Longshot Space -Low-Cost Space Launch System

Longshot Space Is Developing A Very Dumb And Low-Cost Space Launch System!

Longshot Space is a start-up developing a low-cost hypersonic launch system to send objects into orbit. The goal is to create a simpler and more affordable alternative to traditional rockets, as relying on expensive rockets for future space colonies would not be practical in terms of cost and demand.

As far as how the system actually works, the name “Longshot” kind of says it all. The contraption is both “very, very horizontal” and also, very, very long. in its design. The method involves setting up a permanent structure that can propel vehicles to extremely fast speeds. A kick stage gives the initial push, and additional thrusters activate as the vehicle moves along the accelerator.

By bringing the vehicle to orbital velocities on the ground, Longshot Space hopes to bring the cost of launch to as low as $10/kg (in comparison, the price tag of a Falcon 9 ride-share is $6,500 per kilogram).

To achieve speeds of Mach 5, an 80-foot long accelerator using compressed gas is necessary. For Mach 10 speeds, two-to-three football fields of infrastructure are needed, and for Mach 25 to 30 speeds, several kilometers of infrastructure are required.

In order to achieve hypersonic speeds, facilities must be located in extremely remote areas — think the Australian bush or the arid regions of Kenya, due to the accompanying sonic booms produced during launches.

Longshot does have some competitors in the burgeoning Launch Stuff Into Space But Not in a Rocket field, the catapult-like venture SpinLaunch being a notable rival.

The profit will come from the increasing need for the services provided by Longshot in space, rather than the launch system itself. They emphasize on the importance of having a system that can do it at extremely low cost and is dumb as hell. Make it bigger. Don’t make it smarter. That’s expensive.

Reference- TechCrunch, Interesting Engineering, Futurism, New Horizon, Popular Science