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Questions tagged [commercial]

Questions regarding space programs or services provided by private entities for the gain of money instead of governments.

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Proposed Canso Spaceport, challenges to commercial viability of a private spaceport?

Maritime Launch Services is proposing to build a spaceport facility to launch Ukrainian built Cyclone 4M rockets from Canso into polar and sun synchronous orbit. Knowing very little about the space ...
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What happened to International Microspace's $100 million contract?

This might be an obscure one. As I understand it: Diamandis co-founded Microsat Launch Systems, which was renamed International MicroSpace, in 1989. (This is apparently not the Micro-Space of 1977 to ...
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Are SpaceX subject to “Common Carrier” provisions from the FAA, NASA or others? [duplicate]

For instance, could SpaceX refuse to carry OneWeb satellites because it is a competitor to StarLink. Obviously SpaceX shouild be able refuse payloads as incompatible with their vehicle. The obvious ...
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4answers
238 views

What prompted all of those private launch companies to get into the business?

It seems that, somewhere around the turn of the century, a bunch of private companies started gearing up for launching things into space when nobody (at least not private entrepreneurs) seemed very ...
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0answers
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Where are all the space capsules? [duplicate]

My understanding is that space capsules, at least until recently with the private companies, have been single-use. Including the Soyuz capsules that Russia keeps using. Which means there could ...
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1answer
100 views

Will there be man-rated DreamChasers?

The Sierra Nevada DreamChaser was a contender for the commercial crew program, but lost out when NASA chose both Boeing and SpaceX for their program. However, they kept developing the craft for the ...
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1answer
58 views

Which deep space missions have had beverages named after them?

Which deep space missions have had beverages named after them? Just that, though a passing reference to the beverage or photographic evidence may be required supporting information. Here "deep space"...
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1answer
76 views

Is Space X adopting a strategy to move away from the launch segment into being an operator only to fund the Mars Ambitions? [closed]

The recent approval of the FCC towards the launch of the star-link constellation is indicative that from just being a company in the upstream segment,Space X is branching out into the downstream ...
2
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1answer
134 views

Who's “winning” with launch rate?

Launch rate, or cadence, is not necessarily a fundamental metric for evaluating a launch provider, but it's an easy one. From India Today's Sept. 18, 2018 article 6 months, 18 missions: ISRO sets new ...
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3answers
183 views

Are US Space companies favored to purchase subsystems from US only suppliers. Are there any specific laws that dictate this?

While i was doing a study on spacecraft subsystems for satellites launched, I noticed that many of the subsystems aboard an American satellite are derived from companies based in the US. By common ...
4
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1answer
75 views

Will a crew or crews for one or more commercial launch vehicles to the ISS really be announced in August 2018?

The Washington Post article Boeing faces a significant setback with the spacecraft it is designing to fly NASA astronauts includes the following statemt: The leak is likely to delay its launch ...
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2answers
170 views

In what ways could a US-based commercial space company legally use nuclear power?

At the moment, commercial usage of space seems to be the next big 'thing' in space exploration. Much of this (tourism, commercial launch companies, etc) will likely use solar power or fuel cell ...
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239 views

Can they watch TV at the South Pole? What satellites are used for data, comms, and entertainment?

edit: This answer adds one more piece to the puzzle, at least for data. For navigation, I believe GPS covers the poles. For data, there is at least Iridium (see answers to What (actually) makes ...
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1answer
151 views

SpaceX's ITS as heavy lifter for Earth orbit

Was the booster of the interplanetary transport system ever considered as a super heavy launch vehicle for commercial payloads onto LEO and GEO? (with an expendable or reusable second stage) Or its ...
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2answers
4k views

Why did NASA close the space shuttle program? [duplicate]

The era of the space shuttle program was one of the highlights in the history of space exploration. Why did NASA decide to retire the space shuttles, or why aren't they planning to start a new program ...
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2answers
323 views

Were any Components Off The Shelf (COTS) used in the Space Shuttle?

Are there examples of Components Off The Shelf (COTS) used in the Space Transportation System? And is NASA considering using COTS in future manned space flight systems like Orion and the SLS?
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1answer
154 views

What expenses and risks might the state of California incur that might partially justify a new “rocket tax”?

