Trade publication Space Intel Report (SIR) says that rocket company SpaceX has more than halved the inspection and refurbishment time needed for its recovered rockets, and is anticipating further time-savings to be made as its experience grows.
SpaceX has reportedly had extensive discussions with the satellite and rocket insurance sector for its recovered first stages which is vital to future missions.
SIR says that a refurbishment exercise on a rocket used in March by Luxembourg-based SES took almost a year. This past weekend’s launch of BulgariaSat-1 needed only a couple of months to prepare for flight from its recovery following its initial launch.
SpaceX has successfully recovered 13 of its rockets out of 18 flights and will now be debating with its clients as to who might be tempted – by financial incentives – to use a twice pre-flown first stage.