The company launches satellites using a giant rotating device
The SpinLaunch launcher, which is larger than the Statue of Liberty and acts like an Olympic hammer thrower, recently went online in the New Mexico desert.
Rocket fuel is very expensive and releases a lot of greenhouse gases. SpinLaunch launches satellites into space like an Olympic hammer throw competition. The company says its approach will be ten times cheaper and requires four times less fuel.
The future of satellite launch may take shape in New Mexico, where a startup has recently tested a system designed to launch objects into space instead of launching them into rocket orbit.
To place satellites in space, we place them on a rocket carrying a ton of propellants, then burn those propellants to generate propulsion. This allows the rocket to release gravity and, when lifted enough, can release its payload.
The development of reusable missiles has made the process much cheaper – we used to have to bear all the cost of a missile as part of a launch – but fuel is still very expensive and burning it emits a lot of greenhouse gases.
California-based space startup SpinLaunch is testing a different approach to launching satellites – one that involves spinning them quickly and then dropping them at the right moment.
It’s something like throwing an Olympic hammer, but with satellites instead of metal balls, and even SpinLaunch CEO Jonathan Yeni knows it’s weird, which is why this startup has so many, so many in the last seven years under the radar. Have.
“I find that the bolder and more insane the project, the better it is to just work on it – instead of talking about it,” he told Cyan. “We had to prove to ourselves that we could really do it.”
On October 22, SpinLaunch used a vacuum-sealed “accelerator” above the Statue of Liberty to spin a 10-foot projectile on a swivel arm to reach speeds of “thousands of miles per hour.” According to Yanni
The projectile flew “tens of thousands of feet” when it was released from the accelerator tube, he said.
SpinLaunch says this approach will be 10 times cheaper and requires 4 times less fuel.
Over the next eight months, SpinLaunch plans to conduct about 30 more tests of its submarine accelerator in New Mexico – which puts only 20% of its total power behind this first test flight – before building a larger orbital accelerator capable of placing Satellites are in orbit. . .
“We can basically validate our aerodynamic models in terms of the appearance of our orbital vehicles, and this allows us to test new technologies on the release mechanisms,” Yanni said.
SpinLaunch expects its orbital system to orbit at about 440 pounds (200 kg) per launch – the weight of two small satellites. During the launch of this satellite, the projectile lands on the shore about a minute before splitting. The amplifier connected to the payload puts more pressure on it to direct it to its circuit.
Each shipment is a small fraction of what most rocket launchers carry – for example, the Falcon 9 SpaceX can carry more than 50,000 pounds (22,800 kg) into low-Earth orbit.
However, SpinLaunch says its approach will be 10 times cheaper and requires 4 times less fuel than is currently used to place loads of this size in orbit. It also produces zero emissions in the most critical layers of the atmosphere.
And since this system is very cheap, they can make many adjustments and use it with a volume that is small in terms of load volume. The company is looking for a site for its orbital accelerator that can support “dozens of launches per day” and expects to make its first customer launches in late 2024.
Looking to the future: If SpinLaunch can reduce the cost of placing small satellites in space, the impact of the waves could be enormous – its microstructure enables scientists to perform experiments that are impossible on Earth, and cheap access to them could lead to technological advances And be produced Health care and other items.
SpinLaunch isn’t the only company exploring unique ways to reduce space access costs – British startup B2space is developing a balloon to carry rockets into the high atmosphere.
Like the SpinLaunch system, this reduces both fuel costs and greenhouse gas emissions in lower atmospheres, suggesting that future satellite launches may be cheaper and cleaner.
Source : bigthink
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