Disney Star Bridgit Mendler is Heading a Space Startup to Revolutionize Satellite Communications

Bridgit Mendler (Credits: Mike Windle/Getty Images_

Bridgit Mendler, known for her roles in Disney Channel productions and her music career, is venturing into the space industry with a startup called Northwood Space, aiming to revolutionize how satellite data is transmitted to the ground.

Drawing from her background in engineering and space law, Mendler envisions Northwood as a provider of mass-produced ground stations, essential for establishing a reliable data highway between Earth and space.

Rather than constructing rockets or satellites, Northwood’s focus is on simplifying the process of sending and receiving data from space.

With initial funding of approximately $6 million from investors such as Founders Fund and Andreessen Horowitz, Northwood has attracted attention for its innovative approach.

Northwood Space (Credits: Northwood)

Mendler’s cofounders, Griffin Cleverly, and Shaurya Luthra, bring expertise from their engineering backgrounds at Lockheed Martin and satellite imagery venture Capella Space, respectively.

The idea for Northwood originated during the COVID-19 pandemic, inspired by Mendler’s experimentation with building antennas and receiving data from satellites.

The startup aims to address the growing demand for data transmission in the space industry by offering ground stations designed for fast production and deployment flexibility.

Cleverly emphasizes the need for reliable and efficient data transfer in an industry experiencing exponential growth, emphasizing Northwood’s goal of delivering ground stations within days rather than months.

Bridgit Mendler (Credits: Getty Images)

Initially targeting satellites in low Earth orbit, Northwood aims to provide services to companies looking to avoid the expense of building their own ground station networks.

By offering a solution akin to renting server capacity from cloud computing providers like Amazon Web Services and Microsoft’s Azure, Northwood aims to democratize access to satellite communication, enabling space companies to respond more effectively to emerging use cases and missions.

With plans for a first test connecting to a spacecraft in orbit later this year, Northwood is poised to make significant strides in reshaping satellite data transmission.

Jessica Smith
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