The Boston University Rocket Propulsion Group, comprising undergraduate engineering students at Boston University, is bidding to develop an inexpensive suborbital rocket called the Starscraper -- targeted towards educational use -- that is inexpensive and reusable. The rocket aims to address the problems surrounding the exorbitant cost of sub-orbital rockets, which cost around $1 million per launch.
The Starscraper measures 9 meters long and weighs 499 kg, and is designed to be able to lift a 45-kg payload to an altitude of 133,000 meters before returning it safely back to Earth.
The student researchers have currently spent $90,000 on developing and testing the Starscraper, and are looking to raise funds through a Kickstarter campaign. Depending on pledge level, backers will be rewarded with perks like prints and photos to an invitation to the launch in 2015.