på New Space-kartet i Europa.»

    Isar Aerospace godt i rute mot den første testflyvningen

    Isar Aerospace er i sluttfasen av forberedelsene til sin første testflyging av bæreraketten Spectrum: Etter å ha fullført designet av systemene, er de for tiden i gang med produksjonen av alle delene til raketten, inkludert rakettmotorene. Raketttrinnene må gjennomgå akseptansetesting, som er en serie tester for å verifisere at de oppfyller alle nødvendige krav for flyging.

    Isar Aerospace vil tilby den første fullt privatfinansierte europeiske oppskytningsløsningen for å møte den økende etterspørselen etter transport av små og mellomstore satellitter ut til verdensrommet. Selskapet utfører nesten hele verdiskapingen internt, inkludert proprietære fremdriftssystemer, elektronikk, programvare og strukturer. Spectrum-raketten vil også ta i bruk helt ny drivstoffsammensetning, noe som vil redusere utslippene betydelig sammenlignet med klassiske raketter. Med en pragmatisk ingeniørtilnærming, høyautomatisert egenproduksjon og et enkelt design, vil Isar Aerospace redusere kostnadene forbundet med en rakettoppskyting dramatisk. Ved å tilby den første konkurransedyktige oppskytingsløsningen for satellitter inn og ut av Europa, vil Isar Aerospace være en avgjørende aktør i Europas romfremstøt i årene som kommer.

    Om Andøya Spaceport
    Andøya Spaceport er et heleid datterselskap av Andøya Space, som har mer enn seksti års erfaring fra romfartsindustrien. Andøya Spaceport tilbyr oppskytningsfasiliteter og relaterte tjenester til bedrifter som ønsker å sende opp små til mellomstore satellitter til polare og solsynkrone baner. Andøya Spaceport har en komplett verktøykasse, inkludert radar- og telemetrisystemer. Beliggenheten på Andøya er ideell, med enkel logistikk og direkte tilgang til polare og solsynkrone baner. Mer informasjon:

    Pressekontakt Andøya Spaceport
    Trond Abrahamsen
    Mobil: +47 907 43 911

    Om Isar Aerospace
    Isar Aerospace, basert i Ottobrunn/München, utvikler og bygger bæreraketter for transport av små og mellomstore satellitter samt satellittkonstellasjoner ut i bane rundt jorden. Selskapet ble grunnlagt i 2018 som en spin-off av Technical University München. Siden den gang har det vokst til over 300 ansatte fra mer enn 40 nasjoner, med mange års praktisk rakettkunnskap og erfaring innen andre høyteknologiske industrier. Mer informasjon:

    Pressekontakt Isar Aerospace
    Tina Schmitt
    Mobil: +49-170-8584834


    Flere pressefoto og video fra åpningen finner du i mediebanken.

  • Andøya Spaceport expands to the US

    Vincent Ciccarelli has been hired as Andøya Spaceport’s Commercial Director of North America and Asia. His main task will be to make sure that launch operators outside of Europe recognize the opportunities Andøya has to offer. 

    First US-based employee 
    Until now, Andøya Spaceport has mainly focused on the European market for the spaceport that is currently under construction in Northern Norway. That has changed with Ciccarelli joining as the first US-based employee of Andøya Spaceport. 

    Important markets 

    – Establishing a US presence holds great significance for Andøya Spaceport, says President Ingun Berget. We’ve already had a lot of exchange for several years with existing stakeholders and potential partners in the US, and this strategic move is in line with our long-term ambitions. It will allow us to connect more closely with important markets and reflects our dedication to serving customers worldwide. With our location, we believe that Andøya Spaceport is the obvious choice for access to polar and sun-synchronous orbits for both regular commercial operations as for responsive launches. 

    – It is important to be in the United States, closer to the launch operators so that we can build long-term trusting relationships with our new customer base, Ciccarelli says.  

    – Andøya is an obvious choice for European launch operators, but it is also a strategic location for US and Asian based launch operators seeking to grow their European customer market. The launch capacity within the states is quickly filling up, and alternatives are less attractive when compared to Andøya’s offerings. Andøya provides direct access to polar / sun-synchronized orbits, has a more appealing climate than assumed, and above all else: Easy logistics: both through Andøya Airport, two seaports and easily accessed by road from mainland Europe. The air and sea traffic in the north are also relatively low compared to most other places, and with no need for land overflight avoidance, my job will be to make sure the US and Asian launch operators realize this potential, and begin to launch from Andøya. 

    The spaceport at Andøya will be the new European entrance to orbit. Photo of Pad A.

    Ciccarelli holds a bachelor’s degree in ​​​supply chain management from Michigan State University, and an MBA from the University of Washington.  

    Prior to his entry into NewSpace he carries ten years of aerospace procurement and strategy at Boeing and 6 years of program management at Amazon. 

    Over the past year he has been working with the major launch providers as the Director of Mission Procurement for Spaceflight Inc., which was recently acquired by Firefly Aerospace. 

    – Knowing the industry well, I wanted to get closer to the launches, he explains. – What better way is there than to be at the actual launch site! So next stop is Andøya Spaceport. 

    Currently in the US, Ciccarelli will spend a good amount of time in Norway over the next year to better understand the company, culture and the spaceport enabling him to build lasting relations with the new customer base. 

    About Andøya Spaceport 

    Andøya Spaceport is a fully owned subsidiary of Andøya Space, which have over sixty years of experience in the space industry. Andøya Spaceport is focusing on providing a launch site and related services for companies who wish to launch small to medium satellites into polar and sun-synchronous orbits. Andøya Spaceport operates a complete toolbox, including tracking radar, telemetry, and ground-based flight termination systems. The location on Andøya is ideal since the launch vehicles can reach orbit without crossing the borders of other countries and as such providing unrestricted direct trajectories. Andøya Spaceport is finalizing the Initial Operating Capability in August 2023 with the completion of the construction of launch pad A, which is dedicated for Isar Aerospace.

  • På god vei mot første testoppskytning fra Andøya Spaceport

    Andøya Spaceport bygger Norges første romhavn på Andøya. Der skal satellitter løftes ut i polare og solsynkrone baner. Men hva må til for at romhavnen blir klar for første testoppskytning?

    Illustrasjon av en oppskytning fra den første oppskytningsrampen på Andøya Spaceport.

    For å kunne sende en bærerakett med satellitter ut i bane trengs en del utstyr. Andøya Spaceport står for infrastrukturen oppskytningsoperatørene trenger for å kunne foreta en oppskytning. Infrastrukturen for første oppskytning består av en oppskytningsrampe, en integrasjonshall hvor raketten blir satt sammen og nyttelasten satt på, og kontrollrom hvor man styrer tester og oppskytninger.

    – Integrasjonshallen er ferdig og klar for å ta imot den første oppskytningsoperatøren, det europeiske selskapet Isar Aerospace og deres nye bærerakett Spectrum, sier Jon Harr, som er leder for operasjoner ved Andøya Spaceport.

    – Vår integrasjonshall inneholder et renrom (clean room) for satellittintegrasjon, kraner og andre verktøy, forteller Harr.

    Kontrollrommene er også ferdigstilt. Der gjennomføres alle prosedyrer før oppskytningen som sikkerhetsprosedyrer og nedtelling. Telemetri og sporing gjennomføres også for tester, forberedelser og selve oppskytningen.

    Det er to ulike kontrollrom. Det ene kontrollrommet opereres av Andøya Spaceport, mens det andre kontrollrommet brukes av oppskytningsoperatøren.

    Kontrollrommene er lokalisert ved fiskeværet Nordmela på Andøya.

