Hunter wants to operate the gun, the “Quicklauncher,” in the ocean near the equator, where the Earth’s fast rotation will help slingshot objects into space. A floating cannon—dipping 1,600 feet below sea level and steadied by a ballast system—would let operators swivel it for different orbits. Next month, Hunter will test a functional, 10-foot prototype in a water tank. He says a full-size launcher could be ready in seven years, provided the company can round up the $500 million. Despite the upfront cost, Hunter says he has drawn interest from investors because his reusable gun saves so much cash in the long haul. Just don’t ever expect a ride in the thing: The gun produces 5,000 Gs, so it’s only for fuel tanks and ruggedized satellites. “A person shot out of it would probably get compressed to half their size,” Hunter says. “It’d be over real quick.”
The cost of putting things into space is astronomical, to say the least. Getting things into space takes more fuel than moving them from planet to planet because of gravity. So what if we had a new method for sending supplies into orbit for the International Space Station? John Hunter says he has a better idea: shoot supplies into space with a cannon! He say a space gun would bring the cost of launching a pound of supplies from $5,000 down to $250.