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Phantom Express
Review by Ernest Lilley
Boeing  ISBN/ITEM#: phantomexpress
Date: 15 June 2017

Links: Boeing Phantom Express Home / Press Release / Show Article /

DARPA has tapped Boeing to develop a SIngle Stage to Orbit plane for satellite delivery dubbed the Phantom Express. The spaceplane will climb to it's satelite release point using the thrust from an Aerojet Rocketdyne AR-22, a legacy from the shuttle program. Once its payload is released it will do a glide return, and be ready for refuelling and another trip into space. During the test phase the plane is to do a flight a day for ten days, an ambitious schedule considering the original plan to launch a shuttle flight every month. 

From official release/information:

A Rapid, Reusable Spaceplane Boeing and the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency are collaborating to design, build and test a technology demonstration vehicle for the agency’s Experimental Spaceplane (XS-1) program. The spaceplane—called Phantom Express—would reinvent space missions for commercial and government customers by providing rapid, aircraft-like access to space. Within minutes, the autonomous, reusable spaceplane would launch its upper stage to deploy small satellites into low Earth orbit. It would then land on a runway to be prepared for its next flight. Advanced Capabilities Space Access for Launching Small Satellites Phantom Express Technical Specifications Length 100 ft (30.5 m) Height 24 ft (7.3 m) Diameter 13.7 ft (4.1 m) Wing Span 62 ft (19 m) Engine 1 Aerojet Rocketdyne AR-22 Fuel Liquid hydrogen Oxidizer Liquid oxygen

(Source: Boeing)

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