Author Topic: Rocket Factory Augsburg  (Read 58267 times)

Offline EnigmaSCADA

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Rocket Factory Augsburg
« on: 08/28/2019 05:19 pm »
I ran across this article yesterday from Bloomberg.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-08-27/german-space-firm-enters-rocket-business-shaken-up-by-elon-musk

BUT... I haven't found this discussed anywhere here, no official press release on OHB's site, nor any other source other than the one linked above. I freely admit there might just be a "user error" on my end. However I find this very very odd. The Bloomberg article quotes the CEO afterall, it's not like some random employee that's making things up. I'm very confused how this could be just casually talked about in a random interview with no accompanying press release, media blitz, social media blitz, making all necessary OHB execs available for media, etc, etc...

What am I missing? Is this a case of the CEO jumping the gun and catching his organization's com/PR people completely surprised and unprepared? Is there a communication breakdown between Bloomberg & OHB CEO that went comically awry?

Can anyone link to anything else that supports the claim that OHB is currently/plans to develop it's own launcher?
« Last Edit: 08/17/2020 03:11 pm by gongora »

Offline TorenAltair

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Re: OHB to develop a small launcher?
« Reply #1 on: 08/28/2019 10:20 pm »
German news says that the new company created for that rocket is Rocket Factory Augsburg GmbH which is a subsidiary company of MT Aerospace which is a subsidiary company of OHB.

MT aerospace opened a new factory in June 2018 in Augsburg for parts of Ariane 6. It seems that the Rocket Factory Augsburg GmbH shares the facility. Rocket Factory Augsburg GmbH was founded in June 2018 as well.

MT Aerospace writes on their website:
Quote
Unseren unermüdlichen Drang nach Verbesserung setzen wir auch bei der Entwicklung von zukunftsweisenden Mikro-Startraketen in unserer Rocket Factory ein.

In case you want to know more, I can research further.


Offline Olaf

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Re: OHB to develop a small launcher?
« Reply #2 on: 08/30/2019 04:50 am »
https://www.weser-kurier.de/bremen/bremen-wirtschaft_artikel,-ohb-baut-eigene-traegerrakete-_arid,1856188.html
Confirmed here, first flight in 2021, build in Augsburg, but no more details.

Offline Tywin

Re: OHB to develop a small launcher?
« Reply #3 on: 09/08/2019 04:32 am »
Maybe this rocket have relation with VLM-1 of Brazilian space agency, with German collaboration?


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VLM_(rocket)

Report from the blog "Brazilian Space":

https://brazilianspace.blogspot.com/2019/09/solid-motor-housing-for-possible.html




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Offline Tywin

Re: OHB to develop a small launcher?
« Reply #4 on: 11/20/2019 08:37 pm »
New information about the micro launcher of OHB...

With this information, the rocket, don't have any connection with the Brazilian VLM-1....



Quote
OHB hopes to have a small launcher capable of sending 200 kilograms to low Earth orbit conduct a first flight by the end of 2021, Fuchs said in an interview at Space Tech Expo Europe here. The German prime contractor established an entity called Rocket Factory Augsburg to spearhead the small launcher program.


Quote
Even so, OHB will need to develop new competencies, such as engines, since the company plans to build those systems in house. OHB currently envisions the launcher being a three-stage liquid propulsion rocket designed completely from scratch, he said.

“We are not naive about building all these things you need for a rocket, but we feel we are better positioned than many of the startups,” he said.

https://spacenews.com/ohb-defends-self-funded-launcher-effort/
« Last Edit: 11/20/2019 08:39 pm by Tywin »
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Offline john smith 19

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Re: OHB to develop a small launcher?
« Reply #5 on: 12/29/2019 10:54 am »
New information about the micro launcher of OHB...

With this information, the rocket, don't have any connection with the Brazilian VLM-1....

Quote
“We are not naive about building all these things you need for a rocket, but we feel we are better positioned than many of the startups,” he said.

https://spacenews.com/ohb-defends-self-funded-launcher-effort/
Interesting.

I like their plan to self fund and their realism about their chances of success. Self fund means they can (in theory) make decisions fast and iterate the design quickly. I also like their plan to build most major components in house.  Keep in mind their experience with Arianespace gives them substantial knowledge of cryogenic tanking and the benefits of common bulkhead design.

I think they could almost be the German equivalent to SNC, had SNC decided to build a small ELV.
MCT ITS BFR SS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFSC engined CFRP SS structure A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of Earth & Mars atmospheric flight.First flight to Mars by end of 2022 TBC. T&C apply. Trust nothing. Run your own #s "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof" R. Simberg."Competitve" means cheaper ¬cheap SCramjet proposed 1956. First +ve thrust 2004. US R&D spend to date > $10Bn. #deployed designs. Zero.

