Author Topic: Equatorial Launch Australia  (Read 30247 times)

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Equatorial Launch Australia
« on: 11/05/2017 05:32 am »
This company is attempting to set up a launch site in Arhnem land, Northern Territory, Australia. They just signed a lease with the traditional owners.

Traditional owners sign space base lease

A $236 million Australian space station in the NT's northeast Arnhem Land is one step closer with traditional owners finalising a 12-year land lease agreement.

http://www.news.com.au/national/breaking-news/traditional-owners-sign-space-base-lease/news-story/d9ee86b96717ad60d14f697b2fce5ef1

Here's their Facebook page.

https://www.facebook.com/equatoriallaunchaustralia/
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #1 on: 02/07/2019 02:36 am »
"ELA secures US contract to support development of local launch industry
Stephen Kuper
07 February 2019

Equatorial Launch Australia (ELA) has announced the company’s first US-based customer, TriSept Corp, and will provide an efficient launch and recovery location in Australia."

https://www.spaceconnectonline.com.au/launch/3182-ela-secures-us-contract-to-support-development-of-local-launch-industry

Never heard of TriSept before. Here is their website

https://trisept.com/
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline CameronD

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #2 on: 04/30/2019 04:17 am »
An interesting read in the news today: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-04-30/how-viable-is-plan-to-build-spaceport-remote-northern-territory/10970060

Quote
ELA chief executive Carley Scott told the ABC that the project remained on track, and that the firm was planning to potentially have a rocket in the air by this year's tropical dry season.

"We're looking to ideally have a small rocket launched this year, in 2019, and bring the community along for that journey," said Ms Scott, who would not yet reveal an exact timeframe for blast-off.

Quote
The chosen site's isolated location — a wide, bushy plateau not far from the site of the annual Garma Festival at Gulkula and about an hour's drive from Nhulunbuy — adds to its viability, Ms Scott said.

"You're actually looking at a region that has been really strongly benefitted by the history of mining as far as overcoming some of those hurdles that are associated with having a remote area," she said.

"You have a deep water port that's already there, a city-quality airport, the strong township of Nhulunbuy and nearby communities … you have some really important infrastructure that has already been established."

Quote
"There's a lease now in place for ELA to proceed," she said

« Last Edit: 04/30/2019 04:19 am by CameronD »
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline CJ

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #3 on: 05/01/2019 01:35 am »
An interesting read in the news today: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-04-30/how-viable-is-plan-to-build-spaceport-remote-northern-territory/10970060

Interesting, but perhaps not in a good way. This is one line that jumped out at me. (bolding mine).

Quote
At the heart of the Government's current aspiration is its support for a private industry project — a spaceport to launch suborbital satellites being built on Aboriginal-owned land in East Arnhem Land.

It's also worth noting that the launch site's orbital launch azimuths all overfly land. Indonesia to the north, PNG to the northeast, Cape York Peninsula to the east.

To me, this is smelling more and more like a boondoggle. 

Offline CameronD

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #4 on: 05/01/2019 04:37 am »
Quote
At the heart of the Government's current aspiration is its support for a private industry project — a spaceport to launch suborbital satellites being built on Aboriginal-owned land in East Arnhem Land.

It's also worth noting that the launch site's orbital launch azimuths all overfly land. Indonesia to the north, PNG to the northeast, Cape York Peninsula to the east.

To me, this is smelling more and more like a boondoggle.

You might be right.. time will tell.  They claim to have enough clear distance downrange for it not to be a problem.  It also seems they have the (strong) backing of the NT Government against the (perhaps equally strong?) opposition of the Northern Land Council.  Can the government legally back a monopoly?  Who will win?  Does anyone have to win??  Nobody knows.
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #5 on: 05/02/2019 07:20 am »
I believe ELA already has launch contracts from NASA to fly four suborbital missions in May 2020. That's a good start. Cape York Peninsula is about 550 km to the east, being about 150 km wide at that point. A two stage orbital rocket launching east would have the first stage land about 350 km downrange, well before reaching land. There is a chance that the second stage could crash into the peninsula if something goes wrong at the wrong time. The overflight area is heavily forested with few population centres. A ground track that flies north of Weipa (Mission River) should be sufficiently safe.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline CameronD

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #6 on: 05/03/2019 01:03 am »
I believe ELA already has launch contracts from NASA to fly four suborbital missions in May 2020. That's a good start.