I see several mentions in recent news of a proposed tax on launches in the state of California, and that it would be 'by the mile'. The nature of the currently proposed tax is described in this ...
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1answer
196 views

California's rocket tax “by the mile”, how would that work exactly?

I see several mentions in recent news of a proposed tax on launches in the state of California, and that it would be 'by the mile'. If someone is familliar with the issue, could they outline how this ...
5
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2answers
416 views

Could the Soyuz/Progress supply and crew a space station in Lunar orbit?

The Soyuz launcher can put about a third of the mass in low Earth orbit compared with Proton, Falcon 9, Ariane 5, Atlas V. Is that enough to crew and resupply a space station in Lunar orbit, or at an ...
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2answers
2k views

How much would it cost to build an international commercial moonbase?

The Earth's moon is one of the largest natural resources of our planet. My question: how much would it cost to build an internationally accessible commercial facility (moonbase) on the Moon?
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1answer
301 views

Are there other companies than Bigelow Aerospace planning to offer a space hotel?

After reading up on the matter I noticed that there currently are only two options to remain in space for longer than a few hours: International Space Station (US and Russia) assembled in orbit: ...
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2answers
302 views

Was a commercial (ad) balloon satellite ever deployed?

I remember hearing a story from some two decades ago, about a publicity stunt by one of the two - can't remember which - Pepsi or Coca-Cola. The action was allegedly deployment of a gigantic balloon ...
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3answers
549 views

What is the closest intentional separation achieved by two satellites?

I would like to know what is the closest separation achieved by two satellites. Let's restrict it to Non experimental satellites (or else it would be 0) Operational satellites (no collision) Post ...
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0answers
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Reusing Tanks and Rocket Engines from just beyond Geosynchronus Orbit [duplicate]

There are many Centaur upper stages and a few other objects in the junk yard orbit just beyond the geosynchronous orbit. Is there any reasons why this stuff could not be reused? There are cryogenic ...
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1answer
156 views

What are the major expenses for a small spaceport?

I'm not looking for exact numbers, and I know that it will vary on a case by case basis, but I was thinking about the Kodiak Launch Complex lately: Last Launch: August 25th, 2014 2 Active Pads There ...
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1answer
103 views

How is decided the winner for US military satellites launch contracts and what criteria are necessary to be completed for these contracts?

SpaceX and ULA are the only two companies currently authorized to launch US national security payloads. These two companies will compete with each other to win the contracts for national military ...
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1answer
121 views

ISS business venture cost?

How much would it cost for a business to place some self-maintaining electronic equipment aboard the ISS? Would it be a monthly fee, or a one-time transportation and installation fee? Would that ...
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1answer
293 views

What was the first space tourism company?

What was the first company that came up with the business plan of taking tourists to space? In which year was the company launched or the outline of the business plan known to public? What was the ...
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1answer
300 views

commercial launches - what is the growth rate of commercial space flight?

I've been trying to get a growth rate for commercial space flight, as it may be amenable to something like Moore's law. Wheras government funded things are prone to politics so can't really be rellied ...
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1answer
356 views

What happens to Blue Origin's New Shepard capsule if their one engine fails?

What are the plans for the New Shepard capsule if the engine fails near the start of its flight? Are there plans for any sort of ballistic escape like the SpaceX capsule?
3
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1answer
235 views

What are the main synergies between sub-orbital and orbital space launch?

A number of companies are working on suborbital flight with Blue Origin, Virgin Galactic and XCOR being among the most recognized today. I don't ask here about what actual plans different companies ...
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2answers
186 views

Comparison of commercially available components [closed]

I am researching for a student developed nanosat mission, and would like to know which companies to buy from. The sensors are sun sensors and magnetometers. The actuators are magnetorquers. Can anyone ...
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1answer
614 views

Why are there no more Delta II rockets?