    Utvikling av prosedyrer for oppskytning av bæreraketter i Norge

    Andøya Spaceport jobber nært sammen med Direktoratet for samfunnssikkerhet og beredskap (DSB) og Luftfartstilsynets Romtilsyn for å kunne utvikle og oppfylle de nødvendige sikkerhetsforskriftene. DSB regulerer sikkerheten på bakken, og Romtilsynet regulerer oppskytningsaktivitetene.

    – Oppskytning av bæreraketter har ikke vært gjennomført i Norge før. Vi gjør alle nybrottsarbeid, noe som krever mye dokumentasjon og nært samarbeid. Men dette gjør oss også mer fokusert på egne prosedyrer og prosesser, noe som er både sunt og nødvendig for noe så viktig som sikkerhet, sier Harr.  

    Testing og kvalifisering

    Som en del av prosessen med å bli klar for den første testoppskytningen, planlegger Isar Aerospace test av første og andre trinn av bæreraketten Spectrum på Andøya Spaceport før selve oppskytningen.

    – Disse testene er planlagt over flere uker og involverer å fylle drivstoff på første og andre trinnet, for så å teste de på oppskytningsområdet, sier Harr.

    – Andretrinnet inneholder instrumentering for telemetri og termineringssystem dersom oppskytningen må avbrytes. Andøya Spaceport jobber nært sammen med Isar Aerospace for å teste at systemene kommuniserer med bakkesystemene våre.

    Trening og rekruttering av personell

    Under trinntesting og oppskytningsaktiviteter blir sikkerheten nøye overvåket av Andøya Spaceport.

    – Vi er derfor i en prosess med å velge de riktige menneskene, trene de og forberede nødvendige sikkerhetsrutiner og -regler, sier Harr. – Personellet vil overvåke testene og sikre at det ikke er mennesker, maskiner, maritim trafikk eller aktivitet i luftrommet i oppskytningsområdet mens det pågår aktivitet på romhavnen.

    – Både testingen og oppskytningsoperasjonene vil kreve trening av eksisterende personell, og muligens rekruttering av flere, så hold utkikk etter ledige stillinger på nettsiden vår, sier Harr.

    Den første testoppskytningen fra Andøya Spaceport, er bæreraketten Spectrum fra Isar Aerospace. Testoppskytningen er planlagt til andre halvdel av 2023. Nyttelasten med småsatellitter som skal fraktes til polare og solsynkrone baner er fra Europeiske institusjoner, inkludert FramSat1 som er utviklet av studenter fra NTNU.

    Om Andøya Spaceport

    Andøya Spaceport er i ferd med å opprette en romhavn hvor eiere av bæreraketter kan skyte opp småsatellitter til polare og solsynkrone baner. Anlegget skal stå ferdig i 2025, men være klar til første oppskytning i 2023.
    Andøya Spaceport er et heleid datterselskap av Andøya Space AS. Andøya Space har skutt opp forskningsraketter og sluppet forskningsballonger fra Andøya siden 1962. Kundene er blant annet NASA, ESA og nasjonale og internasjonale universitet og forskningsinstitusjoner. Andøya Space AS er eid 90% av staten ved Nærings- og fiskeridepartementet og 10% av Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace.

    Om Isar Aerospace:

    Isar Aerospace, som har hovedkontor i Ottobrunn/Munich, utvikler og bygger bæreraketter for å frakte små og mellomstore satellitter, inkludert satellittkonstellasjoner, ut i bane. Selskapet ble etablert i 2018 som en spin-off fra det tekniske universitetet i München. Siden da har selskapet vokst til mer enn 300 ansatte fra mer enn 40 nasjoner, med mange års praktisk erfaring fra romindustrien og andre høyteknologiske industrier.

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  • Well under way to the first test launch from Andøya Spaceport

    Andøya Spaceport is building Norway’s first spaceport on Andøya, where satellites can be launched with orbital launch vehicles into polar and sun-synchronous orbits. But what is needed for the new spaceport to start operations?

    Illustration of a launch from the first pad at Andøya Spaceport, Norway.

    Andøya Spaceport is providing the ground infrastructure for launch operator companies to launch small satellites into orbit. The initial capability includes a new launch pad, an integration hall where the rocket is assembled and integrated with the payload, and control rooms for operating tests, launch operations and range activities.

    – The integration hall is completed and ready to receive the first launch operator, the European space company Isar Aerospace and their new launch vehicle Spectrum, says Jon Harr, operations director at Andøya Spaceport.

    – Our integration hall provides a clean room for satellite integration, as well as heavy equipment such as cranes and other mechanical tools, says Harr.

    The control rooms are finalized as well. Here, all procedures leading up to the launch will be run, like the countdown operations, and the safety measures. Telemetry and tracking will be monitored during tests, preparations, and launch.

    There are two different control rooms. The launch control room is operated by Andøya Spaceport and the launch operator will steer launch operations from a second room.

    The control rooms are located in the village Nordmela at Andøya.

    Developing the procedures for orbital launches in Norway

    Andøya Spaceport is working closely together with The Norwegian Directorate for Civil Protection (Direktoratet for samfunnssikkerhet og beredskap, DSB), which regulates the safety on the ground, and the Civil Aviation Authority’s space division in Norway (Luftfartstilsynets Romtilsyn), which regulates launching activities, to develop and fulfill the necessary safety procedures.

    – Orbital launches have not been performed in Norway before, and we are all breaking new ground, which requires a lot of documentation and close cooperation. But this also makes us more focused on our own procedures and processes, which is both healthy and useful for something as important as safety, says Harr.

    Final testing and qualification

    As a part of the process of getting ready for the first test flight, Isar Aerospace is planning to test the first and second stages of their launch vehicle Spectrum at Andøya Spaceport ahead of the launch.

    – These tests are planned to be performed over several weeks and involve fueling the first and second stages and then test firing them at the launch site, says Harr.

    – The second stage contains instrumentation for telemetry and flight termination in case of failure. Andøya Spaceport will work closely together with Isar Aerospace to test these systems in conjunction with our ground systems, says Harr.

    Training personnel

    During stage testing and launch operations, Andøya Spaceport monitors the safety closely.

    – We are therefore in the process of selecting the right people, training them for these tests and preparing the necessary safety precautions and routines, says Harr. – The personnel will monitor the tests to ensure that there are no people, ground vehicles, maritime traffic, or aviation activities present in the launch area.

    – Both stage testing and launch operations will require training of our operational personnel, and we may also need to recruit additional people, so keep an eye out on our website for available positions, says Harr.

    The first test flight of Isar Aerospace’s Spectrum at Andøya Spaceport is scheduled to take place in the second half of 2023. The payload of small satellites onboard the launch vehicle to polar and sun-synchronous orbits are from European institutions, including FramSat-1 developed by Norwegian students at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).

    About Andøya Spaceport:

    Andøya Spaceport is a fully owned subsidiary of Andøya Space, focusing on providing a launch site and related services for companies who wish to launch small satellites into polar and sun-synchronous orbits. Andøya Spaceport operates a complete toolbox, including tracking radar, telemetry, and ground-based flight termination systems. The location on Andøya is ideal since the launch vehicles can reach orbit without crossing the borders of other countries. Andøya Spaceport is central in the development of Norwegian and European space industry.

    About Isar Aerospace:

    Isar Aerospace, based in Ottobrunn/Munich, develops and builds launch vehicles for transporting small and medium-sized satellites as well as satellite constellations into Earth’s orbit. The company was founded in 2018 as a spin-off of Technical University Munich. Since then, it has grown to more than 300 employees from more than 40 nations with many years of hands-on rocket know-how and experience within other high-tech industries.

