Radian Aerospace raises $27.5 million to make the world’s first space plane a reality

Radian Aerospace raises $27.5 million to make the world’s first space plane a reality
An artist rendering of the Radian One space plane.Radian One
  • Radian Aerospace has been developing a space plane that can fly people and light cargo to low earth orbit.
  • The space plane will be fully reusable and capable of flying back just 48 hours after touchdown.
  • It will also be capable of delivering up to 2,270 kgs anywhere in the world in less than an hour.
Space travel is slowly becoming more accessible with more people now flying to and fro space. There are developments of various space travel means including a hot air balloon that will let you take a trip to the stratosphere. Another means of space travel could be through a plane that can carry people and payloads.

Radian One’ is a space plane in the making by Washington-based Radian Aerospace and it recently raised $27.5 million in seed funding. The money will be used to develop Radian One, the “world's first fully functional horizontal takeoff and landing, single-stage to orbit vehicle.”

The company has been operating in stealth mode so far with focus on the design and the initial development of the space plane, and the new investment will push it forward.

Radian One space plane

Radian One will be designed and shaped like a plane meaning that it will have wings which will make a big difference in spaceflight. So it will perform aircraft-like operations by delivering people and light cargo to low earth orbit (LEO). The space plane will launch and land horizontally as opposed to current liftoffs that take place vertically. But the space plane will require some push during takeoff that will be from a sled.

In addition to flying to space, Radian One will also be able to perform a mission, refuel and fly again 48 hours after touchdown. The space plane is designed to be fully reusable, and it will even be able to stay in orbit for five days.


The Radian One is also designed to fly here on Earth with capabilities of delivering up to 2,270 kgs anywhere in the world in less than an hour, according to a report by space.com.

The company said that its focus is not on space tourism but on making space travel more convenient. “We are not focused on tourism, we are dedicated to missions that make life better on our own planet, like research, in-space manufacturing, and terrestrial observation, as well as critical new missions like rapid global delivery right here on Earth," said Richard Humphrey, CEO and co-founder of Radian.

Radian’s solution is said to be a low cost space transport that can help create new aerospace markets. There is however no launch timeline revealed as yet for the Radian One but the ambitious space plane is one worth waiting for.

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