Stratolaunch could change launches into space

by Mark R

For those who really like the idea of launching a passenger-carrying rocket into space like an airplane should hear about Stratolaunch.

There is a video of it after the jump, but as you will soon see, it is a CG mock-up, no more real than what you see in a Pixar film. This because it is a concept for now, and you can see how it works. The plan takes off from a runway, and launches its huge payload (490,000 lbs).

If Stratolaunch is ever built, it would be the largest plane ever constructed. It has a massive wingspan of 380 feet, larger than a football field. It reminds me of Howard Hughes Hercules, but this one has six 747 engines and not eight propellers.

Stratolaunch is the design of Paul Allen and Burt Rutan. I’m pretty certain that you have heard of that first name, but the second guy designed Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShip One and Two.

I suppose that if it is ever built, it will be the way we put satellites and even manned spacecraft into orbit. No more will there be giant rockets full of fuel that have to be launched into space. I wonder if it will possible to put many objects into space per day, as if they were FedEx deliveries.



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