Firefly’s first rocket will be cheap enough for a single company to book a flight


Want to send your three pound pet rock into space? It’ll cost you at least $17,000 on one of SpaceX’s rockets. The other bad news is that you’ll probably have to wait for months, or even years, before a three-pound space opens up on a ship. And when it finally does, the launch date could be pushed back even further for business, weather or technical reasons.

Startup space cargo company FireFly isn’t any cheaper than SpaceX, though the $9,000 or $10,000 it will charge per pound of cargo is still more reasonable than if the government were to launch your pet rock. However, what it can offer is a trip to space inexpensive enough for a one or a few companies to book an entire rocket. Last week FireFly revealed Alpha, its first rocket, which can carry up to 882 pounds of cargo at a time. Reserving the entire rocket costs $8 or 9 million: that’s 10 times…

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