LONG ISLAND, N.Y. – When Elon Musk’s rocket company SpaceX launched its Falcon Heavy rocket earlier this year, it wasn’t just astonishing, it was historic.
The colossal feat in engineering was the latest for the young company currently leading a revolution in space flight. It’s those feats that have inspired many including Max Haot.
These days the internet entrepreneur widely known for creating the video streaming company Livestream is investing a bulk of his time and money getting his Brooklyn-based start-up Launcher off the ground.
The company, which is barely a year old, is seeking to capitalize on the growing small-satellite market.
“Satellites have shrunk from the size of a small school bus to the size of a loaf of bread,” Haot said. “There is no small launch vehicle that are commercial yet to launch this small satellite.”
And that’s where Launcher comes in.
The company is on a 10-year mission to launch a commercial rocket which will tower around six stories high and be powerful enough to enter low orbit where it will disperse satellites used to power everything from GPS to internet services.
Before that happens, Haot and his team are conducting periodic engine tests at their test site, a widely deserted airplane runway in the heart of Suffolk County. It’s a site with its own aerospace history.
“This facility was owned by the Navy and given to Northrop Grumman to build the F-14 and many other jet fighters,” he said. “There has probably not been any rocket engine fired on long island for 30 years.”
Until now, that is.
PIX11 was on hand for an engine test at the site where the nearest residential area is over a mile away.
The test, the 45th conducted since last year, was deemed a success.
Launcher’s inaugural commercial flight is set for 2026.