Author Topic: Axiom Space LLC  (Read 18234 times)

Offline BrightLight

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #20 on: 10/06/2016 07:44 PM »
Website (axiomspace.com) has been updated again with a new picture of a module (with what looks like propulsion) attached to ISS.

So that module leaves ISS to form a new station?
The post-ISS LEO station will probably not be funded by NASA (according to NASA) and if their is a market for a LEO facility Axiom will be in competition with Bigelow and others.  The Axiom module has little internal support for power, thermal etc. and will have to rely on external systems - as such detaching from ISS will be of little use unless they have a sponsor that will supply required sub-system inputs.  The gold color end of the Axiom module is not propulsion, it appears to be a LIDS adapter presumably for a crewed vehicle (SpaceX, Boeing, maybe even SNC).
The Cis-Lunar facility will be built in the mid to late 2020's, Axiom is one of the NextStep awardees - for a project to evaluate using launch vehicle stages as potential habitable modules.

Images from http://axiomspace.com/
« Last Edit: 10/06/2016 07:45 PM by BrightLight »

Online rockets4life97

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #21 on: 10/12/2016 10:04 PM »
Jeff Foust on twitter reporting from a presentation by Michael Baine of Axiom Space at ISPCS 2016:

Baine: will be “very interesting” how NASA decides what comm’l module to add to 1 available ISS port; our module adds 2 ports.

Maybe NASA will be able to accommodate both Axiom Space and Bigelow if Bigelow's module could attach to one of the ports on Axiom Space's module.
« Last Edit: 10/12/2016 10:05 PM by rockets4life97 »

Offline floss

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #22 on: 10/16/2016 11:16 AM »
That module would be of far more use docked to the zenith of node two and then dock two inflatables modules to the sides and a large service platform  aft thereby giving  ISS a garage to repair and upgrade visiting vehicles .

With servicing based at the ISS  OMV and OTV from the station to GEO and L1 are possible and a large demand for fuel will make the launch market bigger enabling better launchers to be improved.

Online brickmack

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #23 on: 10/16/2016 06:18 PM »
That module would be of far more use docked to the zenith of node two and then dock two inflatables modules to the sides and a large service platform  aft thereby giving  ISS a garage to repair and upgrade visiting vehicles .

With servicing based at the ISS  OMV and OTV from the station to GEO and L1 are possible and a large demand for fuel will make the launch market bigger enabling better launchers to be improved.

I think at node 2 zenith or nadir any large radial modules would probably interfere with line of sight for exposed payloads on Columbus and Kibo. Especially once Bartolemeo launches. And ISS is a pretty awful location for deploying reusable tugs going to high energy orbits (requires 2 multi-km/s manuevers for inclination changes when going to and from GEO or cislunar space). If such a tug did require human servicing it would be better served by an equatorial space station (probably combined with a fuel depot)

Offline floss

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #24 on: 10/17/2016 04:58 PM »
That module would be of far more use docked to the zenith of node two and then dock two inflatables modules to the sides and a large service platform  aft thereby giving  ISS a garage to repair and upgrade visiting vehicles .

With servicing based at the ISS  OMV and OTV from the station to GEO and L1 are possible and a large demand for fuel will make the launch market bigger enabling better launchers to be improved.

I think at node 2 zenith or nadir any large radial modules would probably interfere with line of sight for exposed payloads on Columbus and Kibo. Especially once Bartolemeo launches. And ISS is a pretty awful location for deploying reusable tugs going to high energy orbits (requires 2 multi-km/s manuevers for inclination changes when going to and from GEO or cislunar space). If such a tug did require human servicing it would be better served by an equatorial space station (probably combined with a fuel depot)

True but the ISS great value is that it can be accessed from many launchsites worldwide and I cannot see any other stations being built simply because it took Bill Clinton to scare Congress with the fear of Arab madmen with ICBMs to get the money .


