Reusing, refueling, partnering – and going nuclear

Advocacy for innovation is always challenging, with much written about difficulties like the valley of death. There is one barrier that does not get much attention, though. We forget the future is always outnumbered in the here and now. Artist concept of Demonstration for Rocket to Agile Cislunar Operations (DRACO) spacecraft, which will demonstrate a nuclear … Continue reading Reusing, refueling, partnering – and going nuclear

A checklist for commercial space and NASA

A paper of mine was published last week in the New Space Journal, “Ingredients and Anticipated Results for Characterizing and Assessing NASA and U.S. Department of Defense Partnerships and Commercial Programs.” Yes, that’s a mouthful. I often write about what’s next for NASA, the commercial space sector, and how these must move ahead together. My … Continue reading A checklist for commercial space and NASA

Technology, transforming the space sector, and us

After concluding a bat’leth tournament, a lone traveler in deep space passes through a jagged sliver of space-time. This piece of the galaxy is defective, a “quantum fissure” in techno-babble, as if whoever made it was asleep at the wheel. This is the universe of Star Trek, of course, full of all sorts of space-time … Continue reading Technology, transforming the space sector, and us

Space based solar power and not losing sight of the plot

“The General doesn’t like it,” he said, because “he doesn’t want to own the big, easy target that’s the first thing destroyed in the next war.” So much for what we might do together on Space Based Solar Power. This would be a short call. The idea of a massive power station floating in space … Continue reading Space based solar power and not losing sight of the plot

A book review – “Escaping Gravity” by Lori Garver

Frustration oozes from the pages of “Escaping Gravity,” and rightly so. Seemingly at odds, but only if you’re not in the business of space exploration, there is also a determination to carry on and leave a positive impact throughout the memoir of Lori Garver, Deputy NASA Administrator from 2009 to 2013. If you have come … Continue reading A book review – “Escaping Gravity” by Lori Garver

About Starships, and the (not what you think) reusability we need

Recently, a SpaceX Starship ran into a setback that’s been ongoing for a couple of years now –  tile popping off. We get to see all this, as SpaceX runs a very open program, much of Starship taking place in the sights of a paparazzi of cameras and drones. We see that sticking protective tile on … Continue reading About Starships, and the (not what you think) reusability we need

Financial risks, spaceflight, and the questions we ask

"Would Boeing make a bet like that again, on a low-cost space launch vehicle," asked our team leader. Suddenly, thirty or so people burst into a tower of babel, everyone talking at once as if a spark set off a conflagration. Mostly the cacophony of replies leaned toward "no," or jumped right into statements - … Continue reading Financial risks, spaceflight, and the questions we ask