29 July 2012
Added "Space Debris and Its Mitigation" to the archive.
16 July 2012
Space Future has been on something of a hiatus of late. With the concept of Space Tourism steadily increasing in acceptance, and the advances of commercial space, much of our purpose could be said to be achieved. But this industry is still nascent, and there's much to do. So...watch this space.
9 December 2010
Updated "What the Growth of a Space Tourism Industry Could Contribute to Employment, Economic Growth, Environmental Protection, Education, Culture and World Peace" to the 2009 revision.
7 December 2008
"What the Growth of a Space Tourism Industry Could Contribute to Employment, Economic Growth, Environmental Protection, Education, Culture and World Peace" is now the top entry on Space Future's Key Documents list.
30 November 2008
Added Lynx to the Vehicle Designs page.
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News / Vehicles (None)
19 May 1998 by Patrick Collins
Former ESA official says investment priorities are backward
Pierre Bartholome, former head of ESA's office in Belgium argued that commercial profits from space activities have been earned from satellite operation, ground equipment manufacturing, satellite manufacturing and rocket manufacturing, in that order.
News / Other (None)
24 April 1998 by Sam Coniglio
Vaughn Cordele Shows He's Got the Right Stuff
Vaughn Cordele, the Civilian Astronaut Corps Pilot, appeared on Thursday's "Late Nite with David Letterman" show. He was dressed in an all black military-style flight suit and was wearing CAC logos. He was slightly nervous, but he confidently talked about himself and the rocket.
News / Other (None)
21 April 1998 by
Reuters and Wired Magazine are reporting that the Japanese distributor of Pepsi, Suntory Ltd., plans to offer it's customers the chance to fly in space as part of a promotional campaign. Five winners will receive the opportunity to fly into space in 2001 via Zegrahm Space Voyages, a U.S. space travel agency.
News / Other (None)
15 April 1998 by Patrick Collins
NASA admits that space tourism is both feasible and desirable
The final report of a study of General Public Space Travel and Tourism performed cooperatively by NASA and the Space Transportation Association (STA) under a Space Act Agreement dated 12th September, 1995 was released at a press conference on Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C. on March 25.
News / Other (None)
31 March 1998 by Patrick Collins
F.A.S. spokesman shows little concern for return on taxpayers' space investment
The Final Report of the joint study on General Public Space Travel and Tourism released March 25 by NASA and the Space Transportation Association (STA) concluded that "Our national space policy should be examined with an eye to toward actively encouraging the creation of a large general public space travel and tourism business." However, one of the problems which the Report specifically discusses is that the concept of "space tourism" is not taken seriously by many technical experts who might be expected to support it:
News / Other (None)
16 March 1998 by Patrick Collins
STA/NASA study sees "no obstacles" to establishment of space tourism business
After a reception starting at 8.00 am, a press conference will be held at 9.00 am on Wednesday March 25th on Capitol Hill at the Rayburn House Office Building, Room B-354 (corner of Independence Avenue and South Capitol Street, SW) Washington D.C. to announce the release of the final report of the joint study by STA and NASA on General Public Space Travel and Tourism.
News / Other (None)
6 March 1998 by Peter Wainwright
Kistler granted environental clearance
Hon John Moore MP, Minister for Industry, Science and Tourism
News / Other (None)
5 March 1998 by
Hollywood's Variety entertainment trade publication ran this innocuous article recently:
News / Other (None)
1 March 1998 by Sam Coniglio
Newsweek, Fortune, Popular Science Introduce the Entrepreneurs to the Public
The proverbial cat is out of the bag. After years of struggling to get recognition, the new space entrepreneurs are getting serious coverage in the mainstream press.

The December 29 issue of Newsweek looked at "The New Celestial Capitalists." Focusing on the business side of space, the article discussed the new opportunities that are changing the frontier. Jim Benson's SpaceDev was showcased as a 21st century gold rush: exploring and claiming near Earth asteroids. Low cost satellite launch and fast package delivery were represented by Kistler Aerospace and Rotary Rocket Company. Space Tourism was represented by Interglobal Space Lines, LunaCorp, and Zegrahm Space Voyages. From the article's perspective, all of these new initiatives spring from the assumption that NASA no longer wants to deal with mundane space operations. As an example, the cost savings that SpaceHab gives to the space shuttle program was compared to the old SpaceLab: $185 million per module versus $1.2 billion.

The February 2 issue of Fortune, normally a conservative magazine, discussed how the new space companies are being formed to deal with the glut of data communication satellites that need to be launched. The X-33 and Lockheed Martin's Venture Star vehicles were discussed. The article then pointed out that even with NASA support, no Venture Stars will be ready to fly by 2001, when several of the competitors will already be operational. Kelly Space & Technology, Kistler Aerospace, Pioneer Rocketplane, and Rotary Rocket Company were mentioned in the article.

Finally, the February issue of Popular Science had the most extensive coverage of the three magazines. The article included several excellent computer images of the best known vehicles. Plugging names such as Tom Clancy, Burt Rutan, Buzz Aldrin, and Pete Conrad, the article did its best to show how serious these companies are. As well as the companies mentioned in the other articles, Space Access was also reviewed. The story of Federal Express' founder Fred Smith offer to put money into a hypersonic cargo plane was discussed, as well as the U.S. Air Force's attempts to build a reusable space plane. The X Prize got a good plug as a side bar article.

The secret is out. The general public is beginning to hear stories of these amazing flying machines. Now with Senator John Glenn getting a ride on the space shuttle, it will not be long before people will start demanding a ride into orbit.


  • Begley, Sharon, and Weingarten, Tara. "The New Celestial Capitalists." Newsweek. Dec. 29, 1997-Jan. 5, 1998. pp. 70-73.

  • Schonfeld, Erick. "Blasting Off the Cheap Way." Fortune. Feb. 2, 1998. pp. 140-141.

  • Sweetman, Bill. "Rocket Planes." Popular Science. Feb. 1998. pp.40-45.
News / Other (None)
24 February 1998 by Sam Coniglio
Payloads, Launch Capacity Discussed
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