This week, private space industry entrepreneurs and start-up companies converge on California's Silicon Valley for an annual conference on the latest developments and promises of commercial spaceflight.
The NewSpace 2012 conference in Santa Clara, Calif., is an annual conference organized by the non-profit Space Frontier Foundation to highlight the business of commercial spaceflight. This year, the three-day conference runs from July 26 to July 28 and will be webcast live by Spacevidcast. You can watch SPACE.com's feed of NewSpace 2012 below beginning Thursday, July 26:
Thursday, July 26, 2012 -- Developing Products and Demands
|08:15 -- 09:00|
|09:00 -- 10:15||Nurturing New Ideas|
Starting a business is difficult, especially in a small and specialized market like the space industry. There are many ways to receive help through partnerships with space business incubators, NASA research parks, and universities. Can we better innovate through collaboration? We will survey the support organizations that assist new companies and discuss the value propositions of each type of working relationship.
|10:15 -- 10:45||Networking Break|
|10:45 -- 12:00||Not Your Traditional Commercial Crew and Cargo Panel|
The flurry of activity in NASA's Commercial Crew and Cargo programs over the last few months has been good for the industry. Ideas are turning into vehicles, and market projections into reality. But in the excitement of day-to-day progress, it can be hard to step back and take a look at where we are going. This panel will provide an update on current activity, but also look three to five years down the road, to where we expect to be.
|12:00 -- 12:10||FAA Commercial Space Transportation Press Event|
|12:10 -- 13:30||Lunch: Enabling Sustainable Human Space Access|
Mark Sirangelo leads Sierra Nevada Space Systems which is the owner and developer of the Dream Chaser Orbital Space Vehicle, a commercial option for human access to Low Earth Orbit. His talk will address the macro-level roles and responsibilities of the commercial space sector in delivering the needed capabilities to NASA and other future customers, why commercial space access is critical to a sustainable human spaceflight enterprise, and the importance of partnerships in creating long-term solutions for space access.
|13:30 -- 14:45||NASA Leadership Roundtable|
NASA centers provide different services and offer unique technical expertise to commercial companies. Some have innovation centers that host companies and act as incubators. How are these relationships working and can we improve them? Leaders of these centers come together once again to discuss their experiences and perspectives.
|14:45 -- 15:15||A Window Into The Future|
Steve Jurvetson, the managing director of Draper Fisher Jurvetson, is interested in things as small as DNA and as fast as racing cars and rockets. His investments do not only look at profitability but also meaningful impact to human society and a vision for the future. What is his interest up in space when the world seems to be looking the other way, down at their bottom line?
|15:15 -- 15:45||Networking Break|
|15:45 -- 17:00||Democratizing Space|
In the past decade, we have witnessed an amazing level of initiative and many successes in space related activities from the private citizens. It's clear that people can no longer wait for the future to happen and are taking matters into their own hands. The range of activities spans across the board from participatory (un)conferences to student-build satellites. The panelists will discuss the next steps in providing inspiration and access to space activities to more people.
|17:00 -- 17:30||Finding the Balance|
NASA and the FAA recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding outlining how the two agencies will work together to ensure the safety of commercial human spaceflights. NASA's Commercial Crew Program aims to facilitate development of a U.S. commercial crew space transportation capability with the goal of achieving safe, reliable, and cost-effective access to and from low Earth orbit and the International Space Station. But not all human spaceflights in the future will have NASA as a customer. How can we ensure that these missions will be as safe as possible without the government imposing burdensome requirements on operators?
|17:30 -- 18:30||STEM: Developing an American Workforce|
SpaceX and its friends have spent tremendous time scouring the field and universities to build a team with 'The Right Stuff'. Their findings have enabled dreams of expanded space exploration to verge on reality, yet it runs the risk of being unsustainable. If a highly trained, technical American base cannot be found, we will lose to foreign countries. Leaders in recruiting, STEM proponents, and an outspoken celebrity will join the discussion on how SpaceX envisions finding a solution.
