The future of spaceflight: space plane, reusable rocket or space elevator

Bookmark and Share

Since the launch of Sputnik, humanity has been regularly climbing to the stars. As the genre of science fiction shows famous Star Trek, the mission is to go where no man do has gone before. However, unfortunately the rapid evolution of the space flight in the 1960s and 1970s can be duplicated at the moment. At the time, the presence of the cold war precipitated the drive towards excellence in space research. Naturally, this become even more pronounced when the drive to the Moon takes place. However, with the fall of communism in the late 1980s, it became almost impossible to have this type of race between the Western bloc and the Eastern bloc. Now, as a result, in the 21st century, space exploration has become a little more that a taxi service space glorified with the use of the space shuttle.

Unfortunately, as of July 2011, the shuttle became a story. Now, it is not possible to have reusable transport system has been taken for granted since the 1980s. Thus, a passion for race of space may ask what is happening in the future of spaceflight now. First of all, the main scope of many space agencies is still to develop a reusable space plane that can be used to fly in space and come back with reusable equipment. The main idea is to develop a hypersonic airplane space which can take off like an airplane and reaching a sub-orbital flight with a combination of the air engine breathing as well as with the use of a turbo rocket. Given that this system would be completely reusable, the system can be used again and again until the equipment finishes its lifetime.

However, the scientific problem plaguing the Hypersonic airplane space is large, and as a result, the use of non-reusable rockets is also one of the focal points of the space program future. At least for 5 to 10 years, can be safely said that rockets non-reuseable will continue to dominate the global space industry. In addition, independently advances in space technology, non-reusable rockets is always the best and the cheapest way to a payload in orbit. Last but not least, of course, space elevators will continue to be an exotic solution to space flight due to the enormous number of problems related to the supporting structure of space elevators.

Dr. Guven is an aeronautical engineer and nuclear engineer who has worked as an academician, researcher and teacher in various institutions as well as in aerospace and nuclear industry as a consultant to solve technical problems and for the training of young engineers.