Made In Space, Inc. (MIS) has reached a significant milestone for its Archinaut program by successfully demonstrating its additive manufacturing and robotic assembly capabilities in a space-like environment.
The Archinaut system underwent thermal vacuum (TVAC) testing at teammate Northrop Grumman’s Space Park facility in Redondo Beach, California. TVAC testing simulates the thermal and pressure environment of a satellite in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) to validate the technology readiness for the space environment. The testing is part of the Archinaut Technology Development Project (ATDP), funded by NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD).
During TVAC testing, MIS successfully demonstrated autonomous reversible connection and joining techniques of 3D printed parts and other pre-fabricated components such as nodes and trusses via a robotic arm system and end effector designed for in-space assembly operations.
With the completion of this ground-based testing, core Archinaut technologies are now prepared to operate in space. This milestone represents the defining capabilities of the Archinaut platform and raises its technology readiness level.
Archinaut’s multi-purpose technology will also enable repair, upgrade, and sustainment missions which will ultimately play a key role in space commercialization.