Reaction Engines has just gained approval from the European Space Agency (ESA) for their Skylon space plane. The Skylon space plane is an unmanned craft that runs off of a mixture of hydrogen and oxygen.
The use of hydrogen and oxygen to create thrust means that the Skylon space plane will be less of a burden on the environment and a whole lot cheaper to launch. How much cheaper? Try fifteen times cheaper than today's rocket ships. The plane has a complicated SABRE engine that can actually grab oxygen from the air to use as fuel. With the ESA's approval, Reaction Engines is planning to build a prototype engine for testing purposes.
A development like this could help boost the young and struggling space tourism industry. The Skylon space plane is definitely something you'll want to keep an eye on in the coming years.
More Stats +/-
Richard Branson's Spacecraft Revealed
Giant Spaceships for Kids
Virgin Galactic Spacecrafts Unveiled