Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A Step to an Announcement

Doing an AMA on Reddit now

Hi reddit. My name is William Baird. I am the CEO and founder of Team Phoenicia. We are an orbital payload manifesting company. We started out as a Google Lunar XPRIZE entrant and now we are specialists in commercial space launch management, making sure someone will make it to the moon. We have already manifested Pennsylvania State University's Lunar Lion team and are working on manifesting another two GLXP teams. We will also be providing launch slots for low earth orbit commercial satellites and the very small cubisats.   
The Phoenicia-1 mission (our next launch: http://i.imgur.com/yZpWylw.jpg (F9 fairing used for planning purposes only)) is currently planned for Dec 2015. We will be aggregating a large number of payloads; upwards of 20 satellites plus around 60U of cubesats. Some of the cubesats will be the first ever past low earth orbit. Each U of a cubesat is 10cm x 10cm x 10cm. Cubesats come in 1U, 3U, 6U , 12U and 27U flavours. We have partnered with Adamworks, Spaceflight, Applied Defense, Space Exploration Engineering, Tyvak, Astrotek, USN and others, in order to deliver a strong and viable mission. 
Among the payloads we are manifesting is the Lunar Iditarod - a micro rover challenge where teams build, qualify and then race rovers the size of a smart phone. The winning three rovers will be carried to the moon on one of the GLXP landers, where they will race again on the lunar surface. They will carry cameras that will allow us to follow the races at home. The finalists may be university students, engineering startups, your mechanically-inclined next door neighbor, and even you! 
I grew up in Los Alamos, NM (and I glow in the dark). I attended New Mexico State University. I have worked for Los Alamos National Lab, Northrop Grumman, White Sands Missile Range's High Energy Laser Systems Test Facility and Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. In my career I have developed control systems as a defense contractor, used and operated some of the fastest computers in the world, shot down missiles and rockets with lasers for the US military, designed and programmed robots for industrial and space exploration purposes, helped astronomers on some of the earliest exoplanets, and am now working with rockets and payloads. 
Or as I like to put it..... I have worked on death rays, proto terminators, skynet and spaceships. All I need now is a tropical volcanic island. No, I am not bald and I don't put my fingers to the corner of my mouth. And I DEFINITELY don't wear a cape.


Thursday, May 15, 2014

Announcing the RevUp Render Lunar Iditarod: a Micro Rover Robotics Challenge

Dogecoin is Going to the Moon!

Team Phoenicia and RevUp Render Launch the Ultimate Dogecoin Competition—the Lunar Iditarod Micro Moon Rover Competition

MENLO PARK, CA—May 15, 2014—“To the Moon!”—a familiar slogan that resonates in the Dogecoin community—is on its way to becoming a real-life event. Team Phoenicia, Inc. and RevUp Render, Inc. have joined forces to roll out the next big Dogecoin challenge—the RevUp Render Lunar Iditarod Competition. Fueled by Dogecoin digital currency, which is similar to Bitcoin, participants will compete in a three-way race on the moon, racing mini moon rovers (DogeSleds) the size of smart phones. Details about the event can be found on the Iditarod competition website at lunariditarod.revuprender.com.  

The RevUp Render Lunar Iditarod will unfold in several stages over the next year and a half. The first stages of the competition will narrow the field of competitors to three Dogecoin-themed DogeSled moon rovers. For the final stage of the competition, the three chosen DogeSleds will be placed aboard a lunar lander and physically carried to the moon on Team Phoenicia’s Phoenicia-1 mission scheduled for Q4 2015. The final stage of the competition involves the actual race, which will take place on the moon after the three DogeSleds have disembarked from the lunar lander.

The Dogecoin-themed event is the culmination of space meets the cloud—Team Phoenicia’s discovery of an unmet need in the private space industry and RevUp Render’s custom cloud technology for design and engineering, which  allows teams to collaborate on complex design projects from any location. Team Phoenicia, which is manifesting the Phoenicia-1 mission, will deliver payloads to low-earth orbit and the moon. In November 2013, Pennsylvania State University’s Google Lunar X PRIZE team, the Lunar Lions, was the first payload to reserve a slot on the Phoenicia-1 launch in 2015.

“Team Phoenicia was a Google Lunar X PRIZE (GLXP) team for several years before withdrawing to focus on the launch,” said William Baird, CEO, Team Phoenicia. “We realized the launch itself was as challenging as the rest of the prize. If someone did not focus exclusively on the launch, no team was likely to make it to the moon.”
The Iditarod is the perfect way for the Dogecoin community to push the limits of digital currency and advanced engineering to achieve something that has never been done before—racing micro-rovers on the moon,” explains Ry Bruscoe, president of RevUp Render. “Participants will have access to our advanced cloud computing technologies to push their designs to new heights. We can’t wait to see what the Lunar Iditarod teams create in the most ambitious challenge to date for the Dogecoin community.”
“Team Phoenicia is proud to support the RevUp Render Iditarod Challenge. We bring our experiences in past challenges, the contacts made through those experiences, and of course, the launch itself,” explained Baird. “The Dogecoin community is well positioned for growth beyond being just another cryptocurrency. By cross pollinating the Dogecoin, robotics, and NewSpace communities, we create an opportunity for these vastly different communities to learn from one another, creating something that is stronger and better than we ever imagined. Not only are we offering to help the Dogecoin community achieve its goal of ‘To the Moon,’ we are helping to create a market for Dogecoin that will help increase demand for the cryptocurrency around the world.”

Within a period of five months, Dogecoiners funded the Jamaican Olympic bobsled team, sponsored a NASCAR driver, and rallied behind numerous charities. Unlike these previous sponsorships, The RevUp Render Lunar Iditarod, is not reliant on crowdfunding. At its core, this event is about extending Dogecoin awareness and usage by incorporating Dogecoin marketing and transactions into the competition requirements. The Lunar Iditarod is the ultimate vehicle for getting Dogecoin “To the Moon!”

Competition Brief

·       RevUp Render Lunar Iditarod Competition website: lunariditarod.revuprender.com.

·       The RevUp Render Lunar Iditarod is a multi-stage, multi-year lunar mini rover competition.

·       The first four stages of the competition will be held in the San Francisco Bay Area featuring a lunar regolith simulation.

·       The final stage will include three micro moon rovers physically racing on the surface of the moon.

·       The judging panel will include professionals in the space industry and Dogecoin community.

About Team Phoenicia
Team Phoenicia is an orbital payload broker and service provider. Founded in 2007, Team Phoenicia entered the spacecraft payload manifesting market in 2010 with the purpose of making space access more routine for small spacecraft. Team Phoenicia is headquartered in Menlo Park, California.

About RevUP Render
RevUp Render, Inc. offers cloud computing for architectural visualization, video game design, motion graphics, vifual effects, and more. The company's goal is to bridge the gap between the creative mind and model rendering through advanced collaborative design & review technology. Visit www.revuprender.com.

All products or brand names mentioned are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.