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The Lehendakari and Minister Arantxa Tapia attend by videoconference the launch of the first Satlantis camera to the International Space Station

2020 May 20
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  • Satlantis has launched an extreme miniaturised camera to obtain sub-metric resolutions and weighing just 15 kg from Japan, after 7 years of technological development and an investment of over €16 million

This evening, Lehendakari Iñigo Urkullu, the Basque Primer, opened the launched the event held from Bilbao, Vitoria, Madrid, Rome, Paris, Washington, Florida, Brussels, Tokyo and the island of Tanegashima, accompanied by the Basque Government’s Minister for Economic Development and Infrastructures, Arantxa Tapia, and the SATLANTIS CEO, Cristina Garmendia.

The launch took place at 2.30 a.m., local time in Japan, as part of the HTV-9 mission run by JAXA, the Japanese space agency, to the International Space Station (ISS), after a four-day journey to reach the station speed of 27,580 km/h.

During his speech, the Lehendakari stressed the importance of research and its link to production and application. As he explained, this project is the outcome of a triple investment in the Basque Country:

-a firm commitment to research

-an industrial ecosystem that allows the production of high technology

-And an outcome that is going to be used to improve the environment and living conditions.

“This project has pooled research and technology, production capacity and improving the environment.  Capacities to be found in the Basque Research and Technology Alliance,” he said. 

As representatives of the company pointed out, this launch is the first time that a camera of that size will achieve a sub-metric resolution in space. It is the first time that a non-Japanese technology is being installed in the Japanese area of the ISS.

The round table organised around the event was moderated by the Satlantis CEO, Juan Tomás Hernani and  with the presence of  Karmelo Sainz de la Maza (ELKARKIDETZA Chair), Javier Ponce (CDTI General Manager), Paolo Minciacchi (CEO of e-GEOS, TELESPAZIO), Jean Jacques Dordain (former Director General of ESA), Sean O´Keefe (former NASA Administrator), Miguel Angel Panduro (CEO of HISPASAT), Eva Labarta (CEO of EVERIS Initiatives), David Norton (Vice President for Research at University of Florida) and Masatoshi Nagasaki (CEO of Space BD).


SATLANTIS has been a trailblazer on a path to combine technologies, artificial intelligence, boosting extreme precision mechanical, optical and industrial electronics to produce this new result. Hernani recognised that there is a great deal of competition and it was fundamental for the company to be the first in Space. “And also, to consolidate that hard-earned position,” Hernani pointed out. “The company is a private-public partnership, with the Basque Government and MINECO (Axis/Ico) as shareholders, with the presence of leading industrial partners as EVERIS and financial investors such as ORZA. The company is ready to make a further leap with a round of financing of €26 million in partnership with global satellite operators”.

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Politicians attending the event
(XI term 2016 - 2020)