    More information via:

    More information?

    Please send us an email with your questions.

  • Framsat-1 shake test


    Before a satellite is ready for launch it is thoroughly tested to make sure it can withstand both the rocket’s intense shaking and vibrations during launch, as well as the harsh environment of space.

    The first satellites to be launched from Andøya Spaceport will be several CubeSats from five institutions in Germany, Slovenia and Norway. These nanosatellites, measuring only 10 x 10 x 10 centimeters and weighing less than two kilos each, will be launched from Andøya Spaceport by Isar Aerospace’s rocket “Spectrum”.

    One of these CubeSats is FramSat-1, built by members of the student organization Orbit NTNU at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).

    FramSat-1 will test an experimental sun sensor developed for satellites and sounding rockets. Such sensors measure the sun’s position relative to the satellite, to determine the satellite’s attitude in space

    The sun sensor on FramSat-1 has been delivered by the Norwegian space company Eidsvoll Electronics (EIDEL). Other organizations which contribute to the FramSat-1 mission are Andøya Space Sub-Orbital, Andøya Space Education, Institute for electronic systems at NTNU, the Norwegian Space Agency, Kongsberg Group and Inission.

    An important milestone

    Like all satellites and spacecraft, the student CubeSats must pass several tests demonstrating that they can withstand the intense shaking and vibrations during launch as well as the harsh environment of space.

    Andøya Space is the facility for FramSat-1’s shake test.

    – This is an important milestone in the development of all satellites, says Mathias Askeland, project manager for FramSat in Orbit NTNU.

    FramSat-1 was taken through vibration tests at several different frequencies to check that the results are within the specifications from Isar Aerospace. The resonance frequency of the satellite will also be detected.

    – In addition, we will test functionality at every axis to ensure that all subsystems onboard still work as intended, says Askeland.

    Making connections with the space industry

    – Everyone working on FramSat-1 have made a maximum effort these last months. We are very relieved that the satellite is ready and that we have solved all the challenges which arose during development, Askeland says.

    After the shake test at Andøya, the three students participating in the test will bring FramSat-1 with them back to Trondheim.

    The students at Orbit NTNU are developing another satellite identical to FramSat-1, to be launched later.

    – It’s been a pleasure to work with our FramSat-1 partners and develop strong connections with the Norwegian and international space industry, Askeland says.

    Environmental testing at Andøya Space

    Andøya Space has developed an environmental testing facility for qualifying sounding rocket payloads.

    – Here we have equipment for performing spin-balancing, spin-deploy, bend-down and vacuum testing, in addition to the vibration table used for testing Framsat-1, says Geir Lindahl, Chief Engineer at Andøya Space Sub-Orbital.

    – With the rapid growth of the satellite market and the construction of our new launch base, we also intend to adapt our test facilities to be able to support more satellite customers, says Lindahl.

    Space Education 2.0

    Framsat-1 is a pilot project in Space Education 2.0, an initiative which aims to use the new educational possibilities which have opened due to the creation of Andøya Spaceport.

    – We aim to increase the utilization of the infrastructure here at Andøya Space for both Norwegian and international universities, says Jøran Grande, project manager at Andøya Space Education.

    This infrastructure includes the new launch facilities for small satellites, as well as the launch base for sounding rockets, Alomar – a laboratory for atmospheric science at Andøya Space.

    More information

  • Satellites as everyday tools


    The world needs to become more sustainable. We must reduce both our ecological footprint and our emissions. But how do we know that the different measures will work? This is where satellites come in.

    – The climate changes we are facing are global, and it’s all connected, says Birgit Vildalen, leader of the environmental team at Andøya Space. – Emissions doesn’t just stop by the border; they have consequences for the entire Earth. Satellites can help us see the big picture.

    The climate changes is measurable through parameters such as increased winds and more precipitation. Important infrastructure, i.e. drains, pipes, and power distribution networks, are rarely designed to handle these increases.

    – Sustainability isn’t just about reducing our footprint, but also develop and use new technology that can contribute to surveillance and preventive actions on a global level, says Vildalen.

    Earth observation satellites continuously measure the atmosphere, the oceans, land areas and the ice in the polar regions. They measure temperature, precipitation, ocean currents, wave height, ocean levels, greenhouse gases, and a series of other parameters that are important to understand the global climate.

    – A satellite in polar orbit will lap the Earth 16 times every day, and provide immediate feedback on Earth’s health, says Vildalen. – But it will also show us the development over time, which enables researchers to make predictions about the near future, suggest actions and give decision makers time to prepare critical infrastructure.

    Multispectral cameras are important tools onboard the satellites.

    Daily operations

    – Data from satellites can be used to optimize daily operations, says Vildalen. – There are systems now which can tell the captain of a container ship that she can sail with lower speeds and still reach her destination in time. Saving fuel and CO2 emission at the same time.

    – Up to date data on winds, ocean currents and wave height can be used to optimize the sailing routes when it comes to fuel consumption and at the same time ensure safe vessel operations.

    Farmers can also benefit from up-to-date satellite data.

    – Satellites can photograph large fields using multispectral cameras, and «see» the status of the soil, says Vildalen. – It can give the farmer an early warning. Maybe she should adjust the nutrients she’s using.

    A satellite’s life in space

    – Satellites are amazing tools, say Jon Harr, Director of operations at Andøya Spaceport. – Advances in technology has not only made them physically smaller, but also smarter.

    – Traditionally they we’re all the size of a truck, but now some of them can be as tiny as microwave ovens, says Harr. – Small satellites is both cheaper to manufacture and cheaper to launch. But all satellites have a limited life-span and needs to be replaced after a few years.

    UV-radiation, space weather and large temperature fluctuations are some of the effects on satellites in orbit, which will take its toll on solar arrays, batteries, and computers.

    – Small satellites have an average life-span of five years before the electronics dies out, says Harr. – But sometimes they may live longer. The Norwegian small satellite AISSAT-1 functioned perfectly for ten years.

    It is important to have a plan for what will happen to the satellite after end-of-life, to avoid it becoming space junk.

    – Satellites in low Earth orbit is not in 100% vacuum but experiences a tiny resistance from the atmosphere – also known as atmospheric drag, says Harr. – It is enough to eventually slow the satellite down so much so that it drops in altitude and then burns up in the atmosphere.

    Norwegian smallsats are already at work.


    – Smaller and cheaper satellites means that space no longer is the domain of governments with deep pockets, says Harr. – NewSpace is about private businesses and organizations moving in, and even businesses which traditionally haven’t seen space as a resource.

    When Andøya Spaceport begin the commercial operations at the end of 2023, Norway and Europe will have a complete value-chain within the space industry; from manufacturing of satellites, to launch, to download of satellite data and downstream customers.

    – Norway already has a fleet of small satellites in orbit, says Harr. – Their main task is to monitor ship traffic inside the country’s economic zone, and the data they transmit back is used actively by both the Norwegian Coastal Administration, and the Norwegian coast guard.

    – Avalanche warnings, forest fires, pollution, algal blooms, farmer’s fields, broadband at the cabin, interactive maps and so on. It is basically only our own imaginations which limits how satellites can help us in our everyday lives, Harr finishes.

    More information

    Do you have questions about the Norwegian spaceport?

  • How can satellites help during disasters?


    When disasters strike, help from satellites can make a huge difference to ensure that the best and most accurate information needed for the situation is made accessible.

    – The satellite data needed during disasters are first and foremost from optical and radar satellites, says Jon Harr, Operations Director at Andøya Spaceport. – They can map the affected area, see the full extent of the damage, and spot entry or exit points and safe zones.

