[FPSPACE] Ars Technica article that says Russia is ceding its market share for launch services to SpaceX and China
pjp961 at svol.net
Wed Apr 18 15:42:14 EDT 2018
Eric Berger reports, quoting Dmitri "Twitter" Rogozin
"The share of launch vehicles is as small as 4 percent of the overall market
of space services," Rogozin said <http://tass.com/science/1000229> in an
interview with a Russian television station. "The 4 percent stake isn't
worth the effort to try to elbow Musk and China aside. Payloads
manufacturing is where good money can be made."
According to an independent analysis
<https://www.sia.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/SIA-SSIR-2017.pdf> , the
global launch market is worth about $5.5 billion annually. Losing its
half-share of this market, therefore, has probably cost the Russians about
$2 billion, which is a significant fraction of its non-military aerospace
Rogozin is correct that satellite manufacturing is a considerably larger
industry, worth about $14 billion a year. But like launch, this is also a
competitive industry, and Russia has historically not had a dominant
position in the satellite manufacturing and services industry like it has
had in launch. It was the Soviet Union that first launched a satellite,
Sputnik, and then a human, Yuri Gagarin, into space, after all.
What seems most remarkable about Rogozin's comment is that, for the first
time publicly, the world's most storied launch provider appears to be ceding
the commercial launch market to other providers-most notably a rocket
company that didn't exist until 2002, and flew its first orbital rocket less
than a decade ago.
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