SpinLaunch is developing a technology that will spin rockets up to 5,000 miles per hour in a giant centrifuge and then fling them into space.
So far they have built a prototype centrifuge that has managed to send an 11-pound projectile up to 4,000 miles per hour, and are in the process of building one three times the size in New Mexico. The goal is to launch a 110-pound test vehicle into suborbital flight by the end of the year.
The centrifuge spins a long arm with a launch vehicle on one end and a counterweight on the other. Slowly ramping up speed over a few hours, an airlock opens and the rocket is released when peak velocity is reached.
Still not able to quite reach orbit, the rocket's engines will give a boost when the rocket reaches 20,000 feet, but they will only need about a minute's worth of burn, drastically reducing the cost of launching payload.
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