RUAG Space, a leading product supplier to the space industry, held a celebratory reception on 11 July, marking the commencement of full production capabilities in its Titusville, Florida facility. Production is set to begin, with the first delivery batches foreseen in approximately 1.5 months. Embracing state-of-the-art machinery and automated processes, this new facility aligns with the industry’s ambition toward cheaper access to space.
Led by RUAG Space CEO, Peter Guggenbach, the RUAG team welcomed over 100 guests to the event: “This facility reflects RUAG’s readiness to meet the needs of our customers – by locating in proximity to them and keeping a high pace. Manufacturing structures for up to three satellites per day is a first for our industry and represents unparalleled speed. It also shows that we are willing to invest if we strongly believe in a project, along with that region. We are proud to be represented in Florida as of now,” said Peter Guggenbach.
RUAG officials thanked guests and showed appreciation for the state’s economic development teams and industry partners. The strong partnership with OneWeb was particularly highlighted, with Greg Wyler, Founder and Executive Chairman of OneWeb, also addressing the audience. OneWeb will be launching the first satellites for its global constellation in early 2018.
“OneWeb is building a new space based global infrastructure to bring low latency broadband to the four billion unconnected people around the world. We would not be able to accomplish this goal without the support of partners like RUAG Space. Together we are reinventing satellite manufacturing processes to support the world’s first high volume satellite manufacturing center,” said Greg Wyler.
“This is another tangible step towards bridging the global digital divide. This new space structures facility will build products that impact the world while also creating jobs and economic opportunity in Florida,” he added.
Besides others, they were joined by Dorothy Hukill, Florida State Senator; Debbie Mayfield, Florida State Senator; Cissy Proctor, Executive Director of Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity; Walt Johnson, Titusville Mayor; Rita Pritchett, County Commissioner; Frank DiBello, President & CEO of Space Florida; and Lynda Weatherman, President and CEO of the Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast.
Besides the mandate for the satellite structures, RUAG Space also manufactures the dispensers that will be used to launch 32 satellites at once and place them in orbit. Further, OneWeb and
RUAG announced that they will expand their collaboration, to include developing and manufacturing the thermal insulation for OneWeb’s satellites.
Weighing 200 kilograms and measuring 1.3 meters in height, the satellites require thermal insulation to ensure they maintain a constant interior temperature despite the extreme temperature fluctuations in space. Without this stability, the sensitive instruments on board would not work properly over the six and a half years of the mission. The production of the multi-layer insulation, RUAG uses a series of partly automated techniques that harness state-of-the-art laser technology – to excel in throughput time.