A surprising amount of what-ifs in science fiction have focused on what might have happened had World War 2 ended differently. From outlandish Nazi technological gambles, to the different uses post-war resources could have been put to.
This one in particular brings to mind Warren Ellis's Ministry of Space, a miniseries focusing on what would have happened had the British managed to secure the resources of Peenemünde. It's striking to think that British astronauts in the early 50s might not have been such a stretch after all.
How would spaceflight look today if Megaroc had become a reality?
“The design was totally practical,” says space historian and editor of Spaceflight magazine David Baker, who has studied the Megaroc designs. “All the technology existed and it could have been achieved within three to five years.” Baker, who was trained on V2 technology in the States and has spent most of his career as a Nasa engineer working on the Space Shuttle programme, says Megaroc was 10 years ahead of its time. “By 1951 Britain could have been routinely putting people into space on a ballistic trajectory,” he says.