SpaceX has won three military contracts in the past three months, one explanation for the need for faster transportation of equipment anywhere in the world, according to Steve Nutt, a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at the University of Southern California.
“Spacex-commissioned missiles are responding to this need to provide hardware and other mission support items quickly, anywhere in the world,” while traditional contractors have proved “cumbersome, slow and expensive.”
In August, SpaceX won part of a $ 1 billion contract to launch rockets for the Space Forces. Two months later, he won a $ 149 million contract with the Pentagon for missile tracking satellites. One more week later, the US military announced a partnership with SpaceX to build a rocket capable of delivering weapons at a speed of 7,500 miles per hour anywhere in the world. That would mean a 7,652-mile journey from Florida to Afghanistan would take about an hour, while carrying 80 tons of military equipment and accessories.
By comparison, the C-17 Globemaster military transport aircraft costs $ 218 million and reaches a speed of 590 miles per hour, so it would travel the same distance in about 15 hours.
The Department of Defense’s need for speed is becoming increasingly important given growing political tensions between the United States and other countries such as North Korea, says Nutt.
“The days of armored tanks and massive trucks are over,” as they are “easy to target and destroy,” says the expert. However, the Department of Defense pursues a capacity for “rapid deployment of forces, preferably without being detected”. Theoretically, the army could act before the attack of enemy forces, thus reducing the risk of a large number of casualties, as well as damage.
“The US military is refurbishing and adapting to future conflicts. Unfortunately, I think we are entering a new arms race, “says Nutt.