From hybrid rockets...to the stars
FEBRUARY 13, 2018 – Australia and Singapore-based rocket company, Gilmour Space Technologies, has entered into a Space Act Agreement with the US National Aeronautics & Space Administration (NASA) to collaborate on various research, technology development and educational initiatives.
“NASA is a world leader in space exploration efforts, and we’re privileged to be able to work with them to develop and test some of our innovative new space technologies,” said its CEO & Founder, Adam Gilmour.
Under the reimbursable agreement, Gilmour Space will work closely with NASA on rover testing at Kennedy Space Center, and may explore other potential future activities in areas of mutual interest, including space transportation, propulsion, in-situ resource utilisation, sustainability and life support systems.
The private space company – better known for its pioneering work on small hybrid rockets – recently conducted a low-pressure test fire of its large orbital engine, which generated 45 kilonewtons (or over 10,100 pounds-force) of thrust. “It was a key demonstration of our hybrid rocket technology, in line with our mission to launch small satellites weighing up to 380 kg to space by 2020,” said Mr. Gilmour.
“However, we recognise that space launch is just one piece of the bigger puzzle,” he added.
“In our journey to the stars, humankind will need to build sustainable and long-term infrastructure and bases on the moon, asteroids or Mars. We will need to be able to manufacture big things off-Earth, generate lots of energy, and develop technology that will help us survive and live longer in space.
“We hope to work with NASA to solve many of these issues in the years ahead.”
To the stars.
Gilmour Space Technologies (http://www.gspacetech.com) is a new space company with operations in Queensland, Australia and Singapore, that is developing low-cost launch vehicles for the small satellite/payload market.
In June 2016, Gilmour Space successfully flew the countries' first privately developed hybrid rocket to an altitude of 5 Km using proprietary 3D printed fuel (the latter reportedly a world-first demonstration). Since then, the company has raised AUD 5 million (USD 3.7 million) in Series-A funding from venture capital firms Blackbird Ventures and 500 Startups, among other private investors; and been awarded R&D grants in Singapore and Australia.
Highlighted at the 2017 International Astronautical Congress and 2018 Global Space and Technology Convention as a promising new space startup, the company is now scaling up to launch its first commercial-class rockets to suborbital space by 2019, and to Low Earth Orbit (or LEO) by 2020.
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