SpaceDev's hybrid propulsion technology helped propel Scaled Composites/Paul Allen's SpaceShipOne into space flight history as the craft garnered the $10 Million Ansari X Prize, a contest created to stimulate the development of the private sector human space flight industry. SpaceDev, a provider of several critical components and technology for the craft's motor, including igniter, injector and main operating valve, successfully performed as expected and powered SpaceShipOne on today's historic manned flight. SpaceShipOne exceeded the altitude requirement on both scheduled flights as required by the Ansari X Prize competition.
The hybrid propulsion system burned full duration. According to Scaled Composites reports, pilot Brian Binnie steered SpaceShipOne high above the Mojave, California desert to a high of 368,000 feet altitude (62 miles). That exceeded the required 328,000 feet altitude - a sky-high goal required by the X Prize Foundation of St. Louis, Missouri. The altitude is generally considered to be the threshold of space.
Jim Benson, SpaceDev's founding chairman and chief executive officer said, "This win signifies what we have been saying for some time. Space flight will now undergo a microcomputer revolution, with SpaceDev helping to revolutionize the $100 billion space industry with hybrid-based propulsion systems for delivering cargo and people to space, safely and affordably."
The Ansari X Prize was designed to jumpstart the space tourism industry through competition among the most talented entrepreneurs and rocket experts in the world. SpaceShipOne was built and launched with private funds. The craft was also able to carry equivalent weight of three people to 100 kilometers (62.5 miles) and return safely to earth. The competition follows in the footsteps of more than 100 aviation incentive prizes offered between 1905 and 1935 credited with spawning today's multibillion-dollar air transport industry.
"Today's news moves the private space community infinitely closer to realizing its vision of creating safe, affordable, commercial human space flight. We are thrilled that we are an integral part of this team and we remain very focused on powering passenger flights in the very near future," adds Mr. Benson.
SpaceDev (OTCBB: SPDV - News) creates and sells affordable and innovative space products and solutions to government and commercial enterprises. SpaceDev's innovations include the design, manufacture, marketing and operation of sophisticated micro- and nano- satellites, hybrid rocket-based orbital Maneuvering and orbital Transfer Vehicles (MoTVs) as well as sub-orbital and orbital hybrid rocket-based propulsion systems for safe human space flight. Upon founding SpaceDev in 1997, Jim Benson started the trend of successful computer entrepreneurs moving into the space development arena. For more information, visit www.spacedev.com.
This news release may contain forward-looking statements
concerning the Company's business and future prospects and other
similar statements that do not concern matters of historical fact.
Forward-looking statements relating to product development, business
prospects and development of a commercial market for technological
advances are based on the Company's current expectations. The
Company's references to non-explosive motors directly relate to the
zero TNT equivalent rating of its hybrid rocket motors and that they
do not detonate notwithstanding the fact that any pressure vessel may
rupture but not "explode" like a solid or liquid rocket motor. The
Company's current expectations are subject to all of the uncertainties
and risks customarily associated with developing business ventures
including, but not limited to, risks associated with new product
development and availability of raw resources and suppliers, risks to
marketed products and availability of financing and other sources of
income, as well as risks discussed in the Company's periodic reports
filed with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission. The Company's
actual results may differ materially from current expectations.
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with the Company's annual report on Form 10-KSB, including the
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disclaims any intent or obligation to update publicly these
forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information,
future events or for any other reason.
The Investor Relations Group
Kathryn McNeil / John Nesbett, 212-825-3210
Stephanie Schroeder, 212-825-3210