Social Media Sidebar


Please sign up, comment on articles and bring your friends!

Current poll

PlanetTech is asking:

What do you think about our new web site?

Love it, indeed
Really good solution
Same as old one
The old one was better
This is a new option

Quote of the day

Just because something doesn’t do what you planned it to do doesn’t mean it’s useless.


Thomas Edison

Darpa urgently wants a space plane it can fly day after day

Posted in Science on 30th May, 2016 03:39 PM by AlexMuller

The Pentagon is building another space plane. It already has one, the Air Force’s secretive X-37B, but DARPA, the Pentagon’s future-focused project’s research agency, wants another. This new space plane is the XS-1, with a deeply ambitious goal: deliver 3,000 pounds to orbit, daily, at a cost of $5 million for delivery.


In a solicitation that went out earlier this week, DARPA says it's looking to “enable routine, low cost space access,” making the delivery of satellites to orbit as routine as, say, shipping cargo across the oceans. DARPA’s been at this for a while; they announced initial contracts in 2014, and have steadily kept up with the program, funding the second stage in 2015.
What makes the new announcement stand out is that it seems almost impatient. Space isn’t necessarily hard, but it’s hard to do cheap, and the cost savings are key to DARPA’s whole vision of the XS-1 program. Normally, a project with the agency goes through three phases, with ideas winnowed down and more successful alternatives buoyed by further funding.
The latest announcement is for both Phase II and Phase III at once, spelling out what a company needs to do to “finalize a design, fabricate, assemble, and fly the XS-1 through a series of test campaigns that will validate critical technologies and capabilities necessary to drive down cost and time-to-space by an order of magnitude.“
The immediate goals are for a successful booster launch on 10 consecutive days, and a launch carrying a payload of at least 900 pounds. While many DARPA projects often call for entirely new designs, the XS-1 program is open to existing spacecraft, if they can meet the standards set out by DARPA.

Tags: spaceDARPAspaceplanehardwaresatellite

Read original article » Back to category



Recent headlines

  • Posted in Medicine on 2018-06-18 20:18:46
    Insight into role gut bacteria play in more
    Posted in Science on 2018-06-18 20:12:58
    Blood-based biomarker may predict whether you’ll more
    Posted in Science on 2018-06-17 23:45:17
    SpinLaunch raises $40M from Airbus, Google and others more
    Posted in Science on 2018-06-17 01:08:50
    New eyedrops could repair corneas, make glasses more
    Posted in Science on 2018-06-17 01:02:51
    121 giant exoplanets in habitable zones may more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-10 01:33
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-20 07:17
Spacex says China is their main competitor for more
Posted in Software on 2013-10-20 06:43
Pirate Bay Browser Clocks 1,000,000 more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-10 02:10
Google reportedly investing hundreds of millions into more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-14 03:13
Endothelial Cells Can Repair and Regenerate Organs, more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Spacex says China is their main competitor for more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Staring at Your Phone Could Be Making You Short more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Oculus Rift virtual reality headset coming to mobile, more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Delivering drugs via nanoparticles to target more

Recent Blog Posts

  • Posted by AlexMuller
    In five years quantum computing will be more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Google partners with Johnson and Johnson to make lower more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Electron holography microscope with spatial resolution down more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Lower cost advanced Nuclear power could dominate future US more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Why Hasn’t AI Mastered Language Translation? more

Login to your Account

Login to your PlanetTech Account here

Remember me

Create a New Account

You just need username and password

The following errors occured:
Verify password:
Remember me