Tuesday 12/31/13 - We have a new Space Access Update out, #134, with a message of cautious optimism for the new year, plus some less cheerful news about this coming April's planned Space Access '14 conference. We very much regret to announce that, due to circumstances arising that will require a great deal of the conference manager's time in coming months, this April's Space Access conference is cancelled.  We'll be contacting those who paid for advance SA'14 registrations at SA'13 about refunds this week.  (If you haven't heard from us by this weekend, email us at space.access@mindspring.com, with the subject line SA'14 Refund.)

Sunday 8/4/13 - We're coming up fast on the 20th anniversary of DC-X's first flight later this month, and some of the people involved have organized a conference in New Mexico, Friday August 16th through Sunday August 18th, to mark the occasion.  I've volunteered to help out with the conference, and that's what I'm writing to you about today.

Much of the original DC-X team will be there, to be honored and to talk about how they did it, techniques used and lessons learned.  There will also be a look at some of the many things that came of DC-X's success, plus a Reusable Spaceplane X-Vehicles workshop looking to what should come next, as well as a tour of the New Mexico Spaceport.

This is a one-of-a-kind event.  It's very unlikely that all these people will ever be in one place at the same time again.  If you have a deep interest in where "new space" came from, where it is now, and where it should go next, this event is more than worth a trip to New Mexico in August.

Conference agenda and details at
http://dc-xspacequest.org/

thanks for your time

Henry Vanderbilt
founder
Space Access Society

Tuesday 6/4/13 - We have a new Space Access Update out, #133, with followups on last issue's NASA Budget and Commercial Crew pieces, plus an alert about proposed Inclusion Of Suborbital (and Orbital) Transports On The ITAR Export-Restricted List

Thursday 5/30/13 - We have a new Space Access Update out, #132, with The Sequester, NASA Budget Status (and Fixing The Problem), Commercial Crew: The Budget and The FARs, and Space Access '13 Wrapup

The Space Access '14 Conference dates we're currently looking at are Thursday-Saturday, April 3-5 or April 10-12, 2014, and so far we're leaning toward the latter. If anyone is aware of major conflicts on either of those dates or has a strong preference, drop us an email at space.access@mindspring.com.

(Older Posts)

Saturday, 4/20/13 - Space Access '13 Web Roundup - As usual, Clark Lindsey of NewSpace Watch has done an amazing job both covering the conference in detail and rounding up pointers to other coverage. His Space Access'13: Summary and Resources leaves very little out; the only things we can think of so far to add are Jeff Foust's Space Review piece Hacking Space and a pointer to Twitter coverage under the hashtag #sa13 (somewhat confusingly, a couple other events used the same hashtag, but it's pretty clear which are which.)

We have a new Space Access Update out, #131, on the NASA Tech Data Drought, The Race Is Far From Over, Free Advice, and a "Warning Shots" Correction.

We have a new Space Access Update out, #130, "Warning Shots". (This Update gets referenced in a story on Alan Boyle's Cosmic Log at nbcnews.com.)

Monday, 1/7/13 - The dates for our next annual conference on the business, technology, and politics of radically cheaper access to space, Space Access '13, are set.  Conference sessions will begin 9 am Thursday April 11th and end 6 pm Saturday April 13th, 2013.

Advance conference registration is $120 (Student rate $40), mail checks to Space Access '13, PO Box 16034, Phoenix AZ 85011.  (We will have online credit card registration open here later this month.)

One additional announcement: We have always viewed the Space Studies Institute's mission (http://ssi.org/) as complementary to ours, and it gives us considerable pleasure to announce that this year we will be hosting our colleagues at SSI for a half-day SSI session at SA'13.

Watch here for more on the conference details in the coming weeks.

Wednesday, 3/14/12 - How time flies! Another Congressional funding season is underway, and you have your first chance to push Congress to spend at least some of its billions in space funding on useful things. Help support full funding for NASA's Commercial Crew and Space Technology programs!

Thursday, 12/15/11 - We have a new update out, SAU #129, with word of a surprising victory in the continuing battle over the future of NASA's Commercial Crew Program.

Thursday, 9/15/11 - We have a new update out, SAU #128, with our thoughts on traditional NASA development costs, and some pointed questions for tomorrow's Commercial Crew forum.

Tuesday, 7/26/11 - We have a new update out, SAU #127, with the latest on the FY'12 NASA Appropriation, Commercial Crew news, and Space Launch System political developments. Hope to see you all at the SFF Conference later this week!

Friday, 7/8/11 - We have a new Update out, SAU #126, with an urgent Political Action Alert - a chance for you to make a positive difference in this country's future in space, plus some thoughts on Shuttle: Looking Back, And Forward.

Thursday, 7/7/11 -
We have a new Update out, SAU #125. "This is a heads-up - there will be significant Congressional action next week on NASA budget items that matter to us.  Our window to make a difference should open in the next day or so.  The next thing we send out will almost certainly be a Political Action Alert, another chance for you to make a positive difference in this country's future in space."

(As we mentioned in Update #124, those of you who took part in our last political push helped nudge the process noticeably in the right direction - the rest of you, what are you waiting for?  This time, join in - once you have the targeting info, make the call and help us make a real difference!)

Monday, 6/20/11 - We have a new Update out, SAU #124, with some thoughts on current issues - SLS "Competition", Commercial Crew & Cargo's direction, the state of the Newspace industry, and a possible extension of the CSLAA.

Space Access Society: Who are we?

