Elon Musk Says Orbital Refilling is Vital to Humanity’s Future

Elon said orbital refilling is vital to humanity’s future in space. More likely spacecraft to spacecraft (as aircraft do aerial refueling), than a dedicated depot, at least at first.

NASA and SpaceX are working on orbital refueling.

It has recently been revealed that Boeing suppressed the development and discussion of orbital refueling.

11 thoughts on “Elon Musk Says Orbital Refilling is Vital to Humanity’s Future”

  1. Taking a more abstract look, it seems to be like Apollo lunar rendezvous idea, big change with one idea. Al Globus ELEO to Moon is similar, also, having lunar activity *based* in orbit, just Earth orbit this time. Only do what you must on lunar surface. It is a planet, not a place to live.

  2. The ISS would qualify for orbital assembly. I’m guessing you mean assembling larger missions to other celestial bodies.

  3. Orbital assembly is another one of those “vital to humanity’s future” technologies that’s been deliberately not developed.

  4. The story is from before SpaceX. Orbital fuel depots would allow the same missions SLS was being designed for WITHOUT the need for a new larger rocket.

    The senators did not like it because SLS means jobs for their states and ULA itself was not fond of the idea because they wanted to keep milking the SLS cash cow.

  5. No, they stepped over a dollar because a powerful Senator threatened to bring the whole thing down if they bent over for it. From Berger:

    “Senator Shelby called NASA and said if he hears one more word about propellant depots he’s going to cancel the space technology program.”

  6. duh. I still dont get it why they want to load everything into 1 single rocket when you can launch many and assemble in orbit.. especially for mars. launch 10 SLS with only fuel.. so what..

  7. I’m shocked – a US company suppressed a valuable technology to compromise a competitor and ensure higher profits just shocking I say

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