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Private Space Exploration Promises to Revamp Florida's Space Industry

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Photo: SpaceX via Flickr Public Domain

Private aerospace manufacturer and space delivery company SpaceX made history last week when it successfully re-launched and re-landed a rocket that had already made one trip to low-Earth orbit. With roughly 70 percent of a rocket's cost sunk in the rocket, SpaceX's reuse of an orbital rocket represents a breakthrough for the economics of space exploration.

While aerospace economics may not inspire the way lunar landings have, SpaceX and other private space companies are increasingly launching ambitious efforts focused taking aim at outer space: from Blue Origin's space tourism efforts to OneWeb's ambitious plan for global internet access via satellites. Combined with NASA's own projects looking to the moon and Mars, an a recent $19.5 billion authorization for the agency's budget, all show promise to revitalize Florida's space industry with new jobs, infrastructure investment, and services linked to the aerospace industry.

Tuesday at 1 p.m., Space Florida's chief of strategic alliances Dale Ketcham explains how a combination of Florida's "legacy" space programs and new projects herlad a promising new era for Florida's space industry.

Also joining the program is WMFE's space reporter Brendan Byrne, sharing insights about the companies, people, and jobs making up the surge in Florida's space industry.

Matthew Smith is a reporter and producer of WGCU’s Gulf Coast Live.
Julie Glenn is the News Director and the host of Gulf Coast Live. She joined the WGCU team in November of 2016 to expand the Gulf Coast Live call-in radio show from once a week to five days a week.  Since then, the show has been recognized in state and regional competitions and has featured artists, political leaders, historians, environmental experts, doctors, local reporters, and national and international scholars. After leading the station's award-winning coverage of Hurricane Irma in September of 2017, Julie was named Interim News Director. In January of 2018, she launched WGCU's first podcast: Grape Minds.