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SpinLaunch SubOrbital Accelerator

Here's another way to get small payloads into orbit:

Science fiction writer Robert Heinlein also thought about the concept of a similar launching device. In his novel The Man Who Sold the Moon, published in 1950, he wrote about an hybrid mass driver built to launch payloads into orbit.

If you had a decent catapult you could put a single stage chem-powered rocket into an orbit around the Earth, couldn't you?

Another, even older, try at a mechanical flywheel launch system can be found in Edward Everett Hale's 1869 classic The Brick Moon:

we would build two gigantic fly-wheels, the diameter of each should be "ever so great," the circumference heavy beyond all precedent, and thundering strong, so that no temptation might burst it. They should revolve, their edges nearly touching, in opposite directions, for years, if it were necessary, to accumulate power, driven by some waterfall now wasted to the world. One should be a little heavier than the other. When the Brick Moon was finished, and all was ready, IT should be gently rolled down a gigantic groove provided for it, till it lighted on the edge of both wheels at the same instant. Of course it would not rest there, not the ten-thousandth part of a second. It would be snapped upward, as a drop of water from a grindstone.

Thanks to SMOF for reminding me that I had this reference on my site, and providing an apt quote.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 11/19/2021)

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