The European space industry is a team

The European space industry is a team

The Italian fund Primo Space bets its chips on the Spanish startup Pangea Aerospace to create a new generation engine

The founders of the Pangea team (photo Primo Space press office) Produce and test new generation engines for the 'space industry, to be applied to micro-launchers for small satellites, called "small sats": this will use the 3 million euro loan obtained from the European company Pangea Aerospace, in which Primo Space Fund, an Italian venture capital fund, participated specialized in space economy. The operation brings the total funding of the Barcelona-based startup to 6 million euros. Led by Inveready, a Spanish fund active in the early technological stage (400 million euros under management, 136 portfolio companies), the new round is also attended by Cdti Innvierte (Spanish National Innovation Agency), Dozen Investments and E2Mc.

Primo Space Fund contributes with 300 thousand euros, in what is its third investment after the operations on Aiko and Leaf Space. The company is part of Primo Ventures, a savings company specializing in early stage technology venture capital, and caters to teams with “seed” projects by providing grants that can reach up to 5 million euros. "In the value chain of the new space economy we look with particular interest to the sector of launchers for smallsats that we see growing strongly in the coming years", explains Matteo Cascinari, general partner of Primo Space Fund, who with Pangea made the first investment outside 'Italy and aims to further expand its portfolio in the future.

Pangea Aerospace aims to revolutionize the space industry with new technologies based on a proprietary recovery system and on an "aerospike" rocket engine, which can transform space propulsion thanks to greater reusability, efficiency (up to 15% more than those currently in use) and the possibility of rapid, low-cost production. This type of engine uses green propellants such as liquid oxygen and liquid methane, and Pangea uses the latest metal 3D printing techniques and materials.

The funding will go towards producing and testing several prototype 20 kN (2 tons) and accelerate towards a ready-to-market propulsion technology. The aerospike engine test, scheduled between June and August, will mainly serve to validate its manufacturability, the regenerative cooling system, as well as the use of Ch4 / Lox (methane / liquid oxygen) propellants. "The space industry is transforming dramatically and new solutions are being sought to be more competitive. The aerospike engine has been considered the holy grail of rocket propulsion for decades, but it is only now that this technology can be built and designed, thanks to new materials and the design freedom offered by additive manufacturing ", concludes Adrià Argemí, ad e co-founder of Pangea.

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