Is this the one you're referring to?  It's the only thing I can find on the FedBizOpps web site that appears even closely related:
https://www.fbo.gov/notices/9b36ca157a3aab58a59e9d7918e1db0b

If so, it doesn't seem to have been awarded yet, nor is there any indication I can see if/when it will be, even though this Page 9 of the following NT Government doc under “2020” does reference the “NASA Australian suborbital sounding rocket campaign – Arnhem Space Centre”:
https://business.nt.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0006/657051/territory-space-industry.pdf

Perhaps NASA are giving assurances at government level?  ???

« Last Edit: 05/03/2019 03:49 am by CameronD »
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #7 on: 05/03/2019 05:56 am »
The launches are in the WFF Bluebook, although only three launches are listed now launching July/August 2020.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline CameronD

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #8 on: 05/03/2019 06:28 am »
The launches are in the WFF Bluebook, although only three launches are listed now launching July/August 2020.

Maybe I'm a bit confused, so please correct me if I'm wrong, but, "AUS -Woomera, Australia" in the WWF Bluebook attachment you posted (thank you, BTW - most interesting)..

Woomera isn't even in the same State, so what do those launches have to do with ELA?!?  ???
« Last Edit: 05/03/2019 06:31 am by CameronD »
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #9 on: 05/03/2019 07:19 am »
Woomera is no longer available as a launch site for civilian use since the RAAF took over the running of the Woomera prohibited area. They will only let their military friends use the site, which does not include NASA. Thus NASA is looking for alternatives. The Wallops Flight Facility (WFF) 2018 annual report says they are looking at two commercial sites in Australia. One of them is the Arnhem Space Centre in the Northern Territory. I'm not sure what the other one is.

https://sites.wff.nasa.gov/code810/download_archive.html

From page 52 of the 2018 report:
"Australia. The SRPO has been working for a number of years to solidify plans that would enable the astrophysics science community to have access to a launch range in the southern hemisphere that also offers up some of the capabilities of our routine launch range in White Sands, New Mexico – primarily telescope recovery. Early this year a campaign kickoff meeting was hosted at Wallops Flight Facility for all campaign and mission stakeholders. The campaign will consist of four telescope missions which are progressing through the design phase. In parallel, the program is preparing to evaluate and select from two commercial launch ranges, where the campaign will be executed. This will be NASA’s first ever use of a foreign commercial launch range which, while exciting for program also introduces unique challenges. The SRPO is working closely with the NASA Office of International and Interagency Relations (OIIR) to resolve these challenges in order to bring this new approach to fruition. Similar to the Norway GCI campaign, SRPO will be taking advantage of newly obtained systems including the Liquid Nitrogen Plant as well as two MML’s (a second MML build is in the works). Two launchers will be utilized for the campaign in order to minimize the teams time in the field. The launch window for the 4 missions is set to open in May 2020 and planned to span a 2 week period."
« Last Edit: 05/03/2019 07:43 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #10 on: 05/03/2019 07:37 am »
Here's a presentation saying that NASA visited the site in October 2016 and that a study was performed in 2017.
« Last Edit: 05/03/2019 07:39 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline CameronD

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #11 on: 05/03/2019 07:41 am »
Ok.. and yet the latest WFF Rocket Report says: "Planning for Australia 2020 is continuing. Recent changes reduces the number of launches to three, requiring only one launcher."

https://sites.wff.nasa.gov/code810/files/Rocket_Report_1st_quarter_2019.pdf

So that means just ELA then??  ???
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #12 on: 05/03/2019 07:46 am »
I think it means that NASA only needs to bring the equipment for a single launcher. I believe they were planning on bringing two launchers to a single site. It wouldn't make sense to try and launch from two different sites. It sounds difficult enough just to get one going!
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline CameronD

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #13 on: 06/02/2019 11:51 pm »
Looks like ELA won NASA's "Australia 2020" gig!