As for Columbus I would far prefer to move it back to node 3 zenith and expand facilities into the PLM and place a new node 4 where Columbus is .This NODE 4 would have a second cupola nadir and  and a new dock forward so that more than one manned craft can dock .
« Last Edit: 10/17/2016 04:58 PM by floss »

Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #25 on: 10/17/2016 08:48 PM »
Quote
As for Columbus I would far prefer to move it back to node 3 zenith and expand facilities into the PLM and place a new node 4 where Columbus is .This NODE 4 would have a second cupola nadir and  and a new dock forward so that more than one manned craft can dock .

Node 3 zenith is not a functional CBM port. If I'm not mistaken, Columbus was always planned at node 2 starboard. Node 3 was at node 1 deck (earth facing) port. The now zenith port was the aft port; it was blocked by the Russian module planned at Zarya (the USA owned FGB). To me the proposals for both the Bigalow and the Axiom modules are out off place for what NASA was offering.
The ports available for commercial modules are node 3 port and aft. At node 3 port only a very small module can be located, before there is interferance with the port radiator array. Node 3 aft can't accomodate modules larger then BEAM. Larger modules will interfere with the truss or with zarya's folded solar pannels. The bishop airlock is very suited for node 3 port (was deck), and it is needed for both satellite deployment and bartolomeo. The JEM airlock only cycles up to 10x annually.

Nasa could offer node 2 zenith for a larger module, if that module provides a backup docking port (next to the primary port: ida2, PMA2, Node2 forward). At node 2 zenith the CAM (centrifuge) module was planned. That module had the same diameter as KIBO/JEM about 15ft/4,5m. I think modules over 6m/20ft can be accomodated at node 2 zenith without causing line of sight problems for external payloads. I think the inboard payloads on the thruss stowage platforms will experiance the most interferace. Hardly any payload faces upward, most face to the earth.
When the Axiom module is located at node 2 zenith, the only port with interferance will be the JEM pressurised stowage module. Alle four other directions will not have module interferance. The modules connected to axiom will block the view for external payloads. All added modules will cause a shift in C.G. and additional drag (however small the drag is).

I expect that if Axiom gets connected to the ISS, it will adopt several modules when the ISS core (FGB, Node1, LAB & thruss) gets to the end of their service life. I expect the US LAB to be the most critical. But I think the ISS post 2024 topic is beter suited to discuss this.

Offline yg1968

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #26 on: 12/28/2016 11:22 PM »
Presentation posted a month ago:

« Last Edit: 12/28/2016 11:24 PM by yg1968 »

Offline BrightLight

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #27 on: 12/29/2016 01:36 PM »
Screen grabs from the Axiom presentation at ISPCS 2016 (Thanks to yg1968)
Stressed the importance of "lots of windows" for scientific research and viewing opportunities (how many windows will the BA330 have?).  Initial module will have approximately twice the volume of the Destiny ISS module, some propulsion capabilities and several docking/berthing ports.
The screen grabs - first two are views of the initial module docked to the ISS and the third grab is of an early concepts for the interior layout. The module will have full ECLSS separate from the ISS.
« Last Edit: 12/29/2016 01:38 PM by BrightLight »

Online Craftyatom

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #28 on: 01/03/2017 06:53 PM »
I watched through the presentation and a few things jumped out at me.  First, as BrightLight mentioned, "it will have propulsive capability, so it will be a visiting vehicle" - this is done through the "propulsion bus", which is (I assume, not entirely clear) the gold-colored part, which would presumably have thrusters in the final design.  I think this is important because none of the other US modules have really had proper propulsion - they all got carried up on Shuttle (or Dragon for BEAM).  Thus, this is something Axiom will have to figure out on its own, or possibly with the help of other companies currently building on-orbit propulsion systems.

