Launch: Stratolaunch aircraft as hypersonic testbed + Blue Origin overview + Video – LinkSpace’s not so original rocket

NewSpace Watch
September 21, 2018

Stratolaunch is studying the use of the company’s giant plane to air launch two different rocket powered hypersonic aircraft:

From GeekWire:

Hypersonic vehicles rank among the top technological frontiers for Pentagon officials, who have sounded the alarm about hypersonic weapon development programs in Russia and China. But it’s not yet clear whether Stratolaunch will join the hypersonic aerospace race.

“We are currently exploring potential partnership opportunities to develop an air-launched hypersonic testbed,” Stratolaunch said today in an emailed statement. “The hypersonic testbed would be deployed from our carrier aircraft and would be used for hypersonic research and technology development for space launch systems, however, no decision have been made yet.”

In the concept study presented this week, Corda and his colleagues provide a detailed description of a delta-wing testbed plane called the Hyper-Z. It would be 83.4 feet long, with a wingspan of 32.4 feet and a launch weight of about 65,000 pounds.


An overview of where Blue Origin is today and where it is headed: Building on New Shepard, Blue Origin to pump a billion dollars into New Glenn readiness –

Bezos also stressed that taking apart and refurbishing a vehicle will be more expensive than an expendable vehicle and that Blue Origin designed New Shepard and New Glenn for operational reusability.

There is also the New Armstrong launch vehicle, of which little is known. Keeping with the pattern of Blue Origin’s smaller launchers, the name suggests New Armstrong would enable crewed lunar missions, named after the first human to walk on the moon Neil Armstrong.

Such a vehicle would have to compete with SpaceX’s BFR, on both performance and reusability. Those plans stretch deep into the 2020s.


The LinkSpace reusable rocket seems familiar somehow – Linkspace on Twitter: “This’s the CG of NewLine-1. Notable, it’s based on real launch mission parameters. Please stay tuned to @linkspace_china. In the near future, we will frequently release the latest technological progress of suborbital reusable rockets(RLV-T5)。CG:@Pockn_CG”

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