Space Sector reforms, Indian startups, ISRO and Pixxel

Newsroom24x7 Network

Newsroom24x7 had conducted investigation and found out that Pixxel Space Technologies, Inc. is registered with the U.S. Security and Exchange Commission and was incorporated in 2019. All its data downloading and dissemination facilities are in USA or some other country but not in India. We had reported this, when ISRO and more particularly K Sivan, Secretary Department of Space and ISRO chairman, had announced that the PSLV C51 mission (Taking off on Sunday) is a special mission as it will launch a satellite from Pixxel Space called Anand from its Firefly fleet of earth observation satellites.

On the launch of communication satellite ‘CMS-01’ onboard PSLV-C50 on 17 December 2020 from Sriharikota, the ISRO Chairman had announced that the upcoming PSLV-C51 mission will be fruition of the space reforms recently introduced in the country.”

Dr. K. Sivan, Chairman, ISRO/Secretary, DOS as Chief Guest inaugurated Pixxel’s office at Bangalore on 20 January in.

Addressing scientists from the Mission Control Centre after the successful launch of communication satellite ”CMS-01”, Sivan had said: “The first satellite ‘ANAND’ from a start-up called Pixxel India, is going to be launched.”

Point to be noted is that within days of Pixxel entering into a formal collaboration with NewSpace India Limited, ISRO had created hyperbole around the announcement that Pixxel’s first satellite Anand will be launched in its PSLV-C51.

The objection we had raised was that Anand -the Pixxel satellite – was being launched through ISRO’s PSLV C51 at a subsidised cost on the pretext of encouraging an Indian startup under the Policy reforms for the Space Sector introduced by the Indian Government.

After our exclusive news story was published and days before the scheduled launch of PSLV C51 on Sunday 28 February, Pixxel announced that they were calling off the launch of their satellite for now due to technical reasons.

Subsequent investigation by Newsroom24x7 to establish that Pixxel is a company incorporated in the US has revealed that Awais Ahmed Nadeem  Alduri, CEO Pixxel  Space  Technlogies, Inc. (“Pixxel”) had submitted under 15 C.F.R. § 960.5(b),  the following license Public Summary of the private remote-sensing spacecraft license that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Environmental Satellite, Data and Information Service (“NESDIS”) issued Pixxel on March 20, 2020 (Pixxel PX2019Public  Summary of Private  Remote L1).

The mailing address and telephone number of the licensee Pixxel Space Technologies, Inc. provided by the company was 3260 Hillview Ave, Palo Alto, CA 94304 USA +1 (301) 379 4511  and its and affiliate or subsidiary was  Syzygy Space Technologies Private Limited 677, 1st Floor, 13th Cross Road,  27th Main Rd, 1st Sector,  HSR Layout, Bengaluru,  Karnataka, 560102, India  +91 96119 47866.

The relevant NESDIS license authorizes Pixxel to operate a private electro-optical hyperspectral Earth imaging satellite over which Pixxel will maintain operational control. The satellite is called Anand and the spacecraft will be in a sun synchronous orbit operating at an altitude of 530-600 km and 97-98 deg inclination. 

The name and address given by Pixxel for receiving mail and services provided to the US licensing authority was as follows:Ken Sunshine,  Chief Operating Officer,  Pixxel Space Technologies, Inc.  3260 Hillview Ave, Palo Alto, CA 94304 USA +1 (301) 379 4511

Check: Pixxel-Public-Summary

Is it another Antrix-Devas like Scam in ISRO

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