The space sector is a high-risk, high-volatility sector. Being a start-up, what prompted you to venture into the segment?
Today space applications are finding their way through in all emerging industries. The sector’s nature of being at high risk and having high volatility helps us refine our products and provide the best possible solution, and since the margin of error is zero, even a start-up’s benchmark becomes 100%. So, we could say this sector entertains outputs that are only 100% qualified. Being an aeronautical engineer and with my love for space, I wanted to pursue my career in the same field. When both these aspects integrated, I was fuelled enough to venture into this segment.
In 2021, Agnikul was one of the two start-ups that were granted access to ISRO. What does this agreement entail? How does it help your developing & testing capabilities?
The MoU signed between Agnikul Cosmos and the Department of Space entails us to undertake multiple tests and access facilities at various ISRO centres to qualify and test our single piece 3D printed semi cryo engine and other vehicle systems. Additionally, we can avail ISRO’s technical expertise for testing and qualifying our launch vehicle systems. This MoU will help us incorporate the experience of ISRO and thus, reduce the risk of failures. Additionally, being one of the two start-ups to sign the agreement, we wish to pave way for upcoming start-ups to innovate and contribute to the Make in India movement.
You partnered with EOS India in August last year. How has it helped your company expand its synergy?
Our partnership with EOS India is dedicated towards accelerating our in-house 3D Printing of rocket engines. Besides having an EOS M400-4 printer installed, we will be assisted by their engineers to enhance the 3D Printing of engines and to qualify them. The collaboration has reduced the lead times for each engine realisation exponentially and with the training provided by EOS, we will also be able to inculcate the best practices for qualifying hardware.
The COVID crisis is far from over. How did it affect your business in the past? What kind of future challenges are you anticipating due to it?
COVID is still impacting all the industries across the world. With the setbacks of the lockdowns, the realisation aspects were forced to decelerate, yet the team’s enthusiasm kept us moving ahead. We started identifying markets across India and a world for our products to help with our timelines. With the upcoming wave of COVID, we are expecting delays in supply chain and products shortage due to less supply in the market. But we are confident that we would be able to address them, as we have already explored the deep Indian markets and global markets.
What new things are in the pipeline for you in 2022?
Our company intends to realise and qualify its next chain of engines in-house in the year 2022. Additionally, a next series of fund raise is also on the cards.