Friday, 08 December 2023
SpIRIT Satellite Launch Party
Rod and I are pleased to be here to celebrate the launch of the SpIRIT -‘Space Industry – Responsive – Intelligent – Thermal’ – nano satellite.
It was our great pleasure to learn the SpIRIT satellite was launched successfully in the early hours of last Saturday morning.
I imagine it was a nervous and exciting moment for Inovor staff here in the office, working on mission control or watching intently, as the satellite took off from Vandenberg Space Force Base in the US, and you established communications with it.
Congratulations on the successful launch, and I look forward to watching the launch video shortly.
Australia has – pun intended! - rocketed into the global space economy in recent years and South Australia has been at the forefront of these endeavours.
We are the nation’s Space State, with the first two launch facility licenses in the nation, three major innovation precincts supporting the space industry, as well as the future Australian Space Park.
It’s great to be here at Inovor Technologies within Lot 14, also home to the Australia Space Agency, Neumann Space and other space leaders, many of whom are represented here today.
Key to the success of Australia’s space industry is our capacity for collaboration and innovation, and the launch of the SpIRIT Satellite is an excellent example of this.
This project represents the coming together of business, government and tertiary sectors, at a local, interstate and international level.
I congratulate locally founded companies Inovor Technologies, Neumann Space and Nova Systems for providing the satellite bus platform, the novel electric propulsion system and ground support respectively, to this project.
In conjunction with funding from the Australian Space Agency, tech support from the University of Melbourne, as well as the contribution of the Italian Space Agency, Sitael Australia and the Hermes Consortium, this mission has been made reality.
SpIRIT is Inovor Technologies’ first ever satellite, and the first satellite funded by the Australian Space Agency, and I congratulate both parties on this milestone.
SpIRIT is also the first made-in-Australia spacecraft to host a foreign space agency’s scientific instrument as its main payload, showcasing the competitiveness of Australia’s space industry and, again, its collaborative spirit.
South Australians can be proud of the role our space industry is playing in the broader development of the advanced manufacturing and high tech industry here in our state, and its contribution to the national economy.
Recently I attended the Kids in Space National Showcase, a wonderful initiative brought together by the Andy Thomas Space Foundation, with funding from the Australian Space Agency and delivery by Makers Empire.
Hundreds of young people from around Australia descended on Adelaide to present their learnings from the program, and learn what a career in the space industry might look like.
It was my great pleasure to tell them about the many space initiatives in which South Australia is involved, and to encourage them to dream big dreams.
Today I have come full circle, celebrating the SpIRIT Satellite with you all, its success the result of the vision and dedication of people in this room – accomplished professionals who were once children, sitting in a classroom, dreaming about a career in space.
Thank you all for your commitment to making South Australia’s space industry the best it can be.
I wish Inovor Technologies and its supporters all the very best with the launch of the Kanyini satellite next year, which will be South Australia’s first solo satellite project – and another exciting milestone in our state’s foray into space.