Kleos Space develops tool for in-space manufacturing of large structures

Kleos Space develops tool for in-space manufacturing of large structures

Kleos Space is performing a 6month long examination of technology for in-space production.

The production of large 3D carbon fiber structures which may apply to build the following:
  • Solar arrays
  • Star shades
  • Interferometry antennas
The company has its operations in the following regions which are best known for radiofrequency reconnaissance satellites:
  • Luxembourg
  • The United States
  • United Kingdom

In the backdrop, however, Kleos has been devising and creating in-space production technology called Futurism. The technology intends to robotically manufacture a carbon-fiber I-beam with embedded fiber-optic wires that are more than 100 meters lengthy.

Andy Bowyer is the CEO at Kleos. He says, “it is something that we link up to our roadmap for RF since it is something that could use very large antennas for RF scouting. However, it is helpful for a whole variety of other functions as well that we are very eager to work with allies on. We strongly believe that production in space is the future.”

In fact, the technology was not conceived with RF scouting in mind. Bowyer and Kleos-co-founder Miles Ashcroft start concentrating on in-space construction at Magna Parva. This is a U.K.-based space engineering firm, which the pair establishes in 2005. When Kleos spun out of Magna Parva, it took ownership of the in-space industrial technology and intellectual property, which turn out to be a component of the firm’s long-term technology roadmap.

That work persists as Kleos constructs a business by providing data from clusters of four RF scouting satellites flying in structure. The firm’s first cluster introduces in November. Two additional clusters arrange to reach orbit this year.

A few key encounters for Kleos engineers were computerizing the complete process. Along with formulating ways to shift fluid in microgravity particularly after long-term storage capacity.

Now that the industrial model works, Kleos is contemplating ways the technology can be installed.

Bowyer says, “if you can substantially link installs and distributes sensors with fiber-optic cables. For example, the stance of those sensors is very precise in relative to each other.” In addition, the technology can cover the way for kilometer-scale reflectors to help science, he adds.

Beyond Kleos, Bowyer foresees many requests for extensive structures with implanted power and data cables.

“You would not just develop huge structures. However, huge structures that are sensible, that can involve sensors,” Bowyer says. “We have a lot of suggestions. But it’s a technology that has a life path away from Kleos’ demands that are very exhilarating.”

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