The agenda is almost finalized and the organizations that will be presenting are NASA Centennial Challenge Program, the TBA allied organization running the challenge, FAA, New Mexico Spaceport Authority, Friends of Amateur Rocketry, Team Phoenicia and some of the SF Bay Area teams.
The keynote speaker will be Dr Andrew Kalman of Stanford University's Space and Systems Development Laboratory. The topic of his speech will be the potential for a nanosat launcher: what it would mean for himself, other scientists, and what it could mean if there was an inexpensive and responsive nanosat launcher for the general satellite market.
The draft rules for the Challenge are planned to be presented and feedback is expected.
There are four thrusts for this seminar:
1. Promotion of the Nanosat Launcher Challenge in the SF Bay Area
2. How the different organizations including Team Phoenicia can help start-up teams
3. A working session for teams from all over the country (including giving feedback on the draft rules)
4. A networking session for those that wish to form or join teams and would like to bootstrap themselves into a competitive position.
The seminar is open to the public, but reservations are advised. Walk-ups on the day of the seminar are free, but seating is not guaranteed. Reservations are not free. Seating is limited to 100 individuals. There are approximately 60 seats remaining.
Team Phoenicia is proud to announce that Dragon Valves of Norwalk, California is now a sponsor. Dragon Valves is providing the valves for our ground testing segment of our engine development.
Dragon Valves Inc., founded in 1945, manufactures instrumentation, manifold and specialty valves. Dragon manufactures power valves in accordance with ASME Section III Class 1, 2 and 3 under its "N" stamp quality program. All valves are designed, machined, assembled, and tested in Norwalk, California.
Team Phoenicia is proud to announce that Microsys has become a sponsor in our question for the GLXP. Microsys' boards are to be used on The Wind at Dawn rockets as part of the avionics package. The Wind at Dawn is our 'training wheels' for the GLXP lander - much like the Zephyr Aurora is for the Nanosat Launcher teams - and the Micro/sys boards will be used for the within atmosphere flight testing.
Since 1976, Micro/sys has been specializing in OEM high-performance, compact, low-power industrial single board computer products suited for demanding environments. Pioneering the USB movement within the stackable computer market, Micro/sys is a leading provider of Host and Client USB microcomputer and microcontroller boards. Micro/sys embedded computers are specified by OEMs in a range of applications including semiconductor processing, medical, military, mail handling, pharmaceutical, industrial marking, process control, and many other industries. For more information, visit the Micro/sys website, www.embeddedsys.com.
Team Phoenicia wants to make clear that the reservations for the Team Phoenicia/Techshop Nanosatellite Launcher Seminar are not required. The seminar is open to the public and you can show up on the day of. If there is sufficient seating - we have an upper limit of 100 people - then you will be ushered in. However, this will be on a first come, first serve basis. However, camping out the night before will probably only annoy the shop and the local police, so turning up too early would be ill advised. In fact, showing up before noon would probably be not a good idea.
There is an option so that you can plcae an advanced reservation. However, it isn't free. It does guarantee yourself a seat. If you place an advanced reservation between October 18 (today) and October 29th, the fee for the reservation is $50. If you place your reservation between October 30th until November 6th, the fee is $75.
It seems that news cannot come strictly good or bad. However, it must come together. The Bads News: NO CSA
The agenda is being revised right now. Unfortunately, the California Space Authority has declined the opportunity to present. We have extended invitations to other, different individuals and organizations. Good News: Strong Enough Interest to Warrant Reservations
On the other hand, the interest has grown so much that we are now concerned that our limited seating venue will not be sufficient. Since this seminar is rapidly approaching and currently we can take "only" 100 people, we are offering a chance for individuals place reservations. The reservations are not free: between Oct 15th to Oct 29th a reservation will cost $50 and between Oct 30th to Nov 5th it will cost $75. Reservations will only be available until the seating is filled. We will keep a count of the number of reservations left and will post running count once 50 have been filled.
It is not required. If there is space, we will be allowing people to walk in free of charge on Nov6th. However, this is on a first come-first serve basis and only for whatever the available seating is. If there is any. There are no guarantees for available seating for any but those that make the reservations.
THAT SAID, the networking session after all the presentations are done is open to everyone, even walk-ups. That will be after some time after 6 PM though. BETTER NEWS! Presentations on youtube.
