I need to know how many space launch vehicles (across categories - small, medium , heavy etc) are under development, worldwide.

For instance this report talks only about the number of Small Space Launch Vehicles that are under development. However, I could not find the figures for Medium Space Launch Vehicles, Heavy Space Launch Vehicles among others.

Is there any authoritative source where this figure is available?


No, there isn't an authoritative source.

The 131 small launchers mentioned in the article you linked, are from "a long-running effort to track small launch vehicle efforts" -- but won't include any that they haven't heard of. The 2018 list and its criteria includes the ominous phrase "We have found out about many of these vehicles by word of mouth from readers of our previous papers."

However, anything other than a small launch vehicle is likely to be too expensive to develop privately, so there are likely less than a dozen under development in any of the other weight classes.

Wikipedians appear to have given up tracking them. The forum at NasaSpaceFlight is a good place to look. The CIA probably have the best list.

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    $\begingroup$ Is the downvoter aware of an authorative list? $\endgroup$ – JCRM Sep 24 '19 at 12:29
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    $\begingroup$ Hah! Submit a FOIA request for the CIA's recon data ;). $\endgroup$ – Magic Octopus Urn Sep 24 '19 at 14:38
  • $\begingroup$ To help reinforce the futility of even attempting to establish a 'complete list' of what is 'in development': Myself and a group of friends have been competing with each other to design functional micro-sats and launchers, and I don't think any of them are public projects. At best we could hope to maintain lists of projects that have achieved official flight status or openly announced development, as I alone have nearly a dozen launchers in pre-flight status [that are in various stages of abandonment...] $\endgroup$ – TheLuckless Sep 24 '19 at 21:20

It's virtually impossible to keep track of all the small launch vehicles.

Most of the big ones are included at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_orbital_launch_systems

Vehicles still in development are listed in tan colour.

Note that retired launchers are in a separate table at the bottom, so don't go looking for the Saturn V in the top table.

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