Terran R
Terran R rocket as April 2023
ManufacturerRelativity Space
Country of originUnited States
Height82 m (270 ft)
Diameter5.5 m (18 ft)
Payload to LEO
Mass~33,500 kg (73,900 lb)
Launch history
Launch sitesCape Canaveral LC-16
First flightNET 2026
First stage
Powered by13 Aeon R
Maximum thrust3,350,000 lbf (14,900 kN)
PropellantLCH4 / LOX
Second stage
Powered by1 Aeon Vac
Maximum thrust279,000 lbf (1,240 kN)
PropellantLCH4 / LOX

Terran R is a heavy-lift two-stage, partially reusable launch vehicle under development by Relativity Space. The vehicle is partially constructed with 3D printing technologies, much like its predecessor, the small-lift Terran 1.[1][2] The first flight is expected to be in 2026.


Original Proposed Version 2021

The Terran R was first publicly announced on 8 June 2021 after the company raised US$650 million in funding.[3] Terran R was an evolution of the Terran 1, and at this time, it was to be 3D printed, fully reusable, including second stage and fairings.[3] This version was capable of putting 20,000 kg (44,000 lb) into low-Earth orbit (LEO) in recoverable configuration.[4]

2023 Version

On 12 April 2023, after the first flight of the Terran 1, Relativity Space CEO Tim Ellis announced that the rocket was no longer going to be further developed and focus would move to Terran R.[4] The new version of the rocket will have a maximum payload capacity of 23,500 kg (51,800 lb) to LEO with a fully reusable first stage, and 33,500 kg (73,900 lb) to LEO if fully expended.[5]

The first stage will use 13 Aeon R engines, producing an estimated thrust of 14.9 MN (3,350,000 lbs) in total.[1] The second stage will use an upgraded Aeon R Vac engine and will be expended, along with the fairings.[5]

Ellis has compared the design of Terran R to SpaceX's Falcon 9 launch vehicle.[6] With this design, Relativity is aiming to significantly exceed the Falcon 9 payload to LEO, with a target payload mass of approximately 33.5 tonnes (73,900 lb) in fully expended mode.[5]

In July 2022, Relativity announced a partnership with Impulse Space to send a payload to Mars on the first Terran R flight,[7] which is expected to occur in 2026.[1]

See also


  1. ^ a b c Berger, Eric (12 April 2023). "Relativity Space is moving on from the Terran 1 rocket to something much bigger". Ars Technica. Retrieved 12 April 2023.
  2. ^ "Relativity Space Shares Updated Go-to-Market Approach for Terran R, Taking Aim at Medium to Heavy Payload Category with Next-Generation Rocket". Relativity Space (Press release). 12 April 2023. Retrieved 12 April 2023.
  3. ^ a b Foust, Jeff (8 June 2021). "Relativity raises $650 million round, announces Terran R rocket". SpaceNews. Alexandria, Virginia. ISSN 1046-6940. Retrieved 13 May 2023.
  4. ^ a b Foust, Jeff (12 April 2023). "Relativity shelves Terran 1 after one launch, redesigns Terran R". SpaceNews. Alexandria, Virginia. ISSN 1046-6940. Retrieved 13 May 2023.
  5. ^ a b c Messier, Doug (28 April 2023). "Relativity Space Dumps Terran 1 in Favor of Larger Terran R". Parabolic Arc. Denver, Colorado. Archived from the original on 14 May 2023. Retrieved 14 May 2023.
  6. ^ Sheetz, Michael (February 25, 2021). "Relativity Space unveils a reusable, 3D-printed rocket to compete with SpaceX's Falcon 9". CNBC. Archived from the original on February 25, 2021. Retrieved February 25, 2021.
  7. ^ Chang, Kenneth (19 July 2022). "Two Companies Aim to Beat SpaceX to Mars with 'Audacious' Landing". The New York Times.