Rockets of Today

— failed plans, 2017–present —

This section is for projects which seemed promising enough so they got written up on this page, but then were abandoned before they ever reached orbit, and also for private ventures which may have reached orbit but never reached profitability, and were therefore shut down. Some of them have good ideas which might make some kind of comeback later in some different form. So far, five rockets have made the transition to this section: Vector Launch (which went bust without finishing a workable vehicle), Boeing’s Phantom Express project for DARPA (which was abandoned as too difficult), Orbital/Northrop’s Omega (which they shelved when the Air Force showed no interest), Astra (which occasionally succeeded but usually could not get the rocket all the way to orbit), and most sadly, Virgin Orbit (which actually had four successful launches).

Several other marginal ideas are probably waiting to come over here soon. In fact, I think I will be gradually broadening the qualification criteria, so that a few companies which are clearly not making it, but not formally bankrupt or cancelled yet, can be moved here. That would ease some of the overburden in the current and future sections.

— Rockets included with current filters: · Vector · Phantom Express · OmegA · LauncherOne · Astra —