Space

From Europe into High Orbit:

Powerful and renewable European heavy lifting solutions for large payloads and crew.

| WHAT


Schrama Space is a Dutch/European startup company launched in 2021, with the aim of developing innovative non-rocket-based solutions for European space exploration.


| WHAT & WHY

Rockets are obsolete.


As every student of space exploration knows: Rockets are really a bad solution to try and reach space, as the traditional booster rocket has a few major drawbacks. The most fundamental of these is that it requires a huge amount of power to launch an object out of our atmosphere and gravity well; and that power equals fuel. Which is why a rocket requires a lot of fuel. To make it worse, a rocket has to carry its own fuel along. Which makes a booster rocket: ✔ Heavy ✔ Large ✔ Expensive ✔ Inefficient ✔ Dangerous ✔ Polluting ✔ Unsustainable ✔ Impractical.


The fact that even with the most efficient rocket fuels in existence today, about 9/10 of the mass of a modern rocket is still needed to carry fuel and only 1/10 of the rocket can carry useful cargo or passengers, points to the need to find a better solution for reaching space, at least, if we really want humanity to gain a foothold in space and even ever set foot on other planets.


In addition, rocket technology is polluting: Not only do booster rockets produce high emissions, which are incompatible with the world's current focus on clean air and long-term sustainable technology, but empty rocket stages that have been discarded also pose an acute danger to navigation in space: More space debris is added every year. Which is why we need to look for a way to reach space that creates less pollution, not more.


The dream of effective and efficient space travel and of humanity as "an interplanetary race" traveling between the planets will never become a reality as long as we continue to rely on an inefficient, expensive and old-fashioned technology like launchers.


Schrama Space is a European space startup, initiated in 2021, with the goal of developing practical, economical and innovative solutions for transporting heavy loads & passengers into high Earth orbit, specifically for the European space sector. Our mission is to give Europe the opportunity to travel autonomously to the Moon, to Mars and far beyond.


With our own means and under our own flag; and without help from the US, Russia or China.


| WHY - A BIT OF BACKGROUND


Historically, the Netherlands has a massive amount of experience in space research. It was a Dutch astronomer who gave hisname to the Oort cloud, a Dutch astronomer after whom the Cuyper belt was named and the Dutch "father of science fiction" Christiaan Huygens who discovered Saturn's moon Titan. That makes it strange that in the 21st century, the Netherlands no longer plays a significant role of any kind in the exploration of outer space.


Similarly, Europe has a leading position in the world in terms of launching small satellites (many of which are constructed in the Netherlands). Here we have to think of cubesats, microsats, smallsats and constellations. However, when it comes to the launching of heavy payloads, or even crewed flights, the European space program remains completely dependent on foreign (i.e., non-European) launch capabilities. Even though this flies in the face of Europe's search for "Strategic Autonomy".


Currently, there are a number of companies in Europe that specialize in the development of small-scale, low-weight rockets. In contrast, the market for heavy and large-scale spaceflight is currently dominated by Japan's JAXA (for cargo transport) and Russia's Roskosmos (for crews and passengers), closely followed by American companies such as SpaceX, Northrop-Grumman, Blue Origin and Virgin. In Europe, there are no companies focused on enabling manned flights!


So when ESA astronauts are launched into space, it is (was) mainly aboard Russian Soyuz capsules, carried by Russian Energia rockets, launched from Russia's Baikonur spaceport. At the same time, American private companies have already developed functional crew launch systems (such as Crew Dragon) and large-scale launch systems (such as the Super Heavy/Starship combo), while new players (such as China and India) have also already developed their own rocket systems that allow them to launch crews into space.


To make the situation even more dire for the reality of European spaceflight, the American, Russian, Chinese and Emirati space agencies are all currently implementing plans to return a manned flight to the Moon; and then to Mars. This includes the orbital lunar station Gateway and the long-range spacecraft Orion, as well as a Chinese-Russian "international" lunar base that has been announced.


