Top 10: Heaviest spacecraft – BBC Science Focus Magazine

every kilogram wants an estimated 32,900,000 joules of power simply to succeed in low Earth orbit.

The associated fee related to this power is gigantic, so each kilogram counts. Prices have been dropping over time – 2020’s Falcon Heavy launch price $950/kg (£685/kg), whereas the 1981 House Shuttle launch price a whopping £85,216/kg (£61,467/kg) – however area businesses nonetheless work exhausting to maintain the mass of their spacecraft to an absolute minimal.

Regardless of this hurdle, people have launched automobile after automobile by means of the environment and into area.

However which is heaviest? These are the spacecraft with the most important mass to have flown in Earth’s orbit and past.
10. Salyut 1
Top 10: Heaviest spacecraft – Salyut 1 © Shutterstock

Russian area station

In service: 1971

Weight: 18,900kg
9. ATV (Automated Switch Car)
Top 10: Heaviest spacecraft – ATV © NASA/ESA

European House Company cargo spacecraft

In service: 2008–2014

Weight: 19,357kg
8. Salyut 7
Top 10: Heaviest spacecraft – Salyut 7 © Alamy

Russian area station

In service: 1982–1991

Weight: 19,824kg
7. Tianhe core module
Top 10: Heaviest spacecraft – Tianhe core module © Alamy

Cornerstone of Chinese language Tiangong area station

In service: April 2021-present

Weight: 22,000kg
6. Apollo Command and Service Module
Top 10: Heaviest spacecraft – Apollo Command and Service Module © Getty Images

US lunar spacecraft

In service: 1968–1975

Weight: 28,800kg
5. Skylab
Top 10: Heaviest spacecraft – Skylab © Getty Images

US area station

In service: 1973–1979

Weight: 77,000kg
4. Buran
Top 10: Heaviest spacecraft – Buran © Shutterstock

Russian uncrewed spaceplane

In service: 1988

Weight: 105,000kg (Orbiter automobile mass)