The other day, I was discussing with an acquaintance the concept of reusable booster rockets to launch satellites into space. There have been many concepts floated such as floating them up on dirigibles to the upper atmosphere and launching from there, or launching from ultra-high altitude aircraft. Another concept is to have a smaller version of a rocket space shuttle. One of the more intriguing concepts is to allow the boosters to come back and land on a runway via a robotic drone concept. All potential concepts, but I have another idea.
Let's allow the booster rockets once they are empty of fuel to go along for the ride. Further, let's then allow special bacteria that will eat the left over fuel residual inside and turn it into gases we might use, you know like oxygen for instance. Why not create an endless set of structures inside in advance – stairways, rooms, built in furniture. Now you have a habitat, one you could make a satellite space for humans like the Skylab, ISS module, etc., or what if you then sent up another rocket with a tow vehicle and took it to the moon. Remember 1/5 the gravity lod to land it on the moon – horizontally or vertically.
Now you have a component of a lunar colony modular system, and think about how much space is inside all the booster rockets of a Delta IV or Saturn V rocket. You already paid to get it most of the way, and you are near escape velocity with the entire system already, as the air gets thinner and ceases to exist, it takes very little to push it higher, why waste it and let it drop back to earth in ruin? Or even allow it to parachute back to be melted down for scrap? I say let's reuse our rockets, but maybe we might reuse at least some of them in a different way.
I am not saying to forget the potential future contracts with Boeing, Lockheed, Northrop or Space X or anyone else who wants to compete for those rather impressive bragging-rights contracts, I am saying maybe we need some extra thought and go the extra arrows to make this happen. I have sketches, drawings, and more details if you wish to contact me by email. Thanks for your time and please consider all this and think on it.