|18:30 -- 19:00||Future of Commercial Space|
Philip McAlister has been involved in the space industry for many years in many different roles, and currently, he serves as the Director of Commercial Spaceflight Development at NASA. In his closing keynote speech, he will speak about the future of commercial space markets with an emphasis on commercial human spaceflight.
|19:00 -- 21:00||"Welcome to NewSpace" Reception|
|19:00 -- 20:30||SpaceX Info Session|
Come meet representatives from SpaceX! SpaceX is a US-based space technology company founded by its residing CEO and CTO, Elon Musk, the former co-founder of PayPal. The company's goal is to renew a sense of excellence in the space industry by disrupting the current paradigm of complacency and replacing it with innovation and commercialized price points, laying the foundation for a truly space-faring human civilization. SpaceX builds rockets and spacecraft from the ground up, including electronics, software, vehicle structures, and engines. In-house development includes nearly all flight critical custom components amounting to approximately 85% of the vehicles both by mass and by value. The development and production efforts represent some of the most dynamic and challenging technology opportunities seen by any organization. We build it, test it, and fly it.
Friday, July 27, 2012 -- Supply Lines to Space Profits
|08:00 -- 09:00||Space Investment: Creating a Viable Industry|
While great visions exist for economical and viable space businesses, the art of creating a business is beyond just being able to meet the technical challenges of the business. This panel will explore what makes a viable space business. How can space businesses, either existing or new, expand their terrestrial applications or create ones to access broader markets? This panel will also explore in what sectors the panelists would like to see more competition or business interest and try to forecast possible future opportunities in the emerging space market.
|09:00 -- 10:30||Business Plan Competition|
The NewSpace 2012 Business Plan Competition brings together promising new business startups, who are working to develop the final frontier. This event includes investors, business leaders and space advocates. Startup companies developing products/services that are directly space, space-related, or "space scalable" will be participating in this contest which will award a 1st Place prize of $100,000. The judges for the competition are skilled and experienced professionals in the investment and business development communities, hailing from around the country.
|10:30 -- 11:00||Networking Break|
|11:00 -- 12:15||Business Plan Competition|
Join the NewSpace business plan's second part, as the judges review who's business plan will be most likely to stand the tests of business and be able to succeed, advancing the space sector and proving the opportunities of space-scalable solutions. This year’s Finalists (in alphabetic order): Digital Solid State Propulsion LLC - They have developed a new form of solid-state propellants that are completely inert unless ignited with electric power of the appropriate magnitude. The first truly throttle-able solid rocket motor. ExoCoat - Developing bioengineered reactive coatings to almost effortlessly clean and disinfect spacecraft interior surfaces of nearly any kind of volatile chemical, toxin, or biohazard, thus enhancing crew livability on long duration space missions, along with many other uses. Nanoly - A nanotech solution enabling vaccines and other perishable mission-critical medicines to be stored without refrigeration for long periods Nanosatisfi LLC - Do-it-yourself Cubesat development platforms. Design your own experiment, then have access to the Cubesat sensor payload at a very affordable price Pine Aerospace - Rapid, high resolution imaging and analysis (spill monitoring and resolution, using microsats and UAVs) for the oil and gas industries. Saber Astronautics - High-end Artificial Intelligence with 3D graphics for an end-to-end space operations solution Space Ground Amalgam LLC - Inflatable technologies to enhance satellite capabilities Terapio - Developing a bioengineered cellular-level radiation mitigation solution Terminal Velocity Aerospace, LLC - Small custom reentry capsules for data and payload return, serving the nanosat industry Unreasonable Rocket - An innovative, responsive commercial nanosat launcher
|12:15 -- 13:45||Lunch: New Sources of Supplies: Opening the High Frontier|
Join us as we hear from industry leader Eric Anderson, Co-Founder of Planetary Resources, about the future of space exploration and development and plans for the company's future.
