SBIR-STTR Success: Made In Space, Inc.
While the average consumer is still coming to grips with the mere concept of 3D printing, Made In Space is already miles beyond this seemingly new trend. 220 miles beyond Earth’s atmosphere to be exact – where astronauts and NASA personnel at the International Space Station (ISS) are printing tools and other necessities in zero gravity that will open up an entirely new era of off-world additive manufacturing.
Made In Space’s Zero-G Printer was launched to the ISS on September 21st, 2014, under a partnership agreement with NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. This accelerated path to success for the California-based company founded in 2010 can be somewhat attributed to its young and naively ambitious staff whose futuristic visions can’t help but spread excitement and awe. But it can also be attributed to NASA’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. With a Phase I and subsequent Phase II award to build an Additive Manufacturing Facility (AMF) for on-demand fabrication in space, Made In Space successfully deployed its innovation and became the first company to manufacture in zero gravity. “We asked ourselves, what is the ...