The Promise of Spaceport America in the Words of its Supporters

Sir Richard Branson and New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson. (Credit: Douglas Messier)
Sir Richard Branson and New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson. (Credit: Douglas Messier)

“This business will mark a milestone in world history, and it will launch a new space industry — a private space industry, driven by innovators and entrepreneurs and new technologies and bold thinkers.”
— Richard Branson

“What we are calling the second space age will open up a wide range of commercial opportunities, including point-to-point cargo delivery, with personal and business travel.”
— Gov. Bill Richardson

Ten years ago today, Virgin Galactic and New Mexico announced a deal for development what became known as Spaceport America. New Mexico would built a $225-million spaceport with taxpayer’s dollars in the desert near Truth or Consequences. Sir Richard Branson’s new space company would sign a 20-year lease to fly tourists aboard SpaceShipTwo from the facility beginning in 2008.  New Mexico also expected the spaceport to be used by UP Aerospace, Starchaser Industries, and Peter Diamandis’ Rocket Racing League and X Prize Cup.

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Starchaser Plans November Launch for Nova 2

Starchaser's Nova 2 rocket, which may carry tourists into space.
Starchaser's Nova 2 rocket, which may carry tourists into space.

Starchaser Industries brought its 58-foot Nova 2 rocket to Acle High School in Norfolk on Wednesday, giving students a chance to see a vehicle that might one day lift tourists into space.

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Starchaser Testing Eco-Friendly Engine

PRESS RELEASE

Manchester based high technology Company Starchaser Industries will today conduct a full test firing of the environmentally friendly rocket engine it has developed using grant funding from the North West regional Development Agency (NWDA). The £130,730 award for Research and Development has been used to develop a unique eco-friendly rocket engine that will find eventual use as a safety system aboard commercial space rockets.

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Starchaser Lays Out Plans for Suborbital and Orbital Tourism Vehicles

UK-based Starchaser Industries has submitted a study to the European Space Agency in which it lays out plans for suborbital and orbital space tourism flights.

The company is working on its Starchaser 5 rocket, which would launch a reuseable Thunderstar capsules on suborbital flights  exceeding 100 kilometers. The flights would would carry one pilot and four passengers. Occupants would experience about three minutes of weightlessness.

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Starchaser Gets Research Grant to Create “Eco-Friendly” Rocket Engine

Starchaser Press Release

Manchester based high technology company Starchaser Industries has been awarded an £130,730 [$210,317] Grant for Research and Development (GRAND) from the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) to develop a unique eco-friendly rocket engine for eventual use as a safety system aboard commercial space rockets.

Specialising in the development, operation and commercialisation of space related products, Starchaser Industries have identified a unique way to develop an environmentally friendly hybrid rocket engine that will utilize “green” propellants, producing virtually no harmful emissions.

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Finally, a Good Use for Old Tires: Sending Millionaires into Space

Starchaser Industries of Britain has unveiled a new rocket that it plans to use to fly tourists into suborbital space in 2013. The Nova 2 rocket, fueled partly by used tires, will launch as three-person capsule from Spaceport America in New Mexico,  company founder Steve Bennett says. The company plans to test booster next year. Tickets will cost about $200,000.

Steve Bennett to run space flights by 2013
The Telegraph

Passenger rocket fuled by old tyres
The Mirror

“I’ll take tourists into space”
Manchester Evening News