    Thus, optical and radar satellite data are vital for evaluating the scope of the disaster, for emergency services entering or working in the disaster area. They are used for search and rescue, setting up assembly points, organizing evacuation and more.

    – For emergency services, establishing phone and internet communication via satellite is also vitally important, as all ground-based communication may be knocked out in the disaster zone, Harr says.

    Establishing satellite communication for emergency work usually doesn’t take much time, as such satellites already cover the entire Earth.

    Can provide vital help

    For all types of disasters, whether caused by hurricane, tornado, flooding, landslide, earthquake, tsunami, wildfire, drought, famine or other phenomena, the International Charter Space and Major Disasters provides free and quick access to satellite data for any country that needs it.

    The Charter coordinates the delivery of several types of satellite data from many different organizations and satellite operators. This ensures that the best and most accurate information needed for the situation is made accessible.

    With new technology and computer algorithms, even small satellites can provide vital help when disaster strikes.

    Small satellites are used for communication, earth observation, navigation, as well as search and rescue. Andøya Space will launch small satellites in 2023.

    Coverage and providers

    Even for optical or radar satellites, data from any place on Earth only takes from a few minutes to a few hours to obtain, depending on the type of satellite, its orbit and general coverage.

    – Several commercial providers offer optical and radar satellite data in high resolution, Harr says. – They can quickly deliver very detailed images of the affected area.

    Examples of such satellites are the commercial satellite constellations Airbus, Maxar, Planet and WorldView.

    – These commercial satellites provide data for corporations and other private organizations, as well as governments and other public actors, Harr says.

    Commercially, earth observation data are utilized for monitoring land use, development, construction, forestry, ice, maritime activities, water levels, and much more.

    Data processing

    The price for a single commercial satellite image that has already been taken varies depending on resolution, but offers can be found at approximately 15 to 20 US dollars per square kilometer.

    – The cost will be higher for images of higher resolution, Harr says. – Or for images at other wavelengths than visible light, larger size, greater coverage and if the satellite needs to be pointed at a specific area which it usually doesn’t cover.

    However, medium resolution images of predefined areas from for example EU’s Copernicus satellites are available free of charge.

    How can small satellites help?

    – Currently, a higher resolution requires a larger optical system and hence a larger satellite, Harr says. – But small satellites tend to use lower orbits, which can provide a high resolution for smaller optical systems.

    Coupled with specialized computer algorithms and data processing, small satellites are able to provide resolutions near those provided by larger satellites.

    – Because small satellites are much faster and less costly to develop and launch, they will become very useful for disaster relief in the near future, Harr says. – This is in addition to all the other applications small satellites are useful for.

    By launching small satellites, Andøya Space will become a significant factor in ensuring that the orbital infrastructure necessary for monitoring the environment and for managing disasters is present.

    Copernicus Emergency Service

    Norway is not a direct member of the International Charter Space and Major Disasters, but has access to the charter via membership in the European Space Agency and EUMETSAT.

    Because Norway is a member of the European Copernicus Program, Norway has access to Copernicus Emergency Management Service (CEMS). This provides all member countries with satellite data during disasters.

    Norway has activated CEMS five times, in 2014, 2017, 2018, 2020 and 2021, due to flooding or storm.

    More information

    For more information please contact Andøya Spaceport

  • Samspillkontrakt inngått med SEKK og LNS

    Andøya Spaceport har inngått samspillsavtale for første byggetrinn med SEKK (Sortland Entreprenør og Karstein Kristiansen Entreprenør) og LNS i forbindelse med utbyggingen av romhavnen på Andøya.

    Fase 1 av samspillavtalen ble iverksatt i november 2021, med hovedfokus på å sette sammen et sterkt team med fokus på prosjektstyring og – ledelse. Samspillmodellen ble valgt for å involvere entreprenørene i tidligfasen og for å legge til rette for godt samarbeid i forprosjekt- og byggefasen.

    – Vi ville få på plass en god samarbeidskultur tidlig, sier utbyggingssjef for Andøya Spaceport, Henrik Strøm. – Både for å jobbe mot et felles prosjektmål og for å gjøre hverandre bedre. Prosjektering og kalkulering har gått hånd i hånd, og vi har nå sammen kommet frem til en målpris som er innenfor totalbudsjettet. Vi er nå glade for å at vi kan ta prosjektet frem til neste fase som er utbyggingsfasen.

    SEKK får ansvaret for oppføring av bygg mens LNS skal utføre grunnarbeider, uttak av masser samt fyllings- og betongarbeider på den første oppskytningsrampen.

    Oversiktsbilde over byggeplass og området hvor den fremtidige oppskytningsrampen skal være

    – Vi er stolte over å kunne starte arbeidene med å lage den norske romhavnen sammen med så kompetente og sterke entreprenører som SEKK og LNS, sier Strøm. – Det er et komplisert og unikt prosjekt som vil vekke oppsikt utenfor landegrensene, og innsatsen til entreprenørene og underentreprenørene vil ha alt å si for det ferdige resultatet.

    – Arbeidet som nå skal gjøres er første byggetrinn, sier Henrik. – I år bygger vi den første oppskytningsrampen, den første monteringshallen for raketter samt nødvendige støttebygg, inkludert et midlertidig kontrollsenter, slik at de kommersielle oppskytningene kan starte så snart som mulig.

    – Deretter vil vi fullføre romhavnen med nye byggetrinn, frem til den er ferdig utbygd i 2025, avslutter Henrik.

    Mer informasjon

    Vennligst ta kontakt med utbyggingssjef Henrik Strøm, Andøya Spacport.

  • Varsler oppstart av ny områderegulering for Andøya Spaceport

    Andøya Spaceport har varslet oppstart for ny områderegulering for romhavnen på Nordmela, men det vil ikke forsinke byggingen av den første oppskytningsrampen.

    – Det å skulle lage en romhavn er ikke gjort over natta, sier Ingrid Hanssen, administrasjonsdirektør ved Andøya Spaceport. – Det er mange komplekse systemer som må fungere sammen, og planer har blitt vurdert og revurdert.

    Administrasjonsdirektør Ingrid Hanssen i terrenget ved Børvågen hvor Andøya Spaceport bygges.
    Ingrid Hanssen er administrasjonsdirektør ved Andøya Spaceport.

    Andøya Space fikk i 2020 godkjent et forslag til områderegulering, basert på hvordan utbyggingsplanene så ut på den tiden. Da skulle det bygges en molo en kilometer ut i havet, der to oppskytningsramper skulle etableres.

    – Å få bygget denne moloen er i seg selv en stor kostnad, men vi innså at det medfører en stor miljøbelastning på naturen og havet, og den ble enda større da vi innså at vi på grunn av sikkerhetskrav måtte ha større avstand mellom oppskytningsrampene, sier Ingrid Hansen. – Moloen ble derfor strøket, og vi måtte dermed revurdere de første planene.

    Andøya Space har allerede varslet om oppstart for en ny reguleringsplan. Lokale beboere, næringer og andre har da en høringsperiode på seks uker hvor man kan komme med sine innspill, frem til 21. mars. Utredningen sendes også til fiskeridirektoratet, statsforvalteren, fylkeskommunen og andre aktuelle organisasjoner og sektormyndigheter.

    – Vi håper på at ny områderegulering er godkjent innen året er omme, sier Ingrid Hanssen.

    Vil ikke påvirke byggingen

    – Det er viktig å påpeke at den første oppskytningsrampen og tilhørende bygg lages innenfor den allerede godkjente områdereguleringen fra 2020 og dispensasjon for oppskytningsrampe A innvilget i 2021. Denne nye områdereguleringen gjelder da for fremtidige bygg og oppskytningsramper som det ikke var mulig å plassere innenfor den gamle reguleringen, sier Ingrid Hanssen.