Offline Kosmos2001

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg (OHB) small launcher
« Reply #6 on: 02/25/2020 09:19 pm »
They are going for an aerospike.

Offline russianhalo117

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg (OHB) small launcher
« Reply #7 on: 06/29/2020 05:34 pm »
Updated: First launcher in the RFA family designated RFA-1:


Quote
RFA-1 is a small liquid fueled orbital launch vehicle, which is being developed by Rocket Factory Augsburg (RFA), Germany, a subsidiary of OHB System.
...


LINK: https://space.skyrocket.de/doc_lau/rfa-1.htm

Offline gongora

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg (OHB) RFA-1
« Reply #8 on: 08/17/2020 03:11 pm »
https://spacewatch.global/2020/08/exolaunch-signs-agreement-with-rocket-factory-augsburg-on-launch-services/
Quote
Berlin-based rideshare solutions provider Exolaunch signed a wide-ranging MOU with Germany-based launch service provider, Rocket Factory Augsburg (RFA), to provide end-to-end launch services for small satellites, with Exolaunch procuring launch capacities from RFA.
...
Rocket Factory, a start-up backed by the German satellite maker OHB as a strategic investor and Venture Capital firm Apollo Capital Partners, is currently developing an LEO launcher system called RFA One for small satellites with a payload performance of up to 300kg. The first launch is scheduled for 2022, and the company recently qualified the upper-stage tank system during cryogenic tests. Currently they are preparing hot-fire tests of the main engine in Esrange, Sweden.
« Last Edit: 08/17/2020 03:12 pm by gongora »

Offline CameronD

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg
« Reply #9 on: 09/29/2020 12:15 am »
Quote
First in Europe. Again.

RFA is thrilled to announce the signature of a groundbreaking MoU with Andoya Space to implement the launch site for RFA ONE maiden flight. As the first European orbital launch service provider, RFA will provide launch services to customers worldwide from 2022 onwards launching out of Norway.

We are looking forward to many successful missions launching from Andoya Spaceport!
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline CameronD

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg
« Reply #10 on: 10/02/2020 01:46 am »
Andoya Space Center posted a news release about the contract of RFA becoming a client for their (in development) spaceport.
(It contains some more images)
Rocket Factory Augsburg Signs Agreement with Andøya Space for maiden launch

Nice launch site!  How far has the Andøya Space "in development" progressed?  Are they anywhere near starting to build??
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline john smith 19

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg
« Reply #11 on: 10/02/2020 02:01 pm »
Loosely speaking it looks like OHB is going in the reverse direction to Rocket Lab. Starting in the satellite components area, then moving into supplying complete satellites and now the LV as well.

Just an impression. I'm sure the German business environment is very different to that of NZ and Ca.
MCT ITS BFR SS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFSC engined CFRP SS structure A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of Earth & Mars atmospheric flight.First flight to Mars by end of 2022 TBC. T&C apply. Trust nothing. Run your own #s "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof" R. Simberg."Competitve" means cheaper ¬cheap SCramjet proposed 1956. First +ve thrust 2004. US R&D spend to date > $10Bn. #deployed designs. Zero.

Online ringsider

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg (OHB) RFA-1
« Reply #12 on: 10/04/2020 03:28 pm »
Rocket Factory, a start-up backed by the German satellite maker OHB as a strategic investor and Venture Capital firm Apollo Capital Partners.

The "Apollo Capital Partners" firm seems to be run by MT Aerospace's CEO, and only seems to have an investment in MT Aerospace, which is of course OHB:

http://www.apollopartners.de/team-management.html
https://www.mt-aerospace.de/management.html
« Last Edit: 10/04/2020 03:29 pm by ringsider »

Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg
« Reply #13 on: 10/04/2020 04:50 pm »
I don't know precisely how RFA, OHB and MTaerospace are structured and related to each other.
MTaerospace produses the steel casings for the Ariane5 boosters. This work will stop. I think they are trying to repurpose these factories. And at the same time they improve acces to space.
Europe used to rely on Dnepr and (EU)Rockot, both aren't available anymore. Vega replaced it, but another launcher for small to medium (<2mT) payloads is welcome.

Offline CorvusCorax

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg
« Reply #14 on: 10/20/2020 10:34 am »
RFA apparently is in talks with the german government - together with new space companies Isar Aerospace and HyImpulse for a sea-launch facility in the North Sea - within German territorial waters - for launches to a polar launch corridor.

More info here:

...

Offline MiqBos

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg
« Reply #15 on: 11/05/2020 09:02 pm »
How far has the Andøya Space "in development" progressed?  Are they anywhere near starting to build??

