NASA, having lofty goals and limited budget, is upping its game and being increasingly proactive about partnering with members of the commercial aerospace community.
In fact, NASA officials are requesting information from U.S. private enterprises interested in pursuing unfunded partnerships with the goal of advancing the development of commercial space products and services. To that end, they launched and posted online the Collaborations for Commercial Space Capabilities synopsis—available at http://prod.nais.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/eps/synopsis.cgi?acqid=156859.
The synopsis describes a “potential opportunity” for non-profit and for-profit organizations to tap into and benefit from NASA’s extensive spaceflight expertise to achieve mutually beneficial space exploration goals. According to a NASA spokesperson, the new aerospace partnerships are intended to help companies accelerate their own development efforts, while also advancing the commercial space industry—something which can bring national and perhaps global economic benefits. The primary goals, certainly, are to enhance the U.S. aerospace industrial base and to bring about the availability of cost-effective commercial products and services that support human space exploration.
“As we have seen with NASA’s previous agreements with the private sector, U.S. companies could significantly benefit from the agency’s extensive experience and knowledge in spaceflight development and operations,” says NASA’s Director for Commercial Spaceflight Development Phil McAlister. “For new entrepreneurial efforts in space, NASA’s archive of lessons learned, technical expertise, and spaceflight data is an invaluable national resource and engine for new economic growth.”
This military and aerospace (mil/aero) geek is happy to see NASA officials reaching out to private industry. Would you partner with NASA to develop and advance commercial space capabilities?