Space Florida Signs MOU With Spanish Aerospace Group

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FL (October 13, 2011) – Today, Space Florida President Frank DiBello and Mr. Jaime Denis, Director General of the Instituto Nacional de Técnica Aeroespacial (INTA), signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to further enhance business development opportunities between Florida and Spain in the aerospace sector.

Space Florida and INTA will now begin the process of the forming a joint venture commercial business that will become a world leader in small satellite development, manufacturing, sales, R&D and launch.


Space Florida, A|D|S Sign MOU on Space Cooperation

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FL (October 11, 2011) – Today, Space Florida President Frank DiBello and Rees Ward, A|D|S Group, Ltd., CEO signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to further enhance business development opportunities between Florida and the UK in the aerospace sector.

A|D|S Group Ltd. is the only UK-based trade organization recognized by the UK government as the association responsible for advancing the UK aerospace, defense and security industries. A|D|S encompasses the British Aviation Group (BAG) and also claims Farnborough International Unlimited (organizer of the Farnborough International Air Show) as a wholly owned subsidiary.


Space Coast Clean Energy Jobs Accelerator Will Help Expand Central Florida’s Clean Energy Hub

Space Florida PR — Four Brevard County-based economic development organizations – Space Florida, the Space Coast Energy Consortium, Brevard Workforce and the Technological Research and Development Association (TRDA) – have been awarded a total of $2.2 million in Federal grants to further develop a clean energy hub in Central Florida. Programs and services enabled by the grants will provide employment opportunities in this rapidly growing high-tech sector.

The Space Coast Clean Energy Jobs Accelerator was one of 20 projects nationwide that will share a total of $37 million in federal funding. According to the EDA, “winning projects demonstrated the existence of high-growth industry clusters that support a wide range of economic and workforce development activities.”


Green Energy Taking Root on Florida Space Coast

In addition to rebuilding Florida’s aerospace industry, state officials are also bringing clean energy technology companies to the Space Coast. The Sunshine State’s abundance of strong winds and…well, sunshine make it an excellent location for clean energy.

In recent weeks, Space Florida has:

  • led a new investment round in Cella Energy Limited, an UK hydrogen fuel company that is setting up shop in the state-built Space Life Sciences Lab at the Kennedy Space Center;
  • received a federal grant to build up the clean energy industry.

In addition, a private company in Palm Bay, Advanced Magnet Lab, has received federal funds to develop the next generation wind turbine.

Details follow after the break.


Space Florida Awards $100K to Medical Device Manufacturer

SPACE FLORIDA PR — CAPE CANAVERAL, FL (September 9, 2011) – On Wednesday, 10 high-tech start-ups had the opportunity to present their business models to national financers at the Igniting Innovation Showcase, hosted by Space Florida and the Technological Research and Development Authority (TRDA) in Cape Canaveral. At the conclusion of the networking event, Space Florida awarded a $100,000 check to the company judges felt had the most potential for near-term growth and commercial success, while contributing to Florida’s economy. C2C Development – a neurological medical device manufacturer – was selected for the award.

The company has developed the proprietary NAViTECH Platform for performing intracranial procedures. C2C CEO Matt Solar says the streamlined device greatly reduces procedure time and is minimally invasive when compared to current technologies like stereotactic frames. According to Solar, Therapy Specific Catheters – like that reflected in the NAViTECH Platform – reflect a $1 Billion market potential. The company anticipates FDA clearance for its product by the end of 2012.


Space Florida Gets New Board of Directors

CAPE CANAVERAL, FL (August 25, 2011) – Earlier this month, the new Space Florida Board of Directors held their first meeting of the 2011-2012 fiscal year at the Renaissance Tampa International Plaza hotel.

During the board meeting, Space Florida’s 2012 budget and numerous other projects were approved for the coming year. The meeting was held in conjunction with Enterprise Florida, due to the fact that the two organizations work closely together and now share many of the same board members.


Space Florida, TRDA Announce Companies for Innovation Showcase

Melbourne, Fla. – Space Florida and the Technological Research and Development Authority (TRDA) jointly announced today the 10 companies selected to present at the I2 (Igniting Innovation) Capital Acceleration Showcase scheduled for September 7, 2011 in Cape Canaveral. The companies were chosen from among a group of 62 Florida technology firms that applied last month for a chance to present their business case at the I2Showcase.

“These firms convey the strength and diversity Florida’s high-tech community,” said Space Florida President and CEO Frank DiBello. “The creative solutions these companies are deploying clearly demonstrate the significant potential that exists for Florida’s high-tech growth in the near term. We look forward to helping these businesses reach their goals.”


Space Florida Backed Group Snags ISS National Lab Management Deal

Space Florida PR – Kennedy Space Center, Fla – The Center for Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS) has been selected to manage the International Space Station US National Laboratory (ISS-NL) and maximize utilization of the orbiting outpost for scientific and technological research and development and the advancement of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education.

