|SPL general facility|
SPL consists of an engineering department, a small test facility and an assembly building, located at Langenthal. This town is placed between Zurich and Bern, the capital of Switzerland. Our main Sponsor, ARO TECHNOLOGIES, provides SPL with a large floor space for research, development and testing. The office, the material test field, the electrical/electronical/ - workshop and the high vacuum chamber are located on the second floor of the ARO Technologies production building. This facility has approximately 250 square meters. The ground floor houses the mechanic workshops (equipped with N/C lathes, TIG-welding equipment, welding robot, cutting and drilling equipment, N/C milling-, surface grinding-, cylindrical-grinding-machine, etc.).
On the second floor
the major SPL systems testing and measurement equipment is installed.
The following ae some examples of the equipment:
On the first sub floor of the same building the large vacuum (600 Pa) chamber is located. This system offers the opportunity to test small motors under low pressure conditions. It has approximately 15 square meters floor space and a volume of 40 cubic meters:
The largest SPL facility is located 80 m on the left side of ARO's main building. That building will be used as a rocket motor integration facility. SPL is using the same facility for assembly, system integration and testing of all major vehicles, payloads and large equipment.
On the left side of the ASIT-entrance SPL builds up an outdoor-teststand for static firing of engines in the range up to 5 kN. To reduce environmental impact and to increase the security SPL will take precautions, namely
Noise reduction and plume-supression with a heavy steel tunnel and water
The launch area will be outside of Switzerland in order to guarantee the necessary safety distance to populated areas. The SPL's strategies and relationships to other organizations will be helpful to find an acceptable launch area.
order to achieve its objectives, SPL will involve external facilities
and will also invite other organisations to participate. The development
of components is planned to be a joint effort between SPL, interested
universities, graduate schools and the precision industry in Switzerland.
This, of course, requires a lot of coordination between the involved participants.
SPL will provide the educational institutes with specific, detailed technical
problems and give them the opportunity to get involved in real "applied
science" in the area of space technology.