CONCEPT

Relativity is creating the first autonomous rocket and launch service. The first rocket is scheduled to be built by 2020, using a platform that combines software, machine learning and a 3D printer. The first engine, Aeon 1, is promised to be one of the “highest-performance-per-dollar rocket engines in the world”.

HOW THEY’RE DISRUPTING

Relativity are transforming how rockets are made. It’s design process and intricate software allows rockets to be created faster and with fewer parts. The parts are lighter; but stronger. Printing of their first rocket Terran 1 has reduced the part count from 100,000 to 1,000 components.

DISRUPTION POTENTIAL

As part of their launch service, rocket engines can carry satellites into low Earth orbit. The space industry is changing; satellites are increasing in demand to reduce communication latencies. Relativity Space anticipate they can, for example, deploy orbital planes of smaller satellites more cost effectively.

INVESTMENTS AND FUTURE

From a total of $45M, Relativity recently raised $35M from a Series B funding round, led by Playground Global. They have also confirmed a 20-year test site lease award with NASA Stennis Space Centre. Their long-term aspiration if to put the first 3D printed rocket on Mars.