Rocket Factory Augsburg Signs An Agreement with Andøya Space for Maiden Launch8th Oct 2020
Rocket Factory Augsburg (RFA) is a German startup company looking to launch a satellite in 2022. The company is receiving backing from Apollo Capital Partners, a venture capital firm based in Munich, and OHB, a satellite manufacturer based in Germany.
The development of the 1.5-ton payload class launcher system, RFA One, is already ongoing. The project aims to place small satellites into Low Earth Orbit.
The partnership between RFA and Andøya Space will result in the establishment of a micro launcher site. The location for the maiden launch is in Northern Norway on the Andøya Island.
Andøya Space has already started the process of setting up a complex that will host the logistics.
There is a lot of excitement around the launch, which is a historical milestone. It will be the first time a satellite is sent into orbit from a European launcher in continental Europe. This is according to RFA’s Chief Operating Officer, Dr. Brieschenk.
Speaking on the ongoing developments, the Rocket Factory Augsburg CCO, Jörn Spurmann, expressed optimism on the choice of Andøya Space for the partnership. The choice was easy to make as Andøya space is leading in Europe in regards to micro launcher spaceport developments.
RFA has complete confidence in Andøya Space’s ability to handle all aspects of the launch service in 2022. With over 58 years of experience in upper atmosphere exploration, specializing in rocket operations support, Andøya space brings in a lot of experience to the partnership.
The Norwegian Government and the Kongsberg Defense and Aerospace Company, co-own Andøya Space. Each has a shareholding of 90% and 10%, respectively.
The new site will take care of critical components such as the provision of support infrastructure for the two launch pads. They will also provide vehicle operators from independent integration facilities in the 1.5t payload class.
Maiden launch progress
With the maiden launch date just around the corner, RFA is stepping up its processes in order to meet the deadlines for the launch and they are already planning to test the main engine in Esrange, Sweden.
Rocket Factory Augsburg is an aerospace company that was established in 2018 and has over 70 space veterans from different parts of the world working on the projects.
As of mid-2019, RFA had successfully tested a turbopump prototype and the company completed Cryogenic testing of the Upper Stage tank earlier this year.