[Via Satellite 08-12-2015] Made In Space, a company capable of manufacturing technology in space, and NanoRacks have teamed up to offer a “Stash and Deploy” service for CubeSat developers. Together the companies plan to build and deploy satellites from the International Space Station (ISS) or other satellite deployment platforms, using NanoRacks’ heritage in CubeSat deployment and Made In Space’s in-orbit additive manufacturing capabilities. Made In Space successfully completed its 3-D Printing in Zero-G Experiment (3-D Print) in 2014, and plans to launch a new 3-D printer, the Additive Manufacturing Facility (AMF), to the ISS by the end of 2015.
NanoRacks and Made in Space plan to cache a variety of standard and customer-specific satellite components aboard the ISS for rapid manufacturing. Made In Space’s AMF will be used to create custom structures, optimized for both the space environment and customer need.
“This is a fundamental shift for satellite production,” said Andrew Rush, president of Made In Space. “In the near future, we envision that satellites will be manufactured quickly and to the customer’s exact needs, without being overbuilt to survive launch or have to wait for the next launch.”
The two companies expect this Stash and Deploy approach will require a fraction of the time required to build, manifest, launch and deploy satellites starting from the ground. The first steps of the Stash and Deploy service will be available during the first quarter of 2016.
“Looking out a few years this option may be more desirable than launch and deploy,” said Jeffrey Manber, CEO of NanoRacks.
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