Relativity Space awarded new responsive launch contract from US Department of Defense
March 18, 2021
Relativity Space, Los Angeles, USA, has been awarded its first orbital launch contract with the US Department of Defense (DoD), facilitated by the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU). This contract is part of a Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) Launch Enterprise follow-up effort to the DoD Space Test Program (STP) Rapid Agile Launch Initiative (RALI) to identify commercial solutions for cost-effective, responsive access to space ‘as aa service’, using launch systems with capacities between 450–1,200 kg to low-Earth orbit (LEO). Relativity’s entirely additively manufactured vehicle, Terran 1, meets this need for disruptive launch solutions to orbit.
DIU works to accelerate the adoption of commercial technology, allowing innovative American businesses the opportunity to solve high-impact national security issues. This goal is met by Relativity’s ambition to revolutionise the design, build, and flight of rockets with what is reported to be the world’s first additively manufactured rocket.
“It is an honour to continue to serve the US Government and build upon our nation’s leading abilities in space with Relativity’s first DoD satellite launch contract award. The Defense Innovation Unit is a group whose innovative approach aligns with the work we are doing at Relativity to revolutionise the future of aerospace,” stated Tim Ellis, CEO and co-founder of Relativity. “I’m excited for what our teams will accomplish together as we look forward to launching our first DoD payload set.”
This agreement represents the ninth announced launch customer for Relativity and the third announced government customer, following the recently announced Venture Class Launch Services Demonstration 2 contract with NASA.