    – Vi er godt i rute med planleggingen og oppstart for første byggetrinn, avslutter hun.

    Mer informasjon

    For mer informasjon, kontakt Ingrid Hanssen, Admin Director, Andøya Spaceport.

  • INNOSPACE signs an MoU with Andøya Spaceport

    Andøya Spaceport and INNOSPACE has signed a memorandum of understanding to launch into polar and sun-synchronous orbits from Norway.

    INNOSPACE was established in 2017 and is headquartered in South Korea, providing manufacturing and engineering services for aerospace and defence contractors.

    The company is developing a series of satellite launch vehicles named Hanbit.

    – This MoU with INNOSPACE shows how Andøya Spaceport is able to attract the attention of commercial companies world-wide, says Ingun Berget, President of Andøya Spaceport. – We are very excited to have INNOSPACE onboard as we move forward with the launch site construction.

    – Andoya Spaceport is really the ideal location for launches towards polar and sun-synchronous orbits, says Dr. Soojong Kim, CEO of INNOSPACE. – Selecting strategic locations around the world brings us closer to our customers.

    About Andøya Spaceport

    Andøya Spaceport is a 100 % owned subsidiary of Andøya Space, focusing on providing a launch site and related services for companies who wish to launch small satellites into polar and sun-synchronous orbits.

    More information

    For more information, please contact Ingun Berget, president, Andøya Spaceport.

  • Samarbeid i fokus under bygging av romhavnen

    Første spadetak nærmer seg. Andøya Spaceport har signert samspillkontrakt med tre entreprenører for utbyggingen på Nordmela.

    Andøya Spaceport har den siste uka signert samspillkontrakter med tre entreprenører: Sortland Entreprenør AS og Karstein Kristiansen Entreprenør AS (SEKK) og Leonhard Nilsen & Sønner AS (LNS), og sammen skal de stå for første fase av romhavn-utbyggingen på Nordmela.

    – Andøya Space vil ikke bare gi høyteknologiske arbeidsplasser knyttet til oppskytninger, sier Ketil Olsen, konstituert daglig leder for Andøya Space. – Det er også viktig for oss at romhavnprosjektet vil gi en rekke ringvirkninger i form av arbeidsplasser og verdiskapning for samfunnet ellers.

    Unikt samarbeid mellom tidligere konkurrenter

    Utbyggingen omfatter oppskytingsplattform med tilhørende konstruksjoner og fundamenter, bygg for montering, integrering og testing av raketter, samt bygg for launch og mission control som oppskytingene vil styres fra. I tillegg kommer nødvendige støttekonstruksjoner og infrastruktur.

    Sortland Entreprenør AS og Karstein Kristiansen Entreprenør AS skal sammen sørge for bygg og anleggsarbeider. SE og KK er til vanlig bedre kjent som konkurrenter, men på grunn av utbyggingens størrelse sier de det var helt naturlig å samarbeide om dette. – Sammen har vi den nødvendige kunnskapen, kapasiteten og tilstedeværelsen som skal til for å kunne levere et best mulig resultat for Andøya Space, sier Kjetil Rønning Hansen, daglig leder i KK.

    LNS skal stå for grunnarbeidene, utfylling og betongarbeidet relatert til den første oppskytningsrampen. De tre entreprenørene har fått ansvar for utbyggingens første fase. Byggingen har planlagt oppstart tidlig i 2022, og skal sørge for at bygg og anleggsarbeider ferdigstilles i tide til første oppskyting mot slutten av 2022.

    Mer informasjon

    Kontakt Andøya Spaceport

  • A spaceport at Andøya

    On August 18th, 1962, Andøya Space launched Norway’s first civilian suborbital research rocket. On October 8th, 2021, almost 60 years and over 1 200 launches later, the Norwegian government gave us their approval to take the next exciting step towards orbital launches. This is the beginning of a new Norwegian space era!

    What are we going to build and when?

    Andøya Space is building Norway’s first commercial satellite launching facility, entering the European investment in NewSpace capabilities. The new facility will be located roughly 30 kilometers south of the existing rocket range, which launches sounding rockets to research atmospheric phenomena.

    With government funding now secured, start of construction is imminent in preparation to support the first launches planned from Andøya in 2023.

    Illustration of a satellite launch vehicle speeding away from Andøya towards polar low Earth orbit
    A satellite launch vehicle is speeding away from Andøya towards polar low Earth orbit.

    Why Andøya?

    Andøya Space launched their first rocket “Ferdinand 1” from Andøya in 1962, just five years after the launch of the Sputnik satellite. Since then, more than 1,200 rockets have been launched to investigate the atmosphere on behalf of organisations like NASA. This has built a leading expertise in launching, data gathering and safety.

    In addition to Andøya’s decades of experience, the geographical location of Andøya also holds multiple advantages.

    Andøya is located at the northern tip of Vesterålen, with large open sea areas and relatively little air traffic. This means safer launches with bigger safety margins and direct access to both polar and sun synchronous orbits from Andøya. This is key for commercial satellites.

    Why do we need a spaceport?

    Modern society is truly dependent on space technology, and not just for critical functions such as weather forecasting, climate research, and search and rescue.

    Whether you’re making a card payment in a shop, using your smart phone to find your way in an unfamiliar city, or using internet onboard an airplane. We all use infrastructure in space to connect us, maybe more than we realize.

    In the past it has been extremely expensive and time consuming to build satellites, but in line with technological development, satellites have shrunk both in size and cost. Satellites are no longer the size of a truck; they are more like a refrigerator or a microwave oven, and with smaller satellites, reduced costs to place them into orbit follows. This, and the ability to launch multiple small satellites together, is making space accessible like nothing before, and thus demand is increasing.

    Illustration of satellites being released from launch vehicle

    What are we going to use these satellites for?

    Satellites help us to solve a range of problems and are becoming more and more important every day. For example, we are dependent on information from earth observation satellites if we are to understand, monitor and find solutions to climate challenges.

    Norway is a leader in merchant shipping and was an early user of satellite communication to maintain contact with the merchant fleet. Not having access to data from navigation satellites is almost unthinkable, and modern weather forecasting would be almost impossible without weather satellites.

    The space industry is in constant development. For example: Several networks are being developed that can offer broadband in remote places via satellite at a reasonable price. Experiments are being carried out to make satellites work as relay stations for cell phones and new solutions are being developed to allow transport companies to track vehicles and containers in real time via satellite.

    Why will doing this be good for Norway and Europe?

    Space technology will continue to be more and more important, and Norway is already at the leading edge of development and satellite communication. There are many Norwegian firms who produce components for satellites and launch systems, and the Norwegian ground station on Svalbard already handles the most satellite communication in the world.

    A spaceport at Andøya will meet the demand and capability for the whole of Europe, be an advantage for the Norwegian space industry, and generate employment in the region of Vesterålen and beyond. Our spaceport has already attracted interest from technology, defence, education, and research sectors across the world.

    Who are our customers?

    The rocket owners are our customers, and Andøya Space will offer launch opportunities to customers who wish to launch satellites into orbit.

    So far, we have signed a long term binding agreement with Isar Aerospace.

    Illustration of launch vehicle being launched from Andøya Spaceport

    Is the development sustainable?

    Andøya Space are going to develop a service, that not only creates value and jobs, but will also be sustainable. We have to consider other businesses and the environment around us. During the planning phase of the launch base, impact assessments were carried out, and during establishment and running of the spaceport we will maintain focus on reducing the negative consequences the development will have on nature and the environment. Pollution will be reduced to a minimum, and what is unavoidable will be compensated for.

