SpaceTech’s multi-hinge solar arrays for Momentus Vigoride satellite shuttles

The first flight models of our novel solar arrays with automated PVA laydown and multi-hinge deployment mechanisms have now been successfully tested at the STI headquarters. The qualification of the first Vigoride flight set is therefore completed. With this project, SpaceTech and Momentus are approaching the new space market with this reliable, light-weight and highly cost effective solution.

Insights

Momentus Vigoride in-space orbit transfer services carry 250 kg for a single satellite, 700 kg payload mass in total. Payloads can be moved from ISS orbit all the way up to 2,000 km on Vigoride. Vigoride can be launched from an ESPA or ESPA Grande ring, from ISS airlocks, or from almost any small dedicated launcher or larger rideshare vehicle.

The applied solar arrays for Vigoride consist of 4 solar panels and yoke with 5 XS hinge axes on the wing for deployment. All solar arrays are built in-house, utilizing the panels of our daughter company Carbospacetech and the automated PVS laydown.

Background

Over the last years, STI has developed a novel multi-hinge deployment mechanism technology suitable of a wide range of solar array sizes from less than 0.5 m² (XS) to more than 6 m² (XL) per panel. Salient feature of the mechanism is the controlled unsynchronized deployment using C-spring hinges of standardized sizes, enabling robust, lightweight and cost-effective solutions for various solar power needs. This technology is - together with our automated PVA laydown technology - greatly enhancing the market for our products. With it we were able to already acquire several contracts ranging from news space to highest reliability institutional missions and Vigoride is now the first to be delivered.

Am Freitag, den 26.06.2020, um 11.00 Uhr, konnten wir den „Spatenstich“ für unsere neue Produktionshalle für Raumfahrt-Solargeneratoren begehen. Unser Immenstaader Bürgermeister, Johannes Henne, der Ortsvorsteher von Kippenhausen, Martin Frank, die SpaceTech Geschäftsführer Wolfgang Pitz und Frank Gilles, der Architekt Gerd Schlessmann, sowie etwa 20 SpaceTech Mitarbeiter waren bei diesem für STI zukunftsweisenden Ereignis von der Partie.

Vollautomatisierte Produktion von Solargeneratoren für Satelliten

Die neue vollautomatisierte in-house PVA Produktion wird SpaceTech in die Lage versetzen neue und große Raumfahrt Missionen mit high-end Solar Anlagen zu versorgen. Wir dürfen uns freuen, dass wir ausgewählt wurden die Solargeneratoren für Zwei-Drittel (d.h. 8 Satelliten) der kommenden Copernicus Satellitenflotte bauen zu dürfen. Es handelt sich um Aufträge in Höhe von 27 Millionen Euro, verteilt über die nächsten 8 Jahre.

SpaceTech spatenstich automatisierte PVA produktionshalle 1
SpaceTech Baugrund für die neue Raumfahrt-Solargeneratoren Produktionshalle in Kippenhausen
  SpaceTech spatenstich automatisierte PVA produktionshalle 2
V.l.n.r.: Architekt, SpaceTech Geschäftsführer, Immenstaader Bürgermeister und Ortsvorsteher von Kippenhausen begehen den Spatenstich

 

 

The quantification of a fundamental process that big parts of life on earth depend on - photosynthetic activity - is key of the Earth Explorer - Fluorescence Explorer (FLEX) ESA mission. At the moment, photosynthetic activity cannot be measured from space. Using a novel sensor, FLEX will be able to and therefore will improve our understanding of how photosynthesis affects the carbon and water cycles on earth. Additionally, FLEX can deliver insight into plant health and stress which is particularly relevant since the growing global population is facing challenges on the production of food and animal feed.

SpaceTech will empower the FLEX satellite

STI was contracted by Thales Alena Space for the design and manufacturing of the FLEX solar arrays. After several other flight contracts for export and new space missions, this is the first application for our innovative multi-hinge deployment mechanism and automated PVA laydown process on an ESA mission.

Mission launch

Satellite launch is planned for 2023 as well.

 

SpaceTech FLEX solar arraysFLEX satellite with deployed STI multi-hinge solar arrays

 

Learn more about the FLEX mission on the ESA website

 

The LEMON tree is growing again.

Please find more information on the LEMON DIAL project website as well as on our website

lemon dial project introduction background

 

On its way to final concession, the ASR runs through many rounds of different testing in the engineering as well as in the clinical environment under more demanding conditions. The next step will now be taken by a pre-series of seven units. In this pilot-production the two SMEs SpaceTech and AST split tasks of design and manufacturing.

Preproduction-series

Within this first week of May, STI will be finalizing the first ASR of the pre-series, ready for testing at the JLU in the following week. At a press conference in the week after, we will be presenting the device to the public.

Visit our crowd funding campaign: Ventilators for the world