Evolvable Mars Campaign. A Masten Mars Ascent engine presents new mission architecture for NASA?s proving ground missions and in exploration beyond to deep space destinations. Technology demonstrations of MMA's in-space propulsion and ascent capabilities will target NASA's cislunar (short stay and long stay) cis-Mars robotic, Mars orbit, and Mars surface missions. The cost and mass savings that comes with the use of additive manufacturing along with Masten?s expertise in engine component and systems development presents a needed and affordable opportunity to prove the reliability of critical systems and operations techniques on which missions into deep space will depend. K. C. Laurini and M. M. Gates, NASA's Space Exploration Planning: The Asteroid Mission and the Step-Wise Path to Mars, 65th International Astronautical Congress, Toronto, Canada, Copyright 2014 by the International Astronautical Federation.
DARPA XS-1 This DARPA Tactical Technology Office (TTO) Experimental Spaceplane (XS-1) initiative has contracted Boeing, Northrop Grumman, and Masten in the first phase of development for a reusable first stage launch vehicle that will fly 10 times in 10 days, to Mach 10+ at least once and launch a demonstration payload to orbit. Masten?s design will develop a vertical takeoff vertical launch (VTVL) system with return to launch site capability and a reusable booster to launch 1500+ kg payloads to orbit. Masten's XS-1 design, known as Xephyr, builds on Masten's award-winning VTVL heritage, aircraft-like reusability, reliable propulsive control, high tempo operations, and unprecedented price per launch. Propulsion for the Xephyr reusable vehicle will be the 65,000lbf+ LOX/methane booster Broadsword engine, which is currently in prototype development. Commercial Launch Vehicles An accelerated production of small satellites and new applications are driving up demand for nontraditional launches, and demand for launches is projected to continue to increase significantly as payload development and launch costs decrease. Satellite operators and vendors are targeting shorter lifespan satellites, less expensive buses, and lower launch costs, as they migrate from a handful of large geostationary assets toward constellations of small satellites in LEO. As a result, increased responsiveness and reduced cost launch vehicles are poised to reshape the small payload launch market.