    Even though both building and running will lead to pollution, the project will give positive effects on the grander scale: Satellites will give us the necessary knowledge to use the worlds resources more sustainably.

    More information

    Do you have questions about the Norwegian spaceport?

  • Romhavn på Andøya

    Siden tidlig 60-tall har man sendt forskningsraketter ut i jordens atmosfære fra Andøya. Fredag 8. oktober ga Regjeringen grønt lys til å ta steget ut i bane rundt jorden. Dette er starten på et nytt romeventyr i Norge.

    Hva og når skal vi bygge?

    Tre mil sør for det eksisterende rakettskytefeltet på Andøya skal det bygges en romhavn. En romhavn er et sted hvor raketter kan løfte små satellitter ut i bane rundt jorden. Andøya Space har lang erfaring med oppskyting av raketter for å forske på atmosfæriske fenomener, og tar nå steget ut i verdensrommet.

    For å kunne løfte en satellitt ut i bane rundt jorden trengs større raketter, høyere hastigheter og mer plass enn det som er nødvendig for en liten forskningsrakett. Derfor bygger vi en separat romhavn på Nordmela, Andøya.

    Når vi nå har fått klarsignal fra Regjeringen, er vi i gang med byggingen så snart alle igangsettelsestillatelsene er klare. Første oppskytning er planlagt i 2023.

    Illustrasjonsbilde av bærerakett som sendes opp fra Andøya

    Hvorfor Andøya?

    På Andøya finnes både erfaringen og geografien som trengs for å etablere en romhavn.

    For det første var det her det norske romeventyret startet: I august 1962 ble raketten Ferdinand 1 skutt opp fra Andøya, kun fem år etter at verdens første satellitt Sputnik ble skutt ut. Siden den gang har over 1200 raketter blitt sendt opp fra Andøya for å gjøre målinger av atmosfæren på oppdrag fra organisasjoner som for eksempel NASA. Det finnes altså allerede et sterkt kompetansemiljø når det gjelder rakettoppskytinger, informasjonsinnhenting og sikkerheten rundt dette på Andøya.

    For det andre har Andøya en rekke geografiske fortrinn: Andøya ligger ideelt til helt nord i Vesterålen, med store havområder og relativt lite flytrafikk i nærheten. Det betyr langt tryggere rakettoppskytinger, med større marginer om noe skulle gå galt under oppskyting. Når vi nå snakker om å løfte satellitter ut i bane er det også et poeng at vi kan nå både polar og solsynkron bane fra Andøya, som er nettopp der hvor hovedmarkedet for de kommersielle satellittene er.

    Hvorfor trengs det en romhavn?

    Verden er i dag avhengig av romteknologi. Ikke bare for kritiske funksjoner sånn som værvarsling, klimaforskning, og redningstjenester, men også hver gang du betaler noe i butikken, hver gang du bruker smarttelefonen din for å finne frem i en fremmed by, når du ser på TV eller når du bruker internett om bord på et fly. Vi bruker alle infrastruktur i rommet mye oftere enn vi tror.

    Tradisjonelt sett har det vært ekstremt dyrt og tidkrevende å bygge satellitter, men i takt med den teknologiske utviklingen har man klart å krympe satellittene både i størrelse og pris. Satellitter må ikke lenger være på størrelse med en lastebil, de kan være som et kjøleskap eller en mikrobølgeovn. Mindre satellitter betyr lettere raketter og lavere kostnader for å få sendt de ut i bane, og etterspørselen etter oppskytingssteder øker.

    Når satellittene blir billigere å bygge blir det også flere som lager dem. Satellittene er fysisk mindre, men det er desto flere. Det er nå en kø av satellitter som ligger på lager og venter på en ledig plass på de store rakettene som sendes opp.

    Eierne av disse småsatellittene kan tradisjonelt heller ikke velge hvor i verdensrommet satellitten deres skal havne, eller når de blir løftet ut i bane. De må haike med større satellitter og følge dem. Derfor har det oppstått et marked for å løfte små satellitter ut i verdensrommet med relativt små bæreraketter. Da kan satellitteierne selv bestemme både når og hvor satellittene skal ut i bane.

    Illustrasjon av satellitter som plasseres i bane

    Hva skal vi bruke alle disse satellittene til?

    Satellitter hjelper oss i dag med å løse en rekke oppgaver på jorden, og blir bare viktigere med tiden. For eksempel er vi helt avhengige av kunnskap fra jordobservasjonssatellitter om vi skal klare å forstå, overvåke og finne løsninger på klimautfordringene.

    Norge er en av stormaktene innenfor shipping og tok tidlig i bruk satellittkommunikasjon for å holde kontakten med handelsflåten. I dag er det nærmest utenkelig å ikke ha tilgang på posisjonsdata fra satellittnavigasjonssatellitter, og moderne værvarsel er nesten umulig å lage uten værsatellitter.

    Romindustrien står ikke stille, og revolusjonen med små satellitter har gjort at vi nå får nye typer av satellitter som hjelper oss mer på personlig nivå. Man er i ferd med å bygge ut nettverk som kan tilby deg bredbånd på hytta via satellitt uten at det må koste skjorta. Det eksperimenteres med å få satellitter til å fungere som virtuelle basetårn for mobiltelefoner, og det utvikles løsninger for å la transportfirmaer kunne holde rede på lastebiler og containere i sanntid via satellitt.

    Hvorfor er det bra for både Vesterålen, Norge og Europa at vi gjør dette?

    En romhavn på Andøya vil gi arbeidsplasser i regionen, være et løft for hele den norske romsektoren, og møte behov og egenevne fra hele Europa.

    Lokalt på Andøya vil etableringen få stor betydning, og være et bidrag til omstilling og fornyelse. Andøya Space har mer enn doblet antall ansatte siden ideen om en romhavn ble lansert, og den siste tida har også rakettkundene våre lyst ut en rekke stillinger på Andøya. Utvidelsen betyr både flere innbyggere og tilreisende som igjen vil gi økt omsetning for mange næringer. På lengre sikt vil dette kunne inspirere til etablering av langt flere teknologibaserte arbeidsplasser i hele regionen.

    Romteknologi blir viktigere og viktigere, og Norge er nå i forkant av utviklingen. Nasjonalt finnes det en rekke norske bedrifter som lager sensorer, mekanismer, rakettmotorer til satellitter og bæreraketter som produseres i utlandet. Norge er også veldig langt fremme på satellittkommunikasjon. Verdens mest brukte bakkestasjon for satellittkommunikasjon ligger på Svalbard. En romhavn vil bidra til å lage enda flere arbeidsplasser innenfor romsektoren og sørge for at Norge er til stede i alle ledd i næringskjeden.

    Tilgang på utskytningskapasitet er også viktig for resten av Europa. Romhavnen har allerede medført betydelig økt interesse fra teknologi-, forsvars-, utdannings-, og forskningsmiljø.

    Hvem er kundene våre?

    Våre kunder er raketteierne: Andøya Space vil tilby oppskytingsmuligheter til de som vil sende satellitter ut i bane.

    Så langt har vi signert bindende avtale med den tyske rakettprodusenten Isar Aerospace.

    Illustrasjon av en bærerakett som blir sendt opp fra Andøya Spaceport

    Er utbyggingen bærekraftig?

