Marble Imaging and Reflex Aerospace Team Up to Deploy Earth Observation Satellite Network

Marble Imaging and Reflex Aerospace Team Up to Deploy Earth Observation Satellite Network

Marble Imaging, with the support of strategic partner Reflex Aerospace, is set to make the first step towards revolutionizing the Earth Observation (EO) industry. With a planned constellation of up to 200 small satellites, Marble Imaging aims to be the leading European EO company capturing images of the entire planet every day in very-high resolution (VHR). 

To achieve this goal, they have partnered with Germany-based satellite manufacturer Reflex Aerospace. Reflex Aerospace is one of the few NewSpace companies capable of developing satellite platforms that outperform similar systems in terms of stability and pointing accuracy, enabling very high-resolution satellite imagery.

“Our planet is facing significant challenges due to human activities impacting Earth,” says Robert Hook, CEO of Marble Imaging. “It’s crucial to understand these effects for a sustainable future. To do this, we need a big data approach to monitor these changes and develop solutions. But currently, there’s a gap in providing the necessary very high-resolution images essential for such applications.”

The derived EO data, analytics, and insights will cater to the needs of real-world applications and people. These include government organizations as well as commercial companies involved in, for example, environmental monitoring, implementation of sustainability and climate adaptation policies, ensuring food security, or providing humanitarian aid. 

The initial satellite will be built for Marble Imaging by Reflex Aerospace with the funding coming via the German Space Agency at DLR in the form of an award to Marble Imaging who have won the Agency’s small satellite payload competition (‘Kleinsatelliten Nutzlastwettbewerb’). Marble Imaging’s payload will be hosted on the same platform as IABG Innovation Center’s RAISE (Resilient AI in Space and the Edge), an onboard AI computing cluster customized for robust and safe autonomous space applications – another competition winner.

“The ability to apply machine learning methods directly at the sensor and the edge in a robust and safe way is key to handling big data and enabling autonomous functions in the challenging and complex space environment,” says Dr. Daniel Kliche, SVP Innovations Center at IABG.

By developing Europe’s first EO VHR satellite constellation in partnership with Reflex, Marble challenges an overwhelmingly US-dominated market to strengthen European independence in the supply of VHR EO data. Celebrating the news, Walter Ballheimer, CEO of Reflex, explains: “At Reflex, we believe that the future of our planet depends on lightning-fast innovation in space, which is what drew us to Marble Imaging’s mission. Through this partnership, we will deploy emerging technology on tailor-made satellites to develop very high-resolution images that empower informed decision-making, positioning ourselves among the top-tier of EO platform manufacturers.”

Siegfried Monser, Space Coordinator of the State of Bremen, congratulated Marble Imaging, calling it: “A good day for the Space Community in Bremen and many other regions in Germany.”

Dr. Fabian Mehring, State Minister for Digital Affairs, commented: “I congratulate the team at Reflex Aerospace for its impressive success. I am proud that the architects of progress once again come from Bavaria. Our Free State demonstrates itself once again as Europe's high-tech stronghold and ideal home for future technologies, on the fertile grounds on which the global champions of tomorrow can grow.”

Prof. Dr. Rudolf F. Schwarz, CEO of IABG added: “We congratulate Marble Imaging and Reflex on this significant step. We are proud to contribute to the success of the important first mission by providing our expertise and solutions for robust and safe AI.”

To achieve Marble Imaging’s goals, partnering with Reflex Aerospace was a logical step based on their ability to rapidly deliver the required customized high-performance technological solutions. Reflex Aerospace’s dual-use approach harnesses modern manufacturing advancements and streamlined design processes to deliver enhanced reliability, the highest-performing core avionics in class, and accelerated delivery times.

The instruments for the first satellite are currently being co-developed with Marble Imaging’s key partner, the Polish company Scanway, which delivers advanced optical instruments for space applications. Scanway’s tools will be able to provide global data of the Earth’s surface at a targeted resolution of 0.8-meter Ground Sampling Distance (GSD) in the Visual and Near Infrared (NIR) spectrum and will include a panchromatic band. Satellites of the future constellation will be equipped with the same instruments and will also image with Short Wave Infrared (SWIR) bands. The envisioned dual-instrument solution also aims to maximize synergies with the European Copernicus program.

Click here to learn more about Marble Imaging's Earth Observation Technology.

Click here to learn more about Reflex Aerospace's Solutions and Technology.

Publisher: SatNow

GNSS Constellations - A list of all GNSS satellites by constellations


Satellite NameOrbit Date
BeiDou-3 G4Geostationary Orbit (GEO)17 May, 2023
BeiDou-3 G2Geostationary Orbit (GEO)09 Mar, 2020
Compass-IGSO7Inclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)09 Feb, 2020
BeiDou-3 M19Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)16 Dec, 2019
BeiDou-3 M20Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)16 Dec, 2019
BeiDou-3 M21Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)23 Nov, 2019
BeiDou-3 M22Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)23 Nov, 2019
BeiDou-3 I3Inclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)04 Nov, 2019
BeiDou-3 M23Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)22 Sep, 2019
BeiDou-3 M24Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)22 Sep, 2019


Satellite NameOrbit Date
GSAT0223MEO - Near-Circular05 Dec, 2021
GSAT0224MEO - Near-Circular05 Dec, 2021
GSAT0219MEO - Near-Circular25 Jul, 2018
GSAT0220MEO - Near-Circular25 Jul, 2018
GSAT0221MEO - Near-Circular25 Jul, 2018
GSAT0222MEO - Near-Circular25 Jul, 2018
GSAT0215MEO - Near-Circular12 Dec, 2017
GSAT0216MEO - Near-Circular12 Dec, 2017
GSAT0217MEO - Near-Circular12 Dec, 2017
GSAT0218MEO - Near-Circular12 Dec, 2017


Satellite NameOrbit Date
Kosmos 2569--07 Aug, 2023
Kosmos 2564--28 Nov, 2022
Kosmos 2559--10 Oct, 2022
Kosmos 2557--07 Jul, 2022
Kosmos 2547--25 Oct, 2020
Kosmos 2545--16 Mar, 2020
Kosmos 2544--11 Dec, 2019
Kosmos 2534--27 May, 2019
Kosmos 2529--03 Nov, 2018
Kosmos 2527--16 Jun, 2018


Satellite NameOrbit Date
Navstar 82Medium Earth Orbit19 Jan, 2023
Navstar 81Medium Earth Orbit17 Jun, 2021
Navstar 78Medium Earth Orbit22 Aug, 2019
Navstar 77Medium Earth Orbit23 Dec, 2018
Navstar 76Medium Earth Orbit05 Feb, 2016
Navstar 75Medium Earth Orbit31 Oct, 2015
Navstar 74Medium Earth Orbit15 Jul, 2015
Navstar 73Medium Earth Orbit25 Mar, 2015
Navstar 72Medium Earth Orbit29 Oct, 2014
Navstar 71Medium Earth Orbit02 Aug, 2014


Satellite NameOrbit Date
NVS-01Geostationary Orbit (GEO)29 May, 2023
IRNSS-1IInclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)12 Apr, 2018
IRNSS-1HSub Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (Sub-GTO)31 Aug, 2017
IRNSS-1GGeostationary Orbit (GEO)28 Apr, 2016
IRNSS-1FGeostationary Orbit (GEO)10 Mar, 2016
IRNSS-1EGeosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)20 Jan, 2016
IRNSS-1DInclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)28 Mar, 2015
IRNSS-1CGeostationary Orbit (GEO)16 Oct, 2014
IRNSS-1BInclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)04 Apr, 2014
IRNSS-1AInclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)01 Jul, 2013