Articles tagged with: SpaceX

06
March
2017

Don't expect a space race between SpaceX and NASA. They need each other

Featuring: Marco A. Caceres

Don't expect a space race between SpaceX and NASA. They need each other

SpaceX, the upstart company, and NASA, the government agency, both have plans to venture to Mars and orbit the moon. But that doesn’t mean they’ve launched a new space race.

In fact, NASA has long been SpaceX’s most important customer, providing contracts to deliver cargo and eventually astronauts to the International Space Station. And the Hawthorne company will need NASA’s technical support to achieve the first of its grand ambitions in deep space.

A major milestone for the partnership came in 2012 when SpaceX launched its first NASA cargo load, making it the first private company to send a spacecraft to the space station.

Marco Caceres, senior space analyst at the Teal Group, said the NASA supply missions gave SpaceX “almost instant credibility."

"Having NASA as an anchor client allowed them to have enough revenue flow so that they could establish themselves and eventually diversify and get some commercial contracts and eventually to be able to get into the military establishment,” he said.

Today, SpaceX and Boeing Co. are developing separate crew capsules as part of NASA contracts to transport astronauts to the space station.

SpaceX noted that this NASA program provided most of the funding to develop the Dragon 2 spacecraft, which will make the moon trip. It is planning to conduct the first test flight of the Dragon crew capsule in November, followed by a flight test with humans in May 2018.

Media Outlet: The Washington Post Tags NASA | SpaceX

18
January
2017

SpaceX sends 10 satellites into orbit, lands rocket booster on drone ship in first flight since September explosion

Featuring: Marco A. Caceres

SpaceX sends 10 satellites into orbit, lands rocket booster on drone ship in first flight since September explosion

Four months after a launch pad explosion, SpaceX returned to flight Saturday morning, delivering 10 satellites into orbit and landing its first-stage booster on a floating drone ship. Analysts had described the launch as “all-important” for the Hawthorne space company to reestablish customer confidence and momentum after a Sept. 1 launchpad explosion in Florida destroyed a Falcon 9 rocket and a commercial communications satellite perched on top. But beyond the specter of the accident, stakes were high for Saturday’s launch because it involved deploying the first 10 satellites of a new commercial constellation for well-known operator Iridium Communications Inc.

The new satellites have more capability than their older counterparts, including higher data speeds. Saturday’s launch is the first of seven that SpaceX will perform for Iridium to carry a total of 70 satellites into orbit.

“There was a lot riding on this for SpaceX, but also for Iridium, and I think they can breathe a sigh of relief,” said Marco Caceres, senior space analyst at the Teal Group.

The launch occurred at 9:54 a.m. Pacific time from Vandenberg Air Force Base, north of Santa Barbara. About eight minutes after liftoff, the first-stage rocket booster landed upright on a floating platform called “Just Read the Instructions” in the Pacific Ocean.

About an hour after the launch, company Chief Executive Elon Musk tweeted that the mission “looks good.” By 11:15 a.m., Musk tweeted that all satellites had been successfully delivered to the correct orbit.

Media Outlet: Los Angeles Times Tags Elon Musk | NASA | SpaceX

20
January
2015

Google Said to Be Close to Investing $1 Billion in Musk’s SpaceX

Featuring: Marco A. Caceres

Google Said to Be Close to Investing $1 Billion in Musk’s SpaceX

"If Google is committing money to SpaceX, they are likely to be a major investor and a real partner," said Marco Caceres, director of space studies at consultant Teal Group. "Google brings the applications for the satellites to the table, and SpaceX has the technical know-how and the launch capacity."

Media Outlet: Bloomberg Businessweek Tags Google | SpaceX

13
January
2015

Musk Sees Seattle-Made Satellites in Race to Mars

Featuring: Marco A. Caceres

Musk Sees Seattle-Made Satellites in Race to Mars

"They're getting the reputation for being a pretty gutsy company that's willing to get things done," Marco Caceres, director of space studies with Teal Group, a Fairfax, Virginia-based consultant, said in a Jan. 10 phone interview.

