South Australian satellite bound for space

07 Mar 2023
South Australian based space company, Hex20, is on course to be propelled into space as part of the National Central University (NCU) in Taiwan’s ‘Automatic Identification System' (AIS) space mission.

A previous participant in the University of South Australia’s Venture Catalyst Space Program, which is supported by the South Australian Government’s Space Innovation Fund, the program is one of Australia's first space technology-focused startup hubs. 

The company, which employs six staff, provides turnkey satellite mission solutions designed and delivered in South Australia and believes South Australia’s rapidly growing space sector is actively supporting the development of new companies. This has been accelerated by the presence of the Australian Space Agency and events such as the Australian Space Forum which provides opportunities to meet and collaborate with local and international companies and agencies.

“The space sector (and defence) in South Australia is thriving and is well-supported by the State Government and a range of other organisations,” said Mr Lloyd Lopez, CEO at Hex20.

“The heritage of the platform technology we use comes from research and missions flown from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore and the University of Colorado at Boulder, USA. 

“We are building on these platforms to push technological advances enabling the next generation of technologies, including optical communications, precision pointing, and high-resolution Earth imaging,” Mr Lopez continued.

“The state's strong focus on innovation and technology is helping to drive the growth of new companies in the sector. 

“The Venture Catalyst Space Program helped us refine our core concept, validate the business model and articulate the value proposition better.

“There are many opportunities for established companies and startups to get involved in this exciting field.”

Hex20 is currently building a 3U cubesat mission named SAISI for the National Central University in Taiwan to space qualify a Software Defined Radio to perform Automatic Identification System for ship tracking. 

The company is also working on building satellite simulators for training purposes. Hex20 is also involved in two other missions; A 3U cubesat mission for Small Satellites to fly a radiation detector payload and a 6U mission technology demonstrator.

South Australia’s reputation as the space and defence state is putting South Australia on the international map with the state continuing to attract global investment within the sector which, in turn, is enhancing the advanced manufacturing industry in the state.

Just last month, space companies from the United Kingdom visited Adelaide on a mission to explore why more global companies are investing in South Australia’s cutting-edge space sector. This followed recent announcements that global companies such as Airbus, SSTL and Equatorial Launch Australia are establishing bases in the state.

To learn more about South Australia’s burgeoning space sector, visit and speak to the team at Invest SA.