The idea of manufacturing commodities in space is not a novel concept. The International Space Station — humanity’s hub for research and development in microgravity — has hosted several research payloads which have produced Optic Fibers and even 3D printed STEM cells. These may have the potential of printing entire human organs in space, saving countless lives.
This technology utilizes the microgravity environment to produce commodities that cannot be made on Earth. Now, a California-based in-space manufacturing company named Varda Space is looking to transition this technology from research to production.
Varda Space is looking to increase access to manufacturing in space, as it provides an environment with characteristics unavailable on Earth. They hope to accomplish this onboard free-flying satellite platforms in Low Earth Orbit (LEO), using in-house technologies and equipment.
“Our technology that we have been working on has been demonstrated in the International Space Station by a variety of researchers. We’re just helping to commercially transition that research from the ISS to our independent satellite platform,” said Delian Asparouhov, Co-Founder and President of Varda, during an interview with NASASpaceflight.com.