PLD Space Completes 17 Million Euro Funding Round

ARION1 booster (Credit: PLD Space)

ELCHE, Spain (PLD Space PR) — PLD Space, the European Microlauncher company, has closed a new funding round of 9 million euros [$10.6 million] completing its Series A round of 17 million euros [$20 million]. Among the new investors are the Spanish aeronautical company Aciturri, founded by Ginés Clemente, and the Spanish investment fund JME Venture Capital, led by José Manuel Entrecanales, CEO of Acciona, one of the largest infrastructure and renewable energy companies in Spain.


ESA Selects Five Micro Launcher Feasibility Studies

PARIS (ESA PR) — Small satellites usually ride piggyback on larger missions but finding a suitable match is difficult because the launch date and orbit are set by the primary payload.

A microlauncher can place a small satellite typically used for Earth observation, technology demonstration, education and telecoms into low orbits, starting from the ground or from an aerial platform.

ESA has chosen five feasibility studies from industry proposing an economically viable, commercially self-sustaining microlauncher, without public funding.


PLD Space Receives ESA Contract for ARION 2 Launcher Study

ARION 2 booster (Credit: PLD Space)

ELCHE, Spain (PLD Space PR) — The European Space Agency (ESA) has awarded the project “Study on Launch Service Making Use of a Microlauncher” to the Spanish company PLD Space.

The microlauncher study, a part of the ESA’s Future Launcher Preparatory Programme, will refine the definition of the European small satellite launcher project proposed by PLD Space, named ARION 2.


PLD Space Receives $2.4 Million for Smallsat Launcher

ARION 1 & 2 technology demonstration. (Credit: PLD Space)

PLD Space of Spain has received nearly 2 million euros ($2.4 million) from the European Commission to continue development of its reusable ARION 1 and ARION 2 launch vehicles.

ARION 1 is a suborbital booster that PLD Space plans to begin launching later this year.  The company said the rocket will validate 70% of the technologies required for ARION 2, which will place payloads weighing as much as 150 kg (331 lbs) into low Earth orbit.


PLD Space Adds GMV as Partner, Receives 6.7 Million Euro Investment

 ARION 1 & 2 technology demonstration. (Credit; PLD Space)
ARION 1 & 2 technology demonstration. (Credit; PLD Space)

ELCHE, Spain, January 9, 2017 (PLD Space PR) — The International Tech Company GMV, with an important presence in the global space sector, has decided to trust in the PLD Space project and will take part in the ownership of the young space company as shareholder. GMV will also develop key technology and will work together with PLD Space in the development of the ARION 1 and ARION 2 launchers, an activity that will enable both companies to grow and position themselves strategically in the small space-launchers market.

The corporative endorsement of GMV enables PLD Space to raise a total investment of 6.7 million euros; between private investment through 2 Spanish investment vehicles and institutional funding coming from the contribution of Spanish government (CDTI and ENISA), public administrations (SUMA Teruel, IVF) and the European Commission (SME Phase1).


PLD Space Gets ESA Support for Reusable Booster Development

 ARION 1 & 2 technology demonstration. (Credit; PLD Space)
ARION 1 & 2 technology demonstration. (Credit; PLD Space)

ELCHE, Spain, November 2, 2016 (PLD Space PR) — The European rocket company PLD Space has received an important backup from the European Space Agency (ESA), with the award of the Future Launchers Preparatory Programme (FLPP) project called Liquid Propulsion Stage Recovery (LPSR).


PLD Space Receives Funding From Spanish Government

PLD Space cofounders with the 25kN engine developed by the company. (Credit: PLD Space)
PLD Space co-founders Raúl Torres and Raúl Verdú with the 25kN engine developed by the company. (Credit: PLD Space)

ELCHE, Spain (PLD Space PR) — The European launch company PLD Space has been awarded by the Spanish Government with a $1.56M propulsion project called TEPREL.

TEPREL (Acronym for Spanish Reusable Propulsion Technologies for Launchers) will help PLD Space to continue their liquid rocket engine program, the first one dedicated to boost the small satellite industry in Europe. This project will help PLD Space to have a 35kN engine qualified for flight by the end of 2017.

PLD Space is working since 2014 with a proprietary propulsion system that will be used as first stage of the suborbital reusable rocket ARION 1. So far, the company has performed more than 30 tests of their first liquid rocket engine configuration, called calorimetric version, and now the Spanish Government with TEPREL will help PLD Space to continue its development with the regenerative version and the flight qualification unit.

The company is also working in parallel with a new engine version that uses the same TCA (Thrust Chamber Assembly) but has some modifications to be used as second stage of the PLD Space’s ARION 2 orbital reusable launch vehicle and also with a single shaft LOX/kerosene turbopump. All this propulsion developments will be qualified for the first orbital flight, targeted in early 2020.