XCOR Offer's Free Ride
While the big boys like SpaceX and Virgin Galactic have been getting all the headlines lately, they aren’t the only players in the commercialized race for space. XCOR Aerospace of Mojave California have been somewhat of a dark horse in this race; and they’ve recently has been making a break for the lead in the sub-orbital market. Humbly self-described as a “small” company, this operation is on the verge of achieving what some many others are attempting: affordable space flight for private citizens.
Based out of the Mojave Air and Space Port, XCOR has been developing and testing their rocket designs since 2001. They have completed an impressive total of 67 flights with their various rocket crafts, and are poised to go commercial with their reusable launch vehicle (RLV) Lynx.
Beyond offering spaceflight participants a ticket to the edger of space, they also plan on using their suborbital platform to provide affordable services to academic, scientific, engineering, and observation-related markets. They are currently developing two additional vehicles, one of which will be an orbital craft.And here’s where things get crazy. These guys are so confident that they’re already handing out free tickets for a suborbital thrill ride. Early registration for the Next Generation Suborbital Researchers Conference (NSRC-2012) at Palo Alto can get entered in an old-fashioned-style Sweepstakes to win a free ride. The draw will be conducted at NSRC-2012 on the 27th of February 2012. Of course there are the nay-sayers citing how talk is cheap. But the developmental progress of the Lynx platform would suggest that suborbital launces are imminent. To further bolster their ambitious claims, the Free Suborbital Ticket expires in 2015. So if you want to go to space for free with XCOR, you’ll have to cash in before 2015, which suggests an impressive timeline.
This article was not sponsored by XCOR. The guys here at SpaceFizz were just impressed with their Lynx development, and their gutsy sweepstakes offer.