To boldly go

Putting stuff into space is an expensive (and dangerous) business. Let's face it, if you really had the choice, which would you prefer, taking off plane-style down a runway, or balanced on top of a tall, thin, pencil-balanced-on-its-end style structure? For that matter, the technology used to get stuff into orbit is very poor on the environmental side. Okay, hydrogen/oxygen engines are green, but the way various stages of the rocket are discarded is a tad wasteful.

When the space shuttle was introduced, the idea was that this was a reusable and hence cheaper and less wasteful vehicle - but it still relies on those huge discarded boosters and fuel tanks.

So if you really could do a plane-style rocket that could take you properly into orbit, rather than a Virgin Galactic sub-orbital flights, it would be quite something. Pie in the sky? Well, yes, it is right now. But a British company called Reaction Engines believes they have the technological concept to make it possible.



You can read more about it here, provided you have a high tolerance for the word 'amazing'.

Comments

  1. Thanks Brian, for keeping me up to date; this looks like a throwback to Thunderbirds via Concorde and an american fighter jet of some description.....

    ....there doesn't seem to be much innovation here unless I missed the point about reusing the engines

    Will it ever get into the air I wonder..?

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