Space Business is heating up!


There are an increasing number of entrepreneurial space-related events and conferences happening, and here are a few that I’ve gotten notice of recently:

On short notice is the half-day symposium on THE SPACE ECONOMY, occurring next Friday morning, March 13th in D.C. The agenda can be found here. There are some interesting names supporting the event, from Cisco to Phillips & Co., in addition to the usual suspects like AAS, AIAA, CSE, GMU, ISU and SEC.

[Update: Robert Hoskins of Phillips & Co. uses some of the output of the event in an editorial in Florida Today in response to short-sighted political maneuvers, found here. Hoyt Davidson of Near Earth LLC also provides a nice summary in the June issue of From the Ground Up (pdf)]

Near Earth LLC, a capital advisory firm, has their March newsletter (pdf) out, From the Ground Up. This month they put the markets in the context of space developments, and are optimistic for the future.

Later this month, also in D.C., is the Satellite 2009 conference, from March 24-27. This is for industry, which means there’s quite a list of exhibitors. Eva and I bandied about the idea of her attending to get some interviews, but no one is buying any books, so there’s no capital to underwrite the trip. Plus, it’s unclear if we’d qualify for a media pass. And I’m going to be at the LPSC down in Houston that week.

The next week starts with the National Space Space Symposium in Colorado Springs, CO, running through April 2nd. This one also has an impressive list of exhibitors, making it a good place to look to put some money to work.

Filling out the week in early April, from the 2nd to the 4th, is the Space Access ’09 conference in Phoenix, AZ. This is the conference where all the rocket guys get together to talk about access to space. There’s a strong entrepreneurial spirit to this one, making it a great place to scout for talent.

Back when I was co-chair of the 2007 ISDC, I campaigned hard to get as many pre-conferences as possible held just before the ISDC, so that the results could be presented at our citizen space conference. So in addition to the Aerospace Technology Working Group (ATWG), we also had the Space Venture Finance Symposium (often considered the 2nd Space Investment Summit), and folks from both groups stuck around for our conference. That was repeated again in 2008 in D.C., and will be repeated again this year in conjunction with the 2009 ISDC in Orlando, FL. The 6th Space Investment Summit will be on Wednesday, May 27th. From the website:

Presentations will focus on the latest developments in the rapidly growing space tourism industry (vehicles, funding, destinations, timeframes, numbers of customers and more), as well as new cross-industry business.

Be sure to stick around for the International Space Development Conference, the largest citizen space conference in the world. From May 28-31, it will feature luminaries from all aspects of our space endeavours. I know from experience that the program will keep evolving right up to the last minute, so be sure to check regularly for updates.

Further out in the year is the NewSpace 2009 conference from the Space Frontier Foundation, from July 18-20 at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Mountainview, California. Waitaminit…that’s what I thought – the ISU Summer Session Program is going to be at NASA Ames from June 29 to August 28. OMG, I so have to be there for that party. I may need to bring lots of beer and Texas vodka to the festivities. Rick always appreciates a nice ice-cold Shiner Bock.

Still further out, September 14-17, is the AIAA SPACE 2009 conference & exposition in Pasadena CA. This one is a more technically oriented, and may not be as much fun as the NewSpace 2009 conference.

I’m sure there are a few that I missed, but this should give you a start on getting the lowdown on the business of space.

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