FROM THE DIRECTOR
HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!
June has been a busy month for us in house. Lots of continuing work to prep for upcoming launches. We are also hiring a few more staff. Please see the notes below about that.
We hope these newsletters are helpful in keeping you up to date on Spaceport activities. Feel free to send questions or comments to us via our website (http://spaceportamerica.com/).
Christine Anderson, Executive Director
New Mexico Spaceport Authority (NMSA)
TECHNICAL OPERATIONS UPDATE
We are continuing to work with our tenants on preparing to support their space activities.
Because our on-site Automated Weather Observing System (AWOS) has now been accumulating data for over two years, meaningful statistical analysis is now possible. Wind is typically the most important meteorological parameter. We have begun building “wind roses” to summarize wind data. The wind rose construct is a common method to depict probabilities of winds in specified speed intervals as a function of direction. They can be constructed for an entire data set, by year, by month, or even by specific hours within specific months.
CONSTRUCTION AND GENERAL OPERATIONS UPDATE
Spaceport America awarded a contract to Pure Operations of Las Cruces, New Mexico for water services support at the spaceport. We also received proposals for HVAC services support and will be making an award shortly.
We brought on board two more staff members: Mike Bashore, IT Support Manager, and Chris Lopez, Maintenance Support Manager. These folks will be instrumental as we ramp up for full operations.
Virgin Galactic is continuing work on its fit out construction activities for the Gateway facility at Spaceport America.
Doña Ana County has released its road design to the BLM for review and is now planning to release the RFP for construction in August. Contact the Doña Ana County Engineer’s Office for more information.
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (it’s all about jobs!)
NMSA is filling two new positions: Flight Control Specialist and Aerospace Engineer.
Flight Control Specialist: The purpose of this position is to provide safe, secure and efficient air and space traffic services to spaceport customers. Provide guidance to the movement of air traffic between altitude sectors and control centers following established procedures and policies. Authorize and control commercial space flights according to government and agency regulations. Assist in writing and maintaining range operations and flight safety plans. Prepare mission reports and analyses.
Aerospace Engineer: The purpose of this position is to perform flight safety assessments of space vehicles and launch systems. Monitor commercial space launches and re-entries. Monitor operation of launch and re-entry sites. Participate in launch readiness reviews. Coordinate spaceport activities with the FAA Office of Commercial Space Transportation and with the US Army White Sands Missile Range. Ensure compliance with International Trading in Arms Regulations. Assist with preparation and maintenance of spaceport policies and procedures.
Both of these positions, along with future positions with NMSA, will be posted on the State of New Mexico’s NEOGOV portal (http://agency.governmentjobs.com/newmexico/default.cfm) and on our own Employment website (http://spaceportamerica.com/jobs/employment/) this month. Applicants are encouraged to submit their resumes electronically through either website.
On the economic development front, the number of referrals of local hospitality-related and aerospace-related business to spaceport tenants and customers has now climbed to over 60. We will be posting more customer requirements on our website this month. Please watch for that and respond if you feel your company can offer some services.
Last month, a major test launch of a new balloon system designed to carry space tourists took place in New Mexico. This test was conducted by Worldview Enterprises at Roswell, NM. This is the same facility that helped to support the record-setting Red Bull Stratos balloon launch in October 2012. The company is considering operating its space tourism flights from Spaceport America when they become operational.
To view more about the test flight: Edge Of Space Commercial Balloon Flights Closer With Record-Breaking Test | Video (http://www.space.com/26338-edge-of-space-commercial-balloon-flights-closer-with-record-breaking-test-video.html)
SpaceX conducted another low-altitude test of its Falcon 9R reusable booster at the McGregor engine test facility. This flight was the first test of a set of steerable fins that provide control of the rocket during the fly back portion of return. SpaceX is expected to start high-altitude testing of the Falcon 9R reusable booster at Spaceport America later this year.
To view this recent test launch go to: F9R 1000m Fin Flight | Onboard Cam and Wide Shot (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgLBIdVg3EM)
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