February 2010

We’ve identified two very different businesses who are aligning themselves with private space enterprise. Let us know about any others we might have missed.

From Phillips & Company’s website

Phillips & Company works with aerospace leaders and emerging Space Economy companies on key strategies for revenue growth by:

  • Building defensible business models for commercial brand integrity and growth
  • Identifying revenue opportunities through existing contract vehicles and sole source opportunities
  • Coalition-building with space technology leaders in industry and government
  • Expanding visibility through analyst community, business and trade media
  • Educating the market on relevance and role within the Space Economy

Press release from Part-Time Scientists announcing Dropbox as a sponsor

Berlin, Germany, February 22, 2010 – Today, Google Lunar X PRIZE competitor, Part-Time-Scientists, announced Dropbox Inc. as an official sponsor of their team. The cloud based storage provider connects shared folders across platforms and continents. Available on Windows, Mac, Linux, iPhone, Android and web Dropbox syncs files on all platforms. The cloud takes care of sharing, syncing and backups. Team Part-Time-Scientists, headquartered in Berlin, Germany with 38 team members is among 21 teams from 18 countries that are competing for their share of the $30 million prize purse.

“As a SAN (Storage Area Network) expert myself I am very excited that Dropbox decided to sponsor us. Collaboration on such a scale needs a reliable and easy way to let people work on files simultaneously. Our engineers are scattered across the hemispheres. When a U.S. member updates a file it is instantly available to every member in the world, while dozens of generations from that file are available for recovery in the background. I can’t think of a better way for collaborative work over the internet than Dropbox,” said Team Leader, Robert Boehme.

Dropbox Inc. joins the ever growing list of sponsors of the team Part-Time-Scientists. Among them is another semiconductor industry giant, Texas Instruments. For a complete list of the teams sponsors visit http://www.part-time-scientists.com/Partners_EN.

For more information about team Part-Time-Scientists, please visit www.part-time-scientists.com. High resolution photographs, video and other team materials are available upon request.

Dropbox was founded by Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi in 2007, and received seed funding from Y Combinator. Today, Dropbox is well-funded by Sequoia Capital, Accel Partners, and Amidzad. Since launching publicly in September of 2008, Dropbox attracted over four million users and are growing rapidly. It has been featured in the New York Times and on TechCrunch, and won awards from places like PC Magazine and CNET. Their passion is making a product that rocks and putting it in millions of people’s hands. http://www.getdropbox.com

The $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE is an unprecedented international competition that challenges and inspires engineers and entrepreneurs from around the world to develop low-cost methods of robotic space exploration. The $30 million prize purse is segmented into a $20 million Grand Prize, a $5 million Second Prize and $5 million in bonus prizes. To win the Grand Prize, a team must successfully soft land a privately funded spacecraft on the Moon, rove on the lunar surface for a minimum of 500 meters, and transmit a specific set of video, images and data back to the Earth. The Grand Prize is $20 million until December 31st 2012; thereafter it will drop to $15 million until December 31st 2014 at which point the competition will be terminated unless extended by Google and the X PRIZE Foundation. For more information about the Google Lunar X PRIZE, please visit www.googlelunarxprize.org.

The X PRIZE Foundation is an educational nonprofit prize institute whose mission is to create radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity. In 2004, the Foundation captured the world’s attention when the Burt Rutan-led team, backed by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, built and flew the world’s first private spaceship to win the $10 million Ansari X PRIZE for suborbital spaceflight.  The Foundation has since launched the $10 million Archon X PRIZE for Genomics, the $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE and the $10 million Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE. The Foundation, with the support of its partner, BT Global Services, is creating prizes in Space and Ocean Exploration, Life Sciences, Energy and Environment, Education and Global Development.  The Foundation is widely recognized as a leader in fostering innovation through competition.  For more information, please visit www.xprize.org.

For those of you who want the numbers from the source.

In case you did not see The Universe – Sex in Space when it originally aired on tv, you can now watch the History Channel production originally aired on September 13,2008  via You Tube.

Related Links

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.”

Source: Huffington Post

Picture how different your life would be if commercial air travel didn’t exist — and imagine the millions of jobs that would vanish. Fortunately, commercial passenger aviation does exist and it exists because the U.S. government in the 1920s wisely decided to begin flying “air mail” on commercial airplanes, accelerating the growth of the entire passenger airline industry. President Obama’s bold, new plan for NASA, announced earlier this month, makes an equally wise decision by promoting the growth of commercial spaceflight. This is a win-win decision; creating thousands of new high-tech jobs and helping America retain its leadership role in science and technology.

