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NASA will test SpinLaunch concept

The project is innovative, but the engeneering problems are huge

11.Apr.22 11:06 AM
By Shawn Highstraw
Photo NASA


NASA will test SpinLaunch concept

The US space agency NASA is conducting a test at the SpinLaunch company in New Mexico later this year. SpinLaunch is developing a system that allows rockets to be hurled into space from a large centrifuge.

NASA signed a contract with SpinLaunch for a test flight to take place later in 2022. Then a load is thrown into the air and then picked up again.

SpinLaunch uses a 91 meter high vacuum chamber. Inside it is an arm that can rotate at a speed of eight thousand kilometers per hour, before releasing its cargo and firing into space through a vertical tube.

Last October, SpinLaunch completed its first successful test flight. In doing so, 20 percent of the maximum power was used, but still the test load reached a height of several kilometers.

By launching rockets into the air, launches should be much more efficient. Indeed, in normal rocket launches, a lot of fuel is consumed to overcome gravity. Rockets launched with spin launch require less fuel. Something is still needed, as an extra push, for example, to put satellites into orbit around the Earth.

SpinLaunch does not intend to take astronauts to space in this way. The rockets that are hurled into the air are relatively small and suitable for light loads, such as small satellites.

In the coming time, the company will mainly conduct test flights. In 2025, a test flight is to be made for the first time, which will go into orbit around the Earth.

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