Commercialization: December 2016 Archives

Dealing With Orbital Traffic

Orbital Traffic Report Released

"The current Framework does not provide a holistic approach by leading in the combined development of technically informed "rules of the road" and the provision of value-driven, safety-based products and services used during spacecraft operations. Such "rules of the road", based on space traffic safety concerns, could lead to the maturation of international norms of behavior, which would greatly enhance the strategic stability of the space domain. Objectives for any space traffic safety governance framework were created by the study team that focus on mitigating space traffic safety-related risks, protecting and enhancing national security interests, and ensuring the economic vitality of the space domain and industry. Five Frameworks were created for consideration. Each Framework exists at a distinct point on a continuous spectrum of space traffic safety governance options in which the USG's prescriptive role ranges from low to high."

Trump's $440 billion weapon, Politico

"What Trump is doing, by targeting specific companies or specific federal contracts, is new and unprecedented, experts said. "Never seen anything like this," said Sean O'Keefe, a former secretary of the Navy and comptroller of the Defense Department. ... But political appointees are traditionally loyal to the president and civil servants would risk their career if they were to not fall in line. That means, in practice, contracting officers are likely to acquiesce. "They can choose to say, 'I refuse to do that,'" said O'Keefe, "and then obviously they find themselves counting barrels of fuel in Beirut or something after it's over."

Today's Episodes of Commercial Space were Brought to You by ..., Richard Cooper

"Below are just some of the names of people I think we need to recognize and celebrate for their courage and vision that have made todays and the future of commercial space possible. Some of these names are of people who have sadly passed away but others thankfully are still with us, and still very active in pioneering commercial space. Also note that my list is by no means complete. In fact in compiling these names and achievements it is a challenge that I want to share with others to contribute towards."

Commercial Crew Flight Dates Delayed To 2018

"The next generation of American spacecraft and rockets that will launch astronauts to the International Space Station are nearing the final stages of development and evaluation. Targeted Flight Dates:
Boeing Orbital Flight Test: June 2018
Boeing Crew Flight Test: August 2018
SpaceX Demonstration Mission 1: November 2017
SpaceX Demonstration Mission 2: May 2018"

Keith's note: The next time you read about people on the NASA Transition Team saying that it is not NASA's job to conduct Earth science research - or wondering why NASA supports space commerce - just remind them: its the law. If they want proof then direct them to "National Aeronautics and Space Act of 1958, Pub. L. No. 85-568, 72 Stat. 426-438 (Jul. 29, 1958) As Amended".

Boeing Becomes Latest Company to Draw Trump's Ire, Dow Jones

"The Air Force earmarked $1.65 billion between 2015 and 2019 to develop two replacement jets, and said it may acquire up to three. However, it hasn't detailed the expected cost or delivery dates for building the planes as talks continue with Boeing, the White House and the Secret Service. "The statistics that have been cited [by Mr. Trump], shall we say, don't appear to reflect the nature of the financial arrangement between Boeing and the Department of Defense," said Obama White House spokesman Josh Earnest."

Did Donald Trump tank Boeing's stock because he was mad about a news article?

"As it turns out, though, the Trump tweet may not have been unprompted. CNN's Jake Tapper noted on Twitter that shortly before the tweet (which was posted at 8:52 a.m. Eastern) the Chicago Tribune posted an interview with the company's CEO, Dennis Muilenberg. "Anyone who paid attention to the recent campaigns and the election results realizes that one of the overarching themes was apprehension about free and fair trade," Muilenberg told the Tribune's Robert Reed. Fair trade has helped Boeing, which prides itself on being America's largest manufacturing exporter."

Trump sold all shares in companies in June, spokesman says, Washington Post

"Miller, the Trump spokesman, told The Post about Trump's stock sale Tuesday morning, following Trump's criticism of aviation giant Boeing. Trump reported owning between $50,000 and $100,000 of Boeing stock in the May filing. In the three years between Trump's original tweet about buying Boeing stock and June 2016, Boeing's share price climbed about 70 percent."

Keith's note: I just got back from the Aerospace Industries Association annual media luncheon in Washington EDC. There was a lot of nervous laughter about this news which was breaking just as well all arrived at the hotel. I am wondering what might happen if/when SLS/Orion cost increases and chronic delay - and the commercial alternatives - comes to Trump's attention. There are hints that this might be an issue in the op eds written by on-again off-again Trump advisor Bob Walker.

Dueling Space Barons

Rocket men: why tech's biggest billionaires want their place in space, Guardian

"Bezos and Musk have developed an intense personal rivalry, says Ashlee Vance. "As time has gone on and these companies have been successful, ambitions have grown. Musk and Bezos used to be cordial, but they're vicious now." In 2013, SpaceX and Blue Origin fought over control of a Nasa launch pad and a patent for landing rockets at sea; Musk won both tussles. When Blue Origin tried to block SpaceX from using the launch pad at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, Musk emailed Space News slamming the company and questioning its ability to build a rocket that would meet Nasa standards. "We are more likely to discover unicorns dancing in the flame duct," Musk wrote. After a successful Blue Origin test launch and landing in November 2015, Bezos used his first ever tweet to boast about "the rarest of beasts - a used rocket"."

Keith's note: This sounds reminiscent of the late 1800s when dueling millionaires (often called "the barons of industry") dueled with one another - but, in the process, caused America to be covered with railroads, oil fields, coal mines, telegraph, telephone, and electrical grids, and eventually roads filled with cars and skies filed with airplanes.



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This page is an archive of entries in the Commercialization category from December 2016.

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