America’s Space Prize Rules Announced
By Michael Mealling
Leonard David has an article on space.com about Bigelow's “America's Space Prize”:
a spacecraft capable of taking a crew of no fewer than five people to an altitude of 400 kilometers and complete two orbits of the Earth at that altitude. Then they have to repeat that accomplishment within 60 days.
While the first flight must demonstrate only the ability to carry five crew members, the winner will have to take at least five people up on the second flight.
And one more thing. They have to do it by Jan. 10, 2010.
Some other details include:
- limited to American companies/individuals only
- in addition to the $50 million, Bigelow is also prepared to offer $200 million in “conditional purchase agreements for six flights of a selected vehicle” to non-first place finishers that, due to various reasons, may have a highly qualified product but just had bad timing or bad luck
- an additional $800 million in options contracts for 24 flights will be available over a period of about four to 4.5 years, Bigelow said.
- the conditionals include a) if the government regulates it to impossibility and b) if Bigelow doesn’t have anything to launch to.
Go read the whole thing.
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