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Momentus Joins DARPA’s Orbital Manufacturing Program Demo for Large-Scale Space Structures

Orbital vehicle support

Momentus Joins DARPA’s Orbital Manufacturing Program Demo for Large-Scale Space Structures

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has awarded Momentus a contract in the demo program for the agency’s Novel Orbital and Moon Manufacturing, Materials, and Mass-efficient Design project geared for building large-scale space structures. 

The DARPA task order calls for the San Jose, California-based commercial space company to collaborate with other NOM4D team members in designs and experiments for integration onto the Momentus Vigoride Orbital Service Vehicle

The NOM4D On-Orbit Demo program will lay the foundation for transporting raw materials from Earth for in-orbit manufacturing of materials for such structures as antennas, optics and solar arrays, Momentus said Thursday.

According to John Rood, Momentus CEO, Vigoride provides payload and integration capabilities that are “well-suited to support” the demo of NOM4D technologies designed to overcome load and vibration constraints that currently limit the type and size of in-space structures.

The company also pointed out that its proprietary water-based propulsion system offers flexible orbital capability for NOM4D requirements.

DARPA launched NOM4D in February 2021 and kicked off its contract awards to eight industry and university research teams in March 2022 under two task categories. The initial contractors include HRL Laboratories and the University of Florida for in-space materials and manufacturing. The University of Michigan, California Institute of Technology and Opterus Research and Development are the contractors for the mass-efficient designs for in-space manufacturing. 

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Category: Space