Artemis I Carries the Future of NASA with It

The Space Launch System rocket fairing with ESA and NASA logos on the launchpad at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, USA. The new ESA logo and NASA’s ‘worm’ logo will be along for the ride on the first full mission of the powerful Space Launch System (SLS) rocket and Orion spacecraft. (Credit: NASA)

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

Of the six launches known to be scheduled to close out August, there’s only one – Artemis I — that truly matters in any real sense. The others will be duly recorded but little remembered in what could be the busiest launch year in human history.


France Opens Public Consultation to Devise NewSpace Strategies & Goals

Translated from French by Google Translate

PARIS (CNES PR) — The advent of NewSpace has profoundly upset the space industry and prompted traditional players to review their strategies in the face of multiple initiatives from new private players over the past twenty years. This sector, now more accessible, opens up a considerable number of opportunities and French space players must face up to rapidly changing challenges in order to remain in the international race.

A collective of space players, fully convinced of the need to accelerate the transformation of the ecosystem – 3i3s Europa, Alliance NewSpace France, ASTech Paris Region, CNES, ESA, Eutelsat, Geodesic, GIFAS, ISAE SUPAERO, NewSpace Club, Paris-Saclay Hardware Accelerator, SAFE, Toulouse Capitole University (Sirius Chair) – has therefore decided to organize the first NewSpace Meetings, on July 7 and 8, 2022 at Station F, Paris. It is in this context that a major public consultation has been launched for all interested natural or legal persons.


Spotlight on Climate and the New Space Economy

Kicking off with a bold flourish, Φ-week 2021 promises to bring space even closer to the forefront of addressing society’s biggest challenges, namely issues associated with the climate crisis, while boosting the economy through transformative New Space, artificial intelligence, and quantum and cognitive computing. (Credit: V. Stefanelli)

PARIS (ESA PR) — Kicking off with a bold flourish, Φ-week 2021 promises to bring space even closer to the forefront of addressing society’s biggest challenges, namely issues associated with the climate crisis, while boosting the economy through transformative New Space, artificial intelligence, and quantum and cognitive computing.

ESA’s Φ-week is now in its fourth edition, and each year this forward-looking event is increasingly relevant to society, business and the economy.


Commercialisation of the Space Sector: What Can ESA Do in Europe?

Josef Aschbacher (Credit: ESA–Philippe Sebirot, 2016)

by Josef Aschbacher
Director General
European Space Agency

There is no need to point out the importance of commercialisation in the space sector. It has been implemented and visibly demonstrated in all corners of the world. The commercialisation of space has entered a new dimension with the digital sector massively investing in the space sector, giving it the attention, credibility, funding and even celebrity the American space industry needed to grow colossally and at a very quick pace. Its success set off a ripple effect overseas, encouraging similar investments in space industries in Japan, China, India, UAE, to name a few. Around the globe, countries have been further encouraged to heavily invest in space after being woken up to the great economic, societal and strategic benefit potential the sector promises.

Certainly, the US has led the way more than a decade ago, but today basically every country puts a huge emphasis on putting the commercial sector into the driving seat for “NewSpace” projects, however you may wish to define NewSpace.


Democratizing Space, One Billionaire at a Time: The Return of Space Tourism

They’re baaack! Tourists will return to space this year after a 12-year hiatus. Above, the first space tourist, billionaut Dennis Tito (left), poses with Soyuz TM-32 crew mates Talgat Musabayev, and Yuri Baturin in 2001. (Credit: NASA)

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

Democratization has a set of fundamental elements to it. It involves giving the people the power to choose their leaders. It means making a political system accountable to those people. It’s creating a government and culture that respect the freedoms laid out in the First Amendment: speech, assembly, religion, press and the right to peacefully petition the government for change. It’s not just changing how the government operates, but how the society functions.

The last thing I ever expected democratization to include are joy rides into space by millionaires and billionaires. But, that’s what NewSpace spinmeisters would have us believe as space tourism returns this year after a 12-year hiatus. They really should stop.


