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Space Access ’11: Rick Tumlinson

By Doug Messier
Parabolic Arc
April 8, 2011

Rick Tumlinson
Texas Space Alliance

  • Consultant for Virginia on how to build up commercial space at Wallops Island
  • Upset that his native state was leading the charge against commercial space — Texas Republican socialists — against govt. spending except where NASA is concerned
  • Formed the citizen-driven Texas Space Alliance to rally the forces in favor of commercial space
  • There are space entrepreneurs in Texas — Elon Musk’s SpaceX testing rockets, John Carmack’s Armadillo Aerospace, Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin
  • Pushed an immunity and liability act based on similar laws in Florida, Virginia and New Mexico — protects flight providers from being sued except if there is gross negligence
  • Bill passed the Texas House a few weeks ago, now in the Senate — expect it to be approved and signed by governor within a few weeks
  • Looking at enterprise zones and other activities to encourage commercial space
  • If we can change what happens in Texas, then we can hit a tipping point that pushes the entire country toward commercial space
  • Texas Interplanetary Spaceport

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