July 2007


This last Thursday, July 26th in Mojave, CA at a Scaled Composites test facility, 3 individuals were killed and 3 more critically injured during a fueling test on SpaceShip Two, the vehicle currently under construction to carry Virgin Galactic customers. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of these 6 individuals and also with the entire Scaled family. Their dedication to opening access to space for the entire world will always be remembered. A press release from the Space Frontier foundation can be read by clicking here.

Just when you had finally saved that last nickel to pluck down a cool twenty-five million dollars to hitch a ride with the Russians to the ISS… there’s a rate hike coming soon.. Prices are now going to run you 30-40 million dollars. That new Gulfstream will just have to wait until another year. The folks at Space Adventures says the price increase is due to a falling dollar.

For the full skinny.

http://www.moscowtimes.ru/stories/2007/07/20/017.html

It looks like Northrup Grumman has purchased 100% of Scaled Composites, the legendary aerospace firm founded by Burt Rutan. Question is: how will it affect it’s joint venture with Virgin Galactic that is building Spaceship Two.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20070720/sc_space/northropgrummanbuysbuilderofspaceshipone

Word from Space Frontier Foundation insiders is that past weekend’s New Space conference was the most successful yet.

38 years ago today on July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped out of their spacecraft the ‘Eagle’ and onto the moon. With those first steps, they left the exclusive league of being astronauts and achieved iconic if not seemingly immortal status. Those achievements were made only because a clear vision was articulate and carried out by a nation.

Today, it is possible for entities albeit much smaller than the U.S.A to achieve incredible feats that could change the course of humanity. Burt Rutan’s winning of the X PRIZE was one such achievement that inspired and reignited thousands and maybe millions of people.

Paraphrasing a mentor of mine: ‘ We (humans) don’t want to go to space because it is easy or safe, but we go there because it is risky and challenging.’

I’m about to board a plane bound for DC to attend the Space Frontier Foundation New Space Conference

I will be speaking on the “Born After Apollo” panel this Saturday at 3:15 EST. Although my co-founder has been to several space events, this is only my second one so I’m really looking forward to it. I will provide a summary of the conference upon my return.

Excellent recap and thoughts on the Space Venture Finance Symposium hosted in May in Dallas.

By BURTON LEE, JOHN HIGGINBOTHAM and PETER BANKS

http://www.space.com/spacenews/archive07/leeoped_0625.html

Much focus is placed on space enterprises that are focused on building rockets and ultimately taking individuals to space. Take a look at Ecliptic Enterprises Corporation, a Pasadena based company which designs and builds on board video and imaging systems for aircraft. Ecliptic clients include NASA, XCOR Aerospace, and Scaled Composites. I would be interested to see how they have been financed since their inception and what their profit margins are like. Whatever, the case maybe the market always demands something that is distinctive which their products are.

Their work speaks for itself

&

http://www.eclipticenterprises.com/gallery_rocketcam.php

Space Tourism could benefit all. Read one perspective.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/4098640a34.html

Those lucky enough to participate in the Fly Your Stuff program can now view it; maybe??

http://bigelowaerospace.com/out_there/video_inside_genesis_II.php

Popular Mechanics article on the future of sub orbital space tourism.

http://www.popularmechanics.com/science/air_space/4219196.html

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