Headlines > News > New Service Offers Payloads to Space for $99

New Service Offers Payloads to Space for $99

Published by Sigurd De Keyser on Thu Apr 20, 2006 10:09 pm
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For $99 anyone can now send a payload into space through a new suborbital space launch service. Masten Space Systems’ new “CanSats To Space” payload program will carry 350 gram, “soda can” sized payloads into space and back. Typical payloads include science experiments such as amateur space telescopes, surveys of cellular mitosis in microgravity, and multi-spectral earth imaging missions for environmental science experiments. Experiments that until recently were only available to scientists with million dollar budgets.

The company’s XA 1.0 suborbital launch vehicle will carry the CanSats into space (at least 100 kilometers) where they will experience several minutes of microgravity and can be exposed to the vacuum of space. The vehicle will then gently return to its take-off point where the CanSats are removed and shipped back to their owners. The vehicle itself provides power and data communications for each CanSat which allows the customer to focus on their particular application.

David Masten, CEO, said, “CanSats have been flying for years on smaller rockets as part of educational programs to teach engineering and space science to high school students. By extending the CanSat capability into space, we are exposing K-12 students to world class science and real world engineering challenges.”

After the introductory period the price goes back to the normal US$199 per CanSat. Qualified educational institutions receive the educational discount price of US$129. Custom payloads that do not need the CanSat data and power services are also available in 1 kilogram increments for US$250 per kilogram. Payloads can be purchased by visiting http://masten-space.com.

About Masten Space Systems, Inc.

Masten Space Systems is a Santa Clara, CA based aerospace company developing the XA (eXtreme Altitude) line of Vertical Takeoff/Vertical Landing (VTVL) suborbital and orbital launch vehicles. The company will begin flying customer missions in the spring of 2008 that will deliver payloads into space for approximately US$25,000. For more information on the company see http://masten-space.com/.

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