Space tourism at ISDC

I’m in Dallas right now for this year’s International Space Development Conference, which gets underway today with the Space Venture Finance Symposium, featuring a number of companies in the personal spaceflight or related fields. Some highlights from the rest of the conference, which runs through Monday morning:

  • Alex Tai of Virgin Galactic will speak during a plenary session on Friday morning;
  • Eric Anderson of Space Adventures will be the luncheon speaker on Friday, talking about his company’s proposal for circumlunar spaceflights for tourists;
  • A “Space Business” track Friday afternoon features, among others, John Carmack of Armadillo Aerospace, Jim Benson of Benson Space Company, Chuck Lauer of Rocketplane, David Gump of t/Space, and Rick Tumlinson of Orbital Outfitters;
  • A “Frontier Transport” track, also Friday afternoon, includes talks about space tourism and spaceports;
  • Another Friday afternoon track on “Spaceflight Law and Insurance” covers some related issues, including “Insuring Space Tourism: It Isn’t Rocket Science – Is It?”;
  • There will be a session on NASA’s COTS effort Saturday afternoon, with speakers from NASA, Rocketplane Kistler, and SpaceX;
  • The COTS session will be followed by talks by Brett Alexander of the Personal Spaceflight Federation and Rick Homans of the New Mexico Spaceport Authority;
  • A session Sunday afternoon will be devoted to NASA’s Centennial Challenges program and the X Prize Foundation;
  • There will be two space medicine tracks, on Sunday afternoon and Monday morning, with a particular focus on space tourism medical issues.

There’s actually a lot more, but those are (some of) the highlights. I’ll post updates from these sessions as time permits. There will be plenty of other reports from other outlets, as well: Alan Boyle of MSNBC has already posted a preview article about the conference with a nice overview of the status of a number of companies in the field.

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