It’s an understatement to say that launching equipment into space isn’t cheap. Even with costs dropping in recent years, the cost of a satellite and its launch can still be anywhere between $10 and $400 million. Indeed, a geomagnetic storm in February is estimated to have caused approximately $50 million of damage to SpaceX’s low-Earth-orbit (LEO) communication satellites. Weather-monitoring satellites cost approximately $290 million.
And that’s before maintenance costs, with component failure requiring either in-space repair or causing the entire system to be written off. In short, all equipment must incredibly reliable and be able to withstand the extreme environment.