Tag: Peter DiamandisPage 2 of 7

Planetary Resources Raises $12 Million in Financing

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planetary_resourcesPlanetary Resources has raised $12.2 million in new financing as part of an offering of $20 million, according to a company filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The funding came from 16 unnamed investors.

The Redmond, Wash., company is focused on mining asteroids. It was co-founded by Peter Diamandis and Eric Anderson.

Mojave Journal: The Ansari X Prize’s Awkward Family Reunion

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Ansari X Prize 10th anniversary panel discussion on Oct. 4, 2014.

Ansari X Prize 10th anniversary panel discussion on Oct. 4, 2014.

One Year Ago, the Ansari X Prize Turned 10
It Was an Uncomfortable Birthday

By Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

The planes kept coming and coming. One after another, they swooped out of a blue desert sky and touched down on the runway at the Mojave Air and Space Port. By mid-morning there were at least a dozen private jets stretched along the flight line running east from the Voyager restaurant toward the control tower. And even more were on their way.

And to what did Mojave owe this ostentatious display of wealth by the 1 percenters? They had come to the sun-splashed spaceport last Oct. 4 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Ansari X Prize. A decade earlier, Burt Rutan and his Paul Allen-funded team had won $10 million for sending the first privately-built manned vehicle into space twice within a two-week period.

Continue reading ‘Mojave Journal: The Ansari X Prize’s Awkward Family Reunion’

The Future Ain’t What It Used to Be: SpaceShipOne & the Triumph of Hype

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Mike Melvill stands atop SpaceShipOne after a suborbital flight on Sept. 29, 2004. (Credit: RenegadeAven)

Mike Melvill stands atop SpaceShipOne after a suborbital flight on Sept. 29, 2004. (Credit: RenegadeAven)

Eleven years ago today, Brian Binnie flew SpaceShipOne to  an altitude  of 112.014 km (69.6 miles),  breaking a record of 107.8 km (67 miles) set by Joe Walker in the X-15 rocket plane 41 years earlier. As Binnie landed the small, experimental space plane at the Mojave Air and Space Port before a cheering crowd, he clinched the $10 million Ansari X Prize for Burt Rutan and his financial backer, Paul Allen.

The air during the post flight events was full of promises, boasts and hopes that today appear positively cringe worthy.

Continue reading ‘The Future Ain’t What It Used to Be: SpaceShipOne & the Triumph of Hype’

Google Lunar X Prize Down to the Sweet 16

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The moon rising over Half Moon Bay, California on Halloween 2009. (Credit: Douglas Messier)

The moon rising over Half Moon Bay, California on Halloween 2009. (Credit: Douglas Messier)

With an end-of-the-year deadline looming for the Google Lunar X Prize to continue, the $30 million competition to land a private rover on the moon has shrunk in half to 16 teams from the original 33 or 34 (more on that later).

At least one of the teams has to demonstrate that it has a firm launch contract in place by Dec. 31 for the competition to continue.  If at least one team can show a contract this year, then the remaining teams in the competition will have until the end of 2016 to secure contracts in order to stay in the race.

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Google Lunar X Prize Update: Funding Remains an Issue

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MTV-1X vehicle in full tether mode. (Credit: Moon Express)

MTV-1X vehicle in full tether mode. (Credit: Moon Express)

The IEEE Spectrum has an interesting update on the $30 million Google Lunar X Prize, which recently slipped its deadline for landing a rover on the moon from the end of 2015 to Dec. 31, 2016.

The story confirms what I’ve suspected for quite some time now: it’s much easier to build and test hardware on Earth than it is to get it to the lunar surface. With two years, not one of the 18 remaining teams has locked down a firm launch date. If none of them does by the end of 2015, the competition will end without a winner.

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What Scaled, Virgin & Peter Diamandis Said After Last Fatal SpaceShipTwo Program Accident

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Part of SpaceShipTwo's fuselage. (Credit: Kenneth Brown)

Part of SpaceShipTwo’s fuselage. (Credit: Kenneth Brown)

By Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

The crash of SpaceShipTwo and the tragic loss of Scaled Composites test pilot Mike Alsbury were stark reminders that despite all the promises about the safety of new space tourism vehicles, space travel is a dangerous business where death can come in seconds.

If outsiders were stunned by the tragedy, it had a sickeningly familiar feel to long-time Mojave denizens. Mike Alsbury was not the first Scaled employee to die developing SpaceShipTwo for Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic spaceline. He was the fourth. Three engineers preceded him seven years earlier in a horrific accident at the Mojave spaceport.

The  2007 tragedy was quite different from the one that occurred over Jawbone Canyon on Halloween. The response to it was both different and eerily familiar.

Continue reading ‘What Scaled, Virgin & Peter Diamandis Said After Last Fatal SpaceShipTwo Program Accident’

Ansari X Prize 10th Anniversary Webcast

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The Ansari X Prize 10th anniversary webcast from Saturday featuring Burt Rutan, Anousheh Ansari, Chuck Beames, Brian Binnie, Mike Melvill, Richard Branson and Peter Diamandis.

X Prize Foundation Grosses $1.2 Million from Ansari X Prize Anniversary Tour

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We’re getting our first updates on the exclusive $40,000 per person Ansari X Prize 10th Anniversary trip being lead by X Prize Foundation Founder Peter Diamandis.

It appears as if “about 30” people signed up for the trip, grossing the X Prize Foundation about $1.2 million. The group includes W. Brett Wilson, whom Canadians will remember as having formerly starred on the CBC show Dragon’s Den, and mining magnate Rob McEwen, whom Canadians will remember as the guy who digs big holes in the ground.

