top of page

About Us

What do we do

ARCA develops extremely cost effective and ecological propulsion rockets for suborbital and orbital civilian and military applications.

Brand story

Hardship, determination and innovation.

How a student team starting from a garage became known across the world of spaceflight for its ecological rocket propulsion technology and unprecedented cost effectiveness.

ARCA Space started in 1998 with an aerospace engineering and theology student, Dumitru Popescu. He and a handful of colleagues decided to build space rockets at the place where Hermann Oberth, the father of spaceflight, was born, in Sibiu, Romania.

At the time, shortly after the fall of Communism, Romania was going through a difficult economic situation. ‘Investment’ was a rarely used word. Dumitru started ARCA in a garage, with his wedding money, and managed to build his first space rocket hardware there.

But when the team reached out to the Romanian Space Agency, they were met with adversity. ARCA went its own way and a few years later, in 2004, it successfully launched Romania’s first private rocket from a Romanian Air Force base on the Black Sea shore.

In 2006, ARCA Space built and launched the world’s largest solar balloons, carrying spacecraft hardware into the stratosphere.

In 2010, it launched the first suborbital rocket from an off-shore location in the Black Sea, with the logistical support of the Romanian Navy.

In 2015, ARCA presented publicly a flying hoverboard to Prince Albert of Monaco and the press from the Principality. The technology drew massive press interest. DARPA and the US Army awarded ARCA Space with a contract to develop the product for military applications.

Since 2020, ARCA Space has been developing the EcoRocket, an ecological, unprecedentedly cost-effective spaceflight technology. It scheduled the first suborbital and orbital launches from the Black Sea in 2021, but the launches were rescheduled due to the military situation in the Black Sea area. However, the team did not relent. It went on to conduct two flight tests, which demonstrated EcoRocket’s active flight control system, the ecological water-based propulsion technology and the underwater launch sequence.

Based on the EcoRocket technology, ARCA is currently developing the world’s heaviest rocket, EcoRocket Heavy and the AMi Exploration program. The latter aims to unlock the biggest wealth source through asteroid mining operations, using present-day, proven technology and a clear timeline.

Since 2023 ARCA is developing defensive weapons, like target rockets and strategic anti ballistic and hypersonic missile interceptors which gathered tangible interest from NATO and Gulf Area militaries. 


Core values

Determination made the team push forward and never give up, and innovation helped ARCA Space to create unprecedentedly cost-effective and ecological spaceflight technologies

What did we do

Some of our past programs are presented below:

2002 - 2004

During the 10 million $ Ansari X Prize Competition, ARCA designed and successfully launched its first rocket, Demonstrator 2B from Cape Midia Air Force Base.



2006 - 2007

ARCA built the world's largest solar balloon that lifted into the stratosphere the crew capsule of Stabilo, a manned suborbital vehicle created after the end of Ansari X Prize Competition. The Stabilo program continued in 2007 at ARCA, this time with an even larger solar balloon lifting the complete Stabilo vehicle into the stratosphere, involving for the first time the Navy for the vehicle recovery from the sea.



2008 - 2010

ARCA joined the $30 million Google Lunar X Prize Competition and in 2013 the team withdrew from the Competition after it launched a technological demonstrator rocket. ARCA's Helen rocket was launched at 40,000m (120,000ft), the event representing the first powered flight in the Google Lunar X Prize Competition. The rocket was transported into the stratosphere with the help of an ARCA built helium balloon.




Haas rocket series was introduced by ARCA consisting of the sub-orbital Haas 2B and orbital Haas 2C launchers.




The European Space Agency (ESA) awarded ARCA with a contract to test the parachutes system for the ExoMars spacecraft that launched to Mars in 2016. ARCA developed the hardware to perform the flight tests for the High Altitude Drop Test.



2013 - 2015

ARCA Space Corporation was incorporated in the United States, New Mexico, as a for-profit corporation.

AirStrato large drone performed the first flight at the beginning of this year and it became ARCA's first product to become commercially available. The aircraft was transferred to the newly created ARCA Space Corporation in the United States and then sold to a US telecommunication company.




ARCA Space Corporation created the ArcaBoard, the world's first real hoverboard commercially available. The company signed in 2017 a contract with DARPA and US Army for this technology, ultimately aiming to improve the mobility and responsiveness of US troops on the battlefield.




ARCA Space Corporation introduced the Haas 2CA, a version of Haas 2C, equipped with an aerospike rocket engine. The rocket is intended for small satellites market, estimated at $5.3 billions in the next decade. Currently ARCA took over the development of this launcher.




ARCA built and tested the Launch Assist System (LAS) as an ecological, water-based electric rocket built in two versions, using a classic bell-shaped nozzle engine and an aerospike engine. LAS is used as first stage for the Haas rocket series, reducing the use of polluting propellants with up to 50% and reducing the launch cost almost fivefold.





ARCA was inducted in the Air Force National Museum and a permanent ARCA exhibition was opened. The exhibition is showcasing some of ARCA's hardware such the Demonstrator 2B, Stabilo, Helen, Haas, IAR-111 Excelsior, ExoMars DTV, AirStrato and ground support equipment for these. This is one of the most important achievements for ARCA since it represents an official recognition of its efforts and of the fact that this team literally made history. The exhibition will receive more hardware in the future.




ARCA announced the EcoRocket on November 17, 2020. This is a small orbital rocket designed around two main features: cost-effectiveness and eco-friendliness, able to launch 10 kg to LEO.

The first two stages are reusable and use water-based propulsion technology that generates water vapours through cold reaction. The expandable third stage uses conventional hot rocket propulsion and it's ignited at high altitude, above the thick atmosphere. Both the first and second stage use the high efficiency aerospike engine technology. The whole rocket uses 86% water-based propellant. ARCA tested this technology at full-scale.

The whole program development cost only EUR 1 million, and the cost/launch was set at $390,000.

ARCA also announced that is developing a heavy version of EcoRocket that was announced in 2022 during the AMi Exploration Keynote.


Sponsors & Donors

We are a non-profit. Innovation is our core-value and we've always created cutting-edge technologies.

A huge THANK YOU to our sponsors, patrons from the Patreon platform, and to our donors! We really appreciate your continuous support!

bottom of page