AAO to build thermal imager for Gilmour space

AAO to build thermal imager for Gilmour Space

AAO has announced a new partnership with Gilmour Space Technologies, to design and build a new sovereign space technology for launch in late 2023.

AAO is world renowned for its ground-based precision instrumentation for telescopes and is now branching out to non-astronomy applications in space. Gilmour Space Technologies is one of Australia’s innovative NewSpace companies and the leading venture-backed manufacturer of launch vehicles and satellite platforms.

As part of this new partnership with Gilmour Space, a team of technical specialists from AAO will construct and deliver a thermal camera payload.

“The payload will be integrated into a Gilmour Space satellite which is slated for launch in late 2023. The data collected from the thermal camera payload will allow the exploration of a new approach to collecting imaging data,” says Project Lead Dr Lee Spitler from the AAO.

“The agreement marks an exciting new chapter for the AAO, as our team of experts can expand their skills and remits to support the growing interest in space exploration.”

“At Gilmour Space, we like to work with fast-moving and innovative partners like the AAO. This is going to be a new Australian-made thermal space imager, which could be used for many different applications, including water quality monitoring, bushfire detection, weather monitoring, and more,” said Shaun Kenyon, the Program Manager for Satellites at Gilmour Space.

This mission flies an all-Australian payload sensor suite and kick-starts Macquarie’s participation in the NewSpace era of agile space technology development.

AAO has several other innovative space-related projects currently underway with Australian industry. This includes a partnership with a Sydney-based company to design custom optical components that will land on the moon in 2025.

Learn more about the space systems capabilities of AAO.