AgniKul Cosmos Successfully Tests World’s First 3D Printed Rocket Engine


New Delhi: Chennai-headquartered space tech start-up AgniKul Cosmos on November 8 announced the successful test firing of the world’s first single piece 3D printed engine.

Trials on AgniKul’s Agnilet engine were conducted at the Vertical Test Facility of Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station (TERLS) in Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC). Located in Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala), VSSC is a major research facility of the national space agency the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).

Supported by the single window nodal agency for promoting and regulating space-tech players, IN-SPACe, as well as ISRO, the test was conducted to validate the technological possibility that rocket engines can be manufactured as a single piece of hardware.

Terming the successful test an “unforgettable moment” for everyone at AgniKul, co-founder and CEO, Srinath Ravichandran said, “Besides validating our in-house technology, this is also a huge step in understanding how to design, develop and fire rocket engines at a professional level.”

Fully designed and manufactured in India, the Agnilet engine was first successfully test-fired at IIT Madras in 2021. This new test at TERLS has validated the design and manufacturing methodology followed by the startup. Also, this is a major milestone for 3D printing technology in India.

AngiKul recently received a patent for designing and manufacturing single-piece 3D-printed rockets. The company has also unveiled Rocket Factory- 1, the country’s first-ever rocket facility for large-scale printing of such rocket engines at the IIT Madras Research Park. The new state-of-the-art production house houses world-class machinery for end-to-end manufacturing of a rocket engine under one roof.

Co-founder & COO, Moin SPM, observed, “The private space ecosystem is growing in the right direction and also gets access to the state-of-art technologies to make and test world-class products inside the country.”

Founded in 2017 by aerospace engineers Srinath Ravichandran, Moin SPM, and IIT-Madras faculty member Prof SR Chakravarthy, AgniKul seeks to make space accessible and affordable. The startup was the first Indian space tech company to ink an agreement with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in December 2020 to access the space agency’s expertise and facilities to test its systems.