Rocket Factory signed a contract with ESA for production and testing of the orbital stage demonstrator of its launch vehicle RFA ONE based on the great support of the Portuguese Space Agency, Portugal Space. Partners on the project are CEiiA, a Portuguese Engineering and Development Center, and RFA Portugal, a subsidiary of Rocket Factory. Last November, Rocket Factory had already received support from ESA for the development of the first stage demonstrator.
Within the scope of the C-STS program, Rocket Factory will be qualifying the orbital stage demonstrator for its launch vehicle. The activities under the scope of this project cover engineering analysis, manufacturing as well as testing of the orbital stage manufacturing demonstrator for a successful proof-of-concept and final qualification towards its respective industrialization roadmap milestones throughout 2021.
“Being the first company to sign the second contract within ESA Boost underlines our position at the forefront of commercialization of space transportation in Europe,” said Jörn Spurmann, Chief Commercial Officer at RFA. “We are very happy that the Portuguese Space Agency enables this program and we are very proud to be a substantial part of the emerging Portuguese Space Industry.”
Stefan Brieschenk, Chief Operating Officer at RFA, added, “The orbital stage developed here will allow us provide unmatched flexibility with respect to mission capabilities. We are excited to engage with our Portuguese development partner CEiiA on this project, to leverage their unrivalled track-record with respect to developing ultra-competitive composite products.”
“The Portuguese Space Agency welcomes and actively support the joint effort of RFA Portugal and CEiiA, to develop structural components of a new generation micro-launcher in Portugal. This marks an important next step in the effort to move Portugal up the added-value chain in the space sector. Through its activities, RFA Portugal and CEiiA will contribute to one of the key objectives advocated by Portugal Space: the democratization of access and use of Space for the benefit of society and economy in the country and worldwide. All these activities contribute to the creation of highly qualified jobs in an ultra-innovative sector, helping create critical mass, that will be fundamental to the economic recovery plan design for the country.”, stated Ricardo Conde, President of the Portuguese Space Agency, Portugal Space.
“The establishment of a strong partnership with RFA towards the development of a breakthrough orbital-stage for Europe’s most innovative micro-launcher is not only an outstanding opportunity for Portugal to be at the forefront on the development of complex space systems, but also a great challenge for CEiiA’s engineering team. We are excited to start the activities and certain that this collaboration will be of great success for all parties onboard.”, said Tiago Rebelo, Chief Technology Officer at CEiiA.