The Delta II is a rocket capable of up to 6 metric tons to LEO, and has the best safety record of any launcher in history. ULA still has the launcher listed as one of its products because it has one ...
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1answer
1k views

Will a bag of potato chips explode in space? [closed]

Potato chips are a favorite snack food Earth side. It seems that currently they are not allowed in the ISS (anything with significant crumbs -- such as potato chips ... can't go.) and that chips bags ...
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5answers
1k views

Are there serious business benefits to going to Mars? [closed]

Elon Musk has many times announced plans to go (manned) to Mars and it seems strange that investors and stakeholders would be interested in spending money on this just because Elon is interested. ...
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2answers
566 views

Are commercial rocket launches by ESA profitable?

ESA provides commercial satellite launches. But is this actually a profitable business? When you would subtract the cost of any purely scientific activities and only look at the commercial launches, ...
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2answers
210 views

What liability do commercial space firms have for abandoned space junk?

Until recently space travel has been something governmental entities take on. With commercial companies entering the foray, what liabilities are they accountable for in regards to the crap they leave ...
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1answer
217 views

Will any of the COTS providers be able to perform expedited rendezvous with the ISS?

Russians have been doing expedited four-orbit rendezvous with the International Space Station (ISS) for quite a while now, and when it works, its benefits are apparent; You get there before you'd even ...
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3answers
1k views

What is the fundamental difference between SpaceX from one side and Lockheed Martin from other?

For non-American is hard to understand why the “New Space” companies are depicted as 'commercial'or 'privately operated' companies in contrast of old NASA contractors which should be commercial ...
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2answers
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What is the market for small liquid rocket motors (0.5 to 10 kN thrust)? [closed]

I was wondering if anyone had information on the availability of small liquid fuelled rocket motors in the US (or elsewhere)
12
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1answer
565 views

Why does SpaceX not label the Dragon capsules externally?

Looking at a great answer to a question about Dragons berthing orientation at the ISS which shows images of the 5 CRS Dragons berthed to the ISS one thing struck me. There looks to be no easy way to ...
14
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4answers
483 views

Why is private spaceflight suddenly expanding so quickly?

Virgin Galactic, SpaceX, Stratolaunch Systems, XCOR, and Blue Origin. These companies have all been formed since 1999, and together are the bulk of the truly private space industry (i.e. are not ...
12
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1answer
1k views

How many companies are active in commercial space exploration [closed]

One of my dreams is to go into space. I believe that humanity is headed in such a direction that before I die (in the next 60-80 years) I should be able to pay for a ticket into orbit, or even to the ...
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1answer
5k views

Why does SpaceX appear to get less funding from NASA for the same thing as competitors?

Been looking at the amazing success of SpaceX and from what I found, the contracts they get awarded don't seem to make much sense. It looks like they are simply getting paid less each time NASA awards ...
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1answer
2k views

How much of a commercial space launch can be insured?

When Orbital Sciences' Antares rocket exploded at Wallops Island just six seconds after launch, the loss of the rocket and spacecraft was estimated at more than $200 million, not including damage to ...
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1answer
778 views

How far did Pan Am go with its plans to have passenger trips to the Moon?

It is well known that Pan American World Airways took more than 90,000 reservations for future passenger flights to the Moon from 1968 until its fall into bankruptcy. How far beyond that did Pan Am go?...
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2answers
101 views

What are the uses and limitations of moored (powered) balloons? (Compared to GEO, sounding rockets et c.)

Why aren't moored helium balloons hoovering a few kilometers over many cities as a competing alternative to expensive satellite launches? They could provide services with local advantage such as: high ...
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2answers
1k views

Will SpaceX open up space to the public?

Soft ball question here: Does anyone know if SpaceX will be open to taking non-space agency/military personnel into space? And if so, in what capacity will they allow? And any estimates on the price? ...
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2answers
407 views

Are there any private space probes presently active?

Are there any private space probes presently active? I'm asking about instruments which have left / are leaving the Earth-Moon system. I know there is a plan for a telescope in one of the Earth - ...
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1answer
256 views

When was the first commercial delivery to an orbiting space station?

What was the first commercial space vehicle, that is not the property of a government entity; to make a delivery of goods to a community (one or more) in Earth orbit that was at the time occupied by ...