Our correspondent, Nickolai Belakovski, reports from the DC-X conference in Alamogordo, NM:
Dumitru Popescu announced that ARCA is in talks with Spaceport America to bring their Haas 2b. The vehicle can carry a capsule to 160km, a capsule which can carry 5 people, a pilot and 4 passengers. They expect to be able to start moving to the spaceport in the next few months.
They intend to compete with other suborbital providers on 4 items: safety, the fact that they offer a true rocket experience with vertical as opposed to horizontal takeoff and parachute landing, they go to a (much) higher altitude, and cost.
The pictures of the capsule showed something reminiscent of a mini Dragon in terms of seating layout, with 4 windows spaced 90 degrees apart. The windows seemed sort of low so I don’t know what the viewing experience would be like. It didn’t look like there would be room to float around.
HASS 2B Technical Data
Length: 16 m
Diameter: 1.4 m
Launch mass: 16 tons
Max thrust: 24 tons
Max. payload: 2.6 tons
Max. altitude: 180 km
Date of first flight: 2016
Situation in March 2012: Program under study