The 10 Most Innovative Companies In Space 2017

Orbital Insight, Spire, and others are taking rocket and satellite technology to new heights.

The 10 Most Innovative Companies In Space 2017
Stratolaunch Systems: For turning a plane into a launchpad Photo: courtesy of Stratolaunch Systems, Vulcan Aerospace

After NASA embraced the private space industry, the investment dollars began flowing. In 2015, more than $2 billion in bets were placed on space startups, but in 2016 things came back down to Earth—a 30% decrease year-over-year, according to CBInsights. At the same time, many of the companies on this year’s list have announced revenue-generating partnerships, which means that 2017 may well include several exciting, ambitious, and highly public product—and rocket—launches. Keep your eyes on the skies.


Click on a company to learn more about why it made the list.

01. Orbital Insight

For analyzing data from a constellation of satellites

02. Spire

For delivering better weather intel

03. SpaceX

For reigniting our interest in rockets

04. Blue Origin

For making the private space race competitive

05. Kymeta

For propelling internet service to new heights


06. China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp

For launching China back into space

07. Rocket Lab

For giving small satellites lift-off

08. Astroscale

For safely redirecting space debris

09. Stratolaunch Systems

For turning a plane into a launchpad

10. Moon Express

For bringing us back to the moon

This article is part of our coverage of the World’s Most Innovative Companies of 2017.

About the author

I'm the executive editor of Fast Company and Co.Design.