Firefly Aerospace, Inc., an end-to-end space transportation company, announced the expansion of its on-orbit services with a line of highly mobile and scalable orbital vehicles named Elytra. As the wings of a firefly, Elytra (pronounced ella-truh) offers on-orbit mobility, hosting, delivery, and servicing across cislunar space and beyond. When launched on Firefly's small- and medium-lift launch vehicles, Elytra can service the entire lifecycle of government and commercial missions.
"Elytra further expands Firefly's on-orbit services by opening access to more orbits, extending the life of each mission, and providing deorbiting services to help minimize space debris," said Bill Weber, CEO of Firefly Aerospace. "Our robust vehicle line gives us a unique advantage to quickly launch, deploy, and service satellites on-orbit in response to dynamic changes in space."
Formerly known as Firefly's Space Utility Vehicle, Elytra offers three vehicle models – Elytra Dawn, Elytra Dusk, and Elytra Dark – that travel further into space to support larger, more advanced on-orbit missions. Optimized for low Earth orbit (LEO), Elytra Dawn can be rapidly launched to support responsive hosting, rideshare, and delivery missions. Elytra Dusk offers enhanced maneuverability, power, and autonomy to provide responsive on-orbit tasking, such as relocation, space domain awareness, and deorbiting services, from LEO to geosynchronous orbit (GEO). Elytra Dark is ruggedized to serve as persistent orbital infrastructure and support transfers from LEO to lunar orbit and beyond.
"Firefly's Elytra vehicles are scalable and customizable to support each customer's unique on-orbit needs," said Jana Spruce, Vice President of Spacecraft at Firefly Aerospace. "Utilizing many of the same flight-proven components from Firefly's launch vehicles and landers, Elytra supports rapid mission schedules while providing affordable access across cislunar space and beyond."
Designed, manufactured, and tested in-house, Elytra utilizes flight-proven hardware flown on Firefly's Alpha vehicle and qualified systems common to Firefly's Blue Ghost lunar lander, including the carbon composite structures, core avionics, and propulsion systems. Elytra also utilizes the on-orbit heritage and learnings from Spaceflight's Sherpa vehicle following Firefly's recent acquisition of the company.
About Firefly Aerospace
Firefly is an end-to-end space transportation company with launch, lunar, and in-space services. As an all-American company headquartered in central Texas, Firefly is focused on delivering responsive, reliable, and affordable space access for government and commercial customers. Firefly's small- to medium-lift launch vehicles, lunar landers, and orbital vehicles provide the space industry with a single source for missions from low Earth orbit to the surface of the Moon and beyond.