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A New Era in Spaceport Launch Cadence & the Reusability Problem It Poses

By Josh Saltsman, PE

March 28, 2022

Photo of Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport launch.

The current climate of the aerospace industry is ripe with ideas and opportunities to extend humanity’s presence far beyond our earthly origins. With destinations such as the Moon and Mars at the forefront of the minds of dreamers and engineers alike, a “Giant Leap” akin to Apollo-era accomplishments seems inevitable.

 

Outdated Spaceport Logistics Threaten a Bottleneck

Private companies are competing against each other, causing the development of new spacecrafts and ground support equipment to skyrocket. As the extraterrestrial aspirations of nations, companies, and individuals converge to define our collective vision of the future, an outdated spaceport logistics schema threatens to bottleneck the ever-increasing demand to send payloads to space.

These outdated aspects include limited capable vehicles to meet demand, limited manufacturing and processing capabilities, and inadequate launch infrastructure. As the industry expands, issues with the current spaceport launch cadence capabilities will only become more prevalent. To accommodate this rapidly increasing demand, launchpad upgrades and expansion of existing vehicle manufacturing and processing facilities will be crucial.

 

Prepare Now for Future Space Travel

One thing is certain - as humans continue to push towards becoming a space-faring species, the current spaceport logistics schema needs an upgrade to support the increased demands of future endeavors.

Recently, several RS&H aerospace professionals created a white paper that dives into what will undoubtedly be some of the first areas to address when beginning to prepare for the future for launch logistics:

  • Growing demand for launches
  • Limited manufacturing and processing capabilities
  • Launch infrastructure limitations
  • The need for a new universal metric

While not a comprehensive evaluation of the problems facing launch logistics and how to solve them, this paper serves as a solid jumping off point for future conversations.

If you would like to read it and join the conversation, please tell us in the form below where to send your copy.

Learn more about the spaceports RS&H has helped plan and license.

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Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls)

Topics: Insights, Aerospace & Defense, Aerospace, Spaceport

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About the Author

Josh Saltsman, PE, is an RS&H vice president and office leader for the company’s Merritt Island office. He has experience across the aerospace industry, with particular focus in civil engineering and site development. He can be reached at josh.saltsman@rsandh.com.

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