    Andøya Space skal utvikle en tjeneste som ikke bare skaper verdier og arbeidsplasser, men som også er bærekraftig. Det skal tas hensyn til både andre næringer som lokalt næringsliv og til miljøet rundt oss. I planleggingen av oppskytingsbasen er det gjennomført en rekke konsekvensutredninger, og gjennom etablering og drift av romhavnen vil det være fortsatt fokus på å redusere de negative konsekvensene utbyggingen vil få for natur og miljø. Utslipp skal begrenses til et minimum, og der det ikke kan unngås skal vi sette inn kompenserende tiltak.

    Selv om vi vil etterstrebe å redusere negativ påvirkning på omgivelsene, vil romhavnen i likhet med de fleste andre byggeprosjekter føre til en del utslipp både som et resultat av selve utbyggingen og driften av den. Dette gjelder både CO2-utslipp fra myr i området, støv og utslipp fra maskiner i byggefasen, og strøm- og transportbelastning assosiert med næringsbygg.

    Selv om både utbygging og drift i seg selv fører til utslipp vil også prosjektet kunne gi positive effekter på en større skala: Satellitter gir oss kunnskap som gjør det mulig å utnytte jordas ressurser mer bærekraftig.

    Mer informasjon

    Kontakt Andøya Spaceport

  • Rocket Factory Augsburg secures launch site in Andøya, Norway

    Rocket Factory Augsburg (RFA) has signed a contract with Norway’s Andøya Space, securing one of the most coveted launch sites in Europe.

    “This agreement secures launch capacity to cover the first years of operation for us. We are very happy that Europe’s most advanced rocket launch complex is partnering with us. We have everything in place now from launch site, over customers to traction on the development program to get the first launch campaign going”, says Jörn Spurmann, Chief Commercial Officer of RFA. “Flexible access to space from continental Europe aids RFA in offering its customers the best and most cost-effective launch service for their payloads.”

    Illustration of future launch site at Andøya
    The future launch site at Andøya

    “A partnership with Rocket Factory is another big milestone for the European New Space Industry”, says Odd Roger Enoksen, CEO and President of Andøya Space. “We look forward to supporting their ambitious launch cadence from our spaceport. Our relationship with RFA has grown strong through the past years and we are particularly proud that RFA continues to be part of our vision to create a competitive European New Space industry.”

    “Andøya’s unique location allows us to offer a flexible, ultra-competitive launch service for orbital inclinations ranging from 87 to 108 degrees. The launch site is easily accessible within Europe and can help to strengthen our space launch industry”, Stefan Brieschenk, Chief Operational Officer of RFA added.

    Andøya Space got their zonal area approval September 2020 and have permit for 30 launches per year from their new spaceport 35 km south of the existing launch site. The spaceport’s location, 69 degrees north and above the Arctic circle on the coastline of Andøya in Nordland county has a flightpath that ensures a trajectory whose ground track does not cross populated areas. Andøya Space, provides launch pads, payload integration facilities as well as the technical infrastructure on site.

    About Andøya Space

    Andøya Space has provided launch services for sounding rockets since 1962. The company is also involved in scientific ground-based instrumentation, unmanned aircraft, space education and testing/verification of new technologies. Andøya Space is from 2022 expanding its portfolio to include a launch site for small satellites to polar and sun-synchronous orbit. Andøya Space AS is 90 % owned by The Norwegian Ministry of Trade and Fisheries.

    About RFA

    Rocket Factory was founded in 2018 by Jörn Spurmann and Stefan Brieschenk, investor Hans Steininger and German satellite company OHB SE. The goal of the start-up is to develop a launch vehicle prototype by the end of 2022, which will lift satellites into low-Earth orbit on a weekly basis at unrivalled prices. Rocket Factory aims for exponential growth in the booming New Space market. The start-up’s goal is to combine highest system performances with ultra-low-cost manufacturing and design principles. Rocket Factory will deliver satellites precisely into orbit with a unique orbital transfer vehicle, thinking space transportation from the satellite and customer point of view. The launcher will offer an end-to-end solution with its last mile delivery service. The launch vehicle combines three key competitive advantages: ultra-low-cost architecture, precise in-orbit delivery and superior propulsion technology. The start-up has established itself in Augsburg and currently has a team of 85 (as of February 2021) New Space veterans from 25 different nationalities, with a demonstrated track-record established in international launch vehicle development projects.

    For more information, visit:

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  • Isar Aerospace signs exclusive launch pad in Norway for up to 20 years

    The first fully privately-financed European launch vehicle bringing satellites into low Earth orbit, Isar Aerospace’s Spectrum rocket, will launch from Norway: Isar Aerospace has signed an agreement with Norwegian Andøya Space to secure exclusive access for a period of up to twenty years to one of its launch pads on the island Andøya.

    As a launch site operator, Andøya Space provides launch pads, payload integration facilities as well as the technical infrastructure on site.

    Illustration of the future orbital launch site at Andøya
    The future orbital launch site at Andøya

    – We are very happy and proud that we were able to secure our dedicated launch pad on Andøya, the best funded spaceport in continental Europe. The length and the exclusive nature of this agreement enables us to provide long-term turnkey launch solutions from European soil, says Daniel Metzler, CEO of Isar Aerospace. – The exclusivity provides us and, even more importantly, our clients with the greatest flexibility and planning security to bring small and medium satellites into earth’s orbit at any time with maximum flexibility and cost-efficiency.

    Given its location far north at a coastline, Andøya Space can offer launch inclinations ranging from 87.4 to 108 degrees. These are favorable for sun synchronous as well as polar orbits. The flightpath ensures a trajectory whose ground track does not cross populated areas.

    – This partnership is a big milestone for the European New Space industry as we will see the first satellite launches ever from a European start-up from European soil. We believe this is just the beginning of delivering on a global demand for launch capacities in Europe. It is with pleasure that we announce our partnership with Isar Aerospace which for us is expected to be one of the winners in this market in the coming years. We strongly believe in joint European initiatives and are proud to be part of this great space endeavor with Isar Aerospace, says Odd Roger Enoksen, CEO and President of Andøya Space.

    Andøya Space has a long history in the suborbital launch business. Since the first launch of a civilian, suborbital research rocket in 1962, around 1.200 launches of sounding rockets and long duration balloons have taken place at Andøya. The company is now in the process of establishing a new launch site on Andøya island for small and medium satellites for polar and sun-synchronous orbits.

    Image of nature on Andøya and Isar Aerospace's rocket, Spectrum

    Isar Aerospace has been developing its Spectrum launch vehicle with a payload of over 1.000 kilograms including proprietary propulsion systems. With a pragmatic engineering approach, highly automated in-house manufacturing and a simple design, Isar Aerospace will reduce the costs of each rocket launch drastically. The founder-led company ensured that almost the entire value creation is carried out in-house for maximum flexibility. The total funding amounting to more than USD 100m stems almost exclusively from European investors.

    About Isar Aerospace

    Isar Aerospace, based in Ottobrunn/Munich, develops and builds launch vehicles for transporting small and medium-sized satellites as well as satellite constellations into earth’s orbit. The company was founded in 2018 by Daniel Metzler, Josef Fleischmann and Markus Brandl. Since then, it has grown to more than 120 employees from around 30 nations with many years of hands-on rocket knowhow as well as experience within other high-tech industries. The company is privately financed by former SpaceX VP Bulent Altan as well as world-leading Venture Capital firms including Airbus Ventures, Apeiron, Earlybird, HV Capital, Lakestar, UVC Partners and Vsquared Ventures.

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    About Andøya Space

    Andøya Space has provided launch services for sounding rockets since 1962. The company is also involved in scientific ground-based instrumentation, unmanned aircraft, space education and testing/verification of new technologies. Andøya Space is from 2022 expanding its portfolio to include a launch site for small satellites. Andøya Space AS is 90% owned by The Norwegian Ministry of Trade and Fisheries.

