Northrop Grumman and Oceaneering Space Systems will collaborate to build a second three-dimensional printer for Silicon Valley startup firm Made in Space, to launch into orbit under a $20 million NASA contract, Space News reported Tuesday.
Debra Werner writes the team will install the 3D printer built with a robotic arm in an external space station pod as part of the Archinaut program.
Made in Space President Andrew Rush told Space News Archinaut is scheduled for an on-orbit demonstration in 2018 to test how the system manufactures and assembles a complex structure through additive manufacturing, according to the report.
Oceaneering Space Systems will build the manipulator arm to be attached to Archinaut’s 3D printer and Northrop will provide systems engineering, control electronics, software and testing services for the space station interface, Space News reports.
The infrastructure is intended to help NASA and the private space sector send additive manufacturing materials to space, Werner reports.