Lockheed Martin’s Reusable Booster System Flight Demonstrator Program.
Credit: Lockheed Martin artist’s concept

Tue, 16 October, 2012

Report Questions Cost Savings of U.S. Air Force Reusable Booster Plan

By Warren Ferster

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Air Force should hold off on major investments in a reusable launch vehicle concept until the economics are better understood but should continue and even expand smaller-scale efforts to reduce the technical risk of developing such a system, the National Research Council says in a new report.

Among other things, the Air Force Research Laboratory should build and fly more than one subscale prototype reusable booster system (RBS) under an existing program known as Pathfinder, the report said. “In addition, competition amongst RBS concepts should be maintained as long as possible to obtain the best system for the next generation of space launch,” the report said.

Read more: Report Questions Cost Savings of US Air Force Reusable Booster Plan | SpaceNews.com.

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