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  • Sustainability and space – how satellites help

    More sustainable living includes reducing poverty and hunger, increasing health and well-being, ensuring quality education, having responsible consumption and production, as well as caring for life on land and in water.

    These and other aspects of sustainability are included in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, adopted by the UN member states in 2015.

    Satellites and the space sector enable and support these goals in many different ways. The importance of space for communities all over the world will only increase in the future as satellites take on even more essential tasks and become even more important to our societies.

    Commerce, education, health services and more

    Today, telecommunication satellites provide radio, TV and internet signals to all corners of the world. This communication is used for business, education, health services, entertainment, social contact, and much more.

    Thus, satellites bring vital communication even to societies that are so remote or inaccessible that reaching them by transportation is difficult and costly, ensuring and transforming life here.

    For example satellites enable small digital bank terminals in remote locations in Africa, increasing the potential for trade and productivity in these communities.

    At the start of the Covid-19-pandemic, satellite-based telemedicine in Spain provided ambulance personnel quicker and more advanced help from specialist doctors that remained at the hospitals. This is just one example of how satellites through telemedicine may improve health services all over the world.

    Essential functions for modern societies

    Satellite navigation systems such as the American Global Positioning System, Europe’s Galileo, Russia’s GLONASS and China’s BeiDou provide signals for positioning, navigation and accurate time.

    These systems are essential for navigation for transport, commerce, and emergency services, but also for accurate positioning data for the construction of buildings, roads, oil wells and other complex structures.

    Satellite navigation systems also provide extremely accurate time. Such data are used in electrical and water grids, for financial transactions and in large computer systems, as well as other services vital to modern societies.

    Today, satellite navigation systems enable the mobile services market and millions of commercial services and applications the world over. In the future, autonomous vehicles and their markets will depend on accurate and ubiquitous navigation signals provided by satellites.

    Satellite image of Andøya
    Satellites cover enormous areas regularly.

    Protecting the Earth’s natural environment

    In order to protect the Earth’s natural environment and large-scale systems, we need to understand them and know how they change over time. This is the task of the Earth observation satellites.

    Because satellites can cover enormous, remote and inaccessible areas quickly and regularly, they are perhaps the best way to monitor the Earth and its systems.

    The European Copernicus program has, together with the European Space Agency, launched several operational satellites to monitor many different environmental factors.

    For example, one type of this program’s satellites provide radar measurements of sea ice and snow cover to see how the world’s ice caps and snow masses change over time.

    Another type of the Copernicus program’s satellites provide optical data of plant cover and vegetation, as well as of wetlands and coastlines. This is used for monitoring forest cutting, the health of food crops, coral reef bleaching, loss of wetlands due to drought or development, and more.

    Copernicus’ Sentinel-3 satellites observe the oceans and its surface temperature, wave height, wind speeds, and several other environmental factors. These data are used for monitoring tropical storms that may threaten communities on land, or surface temperature and ocean acidity that indicate changes in the world’s climate, to mention only a few applications.

    Illustration of Earth observation satellites
    Earth observation satellites are important tools to understand the natural environment we live in.

    Smaller satellites in the future

    As high technology becomes smaller and more accessible, satellites become smaller too, and can be built faster and cheaper, while still being able to perform the duties of larger satellites.

    Norway’s national satellites, AISSat-1, AISSat-2, NorSat-1 and NorSat-2, are all small satellites. Their main task is to monitor ship traffic, used for managing marine resources and oil spill detection to protect life in the ocean.

    HYPSO-1 and HYPSO-2 are Norwegian small satellites that will be launched in a few year’s time. They will be able to detect algal blooms in the ocean. In recent years such algal blooms have killed large amounts of fish and damaged the marine aquaculture business, important to many communities along the coast.

    Most small satellites launched today are used for communication, but in the future, small satellites are expected to perform more and more Earth observation tasks. Thus, small satellites may play an increasingly important role in ensuring and enabling sustainability all over the world in the years to come.

    More information

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  • Rocket Factory Augsburg Signs Agreement with Andøya Space for maiden launch

    Rocket Factory Augsburg AG (RFA), the leading launch service provider based in Germany, signed a ground breaking MoU with Norway based Andøya Space, to implement a launch site for the RFA ONE launch system to provide end-to-end launch services for small satellites.

    – This partnership is pivotal, it allows RFA and Andøya to launch the first satellite into orbit from continental Europe with an European launcher, said Dr. Stefan Brieschenk, Chief Operation Officer of RFA.

    – Andøya Space is the most advanced micro launcher spaceport project in Europe. We believe to have found the best partner to start with the delivery of our end to end launch service to our customers in 2022, Jörn Spurmann, Chief Commercial Officer of RFA, added.

    Andøya Space is developing the new launch complex on Andøya island, 35 km south of their existing sub-orbital launch site. This new site will provide operators of vehicles in the 1.5t payload class with independent integration facilities and access to two launch pads with necessary support infrastructure.

    Rocket Factory, a start-up backed by the German satellite manufacturer OHB as a strategic investor and Munich-based venture capital firm Apollo Capital Partners, currently is developing a launcher system called RFA ONE for small satellites with a payload performance of up to 1.500kg to low earth orbit (LEO). The first launch is scheduled for 2022. The company recently qualified the upper stage tank system during cryogenic tests and is currently preparing hot-fire tests of the main engine in Esrange, Sweden.

    – We are convinced that Rocket Factory is one of the most progressive SSLV companies in Europe. Having them commit to Andøya Space as a partner is of great significance to us. We are developing an efficient multi-user launch site in Norway, and Rocket Factory has the technical capabilities, the same innovative culture, and the enthusiastic team we need in a partner to help us take the spaceport initiative forward. We look forward to supporting them in their missions to polar- and sun synchronous orbits, said Odd Roger Enoksen, CEO and President of Andøya Space.

    RFA is at the forefront of the global new-space launch vehicle development, with its state-of-the-art staged-combustion engine technology. This high-performance engine design, coupled to lowest-possible-cost production techniques, is essentially new to Europe, and through the support of OHB, RFA has managed to acquire key technologies and key talent that will propel the business case of the RFA One launch vehicle to dominate the market on a global scale. Recent firing tests have demonstrated that RFA is on a winning path to establish Europe’s most efficient and powerful rocket engine technology. Recently, RFA won the first round of the micro-launcher competition of the German Space Agency DLR, which granted RFA a letter of support to submit a proposal to ESA’s Boost! programme.

    About RFA

    Since its foundation in August 2018, RFA established a team of 75 (as of September 2020) New Space veterans from 20 different nationalities having a demonstrated track record from previous small launcher projects. An own turbopump prototype was developed from scratch and has undergone first successful tests mid-2019. The Upper stage tank qualification under cryogenic conditions was successfully conducted beginning 2020. At the same time an engine test site is being implemented in Sweden, which will host the hot-fire test of the RFA staged combustion engine from September 2020 onwards. On top, the avionics system test readiness will be given by fall 2020 and RFA will be happy to report about first successful hardware in the loop test results. All system developments being executed in parallel, RFA is happy to present the status of the upcoming integrated stage test next the year. For more information, visit:

    About Andøya Space

    Andøya Space has 58 years of experience in sub-orbital rocket operations for upper-atmospheric research. It also provides space education course up to under-graduate level, conducts missile testing, offers training & flight certification for UAV operations and has capabilities in scientific balloon operations and ground-based ionospheric observation facilities. Andøya Space is owned by the Norwegian Government (90%) and Kongsberg Defence and Aerospace. The company received full support from the Norwegian parliament as well as their owners in June to build the spaceport.

    More information

    Contact Andøya Spaceport.