At the 23rd annual FAA Commercial Space Transportation Conference, a group of spaceport operators gathered to discuss their role in the space economy. Topics included regulation, different models that exist and public/private partnerships and the potential conflicts they create. But one of the more interesting subjects focused on whether we’re already spaceport-saturated — or, conversely, in urgent need of more.
“The key for moving spaceports forward is developing a robust network of spaceports across the nation,” said Alaska Aerospace President and CEO Mark Lester. “There are a handful, say 11 licensed spaceports right now, and only four with vertical orbital capabilities. That’s just not going to be enough — not for assured access to space.”