Second is, as BrightLight also mentioned, it will have full ECLSS capability - I imagine that the small attached solar panels wouldn't quite generate enough electricity to make the module self-sufficient (they're designed for keeping it alive until rendezvous with ISS), but otherwise it will have full life support capability.  No small feat - I think this is what worries me the most about their 2020 launch date.  I could believe the module and propulsion systems would be ready by then, but adding ECLSS into the mix is too much, IMO.  I had more confidence in their "incremental approach" when it was truly incremental, not 'one large self-sufficient module first, then more in future'.

Third, and something I had been wondering about, is the launch vehicle - the first question in the Q&A section asks which launch vehicle they're going to use, and Baine says that they're still deciding, but have looked at Falcon Heavy.  He then mentions that the module is heavy and large - it's greater than 50,000 lbs (22,700kg), and the fairing would be 5m in diameter by 13m long (the outer dimensions of the Falcon 9 fairing, 5.2m diameter by 13.2m long).  He doesn't mention the actual size of the module, but earlier he says that it's "comparable to taking the U.S. Laboratory and Node 2 and basically squishing them together", which would be about 4.4m in diameter and 15m long.  Doing my own measurements on the renderings they provide, however, I'd say that it's about 2.75x longer than wide (excluding the docking port on the end), which would make it (at smallest) 4.2m in diameter by 11.5m long.

I did some graphical mockups of the 4.2mx11.5m design inside some fairings, and pickings are surprisingly slim.  Falcon Heavy and Proton have enough performance, but their fairings are too small (Falcon 9 fairing shown).  Ariane 5, Atlas V, and Delta IV Medium+ don't quite have enough performance to get it to 51-degree LEO (though the Ariane 5 ES version performance is close enough that a lower parking orbit might work, and I don't have data on the Atlas V 552).  Delta IV Heavy is the only launcher with both enough LEO performance and enough space in the fairing, but given its cost, I'm not sure it's viable for a startup newspace company.

TL;DR: Axiom may need to shrink their module, either in weight or length, for it to fit onto any launcher other than the DIVH.  Strangely enough, Bigelow had similar issues with fairing space.

Oh, and I grabbed the full-res versions of the pictures they use on their site, in case anyone wanted them (they're not exactly readily available).
All aboard the HSF hype train!  Choo Choo!

Online rockets4life97

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #29 on: 01/03/2017 07:10 PM »
There isn't any reason SpaceX can't have a bigger fairing on FH. The question is whether the customer (Axiom or Bigelow or whoever) is willing to pay for SpaceX to develop, build, and test it.

Offline TrevorMonty

Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #30 on: 01/03/2017 07:50 PM »
Other possible LVs are Centuar Vulcan and Blue NG , both are schedule to fly around 2020 but won't have much flight history.
« Last Edit: 01/03/2017 07:50 PM by TrevorMonty »

Online docmordrid

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #31 on: 01/03/2017 08:07 PM »
ISTM, if Space chooses to put a crane on 39A for vertical integration they'd have to bid on almost all DoD launches to make it worthwhile - and that means a much larger fairing,  competitive with Delta/Vulcan.
« Last Edit: 01/03/2017 08:08 PM by docmordrid »
DM

Offline Robotbeat

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #32 on: 01/03/2017 08:15 PM »
Nah, I bet one DoD launch per year would make it worth their while.
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Offline Ragmar

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #33 on: 01/03/2017 09:29 PM »
From a new Planetary.org article http://www.planetary.org/blogs/jason-davis/2016/20170103-axiom-profile.html

A company you've never heard of plans to build the world's first private space station
Posted By Jason Davis

Not many people have heard of Axiom Space outside a small segment of the space community.

The company didn't exist until 2016, and only has a half-dozen employees. Yet it only takes a quick glance at the company's publicity materials or a chat with one of its representatives to see that the name Axiom fits well.

An axiom is a statement that is established, accepted or self-evidently true, and that's how the company talks about its future. They aren't planning to build the first private space station—they're doing it. They aren't hoping to launch a mutlipurpose module to the International Space Station in 2020—they are. An Axiom-sponsored astronaut isn't projected to visit the station in 2019—he or she is.

