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Space travel coming closer to Jacksonville - 8/1/2012

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- We have been lifting off into the final frontier for years. But soon space travel will be happening here in North Florida.

"When you see these vehicles in the air, you can't tell the difference between them and a regular airplane," said Todd Linder, JAA senior-aviation planning and spaceport development.

The Jacksonville Aviation Authority was just awarded a grant that could eventually bring the latest space craft to Cecil Field.
Only this time you won't need a launch pad, just a runway.

"They take of just like an airplane, fly like an airplane, but they propel with a rocket," said Linder. 

JAA Will spend the next six months making sure a space craft called "Concept Y" is safe on the environment before it can be flown here. "This means more jobs, high-paying jobs, high tech jobs coming to the area."

The first space flights out of Cecil Field will probably be to conduct experiments. But JAA says eventually it will be for transportation. 

"As we go forward in the future, there will be more competition and the price will come down. And eventually everyone will be able to fly," said Linder

The first flight into space from Cecil Field could happen in the next year. Cecil Field is one of only 12 air spaces approved for space travel in the U.S.

Source: http://bit.ly/IBwnMe

Master plan: Cecil Spaceport could grab market share - - 8/1/2012

Cecil Spaceport stands to garner a significant portion, estimated at up to 10 percent, of the emerging space travel market, according to a Jacksonville Aviation Authority administrator.

Todd Lindner, the authority’s administrator of planning and development, presented the figures Monday to the JAA board as part of a Cecil Spaceport master plan presentation.
The plan originated in April 2011.

According to a plan update, a market share summary study by Futron Corp. for 2021-25 said that nationwide there could be 13,000-25,000 annual space tourists generating revenue of $676 million-$1.26 billion.
Cecil Spaceport could support a 10 percent market share with about 250 annual launches that draw 1,300-2,500 participants and generate revenue of $67.6 million-$126 million to vendors.
In the space tourism industry, orbital flights cost between $20 million to $30 million while suborbital flights are $100,000-$200,000.

Lindner said that Jacksonville and Cecil Spaceport have a projected competitive advantage because of location and proximity to federal spaceports.

Other commercial spaceports in California, Virginia and New Mexico are close to federal spaceports and compete among each other for federal funds and launch approvals, Lindner said.

Cecil Spaceport is the closest to a city that could provide additional amenities for space tourists, he said.
Cecil Spaceport’s only weakness was the lack of an agreement with a vehicle developer. Strengths included the existing infrastructure, tourism potential and the technical workforce.

Among the recommendations are development of a visitor’s center, taxiways, approach roads and the revision of an environmental assessment.


dchapman@baileypub.com,
356-2466
Source: http://bit.ly/ICBXgZ

Jax Spaceport becoming a reality - 8/1/2012

May 23, 2012

News4jax.com
With the launch of a privately owned rocket into space earlier this week, the idea of spacecraft launches from Jacksonville is slowly being brought to life.

"I'd love to watch it, certainly come out and watch it," said Doug Hampt, who's excited about a potential spaceport.

Cecil Spaceport, with help from the Jacksonville Aviation Authority, could be the site of that reality.

"Right now we're looking at probably a launch possibly occurring toward the end of 2013 or the early stages of 2014," said Todd Lindner, of JAA.

It may not look like much now, but there are plans for permanent buildings at Cecil Airport on the Westside designed to attract commercial industry heading to outer space.

"They'll be conducting research, conducting experiments, microgravity experiments, also they'll be doing different activities to accommodate the tourism industry," Lindner said.

The thing that makes this spaceport special is the runway. At more than 12,000 feet long, it's the second longest runway in the state.

The runway will offer more than enough room for a horizontal launch. There's a clear vision for what's to come.

"We will extend out the taxiway here right at the approach end of this runway, and it will mirror what's going on on the west side of the airport," said Kelly Dollarhide, of JAA.


Source: http://bit.ly/JfGQLL

 
 
 
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