Spearheaded by Space Florida, CASIS is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization that will include a consortium of current and future users of the ISS National Lab, including universities and other educational organizations, R&D entities and industry. CASIS will manage the non-NASA scientific research, technology development and STEM education activities on ISS from its headquarters at the Space Life Sciences Lab at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center with broad reach throughout the nation.


A Few Rays of Hope Amid the Gloom in Florida

Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center

Amid the gloom over the space shuttle’s retirement, there is some potentially good news for Florida’s Space Coast, which will bear the brunt of the economic pain. In his speech to the National Press Club on Friday, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said:

And speaking of those facilities at KSC and across the agency, we have had tremendous interest from our commercial space partners in re-using or leasing these assets – and are close to making some major announcements about them soon. The re-use of our unique NASA assets, like the Orbiter Processing Facilities, will help these companies keep their costs down and create jobs for the space industry of tomorrow.


New Governor Cuts Space Florida’s Budget

Florida’s new governor has pitched a curve ball at Space Florida’s efforts to attract business to the Sunshine State:

Funding for Space Florida to improve infrastructure and offer incentives to help lure business to the area would drop significantly under Gov. Rick Scott’s proposed budget for the 2011-12 fiscal year.

But the agency would compete for a pool of incentive and development funds the governor plans to consolidate, possibly allowing it to recoup some or all of the agency’s proposed $21 million cut, a state lawmaker said…


Bigelow to Space Coast: Infrastructure Expansion and Upgrades Essential

Space Florida's Launch Complex 36

Aviation Week has a bit more on Bigelow Aerospace’s pitch to Florida to become the main launch complex for the company’s commercial space stations:

One of the keys to Bigelow’s success is an exemption from International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) restrictions. “Our aerospace company is the only aerospace company in the United States that is ITAR-exempt. That was not easy. We achieved that a while back,” [Robert] Bigelow told about 150 community leaders and journalists gathered to hear his pitch for the Space Coast. The event was organized by Space Florida, a state-backed agency.


Bigelow, Space Florida to Pursue Customers for Private Space Stations

Bigelow Aerospace's planned Sundancer space module

CAPE CANAVERAL, FL (February 3, 2011) – Yesterday, Space Florida President Frank DiBello and Robert Bigelow, president of Bigelow Aerospace, signed a Memorandum of Understanding, agreeing to work together to pursue and identify foreign and domestic companies that could benefit from utilization of Bigelow’s expandable, orbital space complexes.


Bigelow Partnership is Potentially Quite Lucrative for Florida

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

A bit more on the Bigelow-Space Florida MOU, which was signed at an event yesterday at Cape Canaveral. It looks as if the actual cooperative venture is relatively modest in the near term, but potentially quite lucrative in the long run — providing state officials play their cards right and ante up.


Bigelow and Space Florida Sign MOU

Bigelow's space station would have space to accommodate up to 12 people. (Photo: Douglas Messier)

Bigelow Aerospace and Space Florida signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) today at Cape Canaveral. Robert Bigelow and Frank DiBello signed the MOU on behalf of their respective organizations. The event, attended by about 100 people, also featured Dr. George Sowers, Vice President of Business Development and Advanced Programs at United Launch Alliance.

Bigelow is planning to orbit two space stations later in the decade, a project that would use ULA’s rockets for some of the launches. The Las Vegas company wants to launch from Cape Canaveral and other locations, including Wallops Island in Virginia.

Edward Ellegood posted Tweets on the event. Below are the highlights:

Bigelow and Space Florida will collaborate on various activities. Bigelow expects to require 156-186 total launches between 2015-2023.

No facility development is planned under this MOU. Space Florida will seek suitable location for exhibits. Bigelow would open small office.

Bigelow would work with Central Florida’s simulation industry/institute to develop and test concepts. Exhibits would be 1/3 scale.

Bigelow plans two operational space stations: “Alpha” and “Bravo”.

Bigelow looking at 2011-2014 as preparatory time for designing and developing space hardware. He wants FAA AST to be the regulator.

Bigelow would have to build a third mfg facility to develop their third and largest station modules. Would need to be near launch site.

DiBello: Space Florida goal is to increase the state’s launch rate. ULA says its EELV sites are operating below capacity.

Minotaur Rockets Could Launch From Florida


Early this month, the Space Launch Division of the USAF Space and Missile Systems Center/Space Development and Test Wing (SDTW) announced the award of a $48 million “Spaceports 3” contract to provide Florida-based launch services for the federal government.

The Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) award reflects a potential value of up to $48 million for future Minotaur launches from Florida. The first part of this award, which will go into effect immediately (valued at $30,000), is a Task Order to develop a Logistics Strategy Plan for solid-propellant rocket launches from Space Launch Complex 46 (SLC-46) at Cape Canaveral, managed by Space Florida. This logistics plan would include specifics regarding infrastructure requirements for launch as well as facilities to be used to process future solid-fueled boosters and payloads.