The magic of industry, even in the stars. SpaceX, the American company champion of reusable launchers, will launch in 2023 the first satellite of the start-up Varda Space Industries: an experimental mini-factory, dedicated to independently producing high value-added products in orbit. This first flight should last three months and bring back to earth between 40 and 60 kilos of goods, the precise nature of which has not been revealed.
The start-up, created in 2020 by a former collaborator of Elon Musk – who worked for nearly ten years on the Crew and Cargo Dragon vessels – will be the first to produce in microgravity. The idea is not new, however: this project is particularly appealing to Airbus, which announced in March 2021 to launch the manufacture of a pilot space plant. Above all, the International Space Station (ISS) regularly hosts experiments dedicated to harnessing microgravity to improve the manufacturing of certain products.
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