3D printing manufacturer SWISSto12 announced the closing of a series B financing round, raising CHF18.1 million ($18.5 million) to fund the company’s industrialization and commercial deployment of antenna products for communication satellites. SWISSto12 also plans to extend its business by developing advanced communication payloads for the SmallSat market and exploring opportunities in terrestrial communications, such as 5G. The funding will support expansion of recently opened offices in the U.S. and Israel.

Additive manufacturing provides a unique approach for developing next-generation payloads for communication satellites. SWISSto12’s capability offers satellite operators the benefits of high performance, light weight and customizable products, which opens additional opportunities in payload engineering.

After successfully qualifying 3D printed RF communication products for space, SWISSto12 has demonstrated its capability to the aerospace and satellite communities. Additive manufacturing technology brings new design and manufacturing possibilities — from antenna systems to complete payloads — which SWISSto12 is developing for SmallSats and LEO constellations.

“With this financing round, our mission to bring disruptively performing and reliable 3D printed communication products to the aerospace industry goes to the next level. We are very proud to have brought our first products into operation in space this year and look forward to further developing our journey with our clients, enabling increasingly affordable and flexible satellite communication services.” — Emile de Rijk, CEO of SWISSto12

The series B round was led by Swisscanto Invest by Zürcher Kantonalbank and Swisscom Ventures, with returning investor Constantia New Business (CNB).

“With its innovative 3D printing technology, SWISSto12 is leading the way into the next generation of microwave components, such as waveguides, antennas and filters, giving the aerospace industry unrivaled solutions in terms of performance, weight and size. As the satellite industry is transforming, with many low earth constellation initiatives on the way, we believe that SWISSto12 will have an important part to play in this development.” — Pär Lange, Investment Partner at Swisscom Ventures

SWISSto12 recently supplied a Ka-Band antenna feed chain for the NSLSat-1 nano satellite, which launched on July 5, 2019. NSLSat-1 is billed as the first expendable, high throughput nano satellite, developed for Israeli startup NSLComm. Its payload includes an aluminum 3D printed RF system supplied by SWISSto12.

SWISSto12 also serves more traditional companies in the space industry, including Airbus Defense and Space, Thales Alenia Space, Cobham Advanced Electronic Solutions and the European Space Agency.