However, the political leadership of Europe currently has no plans of its own in this area. Why is this?  Is it because we are afraid of thinking big, of chasing big dreams and competing on a global level? At the national policy level, this European proclivity towards small-scale thinking is once again confirmed: The Dutch Space Research Foundation (SRON) focusses entirely on developing satellites for the ESA, the Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy (BIRA) is focussed totally on earth observation by means of small-scale satellites, while the usefulness of the Netherlands Space Office (NSO) and the Space Knowledge Centre is actually completely unimaginable. Similarly, on the European level ESA is bogged down by bureaucracy and European dependency on the US and Russia; while Europe's new space agency EUSPA focusses mostly on ground observation and commercial applications.


The current focus of Europe on small-scale operations means that we risk losing the capacity to send European astronauts into space on an independent basis. Despite the fact that this development is directly opposed to the current and by now rather hollow-sounding European goal of achieving "strategic autonomy" in space.


This is why I decided to found SCHRAMA SPACE: Because we believe that international competition is not only good, but nabsolutely ecessary to get humanity to the Moon and Mars as soon as possible. Because no other European organization or company wants to take on the challenge of developing private manned spaceflight, SCHRAMA SPACE has begun to develop innovative concepts for orbital launch, designed to enable Europe to lift both heavy payloads and manned flights into high Earth orbit.


Not only do we intend to make long-term revenue by filling the current gap that exists in the European heavy launcher market, not only do we intend to find a better solution for transport to space than rocketfuel-guzzling booster rockets; but more than that: We intend to plant our blue & gold European flag on the surface of the Moon and Mars!


"I believe competition is good. Unfortunately, Europe is not competing." - Erik Schrama



| WHERE


We are proud of our origins. From mixed European roots, SCHRAMA SPACE strives to become the European leader in the field of commercially developed manned spaceflight and also to become a global contender capable of claiming a share for Europe and NL in the current global Race for Space - the new Space Race of the 21st century.


As a proud Dutch/Belgian/European startup, our base is located right in the heart of Europe: In the middle of the Flemish wine region, just east of Brussels, the capital of both Belgium, Flanders and Europe. Even more than a European company, we are proud of our Dutch-speaking character and our roots that are firmly established in the soil of the Low Countries. That is why we are working not only to give Europe, but also the Netherlands and Belgium, a pre-eminent position in international space. After all, Europeans are born explorers ...


SCHRAMA SPACE is currently based in Flanders and is driven forward by voluntary contributions (in ideas, labor, effort and/or donations) from those who want to see this project succeed. Please contact us to find out how you can help, at: erik@eschrama.com



(DISCLAIMER: SCHRAMA SPACE is an independent startup which is in no way what-so-ever officially affiliated or associated with  the Dutch, Flemish, Belgian government or the European Union.)



| WHO



SCHRAMA RUIMTE was founded in 2021 by Erik Schrama, whose name this startup bears.


Erik is a writer and translator with a long track record, whose deep interest in space exploration is reflected in his SF work, among others. Erik is also an entrepreneur with +10 years of practical experience in international business, particularly in Brussels. Furthermore he possesses a significant amount of experience in the field of Lunar and Martian policy development. Last but not least: Erik is the initiator of the Dutch Republican Party, which advocates, amongst other things, for Dutch & European strategic autonomy and a new high-tech Dutch economy.

| CONTACT


Do you have any questions or suggestions?

We love to hear from you!


HQ

Schrama Space

Scherpenheuvel-Zichem, Belgium

info@eschrama.com


| OUR LABORATORY


You can't get anything done without first having good ideas and thorough preparation. To solve the current European lack of strategic autonomy in space, we are developing a number of innovative concepts for experimental carrier systems that can lift both heavy payloads and passenger modules.


AT THIS MOMENT WE ARE DEVELOPING THE FOLLOWING EXPERIMENTAL CONCEPTS:


1. EMMA

An acronym for "ElectroMagnetic Mass Array". This is our experimental concept for a next generation launch system that is not based on rocket technology, but uses an electromagnetic railgun or catapult to launch self-contained modules; and is now under development at SCHRAMA SPACE. This concept is based on the observation that the main problem of launchers is the fact that they have to lift their own fuel with them; and that the efficiency of such machines is therefore very low (as also described in the rocket formula). By decoupling the propulsion from the cargo/passenger module and transforming the energy supply and drive of the launcher system into a stationary launcher, we have succeeded in drastically reducing the amount of energy required for a successful launch.


