Tag: Space Florida

Status of Florida Space Legislation

Comments

space_florida_logoTALLAHASSEE, Fla., March 24, 2015 (FSDC PR) – Space Florida’s budget is in play during the ongoing Legislative Session in Tallahassee. The agency typically receives $10 million for its operations, which the House has budgeted, but the Senate offers only $8 million this year. Furthermore, the Senate’s budget language would prohibit any spending on the Shiloh launch site  until after an FAA environmental impact report is issued, vetted by Florida’s environmental agency, and a summary shared with the Cabinet and legislative leadership.

Another Senate amendent seeks to prohibit Space Florida spending for the operation of federal spaceport assets without first being reviewed by the state’s military support organizations to ensure the infrastructure will be available for military purposes. Also, the Senate would take an additional $2 million from Space Florida’s operating budget to fund Cecil Spaceport infrastructure. The House would fund the Cecil investments at the same amount, but without earmarking it from within Space Florida’s budget.

Meanwhile, an Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University program for high-school based Aerospace Institutes would receive $3 million in the House budget and $6.5 million in the Senate’s. And a Florida Tech space research institute would receive $2.5 million in the Senate’s budget.

FSDC 2015 FLORIDA LEGISLATIVE SPACE ISSUES
ISSUE/BILL HOUSE STATUS SENATE STATUS COMMENTS*
Space Florida Ops Budget ($10M) Included in House Trans. and Econ. Development (TED) Appropriations budget Senate budget includes $4M recurring & $4M nonrecurring, for a total of $8M Included in Gov. Scott’s budget request, with $4M of recurring funding and $6M non-recurring. Senate budget seeks a 20% cut to Space Florida’s longtime budget amount.
Space Florida Financing/
Investment Fund
$5 million included in House TED budget Not included in the Senate budget
Provided in 2014 but not included in Gov. Scott’s 2015 request. May be a legislative priority.
Space Transportation
Infrastructure Funding
“TIP” program funded at $15M in 2014 within FDOT budget allocation. Status unclear for 2015.
Shuttle Landing Facility Transition ($2.5M) Proviso earmark of $2.5M in 2014, and intended for two years by sponsoring legislators. Status unclear for 2015.
Cecil Spaceport Infrastructure ($2 Million) Included in House budget Included in Senate budget, but earmarked from Space Florida’s operating budget. Not included in Gov. Scott’s request, but budgeted by House and Senate, same amount as last year.
Space Industry Tourism Funding ($1.5M) Included in House TED budget Included in Senate budget Included in Gov. Scott’s budget request. Continued funding for coordination with VISIT Florida to support tourism attractions and space tourism flight business.
Florida/Israel Joint Aerospace Development ($1M) Included in House TED budget Included in Senate budget Included in Gov. Scott’s budget request. Continued funding of joint aerospace projects with Space Florida and Israel.
Qualified Defense/Space
Contractor Tax Refund
EDTS package extends application period thru 2017, local govt must pay 20% Incentive program requires statutory change to renew application window for companies to qualify for refunds.
Quick Response Training (QRT) Incentive
Supported in 2014 by Gov. Scott. Status unclear for 2015.
Embry-Riddle high school aerospace academies  $3M budgeted
$6.5M budgeted Supported by Gov. Scott in 2014 as a recurring budget item to support/expand network of high school aerospace academies. $3M was approved in 2014.
Florida Tech space research institute
$2.5 million budgeted Similar to a request from last year ($500K approved) and from 2013 ($2M vetoed).

* Note: Most budget items are subject to the Governor’s line-item veto authority.

Ardusat Secures $1 Million in Seed Funding

Comments
Arusat deployed from the International Space Station.

Arusat deployed from the International Space Station.