It seems so. The Norwegian government has earmarked around 40 million $ (a) to start construction (in a previous post in their website they say that they need around 140 million $ (b) to build the facility). The project seems to be complete, and they are hiring right now. For example: Launch Area Manager: Project position for 2-3 years until the spaceport construction is complete (...).(c)

Sources:
a) https://spacenews.com/german-startup-rocket-factory-augsburg-picks-norway-for-maiden-flight-of-rfa-one-smallsat-launcher/
b) https://www.andoyaspaceport.no/2019/03/26/europes-first-spaceport-should-be-placed-in-norway/
c) https://www.andoyaspace.no/2020/09/28/exciting-new-job-opportunities-at-andoya-space/
« Last Edit: 11/06/2020 12:54 am by gongora »

Offline PM3

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg
« Reply #16 on: 12/17/2020 11:09 am »
RFA apparently is in talks with the german government - together with new space companies Isar Aerospace and HyImpulse for a sea-launch facility in the North Sea - within German territorial waters - for launches to a polar launch corridor.

https://www.offshore-spaceport.de/en/
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Offline CameronD

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg
« Reply #17 on: 12/18/2020 02:01 am »
RFA apparently is in talks with the german government - together with new space companies Isar Aerospace and HyImpulse for a sea-launch facility in the North Sea - within German territorial waters - for launches to a polar launch corridor.

https://www.offshore-spaceport.de/en/

I think I've seen something like that before..
https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=45766.180
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline Mighty-T

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg
« Reply #18 on: 02/13/2021 07:57 am »
https://twitter.com/esa_sts/status/1360314011246600198

Looks like there will be a Rocket Factory in Portugal too  8)

Online ringsider

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Re: Rocket Factory Augsburg
« Reply #19 on: 02/14/2021 05:42 pm »
Slightly odd announcement from RFA, stating they are "open to new investors":-

https://www.rfa.space/rocket-factory-opens-up-to-further-investors/

Microlauncher start-up Rocket Factory opens up to further investors

Investor Hans Steininger announces unrivalled low price of EUR 3 million per rocket launch / Serial production enables cost leadership / Financing round to raise EUR 25 million 

Bremen, Augsburg – February 11, 2021  

At the Capital Market Day of space technology group OHB SE (Prime Standard, ISIN DE0005936124), Augsburg-based start-up Rocket Factory announced today that it will boost the growth of the microlauncher company with a financing round. The current shareholders of Rocket Factory are OHB SE, Apollo Capital Partners, other founders as well as the company’s management, the employees and private investors. The aim of the financing round is to raise EUR 25 million in fresh capital.
 
Rocket Factory develops microlaunchers for the cost-effective transport of small satellites into low-Earth orbits. The start-up is determined to grow strongly in the next few years and quickly conquer market shares: “We want to build the best and cheapest rockets and microlaunchers. With freight costs of EUR 3 million per launch, we will be able to offer by far the cheapest launch service in the world,” said Hans Steininger, Deputy Chairman of the Supervisory Board and founding investor of Rocket Factory and owner of Apollo Capital Partners, Munich.
 
In the meantime, the start-up has begun building prototypes of its engine. Small and inexpensive launch vehicles play a key role in the commercial use of space by private service providers. “New Space” is opening up a billion-dollar market that is attracting more and more investors. Venture capital funds worldwide invested a record $15.7 billion in 252 space companies in 2020, of which $9.4 billion went to US companies.
 
Marco Fuchs, CEO of OHB SE, said: “We do not want to leave this lucrative market to US companies. That is why we have set up the Rocket Factory with two young space enthusiasts and given the new company a major boost in the form of expertise and capital. We will be able to maximise the cost advantages of series production because we will be building rockets just like cars. Due to the very high demand for investment opportunities in this promising market, we are now opening up the possibility for further selected investors to participate in the growth of the Rocket Factory.”
 
Rocket Factory’s launcher combines three significant competitive advantages: Unbeatable pricing, precise in-orbit delivery through a novel orbital stage and superior engine technology.
 
“With the staged combustion technology, we are a technological trendsetter because it is more powerful, more efficient and cleaner than most launch vehicles currently on the market,” said Dr. Stefan Brieschenk, Board Member and Chief Operations Officer at Rocket Factory.
 
Jörn Spurmann, Board Member and Chief Commercial Officer at Rocket Factory, added: “We offer a delivery service for the last mile. Unlike many others, we deliver satellites to different orbits with pinpoint accuracy using our unique orbital stage. This creates cost advantages. And because we also produce at the lowest cost, we create unrivalled value for money.”

--

A little bit desperate perhaps? Didn't they announce they were looking for money about a year ago? OHB is a billion dollar firm, why doesn't it chip in €25m itself if the management really has such strong belief as Fuchs and Steininger suggest?
« Last Edit: 02/14/2021 05:42 pm by ringsider »

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