The possibilities…the tether doesn’t actually have to touch the ground. Basically, you put up a satellite with two tethers (one for things going up, one for things going down) and then have a rocket sent up and attach to the tether.
The tether would then push the payload the rest of the way into outer space (as the article points out, space begins at 62 miles above sea level, but 98% of the weight of rockets is used to break away from the Earth’s gravity to that point).
Now, this article was published on April 1st, so I’m really hoping it’s not a prank…
(Also, wordpress looks REALLY BAD today for some reason. Wth? This “block” style is clunky AF and looks more like Netscape ca. 1996)