  • Seed round will finance expansion of Ardusat platform, enabling K-12 and higher ed students to conduct science and technology experiments in space and on earth
  • Edtech startup also announces launch of an open data repository, where students can post experiment results for public academic use

SALT LAKE CITY (Ardusat PR) — Ardusat, an education company focused on enhancing student engagement through hands-on experimentation, today announced it has secured a total of $1 million in seed funding from Space Florida, Fresco Capital, Spire and other investors. The capital will finance the expansion of Ardusat’s Experiment Platform, which enables K-12 and higher education students to study science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields through custom experiments conducted in space or on earth.

Continue reading ‘Ardusat Secures $1 Million in Seed Funding’

Florida Legislative Space Priorities Come Into View as Session Nears

Comments

space_florida_logoFebruary 23, 2015 (FSDC PR) – Florida’s 2015 Legislative Session will begin on March 3 and end on May 1 in Tallahassee. The biggest task for elected officials will be to approve a $77 billion spending plan, including millions of dollars for space-related programs. Governor Rick Scott in January revealed his proposed budget, which includes $12.5 million for Space Florida programs.

The Florida Space Development Council (FSDC) has tracked the progress of annual space-focused funding and policy issues in Tallahassee. FSDC is gearing up for the 2015 Session with an updated chart of space-related issues, a chart that is sure to evolve several times over the next two months.

FSDC 2015 FLORIDA LEGISLATIVE SPACE ISSUES
ISSUE/BILL HOUSE STATUS SENATE STATUS COMMENTS*
Space Florida Ops Budget ($10M) Included in Gov. Scott’s budget request, with $4M of recurring funding and $6M non-recurring.
Space Florida Financing/
Investment Fund

Provided in 2014 but not included in Gov. Scott’s 2015 request. May be a legislative priority.
Space Transportation
Infrastructure Funding
“TIP” program funded at $15M in 2014 within FDOT budget allocation. Status unclear for 2015.
Shuttle Landing Facility Transition ($2.5M) Proviso earmark of $2.5M in 2014, and intended for two years by sponsoring legislators. Status unclear for 2015.
Space Industry Tourism Funding ($1.5M) Included in Gov. Scott’s budget request. Continued funding for coordination with VISIT Florida to support tourism attractions and space tourism flight business.
Florida/Israel Joint Aerospace Development ($1M) Included in Gov. Scott’s budget request. Continued funding of joint aerospace projects with Space Florida and Israel.
Qualified Defense/Space
Contractor Tax Refund
Incentive program requires statutory change to renew application window for companies to qualify for refunds.
Quick Response Training
(QRT) Incentive

Supported in 2014 by Gov. Scott. Status unclear for 2015.
Embry-Riddle high school aerospace academies Signed by Governor in 2014 as a recurring budget item to
support/expand network of high school aerospace academies.

* Note: Most budget items are subject to the Governor’s line-item veto authority.

Moon Express to Lease Launch Complex at Cape Canaveral

Comments
Space Launch Complex 36 at Cape Canaveral in Florida launched the first U.S. government exploration missions to the Moon, and will now be the home of Moon Express lunar lander development and test operations. (Credit: Moon Express, Inc.)

Space Launch Complex 36 at Cape Canaveral in Florida (Credit: Moon Express, Inc.)

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (MoonEx PR) — Moon Express, Inc. (MoonEx) announced with Space Florida today that it has signed an agreement to begin using the historic Space Launch Complex 36 (SLC-36) at Cape Canaveral for its lunar lander development and flight test operations.

Continue reading ‘Moon Express to Lease Launch Complex at Cape Canaveral’

Space Florida Approves Funds for Cape Launch Pad Upgrades

Comments
Artist concept of CST-100 and Atlas V on launch pad. (Credit: Boeing)

Artist concept of CST-100 and Atlas V on launch pad. (Credit: Boeing)

Florida Today reports on Space Florida putting up $6.4 in matching funds for state Department of Transportation improvements on two Cape Canaveral launch pads:

The more costly of the two, shielded under the code name Project Mountain, has Space Florida putting up $6.15 million for improvements to Launch Pad 41, including a new tower to make the facility capability of servicing human flights.

