Satellite and space company mu Space Corp has launched its first payload from Asia on Blue Origin’s New Shepard space vehicle. The six-kilogram payload contains experiments from several universities and space agencies in Thailand.
Speaking about the launch, CEO and founder of mu Space Corp James Yenbamroong said: “We’re happy to launch our first payload on New Shepard,” adding that “it marks the first flight of a payload from Asia on a reusable space flight.”
In an earlier announcement by mu Space, the company revealed they included to its payload a bleeding preventive device, a carbon nanotube and a vacuum-sealed food product. These experiments and items came from their project partners Queen Sirikit National Institute of Child Health, Chulalongkorn University, Geo-Informatics and Space Technology Development Agency (GISTDA), King Mongkut’s Institute of Technology Ladkrabang, and National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand (NARIT).
Mu Space, on their part, had sent textile materials that they plan to use on the space suit and apparels they will soon develop. The company also sent a jersey of the national football team to symbolise the affinity of Thais with World Cup and the successful rescue of the 13-member football team trapped in a cave in Thailand last week.
Yenbamroong congratulated the entire mu Space team and project partners in Thailand who collectively gathered experiments and items for the microgravity flight, saying: “We’re going beyond gravity. We have this big ambition to achieve the space dreams of the Thai people.”
Aerospace company Blue Origin’s Vice President, Clay Mowry, added: “Congratulations to mu Space on becoming the first payload from Asia to fly on New Shepard. We are honoured by the trust you place in Blue Origin to carry your visions to space.”
The payload flew on-board New Shepard space vehicle’s Mission 9. The New Shepard vertical takeoff and vertical landing vehicle is capable of carrying hundreds of pounds of payloads per flight and will ultimately carry six astronauts to altitudes beyond 100 kilometers, the internationally-recognised boundary of space.
Mu Space, founded in 2017, develops satellite communication technologies to accelerate the adoption of Internet of Things devices and smart cities. It plans to launch its own satellite in 2020 using Blue Origin’s New Glenn space vehicle, and to lead space technology development and encourage new space investments in Asia-Pacific.
Blue Origin was established by Amazon CEO and founder Jeff Bezos. In November 2015, New Shepard rocket became the first to fly to space and return to Earth via vertical landing. Less than two months later, the very same rocket launched and landed again, demonstrating reuse.