Space Travel

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One of the most important points for space travel is energeitics - assuming reusable rockets are available in the public domain. How much fuel does a Falcon 9 Heavy take? 75k gallons. [1]. How long would it take to generate that amount of fuel from renewable energy in a village? Take a Dunbar village of 200 acres with only 2 acres in fuel crop: photovoltaics + 400 kW wind turbine. Each day produces an equivalent of 200 gallons of hydrogen. One year of energy generation is sufficient to go to space. Not bad - meaning that even a modern village can afford to have a space program. The cost of 75k gallons of fuel is only $150k, meaning that a trip to the Space Station could cost only $500k in fuel at current fuel prices - assuming open source, modular, lifetime design technology. This is about 100x cheaper than the current $1.8B contract with Space X for a dozen flights to the Space Station. This is a baseline, and it would require significant development to realize, probably on the order of $1B R&D costs, depending on availability of open source prior art.

Development Costs

  • $90M for Space X's first rocket, and $300M for Falcon Heavy. [2]. At least 10x lower cost than NASA.

Companies of Intrest


  • Known for making vertical launch systems reusable and far cheaper than the competition by using retrorockets for landing the boosters, and catching the aerodynamic fearings in large nets
  • Their Website

Copenhagen Suborbitals

  • A hobbyiest group attempting human spaceflight
  • User:Eric speaking here, on my personal, non business youtube account (i think, i'll double check just in case) i asked and they said they wanted to be open source, but had to not be due to the risk of missile development by nefarious groups
  • Their Website

Rocket Lab

  • A company who makes the Electron Launch Vehicle, which is one of, if not the, smallest orbital launch platforms
  • This is useful, as many payloads, such as Cubesats need to get to orbit, but do not need a large launch payload overall
  • Thus the Electron Launch Vehicle saves money for groups looking to launch small payloadss, and lowers the barriers to entry into the feild
  • Their Website

Bigelow Aerospace

Reaction Engines Limited

  • A group specializing in combined cycle, precooled hypersonic engines
  • Their main development is Skylon, a SSTO HTOL Spaceplane
  • Skylon is an ofshoot of the British Aerospace HOTOL Program
  • If successful, this will allow for heavily reusable, and safe delivery of cargo, and human payloads to orbit, on a reliable basis
  • Also the horizontal takeoff and landing is more familiar to the average person, and thus may be more approachable to the average person than vertical launch solutions


  • This company has been put on hold, mostly due to spaceX reducing its place in the market, but it still may have a place
  • This is a company that proposed a SpaceGun utilising a Light Gas Gun based of hydrogen as the light gas being pushed, and natural gas for the explosive push
  • it would consist of a 1.1 km long pipe submerged in a body of water at an angle. It would accelerate payloads to around 6km/s. A small booster would be used for circularizing the orbit, but price would be dramatically reduced
  • This would not be human rated, but it could be very beneficial for resupply and/or fuel depot refueling
  • This would also have a rather fast relaunch time as all that is needed is the insertion of a new payload, and gas repressurization
  • Barrel wear is one concern
  • Some groups propose the use of a coilgun or railgun for a similar but electric approach, which especially makes sense in enviroments with lots of sunlight (for electricity generation), and low temperature + air pressure. Earth's moon is one such place
  • The Wikipedia Page on Quicklaunch

See Also

Useful Links