Catapults, or ground accelerators, can be vertically oriented like VALT, horizontal the way the NAVY uses them or like the Holloman Test Track, angled up the side of a mountain like NASA has proposed and as shown in movies and books, or trackless the way sailplanes use them.
They all work, and they are all cost effective.
When used as part of a launch system the more speed they provide the greater the propellant savings and the more affordable and cost effective the launch system becomes.
for VALT are to go faster and higher.
We will do this by
- making the tower taller
- increasing the acceleration rate on the tower
- building larger rockets with larger motors
- building multi-stage rockets
All of these improvements will add to the goal of making spaceflight affordable to the private individual and private enterprise: to the opening of the Final Frontier for all mankind.