Small Satellite Market Intelligence Report

The Small Satellite Market Intelligence Report is a quarterly update that follows the fast-growing interest in small satellites with the intention to make data on the sector free and accessible.

Small satellites are a significantly utilised alternative to larger satellites because they can provide cheaper, more frequent, and up-to-date data, opening new markets for satellite applications. Recent years have seen the emergence of this market with a huge boom attributed to satellite constellations.

As part of its remit to support the UK space sector, the Catapult provides guidance and facilitates industry growth in this new space era. The Small Satellite Market Intelligence Report shares information the Catapult teams aggregate through day-to-day work. Quarterly rather than yearly reports are issued to improve the visibility of the fast-growing sector of small satellites. These reports aim to inform but also consolidate information through your feedback and will be complemented with ad-hoc reports on specific topics.

What are Small Satellites?

Small satellites are defined here as satellites with a wet mass (including propellant) below or equal to 500 kg with the associated terminology as per table. They are mostly used in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) below 2,000 km altitude.


Q1 2021

Feature: Special Purpose Acquisition Companies


Q2 2021

Feature: Very Low Earth Orbit


Q3 2021

Feature: Lunar Operations


Q4 2021

Feature: Russia’s anti-satellite test (By NORSS)



Q1 2020

Feature: In-Space Transportation


Q2 2020

Feature: Constellations


Q3 2020

Feature: Autonomous Flight Safety Systems


Q4 2020

Feature: Ground Segment



Q1 2019

Feature: Spacecraft Start-Ups


Q2 2019

Feature: N/A


Q3 2019

Feature: Small Satellites in GEO


Q4 2019

Feature: Trends of the Decade



Q1 2018

Feature: Small Satellite Propulsion Systems


Q2 2018

Feature: Space Debris


Q4 2018

Feature: In-Orbit Servicing



Q2 2017

Feature: Small Satellite Launch Vehicles


Q3 2017

Feature: Small Lanch Vehicles Update


Q4 2017

Feature: Small Satellite Constellations


Contributing Authors

A team with technical and commercial backgrounds consolidate their understanding and news of the small satellite world. The team currently comprises:

  • Aleksander Tyczyński, Space Mission Analyst

Previous Contributors:

  • Henry Shepherd, Space Technology Business Analyst Intern
  • Graeme Taylor, Mission Analyst
  • Nikolaos Tsitsilonis, Mission Analyst
  • Florian Deconinck, Small Satellite Programme Manager
  • Ewan Wright, Space Technology Business Analyst Intern
  • Will Pearce, Business Analyst
  • Nick Daggit, Space Technology Business Analyst Intern

Please contact the team at if you have comments or topics of interest you would find of value to be included in future editions.


External Contributions

We are inviting others to propose contributions to the second part of the report – the feature section. This section focuses on one topic per report which comment on current small satellite developments.

We are looking for:

  • An interesting topic or opinion in the field of small satellites (e.g. applications, launchers, satellites, regulation)
  • Approximately 2000 words

We will select topics and authors based on relevance to small satellites and timeliness.

How to submit your contributions:

Send a brief email to, that includes:

  • A description of the topic and draft structure and scope (2-3 lines)
  • Why you believe this topic is relevant

We will be in touch to collaborate.



You may reuse reasonable portions of this document provided that such reproductions are properly attributed to us with: ‘Copyright © Satellite Applications Catapult Ltd’

Whilst we strive to ensure that the information is correct and up to date, it has been provided for general information only and as such we make no representations, warranties, or guarantees, whether express or implied, as to its accuracy or completeness.