It's all so straightforward and matter-of-fact, you find yourself asking: Does Axiom know something I don't?

Quite possibly. The company, led by Mike Suffredini, who managed NASA's ISS program for 10 years, and Kam Ghaffarian, the CEO of SGT, a major NASA contractor responsible for ISS operations and astronaut training, has big ambitions that could potentially re-shape the space industry. Will they be able to pull it off?

Axiom plans to build the core of its space station at the ISS before the international laboratory retires, which is currently scheduled for 2024 but could be delayed until 2028. When the ISS finally calls it quits, Axiom's station will detach and become a fully independent commercial complex.

The company's first module, called the "Multi-Purpose Module," or simply, Module 1, would launch in late 2020. The current plan is to heave it into space all in one shot, providing Axiom can find the right rocket; at about 9 meters long and 5 meters wide, Module 1 will be a huge payload. (An alternative concept is launching the module in pieces and assembling it in space.)

Module 1 has its own propulsion system, meaning it will fly to the ISS under its own power after being dropped off in orbit. Axiom is currently proposing NASA connect the module to the forward-most port of the ISS, where a new mating adapter was recently installed to accommodate commercial crew vehicles. That mating adapter could then be moved to Module 1 and still be used for U.S. crew vehicle access.

Axiom and NASA have conducted a feasibility study on the concept, and are currently discussing all this under a Space Act Agreement; formal commitments have yet to be made. Officials at the agency's Johnson Space Center did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The extent to which Axiom's customer astronauts would interact with the rest of the ISS is still unclear, but Module 1 will be self-sustained from the get-go. It has its own life support systems, sleeping quarters, restroom, galley, and experimentation and storage areas. Axiom says the module can support up to seven astronauts—though there probably won't be a lot of elbow room until the company adds up to two more modules between 2020 and 2024.

I recently spoke with Amir Blachman, the company's vice president of strategic development, and asked him who would build Module 1.

"Structurally, we're going to be utilizing one of the companies that built most of ISS," he said, adding the module would have a rigid structure and be similar in appearance to existing ISS components. Axiom expects to formally announce which company will build Module 1 around May or June of this year.

Initially, the company won't employ its own astronauts. The space station will serve as an off-world co-working habitat, with Axiom training crewmembers that want to use its facilities. The training will be conducted by SGT, the aforementioned contractor that currently trains NASA astronauts.

In 2019, Axiom plans to send a customer's astronaut to the ISS for a short-duration stay before the first module arrives. Because of the time required to prepare for the mission, the astronaut will begin training this year—meaning Axiom is set to begin generating revenue. The company hasn't formally booked a ride to orbit, but but Blachman said it would likely be on either a Soyuz or Dragon flight.

According to Axiom, a private space station can address a market of up to $37 billion between 2020 and 2030.

The actual figure will be lower if the ISS remains operational beyond 2024, but Axiom still expects a substantial revenue stream as soon as Module 1 is in place. I told Blachman I was skeptical: If such a huge market exists, why hasn't anyone already stepped in to fulfill it?

He said the company's top funding source would be sovereign countries wanting to send their own astronauts into space.

"There are more than 20 countries that want to send astronauts into space," he said. Some of those already have human spaceflight programs, while others want to develop one for reasons that include national prestige and fostering STEM education and technology development.

There is a currently a backlog of these would-be astronauts, Blachman said, due to limited ISS capacity and a shortage of launch vehicles.

The ISS can only support about seven crew members at a time. There are always two NASA astronauts, and even after Russia's decision to reduce its crew complement to two, either ESA or JAXA has an astronaut on board at least half of the time.

The other limiting factor is Soyuz seats. The stalwart Russian spacecraft can only hold three people, which keeps the station's staff count at six, until SpaceX and Boeing begin flying crew vehicles in 2018.

But even then, NASA wants an extra astronaut of their own aboard in order to conduct agency-sponsored research. Axiom's station, then, offers a commercial alternative for sovereign astronauts.

