Since 2008 GRADEL is developing special purpose machines and tailored made solutions for the space domain. Due to our experience in electro-mechanical engineering, automation and dynamic axis control, GRADEL has developed extensive know-how for the realization of complex equipment, compliant to the specifications of our customers.
Our main product group in space is Mechanical Ground Support Equipment (MGSE), for which we have a complete range of equipment to handle S/Cs or parts of them.
The following MGSEs are typical products of GRADEL: Multipurpose Trolleys, Hoisting Devices, Horizontal and Vertical Lifting Devices, Integration Stands and Adapter Rings for the assembly, integration and test of all types and sizes of satellites, as well as equipment of CATR facilities to test the antennas of satellites.
GRADEL is providing MGSE elements for the instrumentation of S/C as well. These elements consider special requirements like mechanical precision paired with cleanliness requirements as well as magnetic and thermal compatibility.
GRADEL is developing and manufacturing ultra-lightweight structures for flight hardware under the Trademark xFKin3D. The process Innovation xFKin3D is a highly flexible, versatile designed, cost-effective and sustainable fibre composite technology. A wide range of products or applications have already been realized for different industries and market segments. For space applications Gradel is the exclusive partner of AMC. XFKin3D includes a process to generate lightweight structures.
GRADEL possesses 2 winding robots for the manufacturing of endless winding parts. GRADEL develops and manufactures the robotic winding equipment for other industrial fields.
In 2021, GRADEL established a R&D joint laboratory with LIST for testing and qualification of flight hardware application
PRODUCTS & SERVICES
Multipurpose Trolleys for satellites, fully automated with AGV-systems, Hoisting Devices for horizontal and vertical lifting of satellites, Integration Stands, automatized 0g supports for manufacturing, assembly, integration and test of satellites, equipment for Antenna Test Facilities, like adjustable supporting structures of high rigidity, Handling MGSE for instruments of a satellite and demanding mechanical parts for small satellites.
Multimaterial Flight Hardware:
GRADEL engineers propose to major space players, new lightweight multi-material high-tech solutions for the flight hardware structures.
ULTRA-LIGHTWEIGHT STRUCTURES & ROBOTIC WINDING EQUIPMENTS:
Fasteners or so-called “Brackets” which are predestined for all possible shapes and applications preferably for 3-dimensional geometries. Multi-axial static and / or dynamic load cases are covered by the standardised process. The range extends from simple parts to relatively complex parts, which may also include additional functions and features. Rotationally symmetric components for transmission of extremely high dynamic torques can also be produced by this method. Dynamic moving masses are often a limiting factor in all kinds of machines where the xFKin3D technology can be used to remedy such problems, which are for example the increase of production speed of product lines.
The lightweight manufacturing process allows the production of small, mid & larger part sizes. The minimum quantity required is 1, but the process is economically effective for a production of up to several thousand parts per year.
In short, wherever you reach the limits with conventional methods and still want to reduce mass with constant rigidity the new technology is applicable. Current made metallic assemblies and sub-assemblies can be made directly with this technology. It avoids the use of bolts and welds to keep different parts together.
GRADEL is extending its product offer with their own developed and manufactured Robotic Winding Equipment to different industrial fields
- Engineering office with 15 engineers (mechanical, electric, automation and regulation and simulation of dynamic systems, FEM-analysis)
- Software: SOLIDWORKS, FEMAP, NASTRAN, MATHLAB, SIMULINK, ROBOT Studio, Robot DK, Rhino
- Assembly and test workshop of 800 m² x 10 m height
- Crane capability: 2 times 10 t with 2 speeds
- In-house-capabilities includes lathes, milling machines, welding workshop and measuring room equipped with “absolute arm" & winding robots
Airbus Defence &Space, ESA, OHB Systems, Thales Alenia Space, Euro Heat Pipes, Luxspace
MAJOR SPACE PROJECTS
Gradel has or is participating with its space products for different customers in the following programs:
- Communication :Alphabus, EDRS, Electra, Eurostar Neo, Neosat, SGEO, SES17, Heinrich Hertz
- Science : Euclid, ExoMars, JUICE, Solar Orbiter, Proba III, PLATO
- Earth Observation : MTG
- Others: Moonmission M4