There are countless useful, interesting, and profitable things we could do if we had routine affordable access to space. But, as the old down-Maine joke goes, "you can't get there from here." Half a century into the Space Age, it still takes years of paperwork and planning and costs tens to hundreds of millions per mission to reach Earth orbit, drastically constraining the otherwise huge opportunities. It isn't the laws of physics or engineering that are stopping us - there's nothing in either that prevents reusable rockets based on available technology from operating at costs and reliabilities a lot closer to modern airliners than to current rockets. Yet somehow, after all the early promise, we ended up in a blind alley. We've spent a generation there. Enough is enough.

Space Access Society thinks the problem has a lot more to do with political and bureaucratic inertia than with any fundamental engineering obstacles. SAS's sole purpose is to promote routine, reliable, radically cheaper access to space, ASAP. We think it's possible within the decade, with a little luck and a lot of hard work. Welcome to our minimalist retro text-intensive web page, where we'll try to give you a handle on how we think we can get out of the long-time NASA-industrial complex expensive-space dead end. Here's the longer version: Space Access Society Policy Summary (due for an update at some point, but still amazingly relevant for something written seven years ago.)

And here's our Updates backlist, so you can see how our understanding of the problem has evolved over the years:

Space Access Update back issues

SAS has always been more a state of mind than a formal organization. If you believe radically cheaper space access is both hugely important and near-term possible, you're one of us. Pay your dues by doing what you can to advance the cause, as the chance arises.

One of the higher-profile things we do is our annual Space Access conference on the technology, politics, and business of radically cheaper space transportation, featuring leading players in the field. The most recent was Space Access '11, April 7-9 2011 in Phoenix Arizona, our nineteenth (we've been at this that long?) annual conference. SA'11 was again an interesting mix of the usual suspects and some unusual new additions, again providing an intensive informal snapshot of where the growing cheap space access industry was this spring 2011. Here's the program book for SA'11, to give you an idea what our conferences are like. Stay tuned for more info on Space Access '12, mid April 2012 in Phoenix Arizona as we start getting it organized in the coming months.

Questions? Email us at: space.access@space-access.org (We may take a while to get back to you, but your mail does go through.)

Space Access Update Back Issues

SAU #134 -31 Dec 13 Update
SAU #133 - 4 Jun 13 Update
SAU #132 -30 May 13 Update
SAU #131 -24 Mar 13 Update
SAU #130 - 4 Mar 13 Update
SAU #129 -15 Dec 11 Update
SAU #128 -15 Sep 11 Update
SAU #127 -26 Jul 11 Update
SAU #126 - 8 Jul 11 Update & Alert
SAU #125 - 7 Jul 11 Update
SAU #124 -20 Jun 11 Update
bulletin -17 May 11 Alert
bulletin -26 Apr 11 Alert
SAU #123 -14 Apr 11 Update
SAU #122 - 2 Apr 11 Update
SAU #121 -16 Feb 11 Update
bulletin -27 Sep 10 bulletin
bulletin -24 Sep 10 bulletin
SAU #120 -23 Sep 10 Update
SAU #119 -20 Sep 10 Update
bulletin -13 Sep 10 bulletin
bulletin - 9 Sep 10 bulletin
bulletin - 5 Sep 10 bulletin
SAU #118 -30 Aug 10 Update
SAU #117 -21 Aug 10 Update
SAU #116 -29 Jul 10 Update
SAU #115 -14 Jul 10 Update
SAU #114 -20 Feb 06 Update
SAU #113 - 4 Jan 06 Update
SAU #112 - 9 Sep 05 Update
SAU #111 - 5 Apr 05 Update
SAU #110 -31 Mar 05 Update
SAU #109 -15 Feb 05 Update
SAU #108 -31 Jan 05 Update
SAU #107 - 2 Dec 04 Update
SAU #106 -19 Nov 04 Update
SAU #105 -19 Oct 04 Update
SAU #104 -29 Sep 04 Update
SAU #103 -15 Apr 04 Update
SAU #102 - 9 Feb 04 Update
SAU #101 -13 Dec 03 Update
SAU #100 - 8 Feb 03 Update
SAU #99 - 13 Dec 02 Update
bulletin - 12 Feb 02 bulletin
SAU #98 -  8 Mar 01 Update
SAU #97 - 26 Jan 01 Update
SAU #96 - 26 Sep 00 Update
SAU #95 - 27 Aug 00 Update
SAU #94 -  9 Jul 00 Update
SAU #93 - 13 Apr 00 Update 
SAU #92 -  5 Apr 00 Update 
SAU #91 -  7 Feb 00 Update 
SAU #90 - 10 Oct 99 Update 
SAU #89 - 25 Sep 99 Update
SAU #88 - 24 Jul 99 Update 
SAU #87 - 19 Jul 99 Update 
SAU #86 - 25 Jun 99 Update 
SAU #85 - 18 Jun 99 Update 
SAU #84 - 17 Jun 99 Update 
SAU #83 -  3 Jun 99 Update 
SAU #82 - 12 May 99 Update 
SAU #81 -  5 Mar 99 Update 
SAU #80 - 28 Feb 99 Update 
SAU #79 -  8 Oct 98 Update 
SAU #78 -  6 Nov 97 Update
SAU #77 - 16 Oct 97 Update
SAU #76 -  3 Oct 97 Update
SAU #75 - 23 Sep 97 Update
SAU #74 - 31 Aug 97 Update
SAU #73 - 14 Jul 97 Update
SAU #72 - 23 May 97 Update
SAU #71 -  6 May 97 Update
SAU #70 - 18 Oct 96 Update
SAU #69 - 31 Jul 96 Update
SAU #68 - 21 Jul 96 Update
SAU #67 - 11 Jul 96 Update

  Full list of back issues available here eventually,
 when we finally dig them off various retired computers...

                        *end*