15 April 2008
Announcements - Other (None)
Rocket Racing League Announced
And why it's good for space tourism
by Alan Breakstone
by Alan Breakstone

On April 14, the Rocket Racing League (RRL) announced that its inaugural rocket-boosted exhibition race will take place on August 1 and August 2 at the popular EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA, the largest air show in the world.

Two private pilots will fly their commercial rocketplanes against each other at EAA AirVenture, and the RRL expects an audience of 700,000 fans to cheer them on. The RRL press release also lists the schedule for three more exhibition races this year.

The RRL was founded by X-Prize creator Peter Diamandis and Indy 500 veteran Granger Whitelaw.

In addition, the RRL announced that Armadillo Aerospace, long known to New Space fans, will develop rocket engines for the competing RRL teams. XCOR, another New Space company whose Lynx suborbital plane was recently announced, is already a major contractor for the RRL.

The RRL's announcement of its first exhibition race marks an important milestone for the development of private, commercial rocket-powered craft: if successful, both XCOR and Armadillo Aerospace should get both serious cashflow and hands-on operational experience that can be applied to their manned suborbital ventures.

So even though the rocket racers will not leave the atmosphere, the RRL could serve to advance the development of space tourism.
Share |
Alan Breakstone 15 April 2008
Please send comments, critiques and queries to feedback@spacefuture.com.
All material copyright Space Future Consulting except as noted.