The Philippines’ first rocket company aims for green launches

Image courtesy of Orbital Exploration Technologies

Orbital Exploration Technologies, The Philippines’ first commercial spaceflight company, is working on developing its own launch vehicles with the aim of providing green, low-cost and sustainable launches.

The startup, founded by Dexter P. Baño Jr., will create a space launch system that will be powered by renewable kerosene derived from waste plastics. It has named this proprietary fuel OrbitX RP-2, after the refined kerosene RP-1 typically used in rockets.

OrbitX RP-2 will be used to power OrbitX Haribon SLS-1, a suborbital two-stage rocket that could launch payloads of up 200kg, which the startup will develop with a targeted launch date of 2023-24. The rocket is designed to achieve 844kN of thrust, and will be 12.02 metres high.

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Orbital Exploration Technologies, using its OrbitX Haribon SLS-1, hopes to conduct 6 launches a year. Each launch is projected to cost US$4.959 million, which the company says will be 13% cheaper compared to Rocket Lab’s Electron. The company has secured an initial funding of US$50,000 from angel investors.

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