SSupported by cloud hosting provider DigitalOcean – Try DigitalOcean now and receive a $200 when you create a new account!

Gilmour Space Technologies Raises $3.75M Series A Round To Provide Low Cost Access To Space

Listen to this article

Gilmour Space Technologies is an innovative engineering company with a goal of creating and launching inexpensive hybrid rockets and improving access to space using its proprietary multi-material 3D printed fuel. The company is developing a variety of space launch vehicles and has produced a number of high-fidelity space simulators, among other space technologies. Below is our interview with Michelle Gilmour, the ‎Director of Gilmour Space Technologies:

Q: What is the story behind Gilmour Space Technologies? How did you start?

A: Our CEO and Founder, Adam Gilmour, is an ex banker who spent over 20 years in global financial markets at Citi. He was managing a billion dollar corporate sales business in the Asia Pacific when he decided to pursue a new career in Space.

Adam’s has always been passionate about space tech, of course, but he was really inspired to take action when Scaled Composites won the 2004 X-Prize with SpaceShipOne, which demonstrated how affordable spaceflight could be.

After a lot of research on propulsion systems and rockets, he started Gilmour Space Technologies in 2013 with his brother James, initially to make space-related simulators for a spaceflight academy, which they later set up in the Gold Coast.

The company’s focus turned to launch vehicle technology in late 2014; and within 18 months, Gilmour Space Technologies became one of the first companies in the world to successfully test launch a hybrid-engine rocket using proprietary 3D printed fuel.

Q: You’ve recently announced $3.75m in Series A Round; could you tell us something more?

A: Sure, we’re an Australian company based in Queensland, with a subsidiary in Singapore. Our lead investor was Australian venture capital firm, Blackbird Ventures, and we had some investment from US-based 500 Startups as well. Interestingly, we are one of their first space-related investments in the region.

We’ll be using the funding to fast track the development and launch our low-cost rockets for the small payload market. We believe our dedicated small launchers would offer easier and cheaper access to space, and provide a much-needed boost to the fast-growing but under-served small satellite/payload markets.

Gilmour_Space_Technologies_TechRecommended: How EagleView Transforms Industries Through Imagery And Data

Q: What are the main challenges you had to overcome when launching a rocket into space?

A: We haven’t launched a rocket to orbital space as yet, but we did find it challenging at first to find a launch site in Australia for our suborbital test launch. The rules and regulations here for commercial launch are still highly prohibitive, which is why we’ve explored other launch sites, in the US, for example.

From a non-tech perspective, getting funding has also been very time consuming. In our experience, the Asia VC network still doesn’t have a good handle on “new space” and most of them are prefer to look at what they consider the “quick kills” like software and Fintech.

Q: What kind of rockets are you using the most, and why?

A: At Gilmour Space Tech, we are working on hybrid-engine rockets that use additively manufactured fuel. We believe we have innovative technology that overcomes the big legacy problems associated with hybrid rockets in the past, and our proprietary multi-material 3D printed fuel allows us to launch rockets at a fraction of the cost – a benefit that we plan to pass on to our clients.

Gilmour_Space_Technologies_Hybrid_RocketsRecommended: Cross Audience Helps Brands Develop Quality Mobile Apps To Engage And Retain Audiences

Q: What are your plans for the future?

A: We are currently scaling up to launch our first commercial sounding rockets by end 2018; and our LEO rockets by end 2020.

Our company is based in Australia and Singapore, so our activities will be centered in Asia Pacific in the near term. We may look for Series-B funding within the next 18 months.

The next five years may also see us developing low-cost launch vehicles for human spaceflight and exploration.

Activate Social Media: