Vast Acquires Launcher

Vast, an El Segundo, CA-based company building an artificial gravity station, acquired Hawthorne, CA-based space startup Launcher.

The amount of the deal was not disclosed.

The acquisition provides Vast with an established set of talent to accelerate in-house advanced manufacturing and development capabilities as well as spacecraft technologies. In addition, with Launcher’s Orbiter space tug and hosted payload platform, Vast plans to reach orbit this year to develop and test its on-orbit space station components and subsystems. The combined team of over 120 employees will jointly occupy the recently announced 115,000-square-foot Vast headquarters in Long Beach later this year. Max Haot will join as the President of Vast to help execute the company’s vision.

Founded in 2017 by Max Haot, Launcher develops rocket engines and transfer vehicles to deliver small satellites to orbit. Orbiter, its orbital transfer vehicle and satellite platform, is compatible with third-party rideshare launch vehicles.

Founded in 2021 and led by Jed McCaleb, Founder & CEO, Vast is building an artificial gravity station partnering with a global array of customers, including from the commercial sector and U.S. and international governments and organizations. The company is assembling a team to build low-cost, artificial gravity station so people can live and work in space for long periods of time without the permanent side effects of zero-gravity.

Vast will continue the Orbiter space tug and hosted payload products as well as its staged combustion rocket engine E-2, and will focus on liquid rocket engine products instead of developing its own launch vehicle. Orbiter will continue to support current and future payload customers.