2016 will see a busy time for former Ansari X-prize competitor, Starchaser Industries, as they work towards launching their 9m long Skybolt 2 rocket.
In 2001 Starchaser launched their 11m long Nova 1 rocket to 5541ft and was the last big rocket launch the team achieved before the X-prize was won by Space Ship One in 2004.
Skybolt 2 builds on the original Skybolt rocket, built as a liquid fuelled sounding rocket to test the in-house design rocket engine in flight and to get experience with launching to sub-orbital space. Unfortunately Skybolt did not fly and issues with the Storm liquid rocket engine led the rocket to become a roadshow relic, albeit inspiring young people about rocketry and space flight.
Skybolt 2 that will fly this year will be of the same specs as the original Skybolt but this time will utilize solid propulsion instead of liquid in order to achieve flight.
Following a successful launch this year, 2017 will then see the team launch the Nova 2 rocket, a man rated rocket, and hope to do this before the end of 2017. The video below shows the Nova 2 rocket, the original timeline had it set for a 2012 launch. Better late than never I say!