Vital to the space race will be the ability to create cost-effective materials for projects on the moon, Mars, and beyond.AON3D, a Canadian-based company, is on a space race mission, raising 11.5 million dollars in a funding round with this aim, and bringing them a step closer to launching a lunar lander to the moon.
If it works, AON3D could be the first to land 3D-printed tools on the moon.
The increased funds grant the company’s 3D printing skills access to a large market, including Astrobotic, a company aiming at creating parts for a lander with the potential of being the first 3D printed vehicle to soft-land on the moon since Apollo 17, named the Peregrine lander.
According to CEO Kevin Han in a press release “The future of the 3D printing space is more open-source and economical, So there is increased access to the same hardware by both top firms and small businesses.
“AON3D and our AON M2+ printer are modelled with this in mind.
We have backers convinced of our vision and partners like Astrobotic that place confidence in our hardware.”
Created in 2007, And emphasises lunar technology aimed at building a workflow for moon landings that are more attainable to market interests.
The Peregrine lander
The Peregrine Lander, a groundbreaking spacecraft in the making, is currently undergoing meticulous construction to serve the dual purpose of either landing on the moon or efficiently delivering payloads into orbit. Astrobotic, the visionary company spearheading this innovative project, has strategically adopted a cost-effective process, with a significant reliance on additive manufacturing, due to its inherent cost-saving advantages and its tendency to yield low-weight designs.
Notably, Astrobotic has entered into a collaborative venture with AON3D and its cutting-edge AON M2+ technology, with the ambitious objective of 3D printing around 300 parts for the lander. The primary aim is to minimize the overall size of the spacecraft without compromising on durability, showcasing a commitment to precision engineering and efficiency in space missions.
The ongoing second space race is not without its challenges, yet Astrobotic is poised to navigate these hurdles with its pioneering use of uniquely designed 3D printed materials. According to Clay Inman, a mechanical engineer at Astrobotic, who emphasized in a press release, “In an environment as hostile as space, we need parts that are durable enough to withstand the vacuum of space as well as the challenges of launch and spaceflight. A huge factor in achieving our goals was using PEEK, PEKK, and ULTEM in one machine.”
Upon completion, the Peregrine Lander is projected to stand at an impressive 8.2 feet by 6.2 feet, boasting adaptable decks that enable it to effortlessly handle payloads of varying shapes and sizes. This versatility positions the spacecraft as a formidable player in the realm of space exploration, embodying Astrobotic’s commitment to pushing the boundaries of technological innovation and redefining the future of space travel.
- it will include disembarking place for rovers
- Antennas and a flight heritage transponder: allowing the craft to send and receive data from the Astrobotics Mission centre.
Commercial Allure of the Space Race to AON3D
At the heart of the space race lies a crucial element: a commercial allure that propels the expansion of human enterprise into the vast realms of space. AON3D, among the pioneering entities at the forefront, is actively exploring innovative approaches to furnish cutting-edge technology aimed at facilitating this cosmic expansion. Their focus revolves around devising novel methodologies that not only minimize costs to the utmost extent but also steadfastly uphold the pillars of performance and durability, ensuring that the pursuit of space exploration remains not just feasible but also economically viable for the foreseeable future.
Source: Astrobotics, Youtube