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Clark Lindsey posted today this interesting cost comparison between the Falcon 9 and the Russian-built Proton rocket.

The cost of launch: Clark Lindsey posted today this interesting cost comparison between the Falcon 9 and the Russian-built Proton rocket.

The essence is this: The Proton rocket costs twice as much as the Falcon 9. If SpaceX can make a profit charging these low numbers, the launch industry is going to see a major shake out in the coming years.


Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!


From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.


“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.


All editions available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors. The ebook can be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner. Note that the price for the ebook, $3.99, goes up to $5.99 on September 1, 2022.


Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.


  • Kelly Starks

    Note SpaceX’s numbers contradict. They say price per F-9 launch is $54M (Paid in full standard launch prices for 2012). But also note the cost to NASA for 12 flights to the ISS will be $1.6 billion, or $83m. NASA/Congresses numbers come out to more like $300+M for each SpaceX COTS flight to the ISS, when they ad the rest of the costs in beyond the straight “launch fees”. (about 25%-30% of shuttle program cost per flight, but only carrying 1/4th the cargo adn no personel) Other customers have similarly reported unimpressive bids from SpaceX.

  • It’s called free enterprise. SpaceX is not required to advertise their prices. Negotiation is part of it. Until the current bottleneck is overcome (with new launch facilities not completely controlled by the govt.) negotiating the best price is going to have to deal with availability.

    If you can only launch one rocket; Do you take the $54m offer or the $83m offer? What happens to negotiations when you can launch both?

  • Kelly Starks

    > It’s called free enterprise. SpaceX is not required to advertise their prices…

    They do when the gov is their biggest customer.

    >.. Do you take the $54m offer or the $83m offer?

    Generaly the customers are taking the other guys launchers. Suggesting (as reported by customers) that the total costs from SpaceX arn’t really cheaper, or Spacex’s high accident rates scares them off. (When risk a billion dollar sat, and delays in getting it online maling money) for a mear $20M?

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