Final Frontier Design to Collaborate With NASA on Spacesuits

Spacesuit pressurization (Credit: Final Frontier Design)
Spacesuit pressurization (Credit: Final Frontier Design)

BROOKLYN, NY and HOUSTON (FFD PR) — Final Frontier Design (FFD) is proud to announce the signing of a Space Act Agreement (SAA) with NASA to collaborate on the development, design review, and testing of its launch and re-entry space suit for orbital space flight.

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NASA Funds Additional Smallsat Research Projects

Two three-unit (3U) CubeSats. At about a foot in length and four inches wide, these are similar in design to IceCube and the five selected heliophysics CubeSats. (Credit: NASA)
Two three-unit (3U) CubeSats. At about a foot in length and four inches wide, these are similar in design to IceCube and the five selected heliophysics CubeSats. (Credit: NASA)

With CubeSats and other types of small satellites are being launched in increasing numbers, there’s a race on to develop new technologies to vastly improve their capabilities and extend their range to the moon, Mars and other deep space destinations.

NASA has been at the leading edge of this technology development effort. Last week, the space agency announced its plans to fund four small-satellite research projects. The projects include phase II funding for three Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program proposals and one NASA Innovative Advance Concepts (NIAC) proposal.

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A Final Accounting of Florida Space Spending

space_florida_logoThe good folks at the Florida Space Development Council have provided this handy final report on the fates of space initiatives during the current legislative session. It was a good session overall, with most objectives achieved.

In all, Gov. Rick Scott approved $22 million in space spending, includes funding for Space Florida, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Florida Institute of Technology, Cecil Field Spaceport, Shuttle Landing Facility, space tourism marketing, and a partnership with Israel. The spending package also includes millions of dollars for infrastructure improvements and economic development incentives for companies relocating or expanding in Florida.

2014 FLORIDA LEGISLATIVE SPACE ISSUES – FINAL 6/5/14
ISSUE/BILLHOUSE
STATUS
SENATE STATUSCOMMENTS
Space Florida Ops Budget ($10 Million)Funded at $14.5M in House/Senate conference budgetFunded at $14.5M in Senate/House conference budgetSigned by governor.
Space Florida Financing/Investment Fund ($7M)Funded at $5M in House/Senate conference budgetFunded at $5M in Senate/House conference budgetSigned by governor. $2M less than in 2013. Funding for financing deals for aerospace expansion projects.
Space Transportation Infrastructure Funding ($20M)$20M is in FDOT annual work program through 2018$20M is in FDOT annual work program through 2018Continued funding within FDOT budget for “TIP” program. $15M minimum is included in FDOT budget allocation.
Shuttle Landing Facility Transition ($2.5M)Allowed in Financing/
Investment Fund line (above)
Allowed in Financing/
Investment Fund line (above)
Proviso earmark. Funding to transition/promote SLF for new commercial and govt users. $2.5M/year for two years suggested.
Cecil Field Spaceport Infrastructure ($2M)Added to Space Florida ops budgetAdded to Space Florida ops budgetProviso addition. Funding for Cecil Field spaceport infrastructure. Added to budget in conference committee.
Space Industry Tourism Funding ($1.5M)Fully funded within Space Florida ops budgetFully funded within Space Florida ops budgetSigned by governor. Recurring budget item to support tourism attractions and space tourism flight business.
Israel Joint Aerospace Development ($1M)Fully funded within Space Florida ops budgetFully funded within Space Florida ops budgetSigned by governor. Continued funding of joint aerospace projects with Space Florida and Israel. Included in Gov’s budget request.
Quick Response Training (QRT) Incentive ($12M)Fully funded in House budget
proposal
Fully funded in Senate budget proposalSigned by governor. Workforce training incentive managed by Workforce Florida. Included in governor’s budget request.
Embry-Riddle high school aerospace academies ($1M)Funded at $3M in House/Senate conference budgetFunded at $3M in House/Senate conference budgetSigned by governor. Recurring budget item to support/expand network of high school aerospace academies in Florida increased to $3 million.
Florida Tech space transportation research ($500K)Added to Space Florida ops budgetAdded to Space Florida ops budgetProviso earmark. New funding request for research on “efficient commercial space transportation system.”
Qualified Targeted Industry (QTI) Incentive Carry-ForwardHB-1209 bill died in committeeSB-1422 bill died in committeeWould have allowed more than one year for QTI recipients (including aerospace firms) to use tax credit allowance, or sell credits to other firms.
Governor’s School for Space, Science & Technology ($500K)Added to budget in conferenceAdded to budget in conferenceVetoed by governor. Continued funding for a space & technology school program for gifted students.

