Relativity Space expands footprint via launch site at Vandenberg Air Force Base
(24 June 2020 - Relativity Space) Relativity Space has extended its launch capabilities via a Right of Entry Agreement with the United States Air Force, 30th Space Wing for development of rocket launch facilities at Vandenberg Air Force Base.
The Right of Entry (RoE) allows Relativity and the 30th Space Wing to assess the viability of conducting launch operations at a location currently comprised of Building 330 and adjacent land area. Relativity’s launch capabilities, which will now span both coasts of the United States, offer customers a complete range of orbital inclinations, including polar and Sun Synchronous orbits (SSO), adding to the LEO, MEO, GEO, and low inclination orbits possible at Cape Canaveral LC-16. These expanded capabilities, along with the company’s autonomous production via metal 3D printing, help drive Relativity’s continued momentum.
Rendering of potential future Vandenberg launch site (courtesy: Relativity Space)
“We’re honored to begin this partnership with the 30th Space Wing and join the exclusive group of private space companies able to conduct launches at Vandenberg,” says Tim Ellis, CEO of Relativity. “The West Coast launch facilities allow Relativity to provide affordable access to polar and sun sync orbits that are critical for both government and commercial customers. The geographic southerly position of B-330 at Vandenberg offers schedule certainty and increased launch frequency that will be advantageous to our Terran 1 customers.”
Vandenberg Air Force Base is the home of the 30th Space Wing, which manages the Department of Defense’s space and missile testing, as well as satellite launches into polar and sun sync orbits from the West Coast. If approved, the B-330 launch site at Vandenberg will be capable of supporting Relativity’s rocket, Terran 1, the world’s first and only fully 3D printed rocket, as well as the company’s future capabilities. Relativity’s senior leadership team, drawn from both longtime aerospace companies and industry pioneers, has executed dozens of successful launches at Vandenberg.
“The 30th Space Wing takes great pride in supporting the next generation of leaders in space. We are impressed by Relativity’s innovative approach to reinventing aerospace manufacturing via 3D metal printing and robotics paired with an executive team of seasoned aerospace leaders. We look forward to working with Relativity as its West Coast launch partner for many years to come,” stated Colonel Anthony J. Mastalir, 30th Space Wing commander, Vandenberg Air Force Base.
Relativity continues to grow its customer manifest and public-private partnerships. This agreement represents yet another milestone that the company secured with federal, state, and local governments and agencies across the United States Government. A potential launch site at Vandenberg will be Relativity’s latest addition to its portfolio of major infrastructure partnerships, which also include a launch site Right of Entry at Cape Canaveral Launch Complex-16 and an exclusive-use Commercial Space Launch Act (CSLA) agreement for NASA test sites E4 and E2 at the NASA Stennis Space Center.
About Relativity Space
Relativity is the first autonomous rocket factory and launch services leader for satellite payloads. The company’s vision is to expand the possibilities for human experience by building the future of humanity in space, faster -- starting with rockets. Disrupting 60 years of aerospace, Relativity’s factory vertically integrates intelligent robotics and 3D autonomous manufacturing technology to build the world’s first entirely 3D printed rocket, Terran 1. Relativity is the first application-layer 3D printing company; Terran 1 is the first application. Terran 1 has 100x lower part count than traditional rockets, a radically simple supply chain, and will be built from raw material to flight in less than 60 days with unparalleled iteration speed. As a next-generation space company, Relativity deploys and resupplies satellite payloads with industry-defining lead time, flexibility, and cost to better connect and secure our planet.
Relativity is backed by leading investors including Bond, Tribe Capital, Playground Global, Y Combinator, Social Capital, and Mark Cuban.