President Obama’s decision to invest in this growing industry comes at a perfect time. Entrepreneurial companies like Virgin Galactic, Scaled Composites, SpaceX, Sierra Nevada Space Systems, Masten Space Systems, Armadillo Aerospace, XCOR Aerospace, and Blue Origin are investing their own money, right now, to create new jobs across the nation, including my home state of New Mexico, as they roll out innovative space vehicles. Even the larger, more traditional firms that build launch vehicles for government satellite missions are throwing their hat into the ring to launch new commercial space activities. Commercial spaceflight represents the type of dynamic innovation that we need to create 21st century jobs. Indeed, commercial space companies are one of the few industries that have continued to hire people during the recession.

Our modern economy depends on space — it is woven into our social fabric, from bank transactions and weather forecasts that depend on satellite signals, to GPS and the latest overhead images by commercial spacecraft that will help us rebuild Haiti. America’s commercial space industry can bring private investment to the table and enable government dollars to go much further in meeting our goals. Our nation’s military already benefits from the use of commercial communications and remote sensing satellites, and trusts the commercial sector to launch critical military satellites on rockets designed and built commercially. Now NASA is poised to follow in the same direction by placing an emphasis on commercial space.

In New Mexico, our support for commercial spaceflight is already reaping benefits. About 500 New Mexicans are now on the job, creating the first commercial spaceport in the world. Another 300 new jobs are expected this year. The spaceport is fulfilling its promise of inspiring young people to study math and science and developing our statewide economy. Our anchor tenant, Virgin Galactic, recently unveiled its completed, environmentally friendly spacecraft, and has over forty two million dollars deposited in reservations. The demand is there, and New Mexico will get its return on investment.

Americans will get their return on investment, too. The excitement of commercial spaceflight is already inspiring kids to pursue careers in science and technology, something our nation desperately needs to remain competitive with emerging powers like China.

Full article here.

Source: Fortune

(Fortune Magazine) — American venture capitalist and philanthropist Esther Dyson spent part of 2008 and 2009 training to be a cosmonaut. Dyson is a well-known figure in the world of technology. For many years she penned an influential monthly tech newsletter, and she hosted PC Forum, an annual technology conference. (She sold her company to CNET Networks, which discontinued the conference and sold the newsletter to O’Reilly Media.)

A few years ago she invested in Space Adventures Ltd., the firm that arranged space travel for Dennis Tito, Mark Shuttleworth, and other space tourists. In 2008 the company’s executives invited her to serve as a backup crew member for software entrepreneur Charles Simonyi. As a backup — Dyson would go into space only if Simonyi could not — she went through six months of courses, simulations, and drills at Star City, a former Russian military facility that is home to the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonauts Training Center.

Complete article here.

Source: Daily Kos

Complete article with pics here.

Source: Commercial Spaceflight Federation

Over 250 People Attend Next-Gen Suborbital Researchers Conference, 2011 Meeting Planned for Florida

By John Gedmark

The research and education community voted with its feet last week with over 250 people turning out at the first-ever Next-Generation Suborbital Researchers Conference in Boulder, Colorado, to discuss applications of commercial suborbital vehicles being built by companies including Armadillo Aerospace, Blue Origin, Masten Space Systems, Virgin Galactic, and XCOR Aerospace.

The conference included sessions on astronomy, solar physics, and planetary science; life sciences; microgravity physics; technology payloads and deployable vehicles; education and public outreach; and atmospheric, ionospheric, and auroral science.

“The amount of interest in these new suborbital vehicles was immediately apparent at our Boulder conference. The excitement in the air was contagious,” said John Gedmark, Executive Director of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation.

Dr. S. Alan Stern, chair of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation’s Suborbital Applications Researchers Group (SARG) and former NASA associate administrator for science, added, “In response to the turn-out at the conference last week, Space Florida and the University of Central Florida have teamed together with us to host a second, larger Next-Generation Suborbital Researchers Conference meeting February 28 to March 1, 2011, in Orlando, Florida. I’m looking forward to that already.”

Last week’s conference included an announcement by NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver of $75 million in planned funding over five years for NASA’s Commercial Reusable Suborbital Research (CRuSR) program.