FSDC Applauds State Support for Space Industry

space_florida_logoMay 9, 2014 (FSDC PR) — The Florida Space Development Council (FSDC) applauds the state legislature’s continued support for space industry development and diversification. During the recently concluded annual legislative session in Tallahassee elected officials approved $22.5 million for aerospace programs in 2015, with an additional $20 million available through the Florida Department of Transportation for space transportation infrastructure.

Terminal Velocity Received NASA Contract for Small Payload Return Capsule

Terminal_VelocityATLANTA, GA, March 4, 2014 (VTA PR) – Terminal Velocity Aerospace, LLC (TVA) has been awarded a contract by NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) for development of a prototype small payload return capsule. Designed as a high-altitude drop test article, the prototype will demonstrate mission-enabling communications technologies and verify integrated performance, including functionality of its parachute recovery system. This effort is directly in alignment with TVA’s plan to develop a small reentry device (RED), called RED-4U, capable of returning the payload mass and volume equivalent of four CubeSats, commonly referred to in units of “U.”

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Four Finalists Identified for FSDC Bumper Award

gwynne_shotwell_posed
Gwynne Shotwell

October 12, 2013 (FSDC PR) — The Florida Space Development Council’s Bumper Award, named after the first rocket launched from Cape Canaveral in 1950, is designed to recognize an individual or organization that has had the biggest impact on Florida’s space industry, or a Floridian that has had the biggest national impact in space. The 2013 Bumper recipient will be selected from a list of finalists that were identified by a panel of nine FSDC member volunteers.

The 2013 finalists include (in alphabetical order): Frank DiBello, president of Space Florida; Dr. John Johnson, president of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University; Gwynne Shotwell, president of SpaceX; and Will Trafton, chairman of COMSTAC.

The FSDC board of directors will now select the winner and present the award during an upcoming event before the end of the year.

Embry-Riddle to Host Teachers in Space Summer Workshops

embry_riddle_logo
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., June 11, 2013 (ERAU PR) —
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s new Commercial Space Operations degree program, the first of its kind in the world, will sponsor Teachers in Space summer workshops for the next five years.

A project of the Space Frontier Foundation (SFF), Teachers in Space stimulates student interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) by giving teachers authentic astronaut training and real space science experiences combined with information and resources they can take back with them to their classrooms.

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An Update on Space-Related Legislation in Florida

Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center
Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center

May 6, 2013 (FSDC PR) – Amid increasing competition from other states and nations for space-related economic development, the Florida Legislature stepped up yet again to expand and diversify the state’s aerospace industry. In total, the Legislature approved over $43 million in space-related investments for the 2013-2014 fiscal year.

“The Florida Space Development Council appreciates the Legislature’s dedication to positioning our state for an exciting future of space exploration and enterprise,” said FSDC President Laura Seward. “We especially want to thank those legislators who led the charge on specific initiatives, like Rep. Steve Crisafulli, Sen. Andy Gardiner, Sen. Dorothy Hukill, Sen. Thad Altman, Rep. Will Weatherford, Sen. Don Gaetz, and Rep. Debbie Mayfield.”

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Embry Riddle Announces Plans for Commercial Space Operations Degree

embry_riddleWashington, D.C., Feb. 6, 2013 – Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University announced plans to launch the nation’s first bachelor’s degree in Commercial Space Operations during a news conference Wednesday at the 16th Annual FAA Commercial Space Transportation Conference in Washington, D.C.

The new degree program, which would be offered at the Daytona Beach, Fla., campus of the world’s largest accredited aviation and aerospace academic institution, will supply the commercial spaceflight industry with skilled graduates in the areas of space policy, operations, regulation and certification, as well as space flight safety, and space program training, management and planning.

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