An American company recently presented the Ravn X, which is considered the largest drone in the world and will be used to launch satellites into orbit
| 12/08/2020 | ionicons-v5-c13: 45 | Francisco Trejo |
USA.- This week, an Alabama-based company called Aevum presented the Ravn X , a drone designed to transport and launch satellites in low orbit. It weighs approximately 24,947.58 kilos when carrying a full payload, making it one of the heaviest drones in existence today. It’s also 18 feet tall, has a 60-foot wingspan, and looks like it came straight out of Macross Plus.
The promise of the drone is that it can put a payload into low Earth orbit in about three hours, a fact that Aevum claims it will allow you to shorten wait times on launches of satellites from years to months. Outside of its ominous-looking exterior and record-breaking mass, the Ravn X It is not that different from other aircraft. You only need about 1 mile of runway to fly, allowing you to take off from almost any commercial airport. It also uses the same fuel as a traditional jet.
Once he Ravn X reaches a suitable altitude, the two-stage rocket it carries falls from its belly and ignites in about half a second. Eventually, Aevum says 95 percent of the launch vehicle will be reusable, but about 70 percent can be used again to begin with. When the Ravn X finish a delivery, simply land and return to a perch to prepare for another launch.
Aevum says that the Ravn X represents a new paradigm of putting a rocket in the space. And while the autonomous aspect of their approach is different, there are other companies working to launch rockets at the space from airplanes. Virgin Orbit is one such company, although it has yet to successfully complete a trial launch. The first mission of Ravn X You will see it attempt to put the US Space Force’s ASLON-45 satellite into orbit sometime next year.