Remembrance Day, Challenger & NewSpace

The space shuttle Challenger explodes. (Credit: NASA)
The space shuttle Challenger explodes. (Credit: NASA)

“There was ice on the ship,” I said quietly to no one in particular.

I was standing in the hallway at work with some co-workers, watching the space shuttle Challenger explode over and over again on a television in one of the offices.


Space Florida Names Vice President of NewSpace Market Development

Allison Odyssey (Credit: Space Florida)
Allison Odyssey (Credit: Space Florida)

EXPLORATION PARK, Fla., February 25, 2014 (Space Florida PR) – Space Florida is pleased to name Allison Odyssey as Vice President of NewSpace Market Development. In this role, Odyssey is responsible for creating, directing, and managing Space Florida’s business partnerships with the NewSpace industry, while leveraging and strengthening a positive business climate for the commercial space markets to grow in Florida. Odyssey has been with Space Florida for seven years, most recently as Senior Program Director.

Today the NewSpace industry is composed of hundreds of small and large businesses and according to industry analysts, is expected to reach 1,000 companies worldwide by 2016. NewSpace is characterized by lean companies that are backed by private investment and use space applications to serve a growing base of commercial customers. By evaluating the business needs of these companies from a technical and financial standpoint, Odyssey is responsible for shaping customized solutions, and providing support and investment in the areas that will have the largest impact and best position them for growth and success.


New Video Series on Commercial Space Activities

Video Caption: We follow certain entrepreneurs, public officials, and private citizens that are actively shaping a new kind of space race, and in the process, redefining what it means to explore the cosmos. This pilot episode of the new monthly web series Private Space, features an interview with California State Sen. Steve Knight, the lead author of California’s Space Flight Liability and Immunity Act.

Learn more about the series on our blog:
Subscribe to our YouTube channel to receive the latest episodes.

Connect with us!
Facebook: LifeAssembledStudios
Twitter: @LifeAssembled

ISPCS Closing Speaker: Michael Simpson of Secure World Foundation

Michael Simpson

ISPCS Closing Remarks
Michael Simpson
Executive Director, Secure World Foundation

In closing keynote, Michael Simpson says NewSpace industry has matured over last 8 years, more willing to work with gov’t and others. (Jeff Foust ‏@jeff_foust)

SIMPSON: Don’t restrict innovation to engineering. (Alan Ladwig ‏@SpaceArtAl )

Simpson: Don’t confine innovation to engineering. Great ideas are in business, policy, and other fields. (Suzi Gordon ‏@suzigordon)

Simpson: Any place worth getting to in space is going to come faster if we make use of synergies (ISPCS ‏@ISPCS)


Garver’s Departure Leaves NewSpace Without its Highest Ranking Advocate

NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver talks during a press conference with Sierra Nevada's Dream Chaser spacecraft in the background on Saturday, Feb. 5, 2011, at the University of Colorado at Boulder.  Sierra Nevada's Dream Chaser spacecraft is under development with support from NASA's Commercial Crew Development Program to provide crew transportation to and from low Earth orbit. Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls)
NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver talks during a press conference with Sierra Nevada’s Dream Chaser spacecraft in the background on Saturday, Feb. 5, 2011, at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Sierra Nevada’s Dream Chaser spacecraft is under development with support from NASA’s Commercial Crew Development Program to provide crew transportation to and from low Earth orbit. Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls)

Aviation Week takes a closer look at Deputy Administrator Lori Garver’s impending Sept. 6 departure from NASA. Frank Morring, Jr. notes that Garver has been the major driver behind the agency’s controversial push for commercial space activities as well as the plan to capture an asteroid and have astronauts visit it. He also notes the following:

Associate Administrator Robert Lightfoot, the agency’s No. 3 manager and top-ranking civil servant, is a likely possibility to fill Garver’s post on an acting basis until the White House can nominate another political appointee….

Garver’s departure will come on the heels of Elizabeth Robinson, the agency’s chief financial officer, who has been named under secretary of energy. Robinson and Garver were staunch allies in the often-heated management policy debates that pitted them against more traditional NASA managers, including Administrator Charles Bolden.

