Everyone knows about the space race in the 20th century, the cold war between Russia and America. Well now new space race has begun, but not between some country or nation but between private space companies and the public sector.Here are some of the major private space companies in the 21st century Space Race.
SpaceX stands for Space Exploration. It was founded by Elon Musk in 2002 to make Space Flight cheap. Elon Musk find it very disturbing that after every space flight the rocket is rendered useless,which is a terrible use of the resources.The first successful flight attained was in 2006 after a series of failed launches, during its failed attempts this company was on the verge of bankruptcy. SpaceX has its reputation of learning from its mistakes, now SpaceX has around 95% success rate. The primary goal of this company is to land humans on Mars. SpaceX plan to reach Mars by providing cheap transportation by increasing the thrust to weight ratio and also the most important , reusability of the rockets. SpaceX currently has a two type of vehicles that include Falcon 9, Falcon Heavy. Falcon Heavy holds the record of the most powerful rocket currently in operation.
2. Blue Origin
Blue Origin is an American privately funded company. Its name refers to our Earth. Its owned by the world’s most richest person and the CEO and the owner of the most customer-friendly online shopping brand, Jeff Bezos.While the target of this company is not to reach to Mars but making space accessible to the public with orbital and sub-orbital flights. Though the company have not yet done any commercial or public flights, it has vehicles like New Shepard which is capable of doing manned and unmanned orbital and sub-orbital flights. Its motto is Gradatim Ferociter which is the Latin for Step by Step, Ferociously.
3. Virgin Galactic
Virgin Galactic is a space company under the Virgin Group, founded by Sir Richard Branson. This company aims to provide its customers an experience of the edge of space with its SpaceShipTwo. They also target to make a point to point travel on Earth with a ludicrous speed of 3000mph. You may think this company is like imitating Blue Origin, while there aim is same but there approach is completely different. Blue Origin do a vertical launch and landing, on the other hand, Virgin Galactic do more of a plane like take off and landing. Virgin Galactic is planning for a launch this year.
4. Rocket Lab
Rocket Lab is one of the most innovative space company in the list. While the big players like SpaceX is going big to reduce per Kg cost of launches, Rocket Lab is going small, making rockets small to make the launches more affordable for clients with small budgets. Also they are making with 3-D printing its parts. Their aim is to provide with cheap and frequent launches. Their arsenal of vehicles includes its rocket Electron with its first successful flight on 21 January 2018.
5. United Launch Alliance
United Launch Alliance or ULA is a joint venture between Lockheed Martin Space Systems and Boeing Defence and security.Formed in 2006 was a major player for launching government and military satellites until SpaceX was awarded a contract in 2016.ULA and NASA is collectively undertaking a mission aptly named Space Launch System abbreviated SLS. This is a Space shuttle derived heavy lift vehicle which will not only replace the Space Shuttle but also will be only the vehicle under the lead of NASA which will put the man on Mars.
6. Team Indus
Team Indusis an Indian space agency, as the name suggests. Initially named Axiom Research Labs, was established in 2011 with the aim to win Google Lunar X Price, but the competition have ended with no winner. Still, the company is working on a project they call it “The Moonshot” with the aim to be the first private company to land a rover on the moon and explore its surface.