The pad is now used for unmanned Atlas rocket launches.
Continue reading ‘Space Florida Approves Funds for Cape Launch Pad Upgrades’

University of Zurich Signs 3-Year Lease at Space Life Sciences Laboratory

Comments

space_florida_logoEXPLORATION PARK, Fla., Dec. 16, 2014 (Space Florida PR) – Space Florida is pleased to announce that the University of Zurich, Switzerland recently signed a three-year lease to process future research destined for the International Space Station (ISS), at the Space Life Sciences Laboratory (SLSL), near Kennedy Space Center. Space Florida has invested significant resources in the SLSL over the past four years to transition it to a world-class, multi-tenant commercial research and development facility.

The new, three-year lease is effective on January 1, 2015. The lease was negotiated through a joint effort between Space Florida, the University of Zurich and CSS-Dynamac Science Concierge Services, who provides pre-flight, post-landing and ground control support laboratory space and services for the University.

Continue reading ‘University of Zurich Signs 3-Year Lease at Space Life Sciences Laboratory’

Space Florida, Israel’s Chief Scientist Announce Joint Call for Projects

Comments

space_florida_logoKENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla., November 6, 2014 (Space Florida PR) – Earlier this week, Space Florida and MATIMOP (Israel’s industrial center for research and development on behalf of the Israeli Chief Scientist Office), issued a joint Call for Projects to fund research and development projects sponsored by companies in both states.

In October 2013, the States of Florida and Israel formed an annually recurring $2 million joint program to support research, development and commercialization of aerospace and related technology projects that benefit both States.

Israeli and Florida-based companies are asked to present cooperative proposals, which will be jointly vetted for feasibility, and research funding will be awarded to companies demonstrating the most promising partnerships – those that demonstrate near-term potential for commercialization and economic benefit to both states.

Continue reading ‘Space Florida, Israel’s Chief Scientist Announce Joint Call for Projects’

Research Competition Winners Headed to ISS on Dragon

Comments

iss-research-competitionKENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (Space Florida PR) — On Sunday, the remaining five of seven International Space Station Research Competition winners launched their research payloads to space aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral. The mission, titled CRS-4 (“Commercial Resupply Mission #4”), launched at 1:52 a.m. aboard a Dragon resupply ship.

Projects that were launched included:

  • SABOL – a microgravity-based study into Alzheimer’s Disease
  • SyNRGE3 – studying plant-microbe interactions to improve crop yields and increase knowledge of beneficial bacteria and plants
  • EGAHEP (“Egypt Against Hepatitis C Virus”) seeking to develop Hepatitis C protein crystals in space that will further research into a vaccine
  • Micro-gRX – measuring fluorescence to gauge changes in the speed of molecular rotation of an antibody binding to a vitamin in microgravity
  • ISS NanoRocks – observing the collision of dust particles in the absence of Earth’s gravity

Continue reading ‘Research Competition Winners Headed to ISS on Dragon’

CSF, Space Florida Praise ULA/Blue Origin Engine Venture

Comments

csf_logo_newestThe Commercial Spaceflight Federation Applauds  Blue Origin/ULA Engine Development Partnership

Washington D.C. (CSF PR) – The Commercial Spaceflight Federation congratulates Blue Origin on their partnership with United Launch Alliance to jointly fund the development of their new BE-4 rocket engine. The agreement includes a four-year development process with full scale testing in 2016 and first flight in 2019.

Continue reading ‘CSF, Space Florida Praise ULA/Blue Origin Engine Venture’

Space Florida-Israel Innovation Program Announces Awards

Comments

space_florida_logoKENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla., September 17, 2014 (Space Florida PR) – Space Florida and MATIMOP (Israel’s Industrial Center for Research and Development), on behalf of the Office of the Chief Scientist (OCS) in the Israeli Ministry of Economy, are pleased to announce the first-round winners of industrial research and development funding tied to the Space Florida-Israel Innovation Partnership Program.

Continue reading ‘Space Florida-Israel Innovation Program Announces Awards’