AgniKul partners with Alaska Aerospace to launch from Pacific Spaceport Complex

NEW DELHI: Alaska Aerospace Corporation and India-based AgniKul Cosmos have signed a memorandum of agreement to test launch the Agnibaan launch vehicle from the Pacific Spaceport Complex –Alaska (PSCA) on Kodiak Island in the United States.

Under the agreement, Alaska Aerospace and Agnikul will work together to secure regulatory approvals such as US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) launch licensing, US export control, and will comply with export laws & regulations in India to receive necessary clearances from the concerned Indian authorities as well. The aim is to define launch vehicle-spaceport interfaces and procedures, and conduct at least one test launch from PSCA. These launches are likely to start from 2022, according to a release.

Chennai based AgniKul Cosmos was incubated at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (IIT Madras). It is building a small satellite rocket, Agnibaan, that will be capable of carrying up to 100 kg of payload to low Earth orbits up to 700 km.

While Alaska Aerospace Corporation was established in 1991 by the state of Alaska, USA, to develop a high technology aerospace industry in the state. Alaska Aerospace owns and operates the Pacific Spaceport Complex – Alaska (PSCA) on Kodiak Island, a FAA-licensed multi-user spaceport.

Mark Lester, president and CEO of Alaska Aerospace said, “Agnikul has established itself as a leading rocket technology company.”

“This is further evidence of our company’s progress towards launch,” said Srinath Ravichandran, CEO and co-founder of Agnikul Cosmos.

Additional tests and operational launches are also possible under the agreement. This is a step in moving the small satellite launch market towards a customer-centric business model as opposed to what it is today – a vehicle-centric model. This would mean faster, easier commercial space access, and ultimately will open up space for everyone, the release added.

“By partnering with Alaska Aerospace, Agnikul engineers and staff can focus on the technical complexities of perfecting Agnibaan’s launch operations from different environmental conditions across geographies,” said Agnikul co-founder & COO Moin SPM. “Having access to high latitude launch locations is an important aspect of our strategy for offering customer-centric launch services, and this partnership with Alaska Aerospace is going to be directly helpful.”

AgniKul partners with Alaska Aerospace to launch from Pacific Spaceport Complex AgniKul partners with Alaska Aerospace to launch from Pacific Spaceport Complex Reviewed by TechCO on 10/01/2020 Rating: 5

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