SpaceX has had some very high successes and some very brutal failures. The most recent failed launch of its Falcon 9 rocket, for example, damaged a satellite owned by Israel's Space Communication Ltd. Consequently, SpaceCom is demanding at least $50 million in damages from SpaceX, or a free trip.
According to Reuters, SpaceCom revealed in a conference call with several reporters that the company would indeed seek a minimum compensation of $50 million, or one free flight from Elon Musk's SpaceX for damages made to one of its satellites.
The AMOS-6 satellite was meant to expand the reach of SpaceCom's communication services and cost the company about $195 million. As such, the company could also collect more than $205 million from Israel Aircraft Industries, who manufactured the rocket.
What This Means For SpaceCom
Although the payables are on SpaceX's side, SpaceCom joins them on the losing side. The loss of the satellite is expected to decrease the company's equity by $30 million, as The Verge reports. Furthermore, the company's stocks declined by 9 percent on Thursday. While the explosion happened late on the last trading day, stocks declined another 34 percent afterwards.
SpaceX, as a private company, was not required to publicly disclose what kind of insurance it has in place. As such, the launch agency has kept quiet about how it will answer the damages that SpaceCom is demanding. Moreover, the public cannot readily check whether or not the company has insurance in place that is above and beyond the requirement of the Federal Aviation Administration, which oversees commercial launches from the US. The catch is, the requirement from the same covers only liability and damages to government property.
What This Means For SpaceX
Currently, SpaceX has more than 70 commercial and government-issued missions in line, which together total more than $10 billion. Despite this, the launch company, along with Musk's other ventures (Tesla Motors, Inc. and SolarCity Corp.), is currently losing money.