Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

Inversion Space targets military market with ‘warehouses in space’

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun11,2024

WASHINGTON — Inversion Space, a startup founded in 2021, is setting its sights on revolutionizing military logistics with its concept of “warehouses in space.” The company envisions deploying reusable reentry capsules to store cargo in orbit, and delivering it to any point on Earth within an hour.

A pathfinder mission dubbed “Ray” is scheduled for launch as early as October on the SpaceX Transporter-12 rideshare mission. Funded by Inversion’s $10 million seed round, Ray will test technologies that will support the development of a larger capsule, according to co-founder and CEO Justin Fiaschetti.

Inversion envisions itself as a “warehousing and transportation company,” Fiaschetti told SpaceNews. “We would store cargo in space, and when it’s needed, deliver it in under an hour,” he said. The capsules could transport anything from medical supplies and battlefield gear to small surveillance drones.

DoD wants speed and autonomy

“Militaries are always in need of fast, precise cargo delivery across the globe,” Fiaschetti said, highlighting the reason why the company sees the Defense Department as its main customer. Following successful deployment with military clients, Inversion expects costs to decrease, enabling commercialization for sectors like private aviation and cruise lines.

While Fiaschetti declined to disclose specific customers, the U.S. Air Force is a clear potential adopter. “Close communication with potential customers has been crucial,” he said. “We understand what cargo they need and what matters most — speed and autonomy.” Autonomy is key to ensure precise landings even at updated locations mid-flight, said Fiaschetti. 

Inversion is designing its capsule to be interoperable with any commercial launch vehicle, with load capacity details still under wraps. 

Even though the company is developing a product for military use, Inversion did not seek government funds for development, Fiaschetti said. 

“We don’t see any risk of adoption. We don’t see any risk that customers will not want this,” he said, framing the key challenge as one of execution rather than generating interest.

“Building the product, getting it to scale production, bringing the cost down and flying regularly and reliably for our customers — that’s the execution,” Fiaschetti said.

Upcoming test mission

For the upcoming Ray mission, the compact capsule will remain in orbit for several weeks while undergoing checkouts before initiating a deorbit burn with an onboard rocket engine.

If all goes as planned, it will reenter the atmosphere at hypersonic speeds while deploying a pair of parachutes — that Inversion developed in-house — to gently splash down off the California coast.

The flight is meant to validate critical reentry technologies ahead of constructing Inversion’s larger cargo vehicle, the specifications of which are not yet being disclosed. 

The 25-employee startup believes its vision of orbital warehouses and rapid delivery has a viable future. “People are already spending money on transportation,” Fiaschetti said. “Let’s give them a better way to do it.”

Fiaschetti is a former SpaceX and Relativity Space propulsion engineer. Inversion’s co-founder and chief technology officer Austin Briggs was a propulsion engineer at ABL Space Systems. 

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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One thought on “Inversion Space targets military market with ‘warehouses in space’”
  1. As an aviation enthusiast, I find the concept of ‘warehouses in space’ intriguing. It’s exciting to think about the potential impact on military logistics and global cargo delivery. Looking forward to seeing how Inversion Space’s pathfinder mission unfolds!

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