EPI to produce 147 components for MBZ-SAT commercial satellite

EPI, the Abu Dhabi-based precision engineering company, is collaborating with the Dubai-based Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC), to manufacture specialised components for its MBZ-SAT commercial satellite.

The Emirati satellite is named after Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

EPI will produce 147 high quality engineered components for MBZ-SAT over a six-month long period, in addition to conducting surface treatment and inspection services for the satellite project.

According to MBRSC, MBZ-SAT will be the most advanced commercial satellite operating for the Middle East region, due to its high-resolution imagery capability for commercial use.

Detailed imagery

The satellite is being equipped with an automated system to capture high-resolution images of an area of less than one square metre on Earth.

The 3mx5m satellite, weighing about 700kg, is due for launch into Low Earth Orbit (LEO) in 2023.

The satellite will have a life span of five to seven years.

Being constructed in the UAE, MBZ-SAT will be the UAE’s fourth Earth observation satellite to be launched by MBRSC, after KhalifaSat that was launched in 2018; and DubaiSat-1 and DubaiSat-2 that were launched into LEO in 2009 and 2013 respectively.

commercial satellite
Christian Ziehe, CEO of EPI. Credit: EPI/EDGE

 

In 2018, EPI engaged with MBRSC in machining key metallic components for its Emirates Mars Mission programme spearheaded by the Hope probe which successfully attained Mars’ orbit on February 9, 2021, after a seven-month long journey from Earth.

Christian Ziehe, CEO of EPI, said: “This alliance reinforces the value of leveraging local capabilities to shape an ecosystem dedicated to manufacturing space-related technology and systems.

“For EPI, it serves as a unique opportunity to grow the company’s expertise in the space manufacturing field, and further diversify our operations.

‘Space ambitions’

“We are proud to be entrusted once again with supporting the UAE’s wider space ambitions,” Ziehe added.

As the lead agency for the UAE’s space programme, MBRSC aims to engage UAE-based companies in building a local hub for space-related manufacturers and to nurture the national space sector in the Gulf country.

Amer Al Ghafri, Senior Director of the Space Engineering Department and Project Manager of MBZ-SAT at MBRSC, noted: “MBRSC’s strategic collaboration with local companies in the UAE, to manufacture and supply the components necessary for the development of MBZ-SAT will help enhance the sustainability of the national space industry in the UAE.

“Our goal is to further strengthen the regional space sector by leveraging partnerships that will support the development of MBRSC’s commercial activity through the creation of innovative new space technologies,” Al Ghafri added.

EPI is part of the Abu Dhabi-headquartered EDGE, an advanced technology group for defence and high technology.

Founded in 2007, EPI manufactures high-quality components for the defence, aerospace, and oil & gas sectors.

The Emirati company has advanced capabilities and cutting tools to carry out manufacturing engineering, machining, surface treatment, coating, repairing, and assemblies of complex engineering parts.