A breakdown of what Axiom Space predicts could be a $37 billion market for a commercial space station between 2020 and 2030.

Another funding stream is space tourism. Axiom-sponsored tourists won't look like those planning to book a suborbital flight with a company like Virgin Galactic.

Most notably, Axiom will require its space tourists to undergo much more extensive training, and the ticket price will be quite different. Whereas Virgin Galactic is currently charging $250,000 for a few minutes of weightlessness, Axiom's pricing for a seven-to-ten day mission will be closer to the amount Russia has previously charged to send tourists to the ISS.

"It'll probably be significantly less expensive than what it costs for tourists to go to space now, but it's still going to be in the tens of millions," Blachman said.

The rest of Axiom's potential market comes from exploration support, scientific research, manufacturing, and sponsorships. Blachman attributes the potential growth in some of these areas to "zeitgeist and timing"—spurred in part by CASIS, the non-profit group that helps private companies and organizations conduct research and technology demonstrations aboard the ISS.

It is unclear how much money private organizations have invested in CASIS or NASA-sponsored ISS experiments thus far. CASIS did not respond to interview requests, but according to their website, the group has backed 144 projects since 2012. During that five-year period, CASIS awarded about $27 million in grants.

Axiom seems to believe the market for commercial space research and manufacturing is approaching a tipping point that could slide in the company's favor.

"If you go to a materials science, bio science, pharma or metallurgy conference, there probably aren't a lot of people today talking about "What can I do with zero gravity? What alloy can I make? What crystal can I grow?" We're really only starting to see that pick up now," Blachman said.

The company also believes there is an increasing number of early career entrepreneurs that would like to get into the on-orbit business. Furthermore, as NASA's deep space exploration efforts shift from low-Earth orbit to lunar space, Axiom's station will offer a close-to-home destination for commercial companies looking to test new technologies.

"They're going to want somewhere near Earth where they can test life-critical and mission-critical systems," said Blachman. "Where are you going to do that?"

Axiom envisions their first module would be attached to the International Space Station's forward-most port. The commercial crew mating adapter (seen in black) currently on that port could be relocated to the top of the new module.

Of the dozens of NewSpace firms proposing projects on the scale of Axiom's space station, few have succeeded.

But Axiom has a chance. Mike Suffredini and Kam Ghaffarian have a lot of ISS experience. Also on the team is Stephen Altemus, a former Johnson Space Center engineering director, as well as two astronauts, and Blachman, a seasoned venture capitalist.

Blachman said that in addition to having secured early funding, Axiom is poised to close its first major round of stock financing, known as Series A. He expects 2017 to be a big year in terms of finalizing the company's plans.

Also in Axiom's favor is a lack of competition. Though China plans to build its on space station starting in 2018, and Russia has expressed its own desire to attach new modules to the ISS, it is doubtful either country could support the commercial market Axiom envisions.

That leaves Bigelow Aerospace, which attached its inflatable BEAM testbed to the ISS in 2016. After BEAM detaches in 2018, Bigelow has proposed testing its much larger B330 module on the station. Whether it would have to compete for the same forward port is unclear, though artist's concepts released as part of NASA's NextSTEP program do show the B330 attached to the same spot. Axiom deferred questions on this subject to Bigelow and NASA; Bigelow representatives were not available for comment.

In any case, it's full speed ahead for Axiom, and Blachman believes the company is poised to help the space community transition into a post-ISS world.

"This is a unique, world-class team," he said, stressing, "It really is unique. And it really is world-class."

Offline Ragmar

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #34 on: 01/24/2017 12:25 PM »
Axiom, Made in Space Announce Agreement for Manufacturing in Orbit

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2017/01/19/axiom-space-announce-agreement-manufacturing-orbit/

HOUSTON, Jan. 18, 2017 9 (Axiom Space PR) — Made In Space and Axiom Space today, announce an agreement to be users and providers of one another’s capabilities to manufacture products in space. Made In Space is the only company to produce 3D printed products in Space and Axiom Space is the leading developer of the world’s first privately-owned commercial space station. This collaboration signifies Made In Space’s exciting transition from research phase, to manufacturing for commercial customers.