Media Outlet: Bloomberg Tags Elon Musk | Mars | Satellites | SpaceX

13
January
2015

Moving Forward After the Crash of SpaceShipTwo

Featuring: Marco A. Caceres

Moving Forward After the Crash of SpaceShipTwo

Taking that as a guide, VG would need to be, at least, a $2 billion program. But can any company afford to do private space safely? Marco Caceres, a space-industry analyst at Teal Group, named one contender: SpaceX. Founder Elon Musk's company is positioned for success because it's financing its development with commercial and government clients, not celebrities. "That sort of funding won't come from a few hundred adventure seekers," Caceres says. "It's going to take big-time investment."

Media Outlet: Popular Science Tags Elon Musk | SpaceX

10
January
2015

Musk’s SpaceX Rocket-Recapture Bid Thwarted by Hard Landing

Featuring: Marco A. Caceres

Musk’s SpaceX Rocket-Recapture Bid Thwarted by Hard Landing

"Overall, I would rate it as a success," Marco Caceres, director of space studies with Teal Group, a Fairfax, Virginia-based consulting firm, said in a phone interview.

"It is tricky to hit something that small to begin with, but to hit with the right velocity so that it lands perfectly when the barge is moving in the ocean -- that's a tough challenge," Caceres said. "They're not taking the easy way. That's not the conservative approach."

Media Outlet: Bloomberg Tags cargo supply | Falcon 9 | International Space Station | reusable technology | SpaceX

25
November
2014

SpaceX May Upset Firm's Monopoly in Launching Air Force Satellites

Featuring: Marco A. Caceres

SpaceX May Upset Firm's Monopoly in Launching Air Force Satellites

"This is huge," said Marco Caceres, senior analyst and director of space studies at Teal Group. "It would break up a monopoly and has the potential to save the taxpayer an awful lot of money."

Media Outlet: The Los Angeles Times Tags Falcon 9 | SpaceX | United Launch Alliance

13
October
2014

SpaceX May Be A Bargain For NASA, If Musk Delivers

Featuring: Marco A. Caceres

SpaceX May Be A Bargain For NASA, If Musk Delivers

"Boeing's cost structure is higher than SpaceX — that's just a fact," said Marco Caceres, senior space analyst at the Teal Group.

Because the aerospace giant has been around longer, it most likely has an older, more experienced workforce with higher wages and labor costs, he added.

But the biggest cost differences likely come from manufacturing processes. Boeing builds its Delta rocket and Atlas V launchers in a vertical position, while SpaceX's Falcon 9 rockets are assembled horizontally, which is easier and saves on time.

Meantime, SpaceX is a vertically integrated company, building all of its parts in-house, with no subcontractors. Boeing employs numerous subcontractors to build components, which adds to costs. "When you become a more established company, you can't be a specialist in everything," Caceres said.

Media Outlet: Investor's Business Daily Tags Atlas V | Boeing | Commercial Crew Vehicle | Falcon 9 | NASA | SpaceX

10
September
2014

Musk Seeking Mars Mission After NASA Picks SpaceX-Boeing

Featuring: Marco A. Caceres

Musk Seeking Mars Mission After NASA Picks SpaceX-Boeing

"SpaceX is the new kid on the block, but it's proven its capabilities very quickly," said Marco Caceres, director of space studies with Teal Group, a Fairfax, Virginia-based consultant. "SpaceX would love to be the first commercial company to land its own private astronauts on the moon and eventually go on to Mars."

Media Outlet: Bloomberg Businessweek Tags Boeing | CST-100 | Dragon V2 | NASA | SpaceX

10
September
2014

Boeing-SpaceX Team Splits $6.8 Billion Space Taxi Award

Featuring: Marco A. Caceres

Boeing-SpaceX Team Splits $6.8 Billion Space Taxi Award

"It's entirely possible that we wake up one day and the Russians say, 'We're not taking your astronauts up anymore,'" said Marco Caceres, director of space studies at Fairfax, Virginia-based consultant Teal Group. "NASA's anticipating this possibility. That's why they want to move as quickly as possible with this program."

Media Outlet: Bloomberg Tags Boeing | Commercial Crew Capsule | CST-100 | Dragon V2 | Dream Chaser | NASA | Sierra Nevada | SpaceX

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