Friday, 19 April 2024
The creation of gas stations is space aims to eliminate the paradigm of single use spacecraft thanks to space refueling. The Orbit Fab company, founded in 2018, launched the first commercial fuel depot to LEO and, in October, Blue Origin the company of billionaire Jeff Bezos announced its idea to create an orbital tanker network.
Blue Origin’s project aims to develop tankers that permanently orbit the Moon so that rockets can stop and refuel at these modules. To accomplish this, they are working on the creation of a spaceship called “Cislunar Transporter’, which will carry the fuel from Earth to the orbital tanker.
The space modules, which will be no larger than 20 meters, will be launched empty to the moon, where they will be put in position. Once the mothership refuels them, they will remain in orbit until Blue Origin’s rockets need to refuel. Since the modules are reusable, they will only return to our planet at the end of their lifespans or when they need repairs.
Currently, Orbit Fab’s RAFTI refueling port has become the industry standard and they have entered into the first few refueling service agreements, both commercial and with the United States government. This company has also resupplied the International Space Station with water.
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