Suborbital company announcements and other developments at NSRC

A big focus on Monday’s sessions of the 2012 Next-Generation Suborbital Researchers Conference in Palo Alto, California, was on the progress that five companies—Armadillo Aerospace, Blue Origin, Masten Space Systems, Virgin Galactic, and XCOR Aerospace—are making on the vehicles that can carry the research payloads, and perhaps even the researchers themselves, in the near future. [...]

Suborbital research conference kicks off today

Later this morning the 2012 Next-Generation Suborbital Researchers Conference kicks off at a hotel in Palo Alto, California, in the heart of Silicon Valley and not far from the NASA Ames Research Center. The three day event, now in its third year, is an opportunity for suborbital vehicle developers to describe their vehicle plans and [...]

Stratolaunch lays the groundwork while refining its aircraft design

A little over two months ago a new company backed by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, Stratolaunch Systems, shook up the space industry with plans to develop the world’s largest airplane to perform air launches of a medium-sized rocket. After that initial burst of publicity the company faded from view, but it has remained busy laying [...]

New Mexico liability law dead for this year

An effort to update a law to extend liability indemnification to commercial spaceflight suppliers is dead for this year in New Mexico. The state legislature adjourned Thursday without taking up the proposed bill, which had stalled out in both the state House and Senate because of opposition from trial lawyers. A late push, including letters [...]

Governor joins fight for N.M. liability law

The governor of New Mexico is asking legislators to reconsider their opposition to an updated spaceflight liability bill, as time runs out in the current session. Earlier this week a Senate committee failed to advance the bill, which would update the state’s existing liability indemnification law for commercial spaceflight by extending the same protection to [...]

New Mexico liability law update stalled

An effort to update New Mexico’s commercial spaceflight liability indemnification law has run into a roadblock. As noted here last week, the New Mexico legislature is considering legislation to update its 2010 indemnification act, with the major provision being to extend the law’s immunity from lawsuits to suppliers of spaceflight operators. State officials have warned [...]

Colorado the latest state to consider spaceflight liability law

Colorado may become the next state to pass a law limiting the liability commercial spaceflight operators would be exposed to. The Denver Post reports that a committee of the Colorado Senate approved a liability indemnification bill on Monday. The legislation, Senate Bill 35, would offer companies that provide commercial human spaceflight services similar indemnification from [...]

Is Sierra Nevada Spaceport America’s next tenant?

The New Mexico legislature is currently considering updated legislation to provide spaceflight liability indemnification, similar to what exists in several other states, including Florida, Texas, and Virginia. Senate Bill 3 would require spaceflight operators to have participants sign waivers; the company is then protected except in the case of “an act or omission that constitutes [...]