We will be posting the Nanosat Launcher Challenge Seminar presentations on youtube to the Team Phoenicia channel.
Or it ought to be subtitled: Why Team Phoenicia is involved with the Nanosat Launcher Challenge Seminar.
Team Phoenicia has been focused on the Google Lunar X Prize from the outset. We have been working hard to try to pull together the funding, programming, and manufacturing that is necessary for the team to participate. That has been our sole goal.
The reason we attempted to participate in the Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander Challenge was merely to act as a demonstration step only. Whether or not we won or not - while it would have been nice - was not that relevant to our ultimate goal. What was relevant was the ability to gain credibility with sponsors and the like. That the LLC, even if we didn't successfully fly, did do.
So when this last summer NASA announced the Nanosatellite Launcher Challenge, we took note, nodded, thought it was pretty darn cool, and went back to work. It wasn't relevant to what we were doing. Yes, it could have been a great method of getting a half-step to an large payload orbital rocket. That would be useful to our GLXP goal. However, it'd be many years away from success.
So, we ignored the NLC.
At least until another past challenge participant came to us asking if we'd like to team up to tackle the NLC.
The management team took a moment and thought about it. Could we do this? Should we do this? Do we have time?
The answer was no.
We really, truly did not time to participate in the NLC. There's a lot of management work above and beyond the manufacturing and we were not gaining another set of managers and fundraisers with this. So, we declined to participate. However, we offered a fig leaf: if you pay us - we half joked - we'll build you what you need.
After all, we need the funds for the GLXP. Cash, truly, has been the hardest thing to raise for our entry. If we could raise a chunk of our GLXP entry fee, then we would hae a win-win situation.
The our would-be NLC team mates thought this one over. And we talked about it with another group. They were even more excited. They had wanted to participate in the GLXP with us, but we reall didn't have places for them. However, they were very enthusiastic.
Thus, Vog Rockets, was born of the second group and our first contract was signed. The mystery team quickly followed from the first group. Team Phoenicia was - we were joking - becoming the Bay Area Boeing of Rocketry. Then we had more teams show up with interest in what we were doing. Two of which we are now in negotiations with.
With the level of interest we had, we approached Techshop about getting word out to their members to see if there were more teams that might develop from its crazy inventive members. At least as a springboard from what we could offer. Techshop countered that rather than just send out a mail with that sort of info, better yet would be a seminar. Others had done seminars at Techshop and had great turn outs: "and rockets are so much cooler!"
The only caveat was that we needed to provide enough information for teams to have an accurate assessment of what was involved in the NLC. That we agreed with, so we set out to build up the seminar into something more than just an overgrown sales pitch.
And grew it did. Now the Team Phoenicia/Techshop Nanosat Launcher Challenge Seminar has grown into a very large function where any would-be paritcipate can get a realistic assessment of what it would take to participate rules and legal and tech as well as have a chance to influence the rules when they are being drafted. it also allows people of like mind to network and put together teams.
We're really excited by this prospect. We are really excited by the opportunity to bend metal (and spin composites) for teams that wish to reach orbit. It's also a lot more fun for the team to do to raise money for our GLXP bid than going around hat-in-hand as we have been.
We are also really, really stoked over the prospect of actually making a contribution through being able to pull together the various players for rocket flight for what has almost become a conference in and of itself.
What exactly we are doing for the teams, we'll detail in the future at the conference. For those that wish to not wait, please contact us. We're happy to talk. Under NDA. Even to sell you a rocket. If you meet our criteria.
The agenda is firming up, but organizations that will be presenting are NASA Centennial Challenge Program, the To Be Announced allied organization running the challenge, FAA, California Space Authority, New Mexico Spaceport Authority, Team Phoenicia and some of the SF Bay Area teams.
The draft rules for the Challenge are planned to be presented and feedback is expected.
The scope of this seminar is to be promotion of the challenge in the the SF Bay Area, how the different organizations including Team Phoenicia can help teams, and a working session
The seminar is open to the public.
1:00 PM: William Baird, Team Phoenicia, Introduction and Welcome
Team Phoenicia is a group of technically bent individuals that are entering into the Google Lunar X Prize and Lunar Lander Challenges. This blog is our method of keeping everyone informed on our progress towards those goals.