There was a day when space was the domain of governments: NASA, the Soviet Union, the European Space Agency. It required billions of dollars and tens of thousands of workers to earn a seat at the space table. But this is the 21st century, and times have changed. Tim Ellis, CEO of Relativity Space, is the embodiment of the “new space” era we now live in. He began his college career studying film, but soon switched his major to aerospace engineering and joined the USC Rocket Propulsion Laboratory. After cutting his teeth at Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin, he set out to change the world and co-founded Relativity Space, a company with the audacious mission of 3-D-printing rockets. After landing a $500,000 investment from the celebrity investor Mark Cuban, Relativity has raised nearly $200 million in a few short years and is poised to begin commercial launches in 2021.
Virts is a former NASA astronaut