Astrotanks will develop alloy/composite hybrid tanks for space and aircraft propulsion systems; alloy and fully composite bulkhead tanks for launch vehicle applications; and, in partnership with another UK developer, manufacture polymer/composite hybrids for ultra low-cost tank applications on satellite constellations.
Lower Launch Cost40%
Metallic (aerospace alloy)/composite hybrid for commercial aircraft fuel or satellite propulsion
100% Composite tanks for cryogenic use on space launch vehicles.
Polymer/composite tanks for Demisable satellite propellant tanks on Orbiting platforms.
Broad cross-sector business case and indicated long-term need supports efficient material, tooling and manpower costs;
The market size for provision of the launcher propellant tanks (excluding any new UK requirements) is challenging to evaluate, as most operators are either Institutional in nature (i.e. Government owned) or Commercial operators, with protection of related usage or price data. Both tend to produce their own tanks and other components.
This makes them expensive, in comparison to a commercial tank provider.
The true commercial launcher sector is currently led by two US companies (Space-X and Blue Origin) and these Companies’ supply chains may prove difficult to access.
However, commercial space is becoming more open and we believe that the efficient production of high value products at attractive prices will put pressure on buyers to consider new suppliers, and with the market estimated at £200 million per annum, we are confident we can attain a minimum 5% market share within 3 years.
Growth of market share within the sector should then increase by 2-5% per year thereafter.
New range of tanks using existing commercial industrial practices
Modern materials and processes utilising UK knowhow and expertise in composite construction and manufacture.
Benefiting from Aerospace, Space and Formula 1 expertise inherent in the business.
Manufacture polymer/composite hybrids for ultra low-cost tank applications on satellite constellations.
The Vision is to produce aerospace and space storage hardware of the highest quality, at the lowest possible costs, with minimal overhead and maximum visibility within the UK.
The Mission is to make the costs of reliable technology as low as possible and in doing so, reclaim the UK’s position as an aerospace and space hardware provider of repute.
AstroTanks will deliver this Vision and Mission by creating a high-visibility commercial programme.
Propellant tanks are the heart of every launcher design. They have specific challenges in performance: thermal, mechanical loading, shock and cryogenic handling.
A new range of launcher tanks (of Aerospace grade Aluminium alloys) will deliver the most modern and efficient products at expected reductions of 30-40% on cost and ~50% lead-time and include high-grade materials and new manufacturing processes.
Each successful development will bring opportunities for ‘spin-out’ (to be applied in other areas of technology) and thus increase the value of the development and production lines.