The Exploration Company will use 3D printers from Trumpf to print core components of the Huracán and Mistral engines for the Nyx Earth and Nyx Moon spacecraft in Planegg near Munich, Germany. The aim is to make the Huracán engine reusable and refuelable in orbit with bio-methane and oxygen.
"Our aim is to offer space missions more cost-effectively than was previously possible. Our spacecraft can benefit from Trumpf’s manufacturing and application expertise,” said Hélène Huby, CEO of The Exploration Company.
The start-up plans to send a space capsule to orbit the earth for several months in an initial mission in 2026. Starting in 2028, further missions are planned to go to the moon. The spacecraft will initially carry freight, but in the long term, people will also be on board.
“With our 3D printing technology, we are driving the commercialization of the space-travel industry. If you want to be successful in the space-travel industry today, you have to use additive manufacturing," said Tobias Brune, who is responsible for the additive manufacturing business at Trumpf.
Designers use additive manufacturing to combine entire assemblies into a single component. This saves weight and reduces complexity. Every gram saved reduces fuel costs. What’s more, the less complex components reduce the cost of safety tests before the rocket launch and increase the probability of a successful mission in space.