XCOR Space Tourism
XCOR is a NewSpace startup (now 16 years old) that is working on a tiny spaceship designed primarily for tourism. Considering that XCOR has the lowest listed price for a 6 minute ride in space, $95,000 $150,000 still makes it a luxury that few can afford. Eventually, space tourism may succeed but the price will have to be much, much lower, and provably safe. For now, it appears that space tourism will remain a niche market for a very priviledged few who have a deep interest in Space and deep pockets. The finanacial success and stability of these companies will likely depend on angel investors and private funding.
XCOR LAYS OFF SPACEPLANE WORKERS
The XCOR layoffs on May 27, 2016 are part of a retrenchment to focus on projects that are bringing in revenue, such as the upper stage engine XCOR is developing for ULA. The layoffs primarily affected the team working on the Lynx suborbital space plane. Some employees involved in the program remain; however, work on building the spacecraft has been suspended for the time being.
XCOR Co-Founders Quit - Establish New Company
November 30, 2015
Three co-founders have left XCOR to start a new company, Agile Aero. That company, which, like XCOR, is based in Midland, Texas, will be focused on addressing a problem Greason says has afflicted XCOR and other aerospace companies: the inability to rapidly develop and test vehicles, be they high-speed aircraft or launch vehicles.
“We’ve seen so many companies run into the same obstacle,” he said in an interview. “Once you get past cylindrical designs into vehicles that have lift in the atmosphere, the complexity gets to the point where the ability of people to try things rapidly, and succeed or fail fast, runs out of steam.
Will There Be Space Tourism?
Richard Branson, Virgin Galactic's owner, has repeatedly stated that space tourism needs to be as safe as commercial flight from the get-go. Branson has pointed out that NASA has lost roughly 3% of all the astronauts it ever took to space, and joked that a "government-owned company" could "just about get away" with a loss of that magnitude, whereas his venture "can't afford to lose anybody."
Texas Offers XCOR $10 Million to Relocate
June 22, 2014
MDC, an Texas economic development corporation funded by the quarter-cent sales tax, successfully made a $10 million incentive package for XCOR in 2012. The incentives package offered included $2 million for relocating XCOR’s headquarters to Midland and $5 million in performance incentives.
XCOR Looked at Camden County!
Nov 23, 2012, Atlanta Business Chronicle
Mojave, Calif.-based XCOR Aerospace Inc. has toured the Camden site. The rocket engine and space vehicle manufacturer has considered the proposed Georgia spaceport as a potential location for an East Coast research and development and flight testing facility, Chief Operating Officer Andrew Nelson said.
Nelson points to Mojave Air & Space Port, one of the original commercial spaceports, as an example of an economic development engine. In addition to aviation and space vehicle companies such as XCOR, the development lured suppliers, electronics companies and renewable energy companies.
XCOR moved from Mojave Air and Space Port to Midland, Texas.
Virgin Galactic has built its manufacturing plant at Mojave instead of at Spaceport America that was built at a cost >$200,000,000.
XCOR in England?
Andrew Nelson, chief operating officer and vice president of business development of Mojave, California-based space plane developer XCOR Aerospace, spoke to Space.com at the Airshow about his company's interest in one proposed site, Newquay. "Newquay is sort of interesting. It points right out to the water. You're not flying over anything under rocket power, which is nice."
New Rocket Plane to Begin Space Tourist Launches in 2014
By Denise Chow, SPACE.com Staff Writer | June 8, 2012
NEW YORK — Thrill seekers looking for the ultimate rocket ride may soon turn that dream into a reality aboard a new suborbital spaceship, a winged rocket plane slated to start launching space tourists from California and a tiny Caribbean island by 2014.
The Mojave, Calif.-based XCOR Aerospace is developing the suborbital Lynx space plane to carry paying passengers to the upper reaches of the atmosphere, to altitudes up to and exceeding 62 miles (100 kilometers). XCOR is aiming to begin operational Lynx flights from California's Mojave Spaceport in 2013 and from the Dutch-controlled island of Curacao in the Caribbean a year later, said Andrew Nelson, XCOR's chief operating officer.
XCOR at Kennedy Space Center?
Thursday, June 27, 2013, Orlando Sentinel
This evening, the Orlando Sentinel broke the story that NASA Administrator Charles Bolden will be at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex to announce that NASA will lease the former Shuttle Landing Facility to Space Florida, which will make the runway available to private users such as XCOR. According to the article, “participant flights” could begin as soon as 2015.
A deal to locate at KSC was "99 percent of the way there," he said, with only paperwork remaining said XCOR Chief Operating Officer Andrew Nelson. Orlando Sentinel June 27, 2013
“We will be permanently basing our Lynx Mark 2 production vehicle in Florida,” XCOR chief operating officer Andrew Nelson told Space News. Irene Klotz, Space News | August 24, 2012
XCOR has still not made its first tourist flight and has moved its headquarters to Midland, Texas.
XCOR Aerospace Seeks Curacao Spaceport
"A spaceport on Curacao will create a lot of opportunities for the local community and economy. It will be a boost for the island tourism and will also attract a wide variety of businesses. That's why CAH wants a spaceport on Curacao. CAH is providing the facilities to make this happen. It will influence Curacao in a whole new way. XCOR has built a suborbital spaceplane that SXC is going to use."
Could any of the horizontal launch aerospace companies operate from Camden?
Is Spaceport Camden being planned for companies that have no proven record of success in spaceflight?
Is Space Tourism for real with prices like these?
Tickets to Space:
International Space Station (1 week)
Around the Moon
Virgin Galactic Sub-orbital
Can space companies that operate out of subsidized airport hangers afford to build Spaceport Camden?
Since XCOR is working on horizontal launch systems, how is their experience appropriate for vertical launch rockets that are proposed for Camden?
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