• 12.09.2019
  • Space
  • Media release

RUAG Space expands its production facilities for thermal insulation

Space supplier RUAG Space expands its production of thermal insulation in Austria, including production of thermal insulation for the new European rocket Ariane 6....

RUAG Space, Europe’s leading space supplier, is expanding its production facilities for thermal insulation on its site in Austria. RUAG Space produces high-temperature thermal insulation for the new European rocket Ariane 6 in a newly built production room adjacent to its existing production facility in Austria. The opening of the new building in Berndorf, south of Vienna, was celebrated today. The Austrian Minister of Space, Andreas Reichhardt, praised the highly specialized and research-intensive space industry of the country at the ceremony.

Space is gaining in importance

Urs Breitmeier, CEO RUAG Group, emphasized that the Space Division is a very important part of the international RUAG technology group. “With our future focus on an aerospace group, the space sector will become even more important,” said Breitmeier.

Austria is the competence center for space insulation

The global space market is expected to grow strongly. “There are many new players and new projects in the space sector, where we are ideally positioned with our products,” says Peter Guggenbach, CEO of RUAG Space. For example, RUAG Space supplies heat protection to international customers such as the telecommunications satellite constellations Iridium-NEXT and OneWeb. "RUAG is a globally renowned competence center for space thermal insulation,” says Guggenbach: “With this extension, we are further expanding our leading position in this field”.

Europe-wide market leader in thermal protection for satellites

RUAG Space is the European market leader in the field of thermal insulation for satellites. Thermal insulation from RUAG Space protects almost every European satellite from extreme heat and cold in space. This knowledge for satellites is now being used for the thermal insulation for launchers.

Protection against up to 1,500 degrees Celsius

The new high-temperature insulation for launch vehicles such as ARIANE 6 consists of glass and ceramic. "On their journey from Earth to space, the rocket engines have to withstand extreme heat of up to 1,500 degrees Celsius for a few minutes," says Andreas Buhl, Country Manager Austria at RUAG Space. These temperatures are much higher than the typical -150 to +150 degrees Celsius the thermal insulation for satellites in orbit has to withstand. "But we can use much of the knowledge we have gathered in our work for more than 130 satellites for this new area," explains Buhl.

Thermal insulation for new European rocket Ariane 6

RUAG Space is delivering the thermal insulation for the new European rocket Ariane 6, built by ArianeGroup, on behalf of the European Space Agency (ESA). ArianeGroup is lead contractor for Europe’s Ariane 5 and Ariane 6 launcher families, responsible for both design and the entire production chain, up to and including marketing by its Arianespace subsidiary. The first launch of Ariane 6 is scheduled for 2020. In 2019 RUAG Space will complete the delivery of its thermal insulation for the Ariane 6 maiden flight.

Thermal insulation for MRI scanners

At its facility in Berndorf, Austria, RUAG Space produces multilayer insulation for space as well as for non-space areas. As a spin-off from its space activities RUAG Space is also producing thermal insulation for medical applications, such as MRI scanners (Magnetic Resonance Imaging), and for the energy area, e.g. thermal insulation for Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) tanks.

About RUAG Space

RUAG Space is the leading supplier to the space industry in Europe, and has a growing presence in the United States. In total, RUAG Space has about 1,300 employees across six countries. RUAG Space develops and manufactures products for satellites and launch vehicles—playing a key role both in the institutional and commercial space market. RUAG Space is a division of the international technology group RUAG. RUAG develops and markets internationally sought-after technology applications in the fields of aerospace and defense for use on land, in the air and in space.

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Infographic: RUAG Space is producing thermal insulation for launch vehicles. Copyright: RUAG Space. Download

Picture 1: RUAG Space is producing the thermal insulation for the new European rocket Ariane 6, built by ArianeGroup (Artist's view of Ariane 6). Copyright: ESA - D. Ducros Download

Picture 2: “With this extension, we are further expanding our leading position in thermal insulation for space”, says Peter Guggenbach, CEO RUAG Space. Copyright: RUAG Space Download

Photo 3: Austrian Space Minister Andreas Reichhardt at the opening ceremony: "Austria has a highly specialised and very research-intensive space industry". Copyright: RUAG Space, Martin Steiger. Download

Photo 4: RUAG Space Austria its production and, in a newly constructed part of the building (right), produces high-temperature thermal insulation for the new European Ariane 6 rocket. Copyright: RUAG Space, Martin Steiger. Download

Photo 5: Space Minister Andreas Reichhardt (right) opened the new production hall of RUAG Space, together with Urs Breitmeier (CEO RUAG) and Andreas Geisler (Head of FFG Space Agency). Copyright: RUAG Space, Martin Steiger. Download

Photo 6: RUAG Space expands its leading role in space heat protection. Photo (from left to right): Peter Guggenbach (CEO RUAG Space), Urs Breitmeier (CEO RUAG), Andreas Buhl (Country Manager RUAG Space Austria), Andreas Geisler (Head of Space Agency of FFG). Copyright: RUAG Space, Martin Steiger. Download