“Technologies related to rocket combustion and materials are in the hands of automakers. We will just change the field where the technologies are applied,” said Honda CEO Toshihiro Mibe.
Honda reckons it’s expertise in ICE engines and autonomous driving technology will help it get into this market. It has already developed a prototype rocket engine.
The plan is to develop re-usable rockets to launch satellites weighing less than a ton into orbits from 500km to 2000km.
Using re-usables halves the $45 million launch cost compared to disposables.
The satellites will be used for communications, observation, and automotive location data.
Honda intends to launch its first test rocket in 2030. The small satellite launch market is estimated to be worth $7 billion by 2025.
Yesterday Honda said it would also develop eVTOL flying cars.