Continue reading ‘X Prize Foundation Grosses $1.2 Million from Ansari X Prize Anniversary Tour’

Ansari X Prize 10th Anniversary Celebration Webcast

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Mike Melvill stands atop SpaceShipOne after a suborbital flight on Sept. 29, 2004. (Credit: RenegadeAven)

Mike Melvill stands atop SpaceShipOne after a suborbital flight on Sept. 29, 2004. (Credit: RenegadeAven)

ANSARI XPRIZE 10th ANNIVERSARY WEBCAST
Saturday, October 4, 2014
4:00 to 5:30 p.m. EDT
(1:00 to 2:30 p.m. PDT)

Host: Peter Diamandis, XPRIZE Founder and CEO

Guests

Anousheh Ansari
Ansari X Prize benefactor

Chuck Beames
Executive Director, Stratolaunch

Brian Binnie
SpaceShipOne’s pilot for the prize winning flight

Mike Melvill
SpaceShipOne’s pilot for the first record-breaking flight

Burt Rutan
SpaceShipOne designer

Richard Branson
Founder, Virgin Group

Additional Details

X Prize Foundation Cashes in 10th Anniversary of SpaceShipOne Flights

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Peter Diamandis

The X Prize Foundation has found several ways to cash in on the 10th anniversary of the winning of the $10 million Ansari X Prize next week.

In addition to offering $2,500 tickets to the anniversary luncheon next Saturday in Mojave, the organization has organized an exclusive four-day, $40,000 per person tour around the event.

“Take confidence in the fact that XPRIZE Chairman, Peter Diamandis, is personally curating these four days to make it one of the most extraordinary trips of your life!” the X Prize’s exclaims!

Continue reading ‘X Prize Foundation Cashes in 10th Anniversary of SpaceShipOne Flights’

Ansari X Prize 10th Anniversary Shindig Set for Mojave

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SpaceShipOne lands after its historic spaceflight on June 21, 2004. (Credit: Ian Kluft)

SpaceShipOne lands after its historic spaceflight on June 21, 2004. (Credit: Ian Kluft)

Burt Rutan, Paul Allen and Richard Branson are among those who will gather at the Mojave Air and Space Port on Oct. 4 to mark the 10th anniversary of SpaceShipOne winning the $10 million Anari X Prize, Parabolic Arc has learned.

X Prize Foundation Chairman and CEO Peter Diamandis will preside over the invitation-only event, which is expected to draw hundreds of guests. The foundation sponsored the prize for the first privately-funded vehicle to fly into space twice in two weeks.

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Popular Science Honors Peter Diamandis, Mars Curiosity Rover Team

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Peter Diamandis

Congratulations are in order to X Prize Foundation Founder Peter Diamandis and the team behind the Mars Curiosity rover.

Popular Mechanics selected them for their 2013 Breakthrough Awards. Diamandis won the Leadership Award for his work in creating prizes and technology breakthroughs with the X Prize Foundation. The magazine includes a Q&A with Diamandis.

The Mars Curiosity team were among 9 other individuals and groups singled out in the innovators category. They landed the car-sized rover on the Red Planet.

The magazine also cited the team behind the U.S. Navy’s X-47B aircraft, a prototype for unmanned combat jets that landed on an aircraft carrier without a pilot in July. Popular Mechanics also singled out 10 innovative products for 2013, which included a desktop milling machine and a 3D scanner/printer.

You can read more here: 10 Innovators Who Changed the World in 2013 – Popular Mechanics

Diamandis Joins 3D Systems’ Board of Directors

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peter_diamandisEditor’s Note: Strangely unmentioned in the press release below is the announcement last month that 3D Systems “had joined Planetary Resources’ core group of investors and will be a collaborative partner in assisting Planetary Resources to develop and manufacture components of its ARKYD Series of spacecraft using its advanced 3D printing and digital manufacturing solutions.” This is one of Diamandis’ companies. You think that would be relevant, but apparently not.

ROCK HILL, S.C., July 24, 2013 (3D Systems PR) – 3D Systems (NYSE:DDD) announced today that its Board of Directors has elected Peter H. Diamandis a director of the company.

Dr. Peter Diamandis is the Chairman and CEO of the X PRIZE Foundation, which leads the world in designing and launching large incentive prizes to drive radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity.  Diamandis is also the co-Founder & Executive Chairman of the Singularity University, a Silicon Valley based institution teaching graduates and executives about exponentially growing technologies and their potential to address humanity’s grand challenges.

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Video: Diamandis, Anderson Describe Their Asteroid Mining Plans

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Video Caption

Problem: If humanity is to move off Earth and become an interplanetary species, it will need an economic reason to do so.

Solution: Near-earth asteroids contain (literally) trillions of dollars worth of resources and materials that could be harvested and brought back to Earth. A number of them are also energetically easier to get to than the surface of the Moon. That tremendous bounty creates a huge incentive for the private sector to create the requisite detection, propulsion and harvesting technology to capture these precious metals and minerals.

Technology:
Planetary resources led by Peter Diamandis and Eric Anderson is developing the technology and spacecraft to detect, harvest, capture and bring back these resources from Near-Earth asteroids.

Private Sector Seeks Profit, Adventure Beyond Earth Orbit

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golden_spike_lander

Credit: Golden Spike Company

By Douglas Messier
Parabolic Arc Managing Editor

With human flights beyond Earth orbit not expected to occur for at least eight years, the private sector is increasingly eying deep space for a series of ambitious robotic and human missions for both adventure and profit.

Nine programs are currently underway that include robotic and human landings of the moon, human flybys of the moon and Mars, the mining of the moon and asteroids, and even a settlement on Mars. Backers of these initiatives include the X Prize Foundation, Google and its executives, and the world’s first space tourist, Dennis Tito.

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