The announcement of Garver’s departure has already caused consternation among her supporters in the NewSpace community, who are losing their highest ranked advocate at the space agency at a critical time when Congress and the White House are at loggerheads over the space agency’s funding and direction.


NewSpace 2012: Approaching the Tipping Point on NewSpace NewTech

Approaching the Tipping Point

Panel Discussion

  • Charles Miller: President & Owner, NexGen Space LLC (Moderator)
  • Mark Bunger: Research Director, Lux Research Inc.
  • Desiree Dudley: Director of Development & Research, Foresight Institute
  • Todd Meyerrose: Founder and General Partner, Talos Ventures
  • James Reuther: Deputy Director, Technology Program,  NASA Office of Chief Technologist

A discussion of the technology paths critical to the success of NewSpace and how those priorities relate to NASA’s Technology Development Roadmaps.


Consulting Firm Hires Tumlinson for New Commercial Space Practice Group

Rick Tumlinson

AUSTIN, TX (Formation PR) — Austin-based communications consultancy Formation has announced the addition of a practice group dedicated to the commercial space industry. Formation helps launch and grow business and policy initiatives with a unique blend of strategic communications, design and entrepreneurial thinking.

“I have a great deal of personal interest in enabling growth in the commercial space industry,” says Shelby Stephens, Formation co-founder and strategy design director. “Combine our company’s strong strategic communications capabilities with a background in engineering and aerospace, and we’re in a good spot to help some commercial space companies get to the next level.”

The space practice group at Formation includes commercial space evangelist Rick Tumlinson as a strategic advisor. “Rick brings us decades of space advocacy experience and a deep knowledge of the industry,” Stephens adds. “And, he’s something of a renegade – certainly outside the box – and that seems to fit well with our culture.”


Space Team Romney: Pace, Griffin, Cernan and Anderson

Former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin

In a move destined to anger NewSpace advocates, Mitt Romney has released a letter of support signed by eight space leaders, including prominent commercial space critics Mike Griffin, Scott Pace and Gene Cernan. Pace, in fact, is chairman of the Romney Space Policy Advisory Group.

“We have watched with dismay as President Obama dismantled the structure that was guiding both the government and commercial space sectors, while providing no purpose or vision or mission,” the signers wrote. “This failure of leadership has thrust the space program into disarray and triggered a dangerous erosion of our technical workforce and capabilities. In short, we have a space program unworthy of a great nation.”


Gingrich to Channel JFK This Week in Florida

Newt Gingrich. (Credit: Gage Skidmore)

Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich intends to give a major address on space policy while campaigning in the Sunshine State this week.

“I’ll be at the Space Coast in Florida this week giving a speech, a visionary speech, on the United States going back into space in the John F. Kennedy tradition rather than the current bureaucracy,” he said during an appearance on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” program Sunday morning.

The former Speaker of the House has been critical of NASA’s bureaucracy and favored commercial activities in space. His 1984 book, Window of Opportunity, included a chapter about space.

Gingrich is coming off a surprise win on Saturday over Mitt Romney in the South Carolina primary. Romney had earlier criticized Gingrich’s support for human settlements on the moon.


Florida Today: Hey, This Commercial Space Stuff is For Real!

A Boeing CST-100 crew module docks at a Bigelow Aerospace space station. (Credit: Boeing)

Space, Inc. moving closer to launch
Florida Today Special Report

Florida Today traveled coast to coast, toured secretive facilities, saw first-hand highly proprietary work under way and interviewed dozens of key players trying to stimulate this new industry at altitudes hundreds of miles above Earth.

Our four-month analysis found that U.S. private industry is more than capable of developing spacecraft to fly U.S. astronauts to and from low Earth orbit.

What’s more, U.S. aerospace companies already are developing, testing and launching prototypes.

Their plans are not just PowerPoint presentations and engineering drawings. Commercial companies are cutting metal, assembling engines, testing steering thrusters, and in some cases, spacecraft already are orbiting the Earth.

Read the special report.