AgniKul Cosmos
IndustryAerospace industry
Founded2017; 5 years ago (2017)
  • Srinath Ravichandran
  • Moin SPM
  • Satyanaryan Chakravarthy
  • Janardhana Raju
National Center for Combustion R&D, IIT Madras, Chennai
Key people
Srinath Ravichandran (CEO) & Moin SPM (COO)
ProductsLaunch vehicles, satellite propulsion systems
ServicesCommercial launches, satellite systems
Revenue23.4 crore (US$2.9 million)
Number of employees

AgniKul Cosmos Private Limited[a] is an Indian aerospace manufacturer based in National Center for Combustion R&D (NCRD) of IIT Madras, Chennai.[1] The start up aims to develop and launch its own small-lift launch vehicle such as the Agnibaan, capable of placing 100 kg (220 lb) payload into a 700 km (430 mi) orbit. First commercial launch is expected in 2022.

Mockup of the Agnibaan launch vehicle and it's engine at the International Astronautical Congress 2021.
Mockup of the Agnibaan launch vehicle and it's engine at the International Astronautical Congress 2021.


The company was founded by Srinath Ravichandran and Moin SPM within IIT Madras with a seed funding of 3 crore (equivalent to 3.6 crore or US$450,000 in 2020) with aim to develop and launch its first rocket in 2021 and subsequently develop ability to provide launch service for satellites weighing up to 100 kg (220 lb).[2] The start-up later managed to raise up to 23.4 crore (US$2.9 million) from investors.[3] Till end of 2020, the company had raised almost $4 million and headed towards Indian Space Research Organisation for advisory.[4] A Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) was signed with Department of Space to obtain government's technological assistance in development of launch vehicles.[5] Although the company entered an agreement with Alaska Aerospace Corp. to launch rocket from Kodiak Launch Complex as a commercial launch pad to test rockets was not available in India, the deal eventually fizzled out as no progress was made with the vehicle. [6] AgniKul has received investment from personal capacity of Anand Mahindra, chairman of Mahindra Group. Although, amount was not specified.[7]

AgniKul signed a framework agreement with the Department of Space in September 2021 for access to ISRO facilities and technical expertise for the development of its two-stage small-satellite Agnibaan launch vehicle.[8] On 7 November 2022, Agnikul Cosmos received its first Flight Termination System (FTS) from ISRO. It will be used in Agnibaan scheduled for launch from Satish Dhawan Space Centre.[9]

Development of engines

In February 2021, Agnikul test fired its semi-cryogenic rocket engine Agnilet which will power second stage of its rocket Agnibaan for the first time. The engine has been developed in single-piece through 3D printing with no assembled parts.[10] On 8 November 2022, Agnilet was successfully test fired on Vertical Test Facility, Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station (TERLS), at Vikram Sarabhai Space Center (VSSC) to validate the design and manufacturing methodology used in the development process. AgniKul Cosmos holds the patent for design and manufacturing of single-piece rocket engine. The first dedicated factory to manufacture large number of 3D printed rocket engines is in IIT Madras Research Park.[11]

Launch vehicle

Agnibaan (lit.'Arrow of fire') is envisaged to be a mobile launch system capable of placing a 100 kg (220 lb) satellite into a 700 km (430 mi) orbit. The rocket will be 18 meters long with a diameter of 1.3 meters and a lift-off mass of 14,000 kg (31,000 lb). It will use clustered engines on first stage in various configurations depending upon the payload and will only use LOX and Kerosene based engines. The rocket is supposed to be manufactured by 3D printing at whole.[12]

See also


  1. ^ pronounced: ɐɡnɪ ’kʊl; According to the founders of the company, 'AgniKul' is the portmanteau of 'Agni' and 'Gurukul', and the name therefore translates to "a place where people learn to use fire"


  1. ^ "Agnikul". Retrieved 24 January 2022.
  2. ^ Reddy, Krishna (29 May 2019). "WATCH: IIT Madras-incubated Agnikul is aiming to become the first Indian startup to put small satellites into space".
  3. ^ Kashyaap, Sindhu (18 March 2020). "[Funding alert] Spacetech startup Agnikul raises Rs 23.4 Cr in pre-Series A round led by pi Ventures".
  4. ^ Srinivasan, Srinath (26 November 2020). "Into a new orbit: Making space for small satellites". The Financial Times. Retrieved 7 December 2020.
  5. ^ "Non-Disclosure Agreement signed with M/s Agnikul". ISRO. 3 December 2020. Retrieved 7 December 2020.
  6. ^ Narasimhan, TE (1 October 2020). "Agnikul signs agreement with Alaska Aerospace to test launch its rocket". Business Standard. Chennai. Retrieved 7 December 2020.
  7. ^ "Anand Mahindra backs space startup Agnikul Cosmos". The Economic Times. 10 February 2021. Retrieved 11 February 2021.
  8. ^ "ISRO signs agreement with Agnikul Cosmos allowing it access to facilities, expertise to build launch vehicles". Firstpost. 20 September 2021. Retrieved 24 September 2021.
  9. ^ "ISRO supplies rocket system to support private launch vehicle". mint. 11 November 2022. Retrieved 13 November 2022.
  10. ^ "Agnikul Cosmos fires single-piece, 3D printed rocket engine". MoneyControl. 11 February 2021. Retrieved 11 February 2021.
  11. ^ Kandavel, Sangeetha (8 November 2022). "Chennai-headquartered Agnikul Cosmos successfully test-fires 3D-printed rocket engine". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 9 November 2022.
  12. ^ "Agnibaan". AgniKul Cosmos. Retrieved 7 December 2020.