India’s Agnikul Cosmos flies additively manufactured rocket engine

June 3, 2024

June 3, 2024

Agnikul Cosmos carried out a sub-orbital test flight of its additively manufactured semi-cryogenic Agnibaan rocket from its launch pad at Sriharikota (Courtesy Agnikul Cosmos)
Agnikul Cosmos carried out a sub-orbital test flight of its additively manufactured semi-cryogenic Agnibaan rocket from its launch pad at Sriharikota (Courtesy Agnikul Cosmos)

Indian space startup Agnikul Cosmos, a spin-off from Indian Institute of Technology –Madras, has successfully launched its first sub-orbital test vehicle powered by a single-piece rocket engine made via Additive Manufacturing. The Agnibaan SOrTeD (Sub-Orbital Technology Demonstrator) was launched from Sriharikota’s operational spaceport.

AgniKul Cosmos shared via X, “Humbled to announce the successful completion of our first flight – Mission 01 of Agnibaan SOrTeD – from our own and India’s first & only private Launchpad within SDSC-SHAR at Sriharikota. All the mission objectives of this controlled vertical ascent flight were met and performance was nominal.”

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“The vehicle was completely designed in-house and was powered by the world’s first single piece 3d printed engine and also happens to be India’s first flight with a semi cryo engine. Our greatest thanks to IN-SPACe, ISRO [Indian Space Research Organisation], IIT Madras, and our incredibly committed team in helping us prove that a private player can design and fly original space tech hardware in India.”

The Agnibaan rocket is capable of carrying payloads weighing up to 300 kg to an orbit 700 km high. Developed by an IIT Madras-incubated startup, this launch vehicle also features India’s first semi-cryogenic engine. The Agnilet engine uses sub-cooled oxygen as fuel, unlike cryogenic engines that operate on gases liquified at extremely low temperatures.

The company plans to conduct its first orbital launch by the end of the financial year, and aims to provide regular launches in the next calendar year.

“This is the culmination of 1,000s of hours of reviews and hard work by the team. We are blessed to have had the opportunity and the full support of IN-SPACe and ISRO to design and build original space worthy hardware in India,” said Srinath Ravichandran, co-founder and CEO of Agnikul Cosmos.

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June 3, 2024

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