Next Generation Suborbital Researchers Conference Press Conference Notes

Notes from the Next Generation Suborbital Researchers Conference press conference:

Mark Sirangelo, Chairman of Commercial Spaceflight Federation:

We will be announcing an expansion of the federation to include a number of academic affiliates later today.

Michael Mealling, Masten Space Systems:

Masten will fly the winner of today’s student experiment contest on a flight for free.

Jeff Greason, XCOR CEO:

NASA’s embrace of the commercial suborbital field will be “transformative” for research and education.

The opportunity to actually fly into space will excite a new generation of students to pursue science and technology fields.

Alan Stern, SwRI:

The key part will be the ability to fly microgravity experiments on a day-in, day-out basis. To repeat the experiments many times.

Pete Worden, NASA Ames Director:

Suborbital flights is key to exploring what is known as the “ignorosphere,” a section of the upper atmosphere that we know almost nothing about. It’s too high for aircraft and too low for conventional rockets. This could be key to developing a full understanding of global warming.