- Press Release
- Mar 22, 2023
Gravitilab Announces World First for Space Tech
Innovative leaders in Space engineering, Gravitilab Aerospace Services Ltd, has announced a world first for microgravity research and testing.
At UAV testing site, Predannack airfield, Cornwall, the company has successfully paved the way for a new era of microgravity access on earth by engineering the first ever commercial microgravity service using its unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology.
This revolutionary test, which opens up the world of microgravity research to a new market, was commissioned by Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership to support their ambition to spearhead innovation within the UK space industry, and lead the delivery of UK space and aerospace services.
Gravitilab’s UAV solution ascended to 2,000 ft and then released the payload within their patent protected ‘LOUIS’ drop-pod, achieving a period of microgravity – a world first for generating a sustained microgravity environment using an UAV system.
Today’s development is a step towards transforming testing across industries from cosmetics to satellites, enabling timely and cost-effective access to gravity-free environments.
Environments that are free from the impact of gravity offer far superior research and testing conditions which have proven scientific and commercial benefits. Making microgravity so much more accessible allows Gravitilab to offer unique R&D conditions for industries as diverse as pharmaceuticals, semiconductors, building materials, communications, SpaceTech and climate science.
“This is a fantastic collaborative achievement for Gravitilab, the Cornwall Space Cluster, and the UK Space Industry as a whole,” says Rob Adlard, CEO and Technical Director of Gravitilab.
“The only option for terrestrial microgravity testing until now has been to wait several years for access to a drop tower in Germany, which provides two seconds of microgravity. Our service can be delivered locally, is less expensive and as a result of our demonstration flight, we are on target to offer 5 to 20 seconds of high-quality microgravity using our LOUIS UAV system.”
Gail Eastaugh, Director, Cornwall Space Cluster: “We’re thrilled to have been able to support the achievement of this world first in microgravity testing from Cornwall. Cornwall Space Cluster exists to unlock innovation within the space and aerospace sector and companies like Gravitilab are paving the way for the future of the industry.”
Gravitilab, which is currently in discussions with new investors, has to date been funded by the UK Space Agency and private capital. The company is committed to using its innovative technology to unlock the supply chain to support the inexorable growth of the Space economy. Its ‘Space as a service’ offering sits at the heart of UK Space strategy and brings significant commercial benefits to a wide range of customers.
Gravitilab: Annabel Clementson +447951786435 / [email protected]
Cornwall Space Cluster – Client Director, Georgia Jaggs, [email protected]
Gravitilab Aerospace Services Ltd is a Space engineering company providing specialist research, testing and qualification services for the UK and internationally. Gravitilab uses proprietary technology including hybrid powered suborbital rockets, drop pods and an innovative payload system to facilitate flexible access to specialist environments. It is in the process of completing its initial development phases, beginning to roll out its commercial services, and is seeking funding to support growth to break-even.
Trading since 2019, Gravitilab has already passed many milestones not yet reached by more established Space companies. These achievements include developing its own fleet of suborbital launch vehicles, building a bespoke in-house hybrid engine testing facility, and undertaking commercial atmospheric launches in the UK. The Company’s intellectual property assets include rocket designs, propulsion systems, recovery systems and a wealth of data and procedural insights. Gravitilab has forged relationships with well-established bodies and institutions in the industry including the UK’s principal Space regulator, the Civil Aviation Authority, and both the UK and European Space Agencies. It has also built a pipeline of dozens of prospective customers across commercial, defence and academic sectors in the UK and overseas.
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