|13:45 -- 14:15||Affordable Space Programs: Applying the Commercial Model|
Space Systems/Loral is the world leader in providing commercial geostationary satellites, with more commercial capacity on orbit than any other manufacturer. Reliability, innovative technology, cost and speed of delivery are all essential elements to success in this market. David Bernstein will talk about the commercial business model for the delivery of space systems, and how it can be effectively applied to make U.S. Government programs more affordable.
|14:15 -- 15:00||Opportunities in Military Space|
While America's civil space program makes up a large source of funding for the space sector, it is dwarfed by the amount of funding that is put into the military sector. In an era of shrinking budgets, there is a strong desire from mission planners and the military to minimize costs. There are many opportunities for commercial companies to work in this sector to expand mission capabilities more efficiently. This panel will address what commercial opportunities are available for involvement in the military sector. Furthermore, discussion will focus on how the military will be affected by the reduction in cost being caused by the Space Commercial revolution. Additionally, how will the ability to purchase existing products (launch seats vs. bids) change acquisition strategy for the military?
|15:00 -- 15:30||Liberty Commercial Space Services|
|15:30 -- 16:00||Networking Break|
|16:00 -- 17:15||Space Alternative Architectures|
The Space Frontier will not be settled by one means alone. This panel will focus on various alternatives that exist within the spaceflight community that complement the path forward we will take in our next steps. Key questions will include how we can most effectively and quickly reach the space frontier with proposed and alternative solutions, and how can we most effectively take advantage of NewSpace companies for accelerating the process of reaching the future.
|17:15 -- 17:45||Sex, Drugs, and NewSpace|
Space is sexy, but our unbridled enthusiasm for space development is like a drug. It has built unrealistic expectations for what can be accomplished in the near term. On the other hand, there are those in the arms control community who hype the idea that some form of arms race in outer space is imminent and are also behaving as if on a drug. Following either community's claims in their entirety leaves us with nothing, and stands to bring the worst to Space. Join Colonel-Doctor "Coyote" Smith, PhD, as he discusses his personal views about NewSpace and how the commercial sector and market forces will be the dispassionate arbiters of the debate between those who want to develop space and the international arms control community who want to retard development for the sake of safety or fairness.
|18:30 -- 20:00||Loral Info Session|
Come meet representatives from Space Systems / Loral! Space Systems/Loral employees develop and build some of the most powerful and innovative satellite systems in the industry and provide a range of related services to our roster of international customers. Our customers are often the leaders in supplying services that include broadband digital communications; direct-to-home broadcast; governmental communications; environmental monitoring; and air traffic control. Working here can be exciting and fulfilling, and SS/L pays competitive salaries and provides a solid set of employee benefits.
|20:00 -- 22:00||NewSpace Tweetup|
The #NewSpaceTweetup is a social event open to the space-lovin' public and conference attendees. Come join us to geek out about commercial space and build LEGOS! Cosmically good music will be provided by In Space Media. This event will be held at the Hyatt Regency Santa Clara and is free (donations welcome). More details will be posted soon. Follow @NewSpaceTweetup for the latest updates! Thanks to our sponsors which include the Silicon Valley Space Center, SpaceUp, Yuri's Night and the Space Travelers Emporium.
Saturday, July 28, 2012 -- Settling Into Space
|08:15 -- 09:00||Back to THE Future -- Making the Vision a Priority|
As NewSpace firms begin flying, they must first cross through the airspace of public opinion, where they and their goals are being re-defined in terms of the old paradigm of servicing the government or to provide frivolous entertainment for the 1%. Thus the old school can dismiss the idea of helping create a new industry that will open the frontier in favor of making sure NASA gets a ride to the ISS, and regular people see no connection between what is happening and themselves. We must stop playing around the edges as a movement and get to the heart of the matter. It is time to stop fighting for scraps from someone else’s agenda and change the agenda completely. It is time to get back to the Vision of settling space as the central and driving goal of human spaceflight, and to make it official – thus creating a new blueprint by which to make decisions in space and a new yardstick by which to measure progress. Mr. Tumlinson will address this concept, and also explain his new EarthLight Institute project.
