Sunday 7/27/14 - We have a new Space Access Update out, #136, with a brief remembrance of Bill Gaubatz, some thoughts on US space launch development policy, a Halftime Report on 2014 US space politics, and a request for support for what we're doing here at SAS.
Wednesday 6/11/14 - We have another Followup to last week's Alert out, with pointers to mainstream news coverage, a more detailed analysis of Senator Shelby's apparent turf-grab, and the latest on what you can do to help.
Thursday 6/5/14 - We have a Followup to yesterday's Alert out. Thanks for your help! But we didn't get the job done today; there was no mention of changing the bad Commercial Crew language in this morning's CJS Appropriations markup. If you want to know what comes next, plus more background on the problem, here it is.
Wednesday 6/4/14 - We have a new Space Access Political Action Alert out, an urgent short-fuse item requiring action by 9am EDT Thursday. There's poison-pill language that needs to be removed for NASA Commercial Cargo & Crew in the Senate CJS (NASA) Appropriations bill that goes to the full Senate Appropriations Committee for markup at 10 am Thursday.
Tuesday 5/13/14 - We have a new Space Access Update out, #135, with policy advice on a number of current space issues that may hit the fan soon - Russian and Station, RD-180, and SLS - plus some cautious optimism about resuming Space Access conferences.
Tuesday 12/31/13 - We have a new Space Access Update out, #134, with a message of cautious optimism for the new year, plus some less cheerful news about this coming April's planned Space Access '14 conference. We very much regret to announce that, due to circumstances arising that will require a great deal of the conference manager's time in coming months, this April's Space Access conference is cancelled. We'll be contacting those who paid for advance SA'14 registrations at SA'13 about refunds this week. (If you haven't heard from us by this weekend, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, with the subject line SA'14 Refund.)
- We're coming up fast on the 20th anniversary of DC-X's first
flight later this month, and some of the people involved have
organized a conference in New Mexico, Friday August 16th
through Sunday August 18th, to mark the occasion.
I've volunteered to help out with the conference, and that's what I'm
writing to you about today.
Much of the original DC-X team will be there, to be honored and to talk about how they did it, techniques used and lessons learned. There will also be a look at some of the many things that came of DC-X's success, plus a Reusable Spaceplane X-Vehicles workshop looking to what should come next, as well as a tour of the New Mexico Spaceport.
This is a one-of-a-kind event. It's very unlikely that all these people will ever be in one place at the same time again. If you have a deep interest in where "new space" came from, where it is now, and where it should go next, this event is more than worth a trip to New Mexico in August.
Conference agenda and details at http://dc-xspacequest.org/
thanks for your time
Space Access Society
Tuesday 6/4/13 - We have a new Space Access Update out, #133, with followups on last issue's NASA Budget and Commercial Crew pieces, plus an alert about proposed Inclusion Of Suborbital (and Orbital) Transports On The ITAR Export-Restricted List
Thursday 5/30/13 - We have a new Space Access Update out, #132, with The Sequester, NASA Budget Status (and Fixing The Problem), Commercial Crew: The Budget and The FARs, and Space Access '13 Wrapup
The Space Access '14 Conference dates we're currently looking at are Thursday-Saturday, April 3-5 or April 10-12, 2014, and so far we're leaning toward the latter. If anyone is aware of major conflicts on either of those dates or has a strong preference, drop us an email at email@example.com.
Saturday, 4/20/13 - Space Access '13 Web Roundup - As usual, Clark Lindsey of NewSpace Watch has done an amazing job both covering the conference in detail and rounding up pointers to other coverage. His Space Access'13: Summary and Resources leaves very little out; the only things we can think of so far to add are Jeff Foust's Space Review piece Hacking Space and a pointer to Twitter coverage under the hashtag #sa13 (somewhat confusingly, a couple other events used the same hashtag, but it's pretty clear which are which.)
We have a new Space Access Update out, #131, on the NASA Tech Data Drought, The Race Is Far From Over, Free Advice, and a "Warning Shots" Correction.
We have a new Space Access Update out, #130, "Warning Shots". (This Update gets referenced in a story on Alan Boyle's Cosmic Log at nbcnews.com.)
Monday, 1/7/13 - The
dates for our next annual conference on the business, technology, and
politics of radically cheaper access to space, Space Access '13,
are set. Conference sessions will begin 9 am Thursday April
11th and end 6 pm Saturday April 13th, 2013.
Advance conference registration is $120 (Student rate $40), mail checks to Space Access '13, PO Box 16034, Phoenix AZ 85011. (We will have online credit card registration open here later this month.)
One additional announcement: We have always viewed the Space Studies Institute's mission (http://ssi.org/) as complementary to ours, and it gives us considerable pleasure to announce that this year we will be hosting our colleagues at SSI for a half-day SSI session at SA'13.
Watch here for more on the conference details in the coming weeks.
Space Access Society: Who are we?
