Boeing and Lockheed Martin plan reusable rockets to be launched in 2019

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Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos who developed Blue Origin rocket firm is said to be developing a reusable rocket that is to be launched in 2019. The rocket is being built by The United Launch Alliance, which is dual effort made by Boeing and Lockheed Martin. Each flight will cost $100 million. The rocket is currently powered by RD-180 engines but will likely be using Aerojet Rocketdyne engines similar to those used on the retired space shuttle later on. The objective of the reusable rocket is to cut costs by ejecting the engines midair, and catching them with a helicopter nearby for transport. Various tests have been run with space probes from NASA but ended in flames and frustration. SpaceX is also developing a reusable rocket which they used to launch a resupply capsule to ISS. Unfortunately, the recovery of the rocket afterwards failed, exploding as it hit the ship intended to catch it. Space travel has always been thought of as an expedition, or even a destination. The ISS (international space station) is currently the home to six astronauts who are conducting experiments that are furthering our knowledge of space and how humans respond to different stimuli in microgravity situations. Factors such as calcium loss in bones, space debris and fuel time have to be taken into consideration when making any expedition into space regardless if it’s official or private. ULA is aiming to commercialize space travel, making it accessible to more and more people. Space tourism shows promise in the near future as more and more companies such as SpaceX, Biglow Aerospace, and Virgin Galactic are being funded by private investors and continue to grow with each new innovation in the field of aerospace engineering. As technology compounds on itself, we can observe the accuracy of Moore’s law, which, based on trends in the past, states that “the number of dense transistors in a dense integrated circuit has doubled approximately every two years”. This goes for other forms of tech too. Aeronautics is advancing at an extraordinary pace that companies will have to keep up with. Just as the development and commercialization of cars, computers and phones happened so rapidly, it’s not unreasonable to expect the same from rockets and other space vehicles. The only difference is amount of money that it takes to build them. And with 100 millionaires backing more than 20 companies, it’s easy to imagine hearing about your rich friend’s trip to the mesosphere in the next 30 years.

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