Canadian launch startup SpaceRyde has inked a deal with ISILaunch, a launch services company based in the Netherlands, to launch four customer payloads on its balloon-lofted rocket.
The SpaceRyde approach: The launch startup is building a rocket that utilizes a stratospheric balloon instead of a first stage. The balloon is meant to lift the main rocket above 99% of the atmosphere, where the thrusters will fire up to bring customer payloads the rest of the way to orbit, from LEO to the Moon.
Once in space, the rocket takes on a new role. The craft is planned to be maneuverable in space, and capable of performing in-orbit refueling and life extension services. Each customer launch is also meant to add another servicer to SpaceRyde’s network.
SpaceRyde launches start at $250,000 for payloads up to 25kg. Each additional kg after that will run customers $10,000, up to a maximum of $1M per launch.
Right now, the rocket system is still in development, and the company has a series of test flights planned for 2023. Commercial flights are slated to begin in 2024.
The agreement: Through this contract, ISILaunch will pair customer payloads with four SpaceRyde flights in 2024. The two companies will work together to customize the missions to each client’s specific needs. And SpaceRyde will also get four additions to its planned Rocket Network out of the deal.