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Pixxel Inaugurates Its First Spacecraft Manufacturing Facility In Bengaluru

Spanning over 30,000 square feet, the newly established facility enables Pixxel to optimise the satellite production workflow, covering the entire process from conceptualization to launch

Pixxel Inaugurates Its First Spacecraft Manufacturing Facility In Bengaluru
S Somanath, the chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation

Outlook Start-Up Desk

POSTED ON January 15, 2024 5:27 PM

Pixxel, a space tech start-up, officially opened its inaugural spacecraft manufacturing facility in Bengaluru on January 15. The inauguration ceremony was presided over by S Somanath, the chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). 

This facility will help the company in achieving an efficient production workflow, covering the entire spectrum from conceptualisation to launch, Pixxel said in a statement.  

“It offers Pixxel the necessary infrastructure to construct satellites comprehensively, encompassing manufacturing, integration, and rigorous testing for launch readiness before transportation to the designated launch site,” it added. 

The new facility, spanning more than 30,000 sq ft, consolidates all satellite manufacturing services, providing a comprehensive Spacecraft Assembly, Integration, and Testing (AIT) facility under one roof.  

Commenting on the launch, Awais Ahmed, CEO of Pixxel said, “The inauguration of the new facility marks a momentous milestone as Pixxel nears its fifth anniversary since inception. It will bolster our mission to build a health monitor for the planet. By increasing our capacity to build more satellites, we will deliver even more critical data to our customers faster so they can make informed decisions and address the needs of key industries such as agriculture, energy, forestry, and environmental monitoring.” 

At full capacity, the facility is equipped to handle more than twenty satellites simultaneously that can be turned around within a timeframe of six months, making a total capacity of forty large satellites per year possible.  

The space is uniquely designed, with two modern clean rooms of ISO Class 7 and ISO Class 8 that safeguard against contaminants that could impair satellite functionality during the satellite assembly and integration process. Additionally, it also houses labs for advanced camera integration, electronics R&D, and electrical assembly; along with a mechanical workshop, a mission control room, and an office space that can accommodate more than 200 employees.  

With a steadfast commitment to sustainability, the company’s facility will feature a wastewater treatment plant to help conserve water and reduce water dependency as well as smart heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems to further enhance energy efficiency and minimise carbon footprint.  

Pixxel is a space data company building a constellation of the world’s highest-resolution hyperspectral earth imaging satellites and the analytical tools to mine insights from the data.   

Co-founded by then-20-year-olds Ahmed and Kshitij Khandelwal, the space tech startup aims to build a health monitor for the planet by 2025. Pixxel has worked with notable organisations such as the Indian Space Research Organisation, NASA JPL, and SpaceX amongst other space stalwarts.  

Since its existence, the start-up has secured a total funding of $71 million, with notable support from backers such as Google, Lightspeed, Blume Ventures, and Omnivore VC. In its latest funding round in June 2023, Pixxel raised $36 million in its Series B funding. 

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