Aerospace & defenseFebruary 9, 2022

Virtualization has ‘New Space’ companies thinking big

With the New Space industry gaining momentum, discover how Dassault Systèmes helps…
Avatar David Ziegler

From California to Copenhagen, space flight is taking off at the local level.

Private companies, oftentimes in partnership with government agencies, are generating such a buzz about space travel that 2022 is seen by many followers as a pivotal year for exploring the moon and beyond. While SpaceX, Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin are launching with much fanfare, incubators and accelerators are creating a flourishing environment for start-ups that are eager to disrupt the space sector and have a significant societal impact.

This includes Rocket Lab USA, a Long Beach, California, manufacturer of spacecraft components and satellites. The company, which has been launching experimental satellites for the U.S. military, continues to grow after its IPO in August 2021.

In Denmark, Copenhagen Suborbitals is an amateur spaceflight program that has designed and flown six rockets and capsules from a floating launch site in the Baltic sea, with the aim of bringing space flight to the “amateur astronaut.” In France, TechTheMoon (impulsed by the CNES and NUBBO) is offering to start-ups an ecosystem to develop their product and service.

They’re all part of a growing New Space industry, which could become a $1.4 trillion market by 2040, according to Morgan Stanley. The projections signal an increasingly competitive environment in which the most innovative, agile companies will rise to the top. The new space race requires equally advanced tools to design, test, develop and launch products quickly and effectively.

Dassault Systèmes’ Reinvent the Sky cloud-based solution helps aerospace companies accelerate the product lifecycle by modeling complex systems in a virtual, collaborative environment. It’s built on the 3DEXPERIENCE modeling and simulation platform, which allows users to create a virtual twin of products, assets and processes. NASA has relied on simulation tools since the early days of the program to safely travel to and from space.

Similarly, private companies entering the space industry are turning to virtualization tools to enable faster iteration and shorter time to market. For example, Yuri is a company based in Meckenbeuren, Germany, that makes weightlessness, or “microgravity,” solutions to study how organisms and various chemical properties behave in space. Yuri adopted Dassault Systèmes’ Reinvent The Sky solution based on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform to speed time to market and reduce costs for a project with the University of Technology Sydney in Australia. UTS wanted to study cancer cells at the International Space Station (ISS). But experimenting on the ISS was very costly.

One of the keys to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform is the ability to share virtual representations in real time with internal and external partners. For example, Yuri shares concept proposals with clients, so they can see how the hardware will look and operate. Engineers use CATIA 3D modeling module to express ideas into understandable formats that can be easily shared, and ENOVIA project management module tracks design changes, helping to prevent re-work further down the product development lifecycle. The 3DEXPERIENCE platform helped Yuri meet the space station’s tight design specifications and minimize costs.

Yuri is just one of many examples of how virtual twins are helping enterprises in this “New Space” sector move from concept to reality in record time by leveraging cloud-based capabilities, such as cross-functional collaboration, simulation and digital prototyping.

Want to know more?

Discover how Dassault Systèmes helps to accelerate space companies’ ability to design a system right the first time with the required quality, reliability and safety at lower cost:

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