Space is big business in Texas and it’s getting bigger.

To explore the industry and its impact in Austin and San Antonio, Silicon Hills News is putting on its first space industry conference: SpaceATX: Space the Next Frontier: Exploring Space, Travel and Colonization.

SpaceATX is focused on Texas’ booming space industry and geared to those interested in its development.

The Space Industry is valued at $350 billion currently and Bank of America Merrill Lynch project that to reach $2.7 trillion by 2040, according to a CNBC news report.

Join Silicon Hills News for this half-day-long event focused on space exploration and the researchers and companies that are paving the way for colonization in space.  

The event takes place, Nov. 6th from 9 a.m. until 12 p.m. at the Blanton Auditorium at the Blanton Art Museum at 200 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Austin.

Speakers include an opening keynote presentation on Space Junk by Moriba K. Jah, director of the Advanced Sciences and Technology Research in Astronautics (ASTRIA) program and associate professor of aerospace engineering and engineering mechanics in the Cockrell School of Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin.

Another keynote address features Marc Boudria, vice president of AI, and Greg Carley, vice president of Product Innovation at Hypergiant on The Future of Everything in Space.

Firefly Aerospace, a privately held company, founded in 2014, will give a presentation on Making Space for Everyone. The company, based in Cedar Park, is developing small and medium-sized launch vehicles for commercial launches to orbit. It plans to launch its first rocket soon and it has launch facilities in Cape Canaveral, Florida and Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

The University of Texas at San Antonio Professor Arturo Montoya will present on designing and operating resilient deep space habitats that can adapt, absorb and rapidly recover from expected and unexpected disruption. Christopher S. Combs, Dee Howard Endowed Assistant Professor of Aerodynamics at UTSA, will overview the significance of hypersonic flight, from impacts on missions to the Moon and Mars to potential breakthroughs in air travel.

Texas has a long history with the space race. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the historic Apollo 11 Mission to the Moon in which the Johnson Space Center, established in 1961 in Clear Lake, near Houston, played a critical role. JSC generates more than $7.9 billion in economic activity annually, according to a report from the Texas Comptroller’s Office.

JSC is also an astronaut training center, mission control for the International Space Station and is actively involved in programs to further NASA’s Artemis Mission to return to the moon within five years.

But aside from JSC, Texas’ space industry has proliferated. In Austin, Firefly Aerospace is building commercial rockets to launch to the moon and Mars. And Hypergiant is focused on building an Internet-like communications network for outer space among other projects. Other startups like Slingshot Aerospace are harvesting data from space, analyzing it and providing insights to the industry. And researchers at the University of Texas at Austin, Texas A&M and the University of Texas at San Antonio, Texas State University, Rice University, University of Houston, and Baylor University are all working with NASA and on space-related projects as well as private research groups like the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, which has long times to space exploration and NASA.

In addition to all that, new space industry players like SpaceX has a rocket building facility in Boca Chica, Texas to create Starship, a spacecraft designed to carry crew and cargo to Earth orbit, the Moon and Mars. And Blue Origin has a suborbital launch and engine test site in West Texas near Van Horn.

SpaceATX is sponsored by Hypergiant, UT Center for Space Research, ATX Venture Partners, Egan Nelson, and Silicon Hills Lawyer.

A limited number of tickets remain for purchase on Eventbrite.


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