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Belgian startup unveils plans for aerospace ‘megafactory’

by Sion Geschwindt
Belgian startup unveils plans for aerospace 'megafactory'

Belgian startup Aerospacelab unveiled plans yesterday to establish a ‘megafactory’ large enough to produce 500 satellites per year.

The new 6,000 sq.metre facility will be located in Charleroi, Belgium, roughly 40km from the company’s existing factory in Ottignies-Louvain-La-Neuve.

Aerospacelab plans to begin manufacturing 150- to 700-kilogram satellites at the new facility in early 2025.

In February, Aerospacelab secured €40m (£34m) in seed funding, which it is now using to scale up its production capacity to be able to serve the constellations market, the company said.

Benoît Deper, Aerospacelab CEO and founder, commented: “We’ve been inspired by the automotive industry where standardised products still have the possibility to be adjusted to specific needs.

“We are setting up satellite manufacturing plants, with production lines using ‘off-the-shelf’ components and specific instruments when needed.”

Aerospacelab’s first satellite launched in 2021. The European Space Agency has awarded Aerospacelab contracts for two additional missions. The first is slated to launch later this year.

Aerospacelab, established in 2018, employs more than 140 people full time.

Image: An artist’s impression of the new Aerospacelab megafactory (credit: Aerospacelab)

Read next: NASA funds four lunar construction tech R&D projects

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