Mojave Spaceport

Yesterday, I was visiting an early stage business who just moved into new offices adjacent to a busy, general aviation airport. I learned that one family controls most of the land surrounding the airport. Tenants include everything from corporate air charters to health care related businesses. The diversity of businesses there is impressive.

Will spaceports attract land speculators? They probably already do; especially in places near Spaceport America. Some might sit on their land while others might develop facilities and businesses  that they believe will  benefit from being near a spaceport. Several years ago, I looked at real estate investment opportunities near an existing spaceport, but opted not to invest. However, I know others who have invested in land near other spaceports. It’s another way to be involved with New Space. Will a new wave of real estate development  emerge based on these terrestrial space dreamers? Time will tell.

If you’ve invested in land or a related development at or near a spaceport, we’d love to hear from you.

Spaceport Resources

Videos below of Masten Space System’s vehicle Xombie flew on March 20th, 2010. Great video coverage (multiple angles) below.

Source: Herald Tribune

SARASOTA – Miguel Iturmendi has been waiting for his “wow” moment ever since he was a teenager. So at age 38, another year or two in limbo won’t matter.

But when it does happen — when a vehicle called SpaceShip-Two fires its rocket engine and punches him through the doorway of the high frontier — the Sarasota test pilot/engineer suspects the stakes will be far more profound than a three-hour joy ride.

“I believe we’re at ground zero for something else, like the Internet was in the 1980s,” he says. “It will open up amazing possibilities. Prices will eventually come down to within a fraction of what they are now. Instead of taking a five-star cruise to Alaska, people will decide to go into space.”

Cosmic tourism inched closer to reality in December when SpaceShipTwo — the crown jewel of Richard Branson’s ambitious Virgin Galactic enterprise — was unveiled at a hangar in California’s Mojave Desert. Iturmendi was not the only Sarasotan who got a firsthand look.

Full article here.

Mojave Spaceport tenants such as Scaled Composites and XCOR Aerospace are fairly well know to the New Space Community. However, more firms like Masten Space Systems and Firestar Technologies are relocating to the Mojave Spaceport. Firestar Technologies is new to our radar and their CEO Greg Mungas will be speaking tomorrow at the Mojave Chamber of Commerce luncheon.

According to Firestar’s website,  the firm ‘ specializes in the development and commercialization of technologies for advanced chemical propulsion and power systems as well as related diagnostic instrumentation.”

Source: Mojave chamber email

” Airport space firm to brief Mojave Chamber
Thursday, Feb. 25th at 11:45 a.m.

Greg Mungas, the CEO of Firestar Technologies, one of several
leading-edge aerospace businesses at the Mojave Airport/Spaceport, will
brief the Mojave Chamber of Commerce at its February 25th meeting at the
Mojave Veterans Memorial Building.

Mungas, who also serves as chief technical officer and is a founding partner
of Firestar, will discuss the company, which specializes in the development
and commercialization of technologies for advanced chemical propulsion and
power systems as well as related diagnostic instrumentation.
The company has developed NOFBX Monopropellant, a monopropellant blend that
is low cost, non-toxic, self-pressurizing, and deep-space-storable; and is
developing a piston engine for use in High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE)
aircraft, among other projects.

A no-host buffet lunch will be served beginning at 11:45 a.m. and the
meeting will begin at noon and end by 1 p.m. Mojave Chamber of Commerce
meetings are open to the public.

For more information, call the chamber at 661.824.2481.”

Who needs the space shuttle? Take a tour inside the private space industry and its innovative, efficient plans to get astronauts into space when NASA retires its old ride

Aviation week article – Person of the year: The Space Entrepreneur

By Frank Morring, Jr.

Working quietly in the background since the days of viewgraphs, a group of space entrepreneurs has long been pitching far-fetched ideas to skeptical moneymen with the fervor of evangelists. Now their viewgraphs—updated to Powerpoint and CAD/CAM—are becoming reality, and metal and fire are streaking through the upper atmosphere into low Earth orbit.

Collectively, they are in the vanguard of a new industry, poised to transform how humans venture into space in ways that most observers can scarcely imagine today. Space entrepreneurs had a big influence on aerospace in 2009, although it does not begin to compare with the impact they are likely to have in years to come.

That is why Aviation Week chose this intrepid group of engineers and visionaries as the 2009 Person of the Year.

Two developments have set the stage for space entrepreneurs to begin breaking down barriers, financially and otherwise. After investing more than $1 billion in hard-won private capital on hardware, they are finding increased acceptance for their business plans. And they have finally made it to space with humans onboard—three suborbital flights with SpaceShipOne that won Scaled Composites the Ansari X-Prize and launched a fledgling commercial space-tourism business.

Traditionally reluctant to rely on government backing, these brash businessmen now find themselves at the center of the debate on how government astronauts will get to space; the very governments they have often disdained are potentially their biggest customers. NASA already has multi-billion-dollar contracts with two of them to deliver cargo to the International Space Station and is spending big bucks to encourage them to develop more capability.

In the U.S., where almost all of the space entrepreneurs operate, the federal government may wind up relying on them to transport astronauts to the ISS. And, building on the success of the X-Prize Foundation in spurring development of a privately financed human spaceship, NASA and Congress are using a federal prize program to tap into the skills of the growing entrepreneur community.

As Burt Rutan at Scaled Composites was putting the finishing touches on SpaceShipTwo, the commercial version of the vehicle that won the privately backed $10-million X-Prize, another Mojave, Calif.-based company was winning big, too. Masten Space Systems pulled in more than $1 million in federal Centennial Challenge prizes for building a lunar-lander prototype and proving it on a simulated moonscape.

Mojave is a hotbed of the space-entrepreneurial spirit, and Dave Masten—featured on the cover with his prize-winning rocket-powered Xoie lander—epitomizes that zeal. Like some other space entrepreneurs, Masten got his start in information technology, but winning the Centennial Challenge lunar lander prizes make it less likely the longtime rocket buff will ever have to go back to Silicon Valley.

Click here for the full article.


  • Pics from our friend, Sam Coniglio whose probably going to provide the bulk of the New Space community with first pics.
  • Twitpic feed courtesy  of Jeff Foust from The Space Review and The New Space Journal.
  • NPR

Articles, blogs, and twitter coverage

Jonathan Amos reporting for the BBC.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

The Mojave Civilian test center and spaceport won a new license’ to operate horizontal type launches’ according to Flight Global.

White Knight in Mojave

White Knight in Mojave

Ben of Masten Spacce takes time out of his busy life dedicated to developing rockets to post some very good videos of the latest developments from Masten at the Mojave Spaceport.  Click below on the Masten logo for more…


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