|09:00 -- 10:15||The EarthLight Institute Presents: Mars Colony 2030|
The ultimate goal of space exploration is space settlement: sending humans to live permanently beyond the cradle of Earth's atmosphere. People often assume that permanent settlement is many decades in the future. This need not be the case. There are many things we can do right now that would dramatically accelerate the pace of space settlement. With the right policy and technological choices attendees at NewSpace 2012 could well be among the first to live permanently in free space, on the moon and even on Mars.
|10:15 -- 10:45||Networking Break|
|10:45 -- 12:00||The Endgame of the Google Lunar X-PRIZE|
Less than a decade after the Ansari X-PRIZE was won, a NewSpace revolution began with several companies on the verge of launching private suborbital flights in the next two years. With so many teams competing for their piece of the $30 million purse in the Google Lunar X-PRIZE, the question must be asked: What will come from all of this?
|12:00 -- 13:30||Lunch: Rock On!|
History will look back at this decade as the true beginning of private space missions in partnership with scientific institutions, governments and academia. It is up to us to design this legacy exactly as we want to see it written. From private cargo and manned space travel to mapping our universe and protecting Planet Earth…we have the tools, the expertise and the will - so rock on.
|13:30 -- 14:00||NASA's Technology Roadmap|
NASA's Office of the Chief Technologist has created a series of Space Technology Roadmaps that chart the way forward for numerous technologies related to spaceflight and NASA's goals over the next 30 years. NASA worked with the National Research Council and identified fourteen technology areas, then assigned agency specialists to describe each area’s top technical challenges, the spaceflight missions they could impact or enable, and – as a byproduct – the important terrestrial fields they could advance. NASA also has Technology Area Breakdown Structures for all fourteen technology areas.
|14:00 -- 15:15||Approaching the Tipping Point|
NASA's Technology Road Map identifies key technologies that will help NASA achieve its ultimate mid-term goal of landing humans on Mars, but the technological needs of Newspace may not be perfectly aligned with NASA. In this panel, we discuss what technology paths are critical to the success of Newspace, what technologies should be developed faster than NASA's roadmap plans for to allow a greater impact in the industry, and what technologies NASA forgot about that could help accelerate the progress of both NASA's goals and NewSpace's cash flow.
|15:15 -- 15:45||Networking Break|
|15:45 -- 16:15||Space is Virgin Territory|
Virgin Galactic is on the forefront of commercial space development. From launching humans into sub-orbital space to delivering small payloads to Low Earth Orbit, CEO George Whitesides will provide an update on current Virgin Galactic activities and the broader context within which these developments are being made.
|16:15 -- 17:30||Opening the Space Frontier - On a Budget|
Sometimes progress is made through technological breakthroughs but sometimes progress is made by putting together what already exists (or is almost there) in new and innovative ways. This panel will look at these innovative ways that what we already have can be combined to enable new capabilities and reduced cost. These innovations will include not only technology but also innovation in organization and collaboration methods.
|18:30 -- 19:30||Banquet Reception|
Come mingle and enjoy drinks with influential individuals in the industry with elegant entertainment from the Magnolia Jazz Band
|19:30 -- 22:00||NewSpace 2012 Awards Gala|
The NewSpace 2012 Awards Gala is an event not to be missed. The fabulous gala event serves to honor recipients of several top awards for the innovators and achievements in our field. The event will be held at the Hyatt Regency Santa Clara on July 28th, 2012. The evening will begin with drinks and entertainment from the Magnolia Jazz Band starting at 6:30pm followed by a delicious 3-course meal and the pinnacle awards ceremony. As this is a formal event, evening wear is recommended. Come and enjoy the evening with the most influential individuals in the industry.
To learn more about the NewSpace 2012 conference, visit: http://newspace.spacefrontier.org/