Quote
NASA will launch commercial rockets from an Australian spaceport in the Northern Territory next year after an Australian startup secured a contract with the space agency.

NASA will work with Equatorial Launch Australia (ELA) to launch rockets into space from the startup's Arnhem Space Centre in 2020.

"It's a first for NASA and a first for Australia," said ELA chief executive Carley Scott. "NASA has never ever before contracted a commercial site to do a launch."
https://www.theage.com.au/business/small-business/world-first-startup-wins-nasa-deal-to-launch-rockets-from-australia-20190531-p51t8g.html

The picture in the news article shows Carley and Blake Nikolic (Black Sky Aerospace) with one of their rockets.  Other than Black Sky being a potential launch customer for ELA, I'm not too sure what (if anything) Black Sky have to do with the NASA deal.. maybe nothing?


EDIT:  Here's the FBO link: https://www.fbo.gov/notices/083b2f73932d263f5bba3cfedde3500d

« Last Edit: 06/04/2019 04:30 am by CameronD »
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline plugger.lockett

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #14 on: 06/04/2019 06:12 am »
"NASA will work with Equatorial Launch Australia (ELA) to launch rockets into space from the startup's Arnhem Space Centre in 2020."

https://www.smh.com.au/business/small-business/world-first-startup-wins-nasa-deal-to-launch-rockets-from-australia-20190531-p51t8g.html


Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #15 on: 08/02/2019 04:37 am »
NASA Inspects Proposed NT Space Base
Max Blenkin
2 August 2019

NASA has conducted a site inspection of the area of the Northern Territory from which it plans to launch a series of sounding rockets.

https://www.spaceconnectonline.com.au/r-d/3609-nasa-inspects-proposed-nt-space-base
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline CameronD

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #16 on: 08/04/2019 11:22 pm »
NASA Inspects Proposed NT Space Base
Max Blenkin
2 August 2019

NASA has conducted a site inspection of the area of the Northern Territory from which it plans to launch a series of sounding rockets.

https://www.spaceconnectonline.com.au/r-d/3609-nasa-inspects-proposed-nt-space-base

Quote
Gumatj chief executive Klaus Helms told the ABC he wanted to get started.

"We hope that within this year I'd like to be able to put the roads in and start a clearing, if all the applications come through," Helms said. He said the involvement of NASA helped move the space centre plan into reality.

"It needed a kickstart, and this is a very good kickstart to get it going," Helms said.

"If it goes ahead, we've got the building of the roads, the building of the infrastructure, we've got the delivery of water, the delivery of fuel, we've got communications, security; there's a multitude of jobs."

ELA chose this location for its launch site as it has significant advantages, including its remoteness and proximity to the equator, which takes advantage of the Earth’s rotation and allows greater launch payloads for less fuel.

While the NASA scientists visited the proposed ELA launch site, the main purpose of their visit was educational – to talk to local high school students about the booming space sector. Among schools visited was the Nhulunbuy High School, the closest to the new space base.

{sound of crickets chirping}
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline CameronD

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #17 on: 01/05/2020 09:27 pm »
Here's a plug for ELA from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute:

https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/northern-launch-site-could-transform-australias-role-in-space/


With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline CameronD

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #18 on: 05/31/2020 11:47 pm »
Here's a couple of videos I came across, one old, one new:



With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Equatorial Launch Australia
« Reply #19 on: 06/01/2020 10:17 am »
They plan on building three launch pads.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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