Kennedy Space Center is getting a new neighbor: XCOR Aerospace announced they intend to establish an operational base in Florida, and also hope to build a manufacturing and assembly center for the XCOR Lynx Mark II suborbital reusable launch vehicles.
"Looking over the KSC Visitor Complex grounds and seeing the history of U.S. human spaceflight and realizing that soon XCOR will be a part of the fabric of the Space Coast is very exciting to me personally and our company" said Jeff Greason, XCOR CEO. "When we started the company back in 1999, we could only have dreamt about the possibility of flying the person on the street or the citizen scientist to space from such an important place."
KSC and NASA officials—as well as local officials dealing with the job losses from the end of the shuttle program—were thrilled with the news. XCOR's new operations in Florida could bring new work for highly skilled former space shuttle employees.
"The next era in space exploration is under way, and the Space Coast of Florida is ground zero in the Obama administration's effort to launch Americans from U.S. soil and create good jobs that support an economy built to last," said NASA Chief of Staff David Radzanowski. "The region continues to be a key strategic location for companies, like XCOR, who want to build on our nation's great legacy of innovation and entrepreneurship."
"We look forward to discussing with XCOR Aerospace and other space companies how Kennedy's unique capabilities may be made available for use," said Kennedy's Center Director Bob Cabana. "This is further evidence that the Space Coast is preparing for the next era of space exploration."
Explore further: Targeted LEDs could provide efficient lighting for plants grown in space