Japanese startup making reusable spaceplanes

PD Aerospace is a Japanese startup that is trying to build reusable spaceplanes.

They want to reduce the cost of access to space by 100 times.
They want to create sub-orbital space tourism.

They want their first space plane flying tourists to suborbital altitude by 2023.

They have raised about $5 million (520 million yen) in funding.

Primary uses of funds
・Development of a new type of engine (jet-rocket combustion mode switchable engine) and its practical application
・Development of three types of experimental unmanned planes; X05, X06, and X07
*X07: Total length 8 meters, gross weight 3.5 tons, unmanned suborbital plane with the capability of reaching 100km

The engine can switch from air-breathing mode – where the engine burns liquid propellant with atmosphere air to generate exhaust – to rocket mode, where the engine will switch to on-board oxidizer – to generate thrust. It can fly from a runway and reach suborbital altitudes.

Development Spaceplane type

Spaceplane type	Full length	Payload	Height	Main applications
Multipurpose observation aircraft	Unmanned	5m	50m	50m〜10km	Observation
Suborbital aircraft	Unmanned	8m	100kg	100km	Microgravity test
High altitude atmospheric observation
Suborbital aircraft	Manned	14.8m	1000kg
(6+2people)	100km	Space tourism
Suborbital aircraft
+Air launch rocket	Manned	T.B.D.	200kg	400~500km
(Sun-synchronous orbit)	Orbit insertion of micro satellites