There are countless useful, interesting, and profitable things we could do if we had routine affordable access to space. But, as the old down-Maine joke goes, "you can't get there from here." Half a century into the Space Age, it still takes years of paperwork and planning and costs tens to hundreds of millions per mission to reach Earth orbit, drastically constraining the otherwise huge opportunities. It isn't the laws of physics or engineering that are stopping us - there's nothing in either that prevents reusable rockets based on available technology from operating at costs and reliabilities a lot closer to modern airliners than to current rockets. Yet somehow, after all the early promise, we ended up in a blind alley. We've spent a generation there. Enough is enough.
Space Access Society thinks the problem has a lot more to do with political and bureaucratic inertia than with any fundamental engineering obstacles. SAS's sole purpose is to promote routine, reliable, radically cheaper access to space, ASAP. We think it's possible within the decade, with a little luck and a lot of hard work. Welcome to our minimalist retro text-intensive web page, where we'll try to give you a handle on how we think we can get out of the long-time NASA-industrial complex expensive-space dead end. Here's the longer version: Space Access Society Policy Summary (due for an update at some point, but still amazingly relevant for something written eight years ago.)
And here's our Updates backlist, so you can see how our understanding of the problem has evolved over the years:
Space Access Update back issues
One of the higher-profile things we do is our annual Space Access conference on the technology, politics, and business of radically cheaper space transportation, featuring leading players in the field. Stand by for information on our next, Space Access '15, coming next spring.
Questions? Email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org (We may take a while to get back to you, but your mail does go through.)
Space Access Update Back Issues
SAU #136 -27 Jul 14 Update SAU #135 -13 May 14 Update SAU #134 -31 Dec 13 Update SAU #133 - 4 Jun 13 Update SAU #132 -30 May 13 Update SAU #131 -24 Mar 13 Update SAU #130 - 4 Mar 13 Update SAU #129 -15 Dec 11 Update SAU #128 -15 Sep 11 Update SAU #127 -26 Jul 11 Update SAU #126 - 8 Jul 11 Update & Alert SAU #125 - 7 Jul 11 Update SAU #124 -20 Jun 11 Update bulletin -17 May 11 Alert bulletin -26 Apr 11 Alert SAU #123 -14 Apr 11 Update SAU #122 - 2 Apr 11 Update SAU #121 -16 Feb 11 Update bulletin -27 Sep 10 bulletin bulletin -24 Sep 10 bulletin SAU #120 -23 Sep 10 Update SAU #119 -20 Sep 10 Update bulletin -13 Sep 10 bulletin bulletin - 9 Sep 10 bulletin bulletin - 5 Sep 10 bulletin SAU #118 -30 Aug 10 Update SAU #117 -21 Aug 10 Update SAU #116 -29 Jul 10 Update SAU #115 -14 Jul 10 Update SAU #114 -20 Feb 06 Update SAU #113 - 4 Jan 06 Update SAU #112 - 9 Sep 05 Update SAU #111 - 5 Apr 05 Update SAU #110 -31 Mar 05 Update SAU #109 -15 Feb 05 Update SAU #108 -31 Jan 05 Update SAU #107 - 2 Dec 04 Update SAU #106 -19 Nov 04 Update SAU #105 -19 Oct 04 Update SAU #104 -29 Sep 04 Update SAU #103 -15 Apr 04 Update SAU #102 - 9 Feb 04 Update SAU #101 -13 Dec 03 Update SAU #100 - 8 Feb 03 Update SAU #99 - 13 Dec 02 Update bulletin - 12 Feb 02 bulletin SAU #98 - 8 Mar 01 Update SAU #97 - 26 Jan 01 Update SAU #96 - 26 Sep 00 Update SAU #95 - 27 Aug 00 Update SAU #94 - 9 Jul 00 Update SAU #93 - 13 Apr 00 Update SAU #92 - 5 Apr 00 Update SAU #91 - 7 Feb 00 Update SAU #90 - 10 Oct 99 Update SAU #89 - 25 Sep 99 Update SAU #88 - 24 Jul 99 Update SAU #87 - 19 Jul 99 Update SAU #86 - 25 Jun 99 Update SAU #85 - 18 Jun 99 Update SAU #84 - 17 Jun 99 Update SAU #83 - 3 Jun 99 Update SAU #82 - 12 May 99 Update SAU #81 - 5 Mar 99 Update SAU #80 - 28 Feb 99 Update SAU #79 - 8 Oct 98 Update SAU #78 - 6 Nov 97 Update SAU #77 - 16 Oct 97 Update SAU #76 - 3 Oct 97 Update SAU #75 - 23 Sep 97 Update SAU #74 - 31 Aug 97 Update SAU #73 - 14 Jul 97 Update SAU #72 - 23 May 97 Update SAU #71 - 6 May 97 Update SAU #70 - 18 Oct 96 Update SAU #69 - 31 Jul 96 Update SAU #68 - 21 Jul 96 Update SAU #67 - 11 Jul 96 Update Full list of back issues available here eventually, when we finally dig them off various retired computers... *end*