OPUS Aerospace has selected BUMAX 88 screws in the development of its new suborbital rocket and future vehicles designed to send satellites into space. OPUS was formed in 2019 to provide cost-effective launch solutions for nano-satellites, micro-satellites, and mini-satellites. It aims to offer sub-orbital commercial launch services by 2026 and ultimately orbital services.
BUMAX manufactures unique stainless steel fasteners that provide optimal safety and reliability in the most demanding customer applications. The company’s BUMAX 88 screws are being used to secure the two domes of a prototype cylindrical fuel tank for the Mesange suborbital rocket. The domes must have high-strength screws as they’re a critical part of the rocket with extremely high pressure.
“Our initial calculations showed that standard stainless steel fasteners simply wouldn’t cope with the loads,” says Ignacio Amundarain, launcher mechanical engineer with OPUS. “We have already tested and validated the design of our fuel tank with BUMAX 88 on the ground with even more demanding pressurization tests than we can expect in normal conditions. We are confident that this will ensure the safe operation of our fuel tank.”
Besides high strength, BUMAX 88 screws offer excellent reliability and quality with consistent properties. They also provide corrosion resistance, which is important for a reusable rocket that may be exposed to the elements and potentially seawater.
“I know how reliable BUMAX are from my previous job of designing satellites,” says Amundarain. “They are also cost effective compared with other fastener solutions with similar premium properties.”
OPUS Aerospace has obtained an excess supply of BUMAX 88 that will be used for other important applications on the prototype rocket. These include securely fastening the fuel lines from the fuel tank.
The BUMAX 88 screws were provided with a 3.1 certificate, which confirms that they were fully tested in accordance with DIN-EN-10204 and that they are manufactured in compliance with the order specification. This ensures excellent quality and traceability.
“We are very pleased with the level of service from the BUMAX support team who advised us on our product selection and design, and dealt with the order and delivery,” added Amundarain. “We are looking forward to continuing our rocket development journey together with BUMAX.”
The enhanced properties of BUMAX 88 fasteners are achieved through a combination of unique BUMAX manufacturing processes and the highest quality European steel. BUMAX 88 fasteners are also certified according to DIN EN 15048-1 (Non-preloaded structural bolting assemblies) and to meet requirements in accordance with PED 2014/68/EU (Pressure Equipment Directive).