Momentus Water-Plasma Space Transportation Service #SpaceAccess2019

Momentus will have its first launch June 27, 2019. They have $9 million in seed funding and have $20 million in customer contracts. The first mission is called El Camino Real and is the pathfinder mission.

Joel Sercel is presenting on Momentus Space’s Water-Plasma Propelled In-Space Transportation Services.

The system is super-safe and can be transported on the seat of a commercial airplane.

In 3-4 years, there will be 1500 small sats launched per year without including the mega-constellation satellites and Momentus sees these small satellites as a large potential market.

Nextbigfuture first covered Momentus Space in November, 2018.

$1.2 million for 1 kilometer per second of delta-V for the Vigoride product.
All later systems on their roadmap have 6 kilometers per second of delta-V.

They use microwaves to heat water. A resonant cavity superheats water to plasma (ionized gas) at several thousand degrees kelvin.

Vigoride Extended will be able to take 200 kilogram from low-earth orbit to lunar orbit. It could take 300 kilograms from low-earth orbit to GEO.
The cost would be $100,000/kg.

Ardoride would be able to move a few thousand kilograms.

They will have 2 to 3 times the ISP of chemical rockets.

They can dispense multiple satellites in different orbits and keep going.

SOURCES-, Live coverage of Joel Sercel presentation at Space Access 2019.

4 thoughts on “Momentus Water-Plasma Space Transportation Service #SpaceAccess2019”

  1. It could potentially park for long periods of time without issues of cryo fuel storage, and then be called upon without needing to launch something. I guess their biggest near-term benefit will be roughly doubling payload to higher orbits by acting as a final stage – not sure whether they’re cost-competive at that application though?

    At $100,000/kg to get 5km/s, it doesn’t sound that revolutionary? Will that price get better when they get the option to reload the water supply and reuse the vehicle?

    Water delivery to LEO should be much cheaper than $100K/kg. If they design to “rehydrate” on orbit, doesn’t seem like it’d be too hard to design a water depot and put a number of them at different convenient parking orbits – though a small portion of delta-V would have to be reserved to get to a water depot. One of the first ‘profitable’ tasks might be shifting a full water depot from LEO to GEO. With that in place, nearly full delta-V could be used to put something in GEO, then it could rehydrate and head back to LEO for another mission.

  2. So you can build and launch a spaceship for $29 million these days? Not bad.

    I mean that’s still more money than I make in a whole month, but it’s starting to reach the start-up stage, where the rate of tech development suddenly goes up by an order of magnitude or 3.

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