MindBullets 20 Years

Space economy takes off

It’s go for launch as startups head for orbit

In the three years since SpaceX successfully launched and landed their giant Starship rocket, the space industry has literally exploded – but in a good way. Commercial operators now dominate the launch, maintenance, and recovery market for satellites, while government agencies focus on deep space research and exploration.

Gone is the SpaceX-Blue Origin duopoly of private space enterprise. Now dozens of fledgling companies have joined the race to riches in Earth’s orbit and beyond. From 3D-printed rockets to mass produced thrusters to specialized ‘space tugs’, innovation in space tech has soared to new heights.

Elon Musk pioneered private space flight with the launch of SpaceX’s Falcon 1 in 2008. Since then, they have gone on to perfect reusable rockets, deliver people to space stations, and help NASA land on the Moon. And put thousands of satellites in orbit.

Next steps for commercial operations include private space stations and tourism, space factories, space-based logistics, and removing space debris. And supporting the Lunar Gateway, Moonbase One, and missions to Mars. Not to mention asteroid mining and comet harvesting.

The sky’s the limit when it comes to future opportunities in the space economy, and not only for launch vehicles and spacecraft. Just like the aviation industry before it, the space industry relies on thousands of sub-contractors and suppliers for specialized parts and services, from rocket fuel to custom robotics to satellite design.

The space economy. It’s not just for rocket scientists. It’s for entrepreneurs. And investors.

Get in touch

Futureworld constantly scans the horizon for signals that point the way to game-changing new businesses, and we work with global companies to make those new ventures a reality. For more information on investment in the space economy, feel free to contact the author Doug Vining or research specialist Adam Parsons.

Warning: Hazardous thinking at work

Despite appearances to the contrary, Futureworld cannot and does not predict the future. Our Mindbullets scenarios are fictitious and designed purely to explore possible futures, challenge and stimulate strategic thinking. Use these at your own risk. Any reference to actual people, entities or events is entirely allegorical. Copyright Futureworld International Limited. Reproduction or distribution permitted only with recognition of Copyright and the inclusion of this disclaimer.