Credit: SpinLaunch

 

SpinLaunch has been awarded a responsive launch prototype contract from the Department of Defense, facilitated by the Defense Innovation Unit.

Work is moving forward on the SpinLaunch concept: developing a kinetic energy-based launch system that will provide a low-cost orbital launch services for the rapidly growing small satellite industry.

Tapping existing technology

According to SpinLaunch, the launch system utilizes existing technology and components from oil/gas/mining and wind turbine industries. In tapping these technologies, the group is constructing a mass acceleration system, one that achieves very high launch speeds without the need for enormous power generation or massive infrastructure.

After ascending above the atmosphere, a relatively small, low-cost onboard rocket will be used to provide the final required velocity for orbital insertion.

Aerial view of New Mexico’s Spaceport America.
Credit: Spaceport America

High frequency launch

A SpinLaunch fact sheet explains that, because the majority of the energy required to reach orbit is sourced from ground-based electricity, as opposed to complex onboard rocket propulsion, total launch cost is reduced by an order of magnitude over existing launch systems.

Credit: New Mexico Economic Development Department/Screengrab Inside Outer Space

 

SpinLaunch adds that the group is able to offer readily-available, low cost, dedicated launches at high frequencies and is working to provide up to five launches per day at a price of $250,000 per launch.

Groundbreaking for SpinLaunch facility at New Mexico’s Spaceport America.
Credit: Credit: New Mexico Economic Development Department/Screengrab Inside Outer Space

 

New Mexico test facility

In January 2019, SpinLaunch moved from Silicon Valley to its new 140,000 square foot headquarters in Long Beach, California and last month broke ground on a new $7 million test facility on 10 acres at New Mexico’s Spaceport America.

Credit: New Mexico Economic Development Department/Screengrab Inside Outer Space

First kinetic energy flight tests are expected to occur early 2020 and the company has announced its plans for first launch by 2022.

SpinLaunch was founded in 2014, by Jonathan Yaney, a 1,000+ hour pilot and serial entrepreneur with 15 years’ experience founding companies in aerospace, Fortune 500 consulting, IT, and construction industries.

Go to this New Mexico Economic Development Department ground breaking video at:

https://youtu.be/lmO0k7Nv30g

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