Another milestone for Cecil Field’s spaceport

Plans for a spaceport at Cecil Field, a former naval air station outside Jacksonville, Florida, moved a step closer to reality this week with the release of a draft environmental assessment (EA) for the facility. According to the Jacksonville Aviation Authority (JAA), which is applying for a spaceport license from the FAA, the draft EA found “no significant environmental impacts” from proposed operations, which would feature up to 52 flights a year of horizontal takeoff and landing vehicles. (While the press release claims the draft EA is available on both its web site and the FAA’s, I could not find it in either location as of early Friday morning.) Comments on the draft EA are due by May 20.

What’s still uncertain is what vehicle(s) would operate from Cecil Field once it gets its spaceport license. Back in 2007 the focus was on vehicles that would take off and land under jet, not rocket power, which would include vehicle’s like Rocketplane Global’s XP but not XCOR’s Lynx. Like Oklahoma Spaceport (a former air force base), Cecil Field would not support vertical takeoff and landing vehicles.

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