In 2020, leading satellite hardware manufacturer Sinclair Interplanetary became part of the Rocket Lab family. The acquisition enabled Sinclair Interplanetary to tap into Rocket Lab’s resources, scale, manufacturing capability, and innovative technologies to make world-leading satellite hardware accessible to more customers.
Our high-reliability, vacuum-lubricated reaction wheels are designed for picosatellites, nanosatellites and microsats. More than 76 wheels are on-orbit, performing well.
All Sinclair Interplanetary by Rocket Lab reaction wheels incorporate a built-in digital processor. They can be commanded over a serial bus to produce a desired speed, momentum or torque. They report digital telemetry concerning speed, temperature, voltage, current, and other health parameters.
1 Nms Microsatellite Wheel
Our largest wheel, suitable for 100 kg Earth-observation missions. There are currently 52 units on-orbit on 13 spacecraft, with the first launch in June 2016.
1 Nms GEO Wheel
This is a hardened version of the heritage 1 Nms wheel, suitable for high orbits. It uses rad-hard parts, has a shielded enclosure, and employs an active mechanism to mitigate deep charging of the rotor assembly. Power consumption is greatly reduced.
400 mNms Microsatellite Wheel
This wheel is optimized for torque and for radiation hardness. It can give performance equivalent to a 0.4 Nms CMG with 22.5 deg/sec gimbal rate at much reduced mass and complexity. Designed for high-agility remote sensing or science microsatellites.
60 mNms Microsatellite Wheel
This wheel packs high-torque motor phase current control electronics into a small package. There are 52 units on-orbit on 16 spacecraft, with the first launch in June 2014.
30 mNms Nanosatellite Wheel
Sinclair Interplanetary’s first wheel design, and still the most popular. First launched in April 2008, there are now more than 50 units on-orbit. Many of these are onboard the University of Toronto SpaceFlight Lab's GNB series of spacecraft. They fit comfortably into a 6U to 12U cubesat.
10 mNms Picosatellite Wheel
This wheel is ideally suited for smaller cubesats. There are 10 units on-orbit on 4 spacecraft, with the first launch in June 2014.
3 mNms Picosatellite Wheel
This wheel is so tiny that 3 wheels can be carried in a 1U Cubesat. A 4-wheel pyramid configuration is also possible.