Space engineering startup Orbit Fab has received a $250K grant from the National Science Foundation to demonstrate a docking system for refueling satellites in space, SpaceNews reported Tuesday.
As part of the NSF America's Seed Fund program, Orbit Fab will coordinate with potential clients and perform modeling and simulation activities to further develop and test the company's refueling technology.
Orbit Fab may also be tasked to conduct phase 2 activities as part of an option with a ceiling value of $1.5M.
The recent grant builds on Orbit Fab's prior in-space technology development experience as well as its work on the International Space Station to test fluid transfer capabilities.
The company also participated in Techstars' Starburst Space Accelerator last year.
Daniel Faber, CEO of Orbit Fab, told SpaceNews in an interview that the company seeks to establish a cooperative docking system that utilizes both active and passive sides of a refueling platform.
Orbit Fab expects to conduct air-bearing tests for its refueling technology by summer.
Headquartered in San Francisco, Orbit Fab offers in-space servicing and satellite propellant products to support a range of current and emerging sectors such as space tourism, mining and manufacturing.