Astra, the space launch startup with plans to go public via a SPAC merger, will acquire electric propulsion maker Apollo Fusion, the company said Monday. Electric propulsion systems are effective at moving spacecraft from lower to higher orbits, even to the moon, Astra Chief Engineer Benjamin Lyon said in a blog post Monday, pointing to Astra’s plans beyond missions to Earth’s orbit.

Under the terms of the deal, Astra will buy Apollo for $30 million in stock and $20 million in cash, for a total purchase price of $50 million. There is also the potential for an additional earn-out of up to $95 million if Apollo hits certain performance benchmarks. PJT Partners is acting as financial advisor to Astra with regard to the transaction, the Alameda-based launch startup said Monday.

Astra CEO Chris Kemp has been forthright about his goal of making the company a vertically integrated launch and space services provider, and Apollo’s thruster technology is a major piece of that puzzle. Astra successfully launched its first test rocket from Kodiak, Alaska last December, but in public statements Kemp has indicated plans for monthly commercial launches.

Apollo produces two EP thruster systems, the Apollo Constellation Engine (ACE) and the ACE …read more

Source:: TechCrunch – Startups

      

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