The CRuSR program was highlighted in NASA’s detailed FY2011 budget proposal released today, which states: “As commercial suborbital capabilities become available, the CRuSR program will competitively secure flight services for experiment payloads supporting NASA’s objectives in science, technology and education.” NASA’s budget also stated that “CRuSR establishes a series of suborbital flights that will yield many benefits to NASA by providing access to 3-4 minutes of microgravity for experimentation, discovery and testing. Results are expected to reduce the risk for use of new technologies in future missions by demonstrating application in the space environment, providing for routine recovery of payloads and frequent flights.”

Source NASA

Centennial Challenges Technical Symposium: Feb. 25, 2010, 9 am to 4:30 pm
2009 Prizewinners Recognition Ceremony: Feb. 26, 2010, 10 am to 11 am

Both events are held in the NASA Headquarters Auditorium, Washington, DC
The public is invited, government, industry and media representatives are encouraged to attend. NASA TV will broadcast the events and a live webcast of the symposium and recognition ceremony is planned. The link for the webcast will be available here Thursday, Feb. 25 before the Symposium begins.
› View Press Release
› Agenda for Technical Symposium
To those who send Twitter updates during the events on Thursday and Friday, please use #nasacc as a hashtag.

For those of you unfamiliar with Dr. David Livingston, he is creator of the radio show The Space Show and a Face of Space. Dr. Livingston is  doing a terrific job consistently featuring and interviewing a wide rage of individuals from academia, commerce, and other science. Thank you David for providing a wonderful resource for the space community. Podcast available here.

This week’s schedule is listed below.

Source: The Space Show Newsletter

Also, check out Dr. David Livingston’s corresponding ‘Classroom Blog.

Who’s On The Space Show This Week
February 22, 2010

Programming For The Week Of February 22, 2010:
THE SPACE SHOW CLASSROOM SERIES IS NOW IN SESSION. FOR DETAILS, VISIT http://spaceshowclassroom.wordpress.com or contact Dr. David Livingston at drspace@thespaceshow.com. Bulletin: Please visit www.thespaceshow.com/newsletterfinal.htm for complete information for this week’s Space Show programs, contact information, listener participation instructions, future Space Show programs, special events, announcements, and more. The e- mail version of the newsletter has been abbreviated to save subscribers time and avoid some spam filter problems.

The Monday Space Show is live 2-3:30:30 PM Pacific. The Tuesday program is 7-8:30 PM Pacific, the Friday program is always 9:30-11:30 AM Pacific Time and the Sunday Space Show is live 12-1:30 PM Pacific Time. If you believe you are getting this newsletter in error, send a note to drspace@thespaceshow.com to be immediately removed from the mailing list. The Space Show does not support spam mailings of any type and will quickly address your complaint.

Programming For The Week Of February 22, 2010:
1. Monday, Feb. 22, 2010: 2-3:30 PM PST We welcome back noted space legal authority, George Robinson to discuss space law and commercial space management plus policy.
2. Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2010, 7-8:30 PM PST: Jim Funaro returns to talk about the upcoming Contact Conference to be held at NASA Ames.

3. Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2010: 7-8:30 PM PST:, We welcome back Jim Muncy to discuss the Administration’s new space policy and budget.
4. Friday, Feb. 26, 2010: 9:30-11:30 AM PST: Dr. Pascal Lee of the Mars Institute returns to discuss Phobos, Mars, Exploring the Moon & Mars using pressurized rovers, SETI and The Drake Equation, plus much more.

5. Sunday, Feb. 28, 2010. 12-1:30 PM PST: OPEN LINES. Be sure to call the show.
Listeners can talk to the guests and the host by using toll free 1 (866) 687-7223, by sending e-mail during the program using dmlivings AT yahoo.com, drspace@thespaceshow.com, thespaceshow AT gmail.com or chatting on AOL/ICQ/CompuServe Chat using the screen name “spaceshowchat.”

The Space Show is now podcasting effective May 3, 2005. Subscribe your pod casters to http://www.gigadial.net/public/station/11253/rss.xml. For questions or additional information, send e- mail to Dr. David Livingston dmlivings AT yahoo.com, drspace AT thespaceshow.com, or thespaceshow AT gmail.com.
NOTICE: The views and comments expressed on The Space Show by its guests, callers, and listeners belong to the maker . The Space Show and its host serve only as a platform and are not responsible for other’s comments or view. All topics discussed on The Space Show are primarily for educational purposes. All e-mails sent to The Space Show belong to The Space Show and may be used for promotional purposes by The Space Show. Permission for such use is implied by the sender of the e-mail. The name The Space Show is a trademarked name regardless of how it is designated in this newsletter or on www.thespaceshow.com © Copyright 2010. David Livingston. All rights reserved.

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