2. BOKKERIJDER:

Named after the southern Dutch legend of the Bokkerijders, this is our experimental concept for the module that will be launched by EMMA. One basic dual-use module, with the idea of being able to lift either heavy payloads or astronauts (based on the requirements of the mission profile) into high Earth orbit.


3. BLIKSEM: This is our conceptual POC sounding rocket with which we are testing the possibilities of launching rockets on biofuels, among other things.


4. FRIJA

Named after the ancient Germanic goddess, FRIJA is our experimental concept for an Earth-to-Moon module that will land a Dutch astronaut on the surface of the Moon.


5. TYR

Named after the Germanic god of Mars, Tyr is our experimental concept for an interplanetary spacecraft that will be able to reach Mars and land a European astronaut on the surface of the Red Planet.


| HOW LONG & HOW MUCH?


As a private startup, our timeline depends both on the partners who donate their time and ideas and on the funding we have. In short: The more help (both in labor, ideas and finances) we get, the more progress we can make!


That said, innovative space development is a long-term investment with a huge potential for profit: The "average" space enterprise takes 10 to 20 years to become profitable, but with the growing share of heavy space transportation in the world economy (not to mention the potential of future regular transportation to the Moon and Mars as well as the potential yield of minerals in the Asteroid Belt, which promise to contain an almost inexhaustible wealth of minerals and natural resources! ), innovative space travel promises to be able to make a gigantic contribution to the world economy; and, if we start now to catch up with our current backlog, to the Netherlands.


The U.S., Chinese and Russian space industries have currently mapped out a timeline that should put them back on the Moon by 2023 and on Mars by 2030. Based on our knowledge of the progress that space travel has made in recent decades, combined with observations of the American attempts to build Mars landers, among others, we believe that this timeline is far too optimistic: The technology is simply not ready!


That is why it is important to start innovating now in Europe, so that we can turn our backlog into a lead, and so that we can actually develop the efficient, affordable, clean, renewable technology that humanity needs to go into space permanently.


| WILL YOU BE OUR NEW PROBLEM SOLVER?


Europeans are born explorers. It is therefore high time that Europeans themselves start going into space on their own, instead of always relying on a leg up from the Americans and the Russians! Money is not everything... That's why SCHRAMA SPACE is expanding our business and are looking for talented and enthusiastic inventors:


Specifically, we are looking for talent in:

  • aerospace engineering
  • engineering & machine construction
  • metalworking
  • chemistry
  • PR
  • fundraising
  • legal
  • and more.


Do you also believe in an independent European space program? Do you want to be part of a fantastic mission to develop an innovative and groundbreaking carrier system?

Then send your CV today to erik@eschrama.com or contact SCHRAMA SPACE today.


| SUPPORT OUR MISSION


Even when you're working with a startup budget of nothing and doing your science practically on a nonprofit basis, building an innovative launch system capable of putting a man/woman into orbit around the Earth still costs a good chunk of money.


SCHRAMA SPACE, however, rejects the commercial profit model as our primary motivation, where all our hopes, dreams and desires are completely in the hands of big business, international conglomerates, bureaucratic governments and big business. Instead, we choose to focus on what is best for the Netherlands and Europe in particular, and humanity in general, by focusing on innovative, efficient, low-cost, renewable space solutions.


If you are as passionate about European space exploration and discovery as we are, please support us by making a small donation. Since we are independent from the big aerospace conglomerates that totally control the European rhombus industry, every euro counts towards the future.


Please donate here. And in the name of the constantly progressing European space industry we thank you from the bottom of our biofuel powered electromagnetic space catapult!

| CHILD'S PLAY: SPACE @ HOME


Passion for space exploration starts early.

Be inspired by this fun bottle rocket experiment carried out our founder and his kids. Easy to do (you just need a couple of plastic bottles, some white vinegar and backing powder, a cork, of course, and lots of enthusiasm!) and great introduction to the basics of rocketry...