APIS™

APIS (Asteroid Provided In-situ Supplies) is a family of flight systems based on a similar architecture, ranging in size from the experimental Mini Bee, a 250kg technology demonstration spacecraft, through the Honey Bee, capable of capturing a 10m asteroid and extracting its resources, to the Queen Bee, capable of capturing a 40m asteroid for resource extraction. All use an asteroid containment system similar to that proposed for the original Asteroid Redirect Mission, optical mining for resource extraction, and a water based Omnivore™ Thrustersystem for propulsion. A variant called the Worker Bee, can serve as an orbital transfer vehicle, transporting items to high Earth orbits and beyond, potentially even to Mars.

In order to effectively mine asteroids, TransAstra has created the Apis™ family of spacecraft including the Honey Bee and the even larger Queen Bee. The Honey Bee is capable of maneuvering to a water rich asteroid, capturing the asteroid in its bag, and mining the asteroid using Optical Mining technology. The water extracted from the asteroid is stored in cryobags as ice to be transported to fuel depots. The Honey Bee also contains an Omnivore Thruster, allowing it to use the water it mines as propellant for its return journey.