Picture credited by Wikipedia
Spinlaunch, a newly developed startup in the Silicon Valley, has raised $40 million for their innovative ideas for launching spacecraft, and payloads into orbit. They claim to use a “catapult” like structure to launch them into space which would use very less energy compared to the current systems used.
The idea has not been the unique ones. Since Jeff Bezos, Amazon CEO and founder of the private space company Blue Origin had been through it in the early days of his space station venture. He had dismissed the very principle of the idea as having many glitches and “practical problems” which came from the book “Space Barons.”
The same idea has been picked up by Spinlaunch, and it has been successful in raising $40 million for it. The investors include the massive organizations like Airbus Ventures, Google’s Venture fund (GV) and Kleiner Perkins.
The specifics of the appearance of the project are not confirmed as yet, but the company claims to make use of kinetic energy, generated from ground-based electricity, to launch the spacecraft or payload. Since it uses regular electricity, and not rocket fuel, to power the catapult, it’ll provide a very cheap alternative for space stations. However, TechCrunch does believe that some payloads may need an additional rocket motor to enter space.
Secondly, their technology comes from the fundamental principles of Physics, which has also attracted the interest of many around. It is the law of conservation of momentum. Spinlaunch plans to use energy to spin the small rockets in circles at about 5,000 miles per hour, which will then be flung into space.
A partner at Kleiner Perkins, Wen Hsieh said in one of his statements that he is most intrigued by the idea of using renewable sources of energy to power the catapult, which reduces usage of highly toxic and dangerous rocket fuel. GV partner Shaun Maguire said the project is unique from the traditional rocket-based methods for space launch.
With high hopes, Spinlaunch wishes to attempt its first launch within the upcoming four years. They are also in talks with four different states to construct launch sites for their catapults.
This new budding company has successfully raised a considerable amount of capital, but the information regarding its project is still not entirely public. Their website does have pinches of information, but it is unknown how the catapult will look like.