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UAE: Chennai-based startup aims high after deal with UAE space agency

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Aerospace and defense components start-up ST Advanced Composites is supplying a United Arab Emirates space agency with structural components needed to manufacture satellites, aiming to tap market potential in the sector, a senior official said.

The city-based company won an order from the space agency in 2020 to supply components used to build satellites to study soil and conduct water analysis on satellites moondirector devondran tirunaukarasu Say.

“The UAE-based space agency offered us a contract in December 2020, which was successfully completed within four or five months. After that, a regular meeting was held and they also placed a second order, which was to manufacture the satellite. We Work started in April 2022 and a successful launch via SpaceX launch on December 11,” he told PTI in an interaction.

With the goal achieved, the scientists have already started communicating with the system. “They will be able to do soil testing and water analysis there (on the moon),” he said.

He elaborated that the company supplied the structural components that make the payload, the shell of the rocket’s satellite.

“The intention is that it should be lightweight because weight plays a big role in aerospace. With metal, the density is higher, but with carbon fiber we can reduce that by up to 60 percent,” he said.

Thirunavukarasu, an aeronautical engineer from a farming family who studied in France, said: “I had the opportunity to work in aircraft manufacturing in Rome and then I switched back to Chennai And founded the company in 2014. He said the company uses carbon fiber as the basic raw material to manufacture the product, which significantly reduces the weight of the satellites that make up the bulk of the rocket’s payload weight.

“When we deliver parts to the UAE-based space agency, they love it. What we deliver to them is very light weight…we are basically a lightweight manufacturer and solutions provider for aerospace and defense,” he said added.

Much of the technology used was “carbon fiber technology,” he said.

When questioned, he said the company was working on various government projects with Muscat, Oman, the United Kingdom and Israel.

“Our aim is to do more exports under the Center’s Make in India campaign and to be a pioneer in aerospace and defense,” he said.

On the prospects, he said the company is currently discussing setting up its manufacturing facility at Vallam Vadagal in the neighboring Sriperumbudur district.

“We have identified an acre of land from TIDCO (Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Ltd.), which is currently under discussion. We hope to move to the Chennai Aerospace Park by January or February,” he said.

Responding to queries, he said the company, which started in 2014 with a capital of less than Rs 1 lakh, is currently in discussions with various government agencies in the country to supply components.

“At this time we cannot reveal the details of the project. We are already working on the ISRO with Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO),” he said.

After the company establishes its base in Chennai, it plans to bangalore Also in New Delhi.

“Currently we have about 20 people. We plan to add another 20 when we set up the manufacturing plant in Vallam Vadagal,” he said.

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