The companies have been working out the logistical elements of in-space manufacturing, outfitting the in-space factory with equipment, utilities, power, and thermal management to answer customers’ growing demand. In parallel to the manufacturing element, the companies are working together to plan the delivery of completed products to Earth, ensuring their quality during flight and upon arrival.

In addition to launching the world’s first commercial polymer and metal 3D printers to the International Space Station (ISS), Made In Space is currently developing a system to produce high-value optical fibers in space, planned to be used aboard Axiom’s station. Made In Space’s technology, operating aboard Axiom’s modules, is the way of the future for manufacturers and researchers, and for servicing and expanding satellites and station capabilities.

“Made In Space carries a rich legacy in manufacturing. This partnership marks an important next step in humanity’s reach into space,” said Michael Suffredini, President and CEO of Axiom Space and former ISS Program Manager. “In-space manufacturing provides a unique class of products beneficial to the communications, materials and biomedical industries on Earth. Made In Space is an exemplary company to collaborate with to meet the demand for in-space manufacturing, and we are thrilled to build a partnership with the individuals who have proven their abilities in zero-g flights and on ISS.”

“Axiom and Made In Space are adding to the space ecosystem, serving a growing market and enabling innovative approaches from processes learned on the International Space Station. This partnership allows us to continue to evolve and develop new products and allow our customers to invest in space manufacturing knowing that there will be an ongoing human presence on orbit,” stated Andrew Rush, CEO of Made In Space. “They are the ideal partner for manufacturing new technologies in space and leveraging our new capabilities.”

Offline Ragmar

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #35 on: 01/31/2017 12:30 PM »
Axiom founder Mike Suffredini recently held an interview with Bloomberg discussing in-space manufacturing, and more:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/videos/2017-01-27/the-case-for-a-commercial-space-station


Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #36 on: 04/12/2017 06:28 PM »
Quote
Axiom Building World's First Commercial Space Station. #space #spacestation @Forbes coverage here:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/brucedorminey/2017/04/11/axiom-aims-to-build-worlds-first-commercial-space-station/#e392a371d80d

https://twitter.com/axiom_space/status/852220359843602432

Somehow I don't think Bigelow Aerospace will agree that Axiom is building the first commercial space station ...

Offline jongoff

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #37 on: 04/12/2017 10:31 PM »
Quote
Axiom Building World's First Commercial Space Station. #space #spacestation @Forbes coverage here:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/brucedorminey/2017/04/11/axiom-aims-to-build-worlds-first-commercial-space-station/#e392a371d80d

https://twitter.com/axiom_space/status/852220359843602432

Somehow I don't think Bigelow Aerospace will agree that Axiom is building the first commercial space station ...

Bigelow hasn't built one yet. They've built some pressure vessels, but nothing complete enough to be called a space station. That said, it'll be interesting to see who makes it to market first.

~Jon

Offline Robotbeat

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #38 on: 04/12/2017 10:57 PM »
Could be in a Blue Origin vs SpaceX situation. Blue has always had a billionaire's fun money, whereas Musk just put in some money for Falcon 1 but since then has been growing off of business and contracts. Blue had an early lead on SpaceX with their VTVL tech, but SpaceX, which started with a simpler tech, simply executed faster and was more adaptable and nimble.
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Offline ChrisWilson68

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Re: Axiom Space LLC
« Reply #39 on: 04/13/2017 04:08 AM »
The Cis-Lunar facility will be built in the mid to late 2020's, Axiom is one of the NextStep awardees - for a project to evaluate using launch vehicle stages as potential habitable modules.

Too bad we're just at the point where launch vehicles are switching over to being reusable.  No free upper stages floating around any more.

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