HyImpulse Moves to Koonibba For 1st Launch

15th Nov 2023
HyImpulse Moves to Koonibba For 1st Launch

At the Space Tech Expo in Bremen, Germany, on 14th November 2023, Southern Launch CEO Lloyd Damp and HyImpulse Technologies co-CEO Christian Schmierer officially announced the launch window for the highly anticipated SR75 suborbital rocket. According to the announcement, HyImpulse has been given the go-ahead to conduct its launch from Southern Launch’s Koonibba Test Range in March 2024. HyImpulse had been expected to launch from SaxaVord, in the Shetland Islands.

Statements Issued by Representatives

HyImpulse CEO Mario Kobald said,

Our mission is to develop a launch vehicle that uses our unique hybrid propulsion technology. Launching our first suborbital rocket from the Koonibba Test Range is a huge milestone for our company, and we are looking forward to the learnings that this launch will provide our team.

Co-CEO Christian Schmierer added, 

Launching HyImpulse’s first rocket from the other side of the globe shows Southern Launch’s and HyImpulse’s capability of serving a global market in a rapid, efficient and responsive cooperation from anywhere around the world.

As of the time this article was written, there was no official word from HyImpulse, SaxaVord, or Southern Launch regarding the change in launch site.

HyImpulse SR75 Integration Success

As per the press release, the SR75’s assembly and integration have been completed. Furthermore, the integration of the flight rocket motor with the oxidizer tank and comprehensive tests of onboard electronics were carried out during the last few weeks.

At the core of the SR75’s propulsion system is HyImpulse’s hybrid rocket motor, which was put through ground testing campaigns earlier this year.

SR75 Gains Australian Operational Clearance

With the assembly and integration complete, the next step involves transporting the SR75 launch hardware to Australia. 

HyImpulse is in the final stages of securing the requisite license from the Office of the Space Regulator, Australian Space Agency, ensuring compliance regarding SR75’s operations in Australia. This regulatory approval, coupled with the earlier acquisition of the flight license from the CAA in the United Kingdom, emphasizes HyImpulse’s preparedness for this upcoming event.

Southern Launch Facilitates Campaign Preparations

Southern Launch plays a central role in managing most aspects of the launch campaign preparations on behalf of HyImpulse. From securing regulatory approvals to overseeing the import of the launch vehicle, Southern Launch’s involvement is laying the groundwork for a streamlined trajectory for the SR75.

Lloyd Damp expressed pride in supporting HyImpulse’s venture into hybrid rocket technology. 

“Southern Launch exists to provide launch services so our industry can keep moving forward at pace. HyImpulse are leaders in their field and we are incredibly excited to play a role in helping them develop their unique launch vehicle that will help our industry continue to evolve and improve.”

As regulatory processes unfold, the suborbital SR75 mission is poised to lift off from the Koonibba Test Range in Q1 of 2024.

What Happened at SaxaVord?

The move to Australia comes as a blow to Britain’s attempt to become a home for launch services, at least in the short term. HyImpulse had been given the UK’s first Large Rocket Air Navigation Order Permit. However, construction seems to have halted for at least part of the summer of 2023 at the site, and the finding of important archeological remains on the site may have also complicated matters.

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