Varda Space Industries will send its first space factory to orbit on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket – TechCrunch

Varda Space Industries is a startup that aims to build in-space manufacturing plants. In 2023, Varda Space Industries will send its first spacecraft into orbit aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
Rocket Lab, SpaceX's rival launch company will make the spacecraft that will take the startups to orbit. Rocket Lab will also produce two more space vehicles for Varda. Two modules made by Varda will be fitted to the three vehicles: a microgravity module and a capsule for reentry.

Each spacecraft should spend around three months in orbit. The reentry module will bring back approximately 40-60 kilograms worth of manufactured material.

Vardas' goal is to unlock microgravity's benefits, which can only be found in space for the manufacturing of novel materials like bio-printed organs and specialized semiconductors. Startups believe that there is a large market for these materials.

The Torrance, California-based startup has moved fast since it was founded by Will Bruey, a SpaceX veteran, and Delian Asparouhov (Founders Fund principal), a little over a year ago. Varda announced a $42million Series A in July and plans to follow an aggressive launch schedule with two launches in 2023, and one in 2024.

Spacecraft will be one among many on the Falcon 9 rideshare mission. This new program, which allows customers to carpool to orbit, spreads the cost to go to space. SpaceX claims to reduce launch costs to as low $1 million per customer who wants to send 200 kg of payloads to sun-synchronous orbit.