January 16, 2024

Space Tango Receives SBIR Ignite to Develop Automated Manufacturing Facility

LEXINGTON, Ky. (January 15, 2024) Space Tango received Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Ignite funding for TangoBox, the next step in Space Tango’s technology roadmap. Expanding on CubeLab capabilities, TangoBox provides the horsepower to optimize automated space manufacturing and research. Space Tango’s proven flight heritage is the proof point that TangoBox is the next-generation infrastructure for in-space production on commercial space stations.

“Space Tango is honored by NASA’s continued trust in our boundary-pushing innovations and higher throughput manufacturing systems,” said Space Tango CEO S. Sita Sonty. “We are excited to bring this new solution to market and make a positive impact at a global scale prioritizing data management, automation, and national security.”

The TangoBox reimagines the terrestrial laboratory sterile hood as an automated platform to execute cell culture, tissue culture, chemistry, fiber optics, and materials manufacturing. In addition to current CubeLab capabilities, the TangoBox offers sterility control, omics analysis, centrifugation, temperature-controlled environments, materials processing, and biofabrication. 

The TangoBox solution propels technology development for artificial retina manufacturing, stem cell manufacturing, 3D printing, and nanomaterials. The modular design plugs into the low-Earth orbit (LEO) marketplace and can be integrated into terrestrial labs as well. Space Tango’s new Tangobox product is now available on the roadmap for commercial, civil, and national security customers. 

“Space Tango will deliver critical pathfinding research and output by efficiently increasing the throughput of the International Space Station (ISS) and future commercial platforms in space,” said Gentry Barnett, the Chief Technology Officer at Space Tango. “TangoBox is the next step in our product line.”

Space Tango’s CubeLabs have a proven flight heritage of over 260 investigations with approximately 50 parallel ground studies. Space Tango’s December 22nd successful splashdown of SpaceX-29 Commercial Resupply Service (CRS-29) returned live science to customers at Cedars-Sinai and the University of California San Diego.  The live science payloads included personalized stem cell batches for therapeutic application, neuro stem cell progenitors, and neural organoids. These payloads, and the terrestrial health applications, demonstrate the demand for the higher throughput and data efficiency TangoBox offers.

With a greater emphasis on commercialization, SBIR Ignite funds U.S. early-stage, high-risk technology development to help make companies and their technologies more attractive to private sector investors, customers, and partners. SBIR Ignite targets technologies that reflect emerging market trends and demands. Advancing Space Tango’s next-generation hardware capability eliminates production obstacles and permits on-orbit iteration crucial to commercially viable space-based manufacturing.


About Space Tango

Space Tango is an industry leader in automated systems in the pursuit of health and technology manufacturing in space. Since 2017 Space Tango has provided facilities to support iterative R&D and manufacturing in microgravity environments. Through an integrated and intuitive approach, Space Tango works alongside its diverse partner base to embrace pathways to production. For more information, visit www.spacetango.com.


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