posted on Dec, 15 2005 @ 05:21 PM
Space Tourism Firm Unveils Orbital Spacecraft Concept
By Tariq Malik
posted: 15 December 2005
8:00 a.m. ET
A space tourism group developing a suborbital rocket ship is now taking aim at orbital trips with a new spacecraft that doubles as a hypersonic
Canada’s London, Ontario-based firm PlanetSpace unveiled designs for its Silver Dart spacecraft, an eight-person vehicle derived from experimental
aircraft studies in the 1970s, Thursday with hopes of carrying fare-paying passengers into orbit and resupplying the International Space Station
“The Silver Dart is the DC-3 of the space industry,” said Geoff Sheerin, PlanetSpace president and CEO, in a telephone interview. “It has so
many things going for it in terms of performance.”
Sheerin’s Silver Dart program is separate from his Canadian Arrow effort to use a proven V2 rocket design to build a three-person rocket ship for
suborbital flights. Plans for the Silver Dart date back about four years as Sheerin was researching the Canadian Arrow rocket to compete in the $10
million Ansari X Prize competition for suborbital spaceflight.
“About five percent of my time has been looking and poring over the program,” Sheerin said of the Silver Dart plans.
But NASA’s intention to purchase commercial services for both cargo and crew flights to the ISS encouraged Sheerin and his team to push forward with
their work. NASA plans to retire its three remaining space shuttles – Atlantis, Endeavour and Discovery – in 2010.
I like this spaceplane it is using a lifting body technology.
[edit on 15-12-2005 by MarkLuitzen]