11 Aug 2010
Small is the new big. At least according to the U.S. Army who is developing a Multipurpose Nanomissile system — the smallest orbital launch vehicle — for the sole purpose of launching swarms of tiny satellites for various tactical missions. According to Fox News, it stands at just a little taller than a basketball hoop, and the rocket’s modularity could make it useful not only as a launch vehicle but potentially a missile defense target, sounding rocket and hypersonic test vehicle as well. This move reinforces the Army’s mission of developing cheap constellations of spacecraft that can be easily replaced, as opposed to the Air Force’s MO of building a small number of very expensive satellites. So, it’s a small world after all — well at least it is when it comes to the U.S. Army. Welcome all thoughts and feedback.