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

Swiss company aims to fly satellites into space

Posted in Science on 18th Mar, 2013 12:34 AM by AlexMuller

If you want to launch a satellite in the usual way – on top of a rocket – it will typically cost you at least US$50,000,000. Newly-inaugurated aerospace firm Swiss Space Systems (S3), however, claims that it will be able to put your small satellite into orbit for about 10.6 million bucks.


Why so cheap? S3 is planning on flying satellites into space, using an airliner and an unmanned shuttle.


The launch system would incorporate an Airbus A300, an existing commercial aircraft that’s already certified for zero gravity flights. Mounted on the back of the A300 would be the shuttle, and contained within it would be a satellite weighing no more than 250 kilograms (551 lbs).


The airliner would take off from a designated spaceport, and release the shuttle at an altitude of 10,000 meters (32,808 feet). The shuttle would then start its engines and climb up to 80 kilometers (50 miles), at which point the satellite would be launched from its cargo bay. From there, the satellite’s upper stage engine would take it into orbit, while the shuttle would glide back down to the spaceport for reuse.


According to S3, not only would its system require considerably less fuel than conventional rocket launches, but also – if need be – the launch could be called off at any point, with the shuttle returning to earth still carrying its payload. Additionally, because the A300 could take off from any runway capable of accommodating it, multiple spaceports could be established in a variety of locations around the world. This means that clients wouldn’t need to transport their satellites great distances in order to have them launched.


The first of these spaceports is planned to open in the Swiss city of Payerne by 2015, with the first test launches scheduled to take place by the end of 2017. Additional ports are planned for Malaysia and Morocco, with other locations pending.

Read original article » Back to category



Recent headlines

  • Posted in Hardware on 2018-11-13 05:19:55
    NASA certifies SpaceX's Falcon 9 for its most more
    Posted in Software on 2018-11-09 03:19:01
    OpenAI launches reinforcement learning more
    Posted in Science on 2018-11-08 03:58:12
    Plan to find and explore Ocean Worlds and search for more
    Posted in Medicine on 2018-11-06 01:18:21
    Glowing chemical 'could aid brain cancer surgery' more
    Posted in Business on 2018-11-06 01:11:11
    Space Force will be more about putting up new 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
    Even light drinking increases risk of more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Researchers have discovered how to slow more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Human retinas grown in a dish explain how color vision more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    The smartphone app that can tell you’re depressed before more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Neural networks don’t understand what optical illusions 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