ALAMOGORDO — The rocket building industry is taking shape in southern New Mexico and a Las Cruces company is leading the way.
In 2014, the ARCA Space Corporation relocated from Europe to the Las Cruces International Airport and brought a vision to corner the market on low-cost satellite delivery with a new breed of launch vehicle featuring cutting edge technology. The Haas 2CA rocket, named after medieval rocket pioneer Conrad Haas, is a single stage to orbit rocket can launch 220 pounds of payload into low earth orbit for significantly less cost than is currently available.
The rocket, built at the ARCA facility in Las Cruces, will be on display at the New Mexico Museum of Space History on Wednesday, April 19. The visit is part of a regional tour of the 50-foot rocket and an effort to educate New Mexico residents about the opportunities that the commercial space industry and ARCA are bringing to the state.
“The exciting thing for me is that ARCA is building their rockets here in southern New Mexico,” said Museum Executive Director Chris Orwoll. “With our rich heritage of space research and development for the US manned space program, it seems very appropriate that ARCA has chosen our state to manufacture their new spacecraft. It’s interesting to note that the aerospike engine that the Haas 2CA is using in based on technology first tested by NASA in the 60s for potential use in the space shuttle and later the Venture Star single stage to orbit craft in the early 2000s. Had the Venture Star project not been cancelled, it would have flown from southern New Mexico. ”
The ARCA rocket will be on display in the upper parking lot of the museum beginning at 1 p.m. and staying through the afternoon on Wednesday. The community is encouraged to come up and look, take pictures and ask questions.
Wednesday will be an opportunity for Otero County residents to get an up close and personal look at the new Haas 2CA and talk to ARCA representatives, such as CEO Dumitru Popescu.
ARCA Space Corporation was introduced to New Mexico several years ago as an X PRIZE competitor and Popescu quickly fell in love with the Land of Enchantment. With preliminary partnerships already in place with NASA’s space centers, ARCA is in the process of securing its Federal Aviation Administration license and is actively seeking US defense partnerships.
The first launch of the Haas 2CA is slated for 2018 at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia, but the manufacturing of the rocket fleet that will be needed to meet the needs of a $5 billion industry is happening in New Mexico at their Las Cruces facility. ARCA is also negotiating with Spaceport America for future flights from that location.
The New Mexico Museum of Space History is located at 3198 State Rte 2001. For more information, call 437-2840 or toll free 1-877-333-6589 or visit their website at www.nmspacemuseum.org.
Quelle: ALAMORGODO DAILY NEWS