Space

Satellite manufacturers are getting to grips with component shortages

Satellite manufacturers are getting to grips with component shortages

Component scarcities have been difficult for producers to boost supply chains as a shortage of semiconductors threatens interruptions and price rises.

COVID-19-linked supply chain interruption has triggered a microchip lack that can take years to resolve. This is aggravated by the rising demand for technology during the pandemic as everyone stayed at home.

Though the problem mainly disturbs very high volume-making companies. Such as those in the automotive and consumer electronics businesses, it has sent undulations across the space industry.

“Any component scarcity can have an immediate influence on timely deliveries, and this is definitely a worry for us at Airbus,” says Andreas Lindenthal. She is head of business strategies for Airbus Space Systems.

“We are mindful of present deficiencies on components and are working with our supply chain to lessen the impact”, Andreas adds.

Airbus has a joint venture with low Earth orbit broadband operator OneWeb. Also known as OneWeb Satellites, which aspires to churn out over one satellite per day for the enlarging mega constellation.

Start-up challenges

Access to semiconductors has been a task for smaller space firms long prior to the pandemic, as per nanosatellite producer NanoAvionics – CEO Vytenis Buzas.

The firm is also partially shielded from external production interruption since it builds around 95% of its satellite subsystems in-house. This is with a controlled supply of components and raw materials.

Buying local

Huge aerospace and defense firms that manufacture satellites also have a tendency to have committed foundries for creating semiconductors.

Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and others with satellite firms have profited from being classified as vital by the U.S. government during the pandemic.

The Biden-Harris administration advised Congress to help at least $50 billion in investments. This is in order to advance domestic semiconductor production and encourage R&D, as part of a 100-day supply chain evaluation issued on 8 June.

The road ahead

Satellite manufacturers at the smaller end of the industry can profit from establishing stronger contacts with suppliers. This is curing them as additions to their team.

It is hard to assess the pandemic’s effect on potential supply chains. This is along